March 2017 NorthWords

“The First 50 Pages”
Instructor: Felicia Schneiderhan
Six Thursdays beginning March 30 and ending May
6-8:30pm at LSW office, 301 W 1st St., Suite 310, Board of Trade Building

Felicia Schneiderhan

Even those of us who write every day may not have written what’s really in our dreams: a full-length manuscript. Whether it’s a work of fiction, or a memoir, or some other work you envision, this class will help you write the first 50 pages! Everyone will write 10 pages for each class (except the first class) and we’ll share and review our progress each week. Sometimes all it takes is a schedule and a weekly deadline to get the all-important start on your work. Join Felicia Schneiderhan on Thursdays March 30-May 4, 6-8:30 pm at the LSW offices. Cost is $90 for LSW members and $115 for non-members who become members upon taking the class.

Felicia Schneiderhan is an award-winning author based in Duluth. In 2015, she published the memoir Newlyweds Afloat, detailing more than two years that she and her husband Mark lived aboard a trawler in Chicago. One partial scholarship for the class is available; go to for complete information. To register, contact Marty Sozansky at 218-341-4363 or

Call for Submissions – 2017 LSW Writing Contest

Lake Superior Writers is accepting entries in multiple genres for our annual writing contest. Categories include:  Poetry, Short-Short Fiction (up to 500 words), Short Story (1,500-5,000 words), and Creative Nonfiction (1,500-5,000 words). Writers may submit in more than one category but can win in only one. One winner in each category will receive a prize of $250 and publication on the Lake Superior Writers website.

The 2017 theme is “Rivers: Mapped and Unmapped.” We are looking for submissions that use the theme of rivers, real or metaphorical. Writers have written about rivers as a metaphor for time, history, lifeblood and more. What will rivers, or a specific river, evoke in your writing? In her song River, Joni Mitchell wrote, “I wish I had a river I could skate away on.” What do rivers mean to you? Check out our complete guidelines.

Upcoming Events

March 6 (Mon) 6:30 pm – Words & Lyrics will feature the writing of Finnish Americans, a program echoing events around the country celebrating Finland’s 100th year of independence. Selections of prose and poetry from the children and grandchildren of Finnish immigrants will be read by Jeanne Maki. Lyric Center Annex, 516 Chestnut Street, Virginia. This event is free and open to the public.

March 15, 22, 29 & 5 (Wednesdays) 6-8:30 pm – Jan Chronister is teaching “Jumpstart Your Poetry” at WITC in Ashland beginning March 15. The class runs for four Wednesdays (last class April 5). It is suitable for beginners through published poets. Follow this link to register online. Type “poetry” in the first field and the class should come up. Email questions to

March 16 (Thurs) 6-7:30 pm – The Grand Marais Writers’ Guild meets at the Grand Marais Public Library. Open to ALL writers. Bring your notebook; writing prompts provided. Contact: Rose Arrowsmith DeCoux, Future dates, all 6-7:30 pm at the library: April 19, May 17 and June 21.

March 16 (Thurs) 7-9 pm – Spoken Word Open Mic featuring Michelle Mathees. Open to all genres of written work, half priced wine, trivia and prizes. Show up to sign up!

March 19 (Sun) 1-3 pm – A two-hour workshop “Writing Family History” will be held at the Douglas County Historical Society (1101 John Avenue in Superior). The session will focus on poetry, but all writers are welcome. Facilitators are Jan Chronister and Peggy Trojan. The cost is $5 and includes a copy of Trojan’s chapbook Homefront which will be integral to the discussion. Participants are encouraged to bring a family keepsake, photo or other artifact. No pre-registration is required. Call DCHS at 715-392-8449 for more info.

March 25 (Sat) 10-3 pm – Mark Munger will be at Peace Church in Duluth on participating in the Treasures of the Earth Art and Craft Festival. Signed books from Mark, along with lots of other great vendors.

March 25 (Sat) 12:30-2 pm – Grand Marais Art Colony’s 2016 Mentorship in Fiction gather with regional writers at the Grand Marais Public Library to read from nearly-completed manuscripts, answer questions and talk about the writing life. Hosted by Judy Budreau of Lake Superior Writers, and free and open to the public.

KUDOS – News about our members

James Brakken’s historical fiction novel Alias Ray Olson: The Complete Story Behind the 1939 Chequamegon Forest Manhunt will be released later this month. A special edition of 40 signed and numbered collector copies can be pre-ordered through Brakken’s website, Alias Ray Olson is a 290-page illustrated novel about the life and death of August Buelo, also known as Ray Olson. Olson was known to have tampered with illegal slot machines in Wisconsin and Minnesota taverns. He became a significant character in Wisconsin’s “gangster history” in June, 1939, when, after a downtown Hayward car chase, two deputized citizens assisting the Sawyer County sheriff were shot and killed. Olson took to the woods, beginning Wisconsin’s largest-ever manhunt.

Sheila Packa has a poem in a new anthology published by Grayson Books, Forgotten Women: A Tribute in Poetry. The subjects of the poems in this book are artists and scientists, sharp-shooters and lighthouse keepers, factory workers, athletes, homemakers, and musicians. There are those who had brief windows of fame, and others who were or are completely anonymous. This remarkable anthology is sure to be valued by those who want to fill in the gaps of history, and make it herstory too. Available anywhere in bookstores or at

The Swedish label BIS records recently released the audio CD Sibelius Kullervo Kortekangas Migrations performed by the Minnesota Orchestra, directed by Osmo Vänskä, and the music has received good reviews in the US and internationally. Four of Sheila Packa’s poems were used to create the work of classical music. It is available everywhere. For more information, see

Six Weeks of Fun, Inspiration and Tips for Writers
Wednesdays, April 12 to May 17
7 to 9 pm
Instructor: Alice Marks
Lincoln Park Middle School

Writers of all levels are invited to join this class, taught by an educator and published author. In a relaxed and affirming setting you will be encouraged to share your poems, stories, and memoirs. Each week you will have a writing prompt to inspire your creativity and you will learn techniques for improving your writing. Fun with other writers is guaranteed. Alums of this class include one who had a humor piece published in the Duluth News Tribune, one who published a novel, and one who became employed in the writing field. Call 336-8760 extension 5 to register for class #5179. $36

THE DARN GOOD READERS invite new members to join

What are The Darn Good Readers? We’re a group of readers and writers who will be available to share their love of literature by doing readings around the Northland. Depending on the location and occasion, we may read from classic and contemporary published works by our favorite authors; in some situations we may read our own work.  We’ll be available to read at festivals, bars, coffee shops, hospitals, schools, libraries — any place that wants to inspire reading and writing.  Our first gig is April at Beaners — more next month.  If interested in joining, email

Grants for Writers

The Emerging Writers Grant
Thank you to Bao Phi, Program Director at the Loft Literary Center who presented an information session about the Minnesota Emerging Writers’ Grant to LSW members and others in Duluth last month. This grant provides financial support and professional assistance to support the artistic or career advancement of writers who show significant potential, have a professional practice, have some level of professional achievement yet are under-recognized. This is not a beginning writers’ grant. Up to five winners will be selected to receive grants of $8,000. Applications are accepted from Minnesota poets, prose writers, children’s authors, and spoken word poetry artists. Applications are not accepted in the following genres: monologues, scripts, screenplays, journalism, academic, education, business, or self-help. Guidelines and applications are now available online at The due date for this grant is March 31, 2017.

The McKnight Artist Fellowship for Writers
The McKnight Artist Fellowships for Writers provide Minnesota writers of demonstrated ability with an opportunity to work on their craft for a concentrated period of time. Four $25,000 fellowships are offered in alternating years to writers of creative prose and poetry.  Creative prose includes fiction and literary nonfiction such as memoir, personal essay, and autobiography. During the poetry cycle, three fellowships of $25,000 are offered alongside one $25,000 fellowship for a spoken word artist. A $25,000 fellowship is awarded each year in children’s literature, including poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction. This year’s award is offered to a writer for children 8 years of age or older. These fellowships do not support the work of playwriting, journalism, or nonfiction that is written primarily for educational or technical use. Guidelines for the McKnight Fellowship are generally available in September at

Hal Prize Contest deadline May 1

Each fall, the Peninsula Pulse invites people of all ages, backgrounds and artistic abilities to submit stories, photographs and poems for a chance to be published in our annual Hal Prize literary and photography issue. The Hal Prize is held in the spirit of the late Hal Grutzmacher, a professor and Door County bookstore owner, by offering commentary and encouragement to promising writers and photographers. The contest offers publication to a readership of more than 17,000, cash awards for first place winners, a week stay at their partnering organization, Write On, Door County, and other prizes. To see last year’s winners, go to Deadline for this year is May 1, 2017. Complete guidelines at

The Loft Literary Center
Writing the Novel and Crafting a Career in Minneapolis April 29

The Loft in Minneapolis is offering a one-day conference for writers called Writing the Novel and Crafting a Career Conference Saturday, April 29, 8 am-6 pm, at The Loft at Open Book (Performance Hall) The conference is designed to help you take the next steps toward completing your novel and launching your career. Featuring Angela Flournoy, Kiese Laymon, Charles Baxter, and many more novelists, editors, and book people. See the full conference schedule and how to register here.

Write-by-the-Lake Writer’s Workshop and Retreat  Madison June 26-30

The University of Wisconsin Madison Department of Continuing Studies offers a week-long “Write-by-the-Lake” Writers Workshop June 26 through 30. Immerse yourself in hands-on mini-workshops, critiques, and time to focus on your writing. Choose from fourteen sections in fiction, nonfiction, freelancing, and poetry. Master classes including full-novel critique. See complete details and registration here.

LSW Open Writing Groups

March 16 (Thur), 11 a.m. Writers’ Square Table. Place: Sami Center, 4915 E. Superior Street, Ste# 205. Enter from Pitt Street. Topic: Writing an Ethical Will. Mara Hart will facilitate. All are welcome.

March 15 (Wed) 6 pm – Third Wednesday Writing Group meets on the 3rd floor of the Board of Trade Building, 301 West First Street. All genres are welcome.   Questions? Contact Rodney at

March 19 (Sun) 1:30 pm – Memoir Group – We will meet at the home of Mara Hart, 205 W. Kent Road, Duluth. All are welcome.

LSW Mentoring and Editing Program

Would you like a writing coach to help you with your writing or does your manuscript need some editing? Check out the LSW Editing and Mentoring Program where you can pair up with an editor or mentor If you’re interested in finding an editor or mentor, you can read through our profiles and contact the individual you would like to work with directly. If you are interested in becoming an Editor or Mentor, please email us at