December 2019 NorthWords


Writers’ Café

December 14 (Saturday), 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Perk Place, 1336 W Arrowhead Rd, Duluth

Join us at Perk Place for a chance to meet up with other writers and talk about writing. The Writers’ Cafe meets the second Saturday of each month. It’s a great way to meet fellow LSW members, network, and find members for your writing group. Casual, friendly, and fun – join us!

Literary events in our region

Walking the old roadDec 5 (Thurs) 5:00 pm – Staci Drouillard: Walking the Old Road – Local author Staci Drouillard will read from her new book, Walking the Old Road: A People’s History of Chippewa City and the Grand Marais Anishinaabe. She’ll discuss the research and take questions. Drury Lane Books, 12 E Wisconsin St, Grand Marais, MN.


Zenith Bookstore events All events held at Zenith Bookstore, 318 N Central Ave, Duluth, MN:

Dec 1-24 – Jólabókaflóð – pronounced YO-la-po-ka-flohd – is the Icelandic holiday j1 - Bob Dobrowtradition of gifting books often with chocolate and cozying up to read on cold winter nights. Starting Sunday, December 1st, Zenith Bookstore is once again celebrating this fun, restorative tradition with free gift wrapping and complimentary chocolate bar. Jólabókaflóð, which roughly translates to “Yule Book Flood,” will run from Dec. 1 to Dec. 24, when the store will offer local author readings and other fun activities. Learn more about Jólabókaflóð at

Dec 1 (Sun) 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm – Reading and Music with Chan Poling and Lucy Michell – From two beloved Minnesota musicians, a unique and moody collaboration in the form of a picture book for adults. Jack and the Ghost is a gothic, lyrical evocation of a shipwreck, ghosts, and living through grief in a seaside town. Chan Poling and Lucy Michell will entertain us with a reading of their book, discuss how it came about, and perhaps perform a few songs!

Dec 5 (Thurs) 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm – Holiday Cheer and Readings – The theme is Holiday Poetry. Please come and grab your favorite beverage. Read, listen, and enjoy local poets read their various works. Anyone is welcome to read their own or other works. Every reader can sign up and have 5 or so minutes to read and discuss their poetry!
Hosted by Lucas Alan Dietsche, Superior’s first co-Poet Laureate of Superior, and Red Mug’s very own Poet Laureate! Red Mug Coffeehouse, 916 Hammond Ave, Superior, WI.

Dec 7 (Sat) – Local Authors Book Signing – 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm: Cheryl Minnema (Johnny’s Pheasant) 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Michael Fedo (Don’t Quit Your Day Job, The Lynchings in Duluth)

Dec 14 (Sat) – Local Authors Book Signing – 11:00 am – 1:00 pm: Alex Messenger (The 29th Day) 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm: Ryan Vine (To Keep Him Hidden) 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Pamela Fish Carlson (Emma Bee)

Dec 21 (Sat) – Local Authors Book Signing – 11:00 am – 1:00 pm: Leif Enger (Virgil Wander) 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm: Margi Preus (Enchantment Lake series, Heart of a Samurai) 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Vern Northrup (Akinomaage)



The Thunderbird Review Vol. 8 – Submissions open November 1, close on December 10. Current students enrolled at FDLTCC, UWS, UMD, CSS and LSC and residents of the Twin Ports area and surrounding counties in MN and WI. Categories include Short Fiction, Creative Non-Fiction, Poetry, Artwork, and Music. Previously published work will not be accepted.





REWILDING - Crystal Gibbins.png

Flexible Press and Split Rock Review seek poetry submissions for Rewilding: Poems for the Environment, an anthology that explores the current state of the natural environment. We want to bring together a diverse spectrum of current poets writing about the environment in varied, thematic, and innovative ways. We aim to showcase a wide range of voices, especially from underrepresented communities. All proceeds will be donated to Friends of the Boundary Waters and Wilderness, a nonprofit environmental organization. Deadline: December 31. For more information and guidelines, visit: or


The Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets is currently accepting submissions to three contests: the Muse Contest (open to all Wisconsin poets), the chapbook contest (post-publication for Wisconsin poets), and the student contest (open to Wisconsin students in grades 6-12). For complete information please go to

Many Voices Fellowship – for early career writers of color and indigenous writers. Deadline December 5.
Many Voices Mentorship – for beginning Minnesota-based writers of color and indigenous writers. Deadline December 5.
Core Writer Program – for any professional writers. Deadline January 23.
McKnight Fellowship in Playwriting – for mid-career Minnesota-based writers. Deadline January 16.
McKnight Theater Artist Fellowship – for mid-career Minnesota-based artists other than playwrights. Deadline April 16

KUDOS – News about our members

Jan Chronister – Two of Jan Chronister’s poems were published by the Plath Poetry Project. Her micro-chapbook “Before They Closed the Temple at Kukulkan” is being published by the Origami Poetry Project and will be available for free on their website. Five of Jan’s poems received an Award of Merit in the annual League of Minnesota Poets contest.

TheHighlandersCollection (1) - Naomi Musch

Naomi Musch is pleased to announce the release of The Highlanders, a Smitten historical romance collection from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas and Iron Stream Media. Her story “A Tender Siege” is one of four novellas set between 1715 and 1915, each featuring a hero of the Scottish Highlands at a different turning point in history. A Tender Siege takes place in 1763, in the American wilderness during Pontiac’s War, when Highland regiments marched under Colonel Henry Bouquet to relieve the siege of Fort Pitt. More at

Sheila Packa – Two publications: a short story, “Everlasting Life” will be in the December issue of Valparaiso Fiction Review and a set of five prose poems forthcoming in The Laurel Review Issue 52.2.

In November, Vickie L. Smith received two honorable mentions in the Indianhead Writers’ 2019 Contest, one for “Corrine’s New Shoes” (fiction) and one for “A Cracker Jack of a Story” (nonfiction). They aren’t publishing the contest winners. Smith’s essay, “Writing’s Daily Worries,” is scheduled to be on Brevity Blog December 18. (

Thomas Wayne King discussed stories and poems from his four-volume Northland book series, Tales from the Red Pump, in Reykjavik, Iceland, on October 24 and 29, 2019.


Open LSW Writing Groups

Dec 11 (Wed) 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm – Monthly critique group hosted by North Shore Poets and Writers and Two Harbors Public Library. Writers of all genres (and ages 14 and up) are welcome to this monthly gathering, meeting every second Wednesday of the month. Share your writing for gentle critique, in-depth critique, or merely an audience, or just come and listen to stories and poems by local writers. See or contact our Facebook page for more information. This is a free event held monthly at Two Harbors Public Library, 320 Waterfront Dr, Two Harbors, MN.

Dec 15 (third Sun) 1:30 pm – Lake Superior Writers’ Memoir Group meets at the home of facilitator Ray Allard, 210 W Kent St, Duluth, MN. Bring something to read – we are helpful and friendly! Call 218-464-1782 for more information.

Dec 18 (third Wed) 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm – The Third Wednesday Writer’s Group, an open genre group for all writing venues (poetry, memoir, long prose, short prose, fiction/nonfiction, etc.), will meet at Perkins restaurant at the Miller Hill Mall, 1302 Miller Trunk Hwy, Duluth, MN. For more information, contact facilitator Rodney Savary, 218-464-7701,