March 2018 NorthWords

Lake Superior Writers – Call for Submissions
2018 Writing Contest
Theme – “Rescue”
Deadline:  April 1, 2018

We’re accepting entries in multiple genres for our 2018 writing contest. The theme is “Rescue.” Categories include: Poetry (up to 3 poems), Short-Short Fiction (1 or 2 submissions of up to 500 words), Short Fiction (a single submission of 1,500-5,000 words), and Creative Nonfiction (a single submission of 1,500-5,000 words). One winner in each category will receive a prize of $250 and publication on the Lake Superior Writers website. Go to for complete contest guidelines.

LSW Writers Cafe
Sat March 10, 9-11 am
Perk Place, 1336 W. Arrowhead Road, Duluth

Join us on Saturday, March 10 from 9-11 am at Perk Place, 1336 West Arrowhead, Duluth 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 proving to be a popular way to meet fellow LSW members, network, find critique partners for that unwieldy manuscript, and find members for your writing group. It’s casual and friendly (and Perk Place has really good coffee). This month your hosts are Linda Conradi and Gail Trowbridge.

Check out LSW’s latest podcast! 

Lucie Amundson

Brooks Johnson interviews Lucie Amundsen, author of “Locally Laid.” Lucie B. Amundsen talks eggs, carrots and kale as she reads from her book and talks about the writing craft on this month’s Lake Superior Writers podcast. Find the link at right on this page.

LSW Panel: “Writing for Money”
TODAY! March 3 (Sat) 2-3:30 pm – FREE
Green Room, Duluth Public Library downtown

Can you really make money with your writing? Join us in the Green Room at the downtown public library to learn from a panel of accomplished writers who earn their living by putting pen to page. Panelists will discuss how they earn money from a variety of writing roles, from working a full-time job to managing projects as a freelancer. This panel will be helpful to anyone curious about the writing business – including how to submit work for publication, working with clients, and earning your entire living from writing.

“Writing for Money” is the second in a series of three free panels on topics important for the writing life.  These panels are offered free of charge to LSW members and the general public. (Watch for date, time and location for our third panel, “Getting That Grant!”)

Make a Mobile Story
Spring 2018 Workshops
Instructor: Lisa Larson
Location: Marshall School computer lab

Create & share an interactive story for iPhones and iPads! No tech experience needed! No mobile device needed for workshop!
Choose one of these workshop sessions: Sat. March 17 or Sat. April 7 or Sat. May 5 (please note new dates)
10 am – 3 pm plus optional work time with help, 3 – 5 pm
Marshall School computer lab, 1215 Rice Lake Road, Duluth MN
Fee: $30 Open to adults age 18 and up.

In this one-day workshop you’ll be guided from start to finish to make your own mobile story or poem using the free Aris authoring tool. You can choose how your reader or viewer will access your pages or scenes, including GPS location, QR codes, a story map, or the Continue button. Besides text, you can easily add: photos, videos, music, or spoken words. Registration in advance is required. Go to to register and for further details and sample stories. Contact with questions or to discuss your ideas. Made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, thanks to legislative appropriation from the arts & cultural heritage fund.

Lisa Larson used Aris Editor to develop new learning game modules with augmented reality for the Minnesota Historical Society for a project funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities. See  for details and contact info.

This workshop series was made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, thanks to legislative appropriation from the arts & cultural heritage fund.

Literary events in our region

March 4 (Sun) 2 pm – Katharine Johnson will be signing her One Book Read The Wind and the Drum at Zenith Bookstore.

March 6 Tue) 2 pm – Katharine Johnson will be signing her One Book Read The Wind and the Drum at Grace Lutheran Church social hall, Hibbing.

March 12 (Mon) 5:30-7:30 pm – Meet Wallace J. Nichols at the Bookstore at Fitger’s, 600 E. Superior St., Duluth, as he signs his book, Blue Mind. Why are we drawn to the ocean each summer? Why does being near water set our minds and bodies at ease? In Blue Mind, Wallace J. Nichols revolutionizes how we think about these questions, revealing the remarkable truth about the benefits of being in, on, under, or simply near water. Combining cutting-edge neuroscience with compelling personal stories from top athletes, leading scientists, military veterans, and gifted artists, he shows how proximity to water can improve performance, increase calm, diminish anxiety, and increase professional success.

March 13 (Tue) 7-9 pm – NorShor Poetry Series Featuring Ellie Schoenfeld in the Mezzanine at the NorShor Theatre, downtown Duluth. With special guests: John Sonofmel, Deanna Erickson and Zomi Bloom. $3 Admission.

March 15 (Thur) 7-9 pm – Spoken Word Open Mic Featuring Jan Chronister. Beaner’s Central, 324 N. Central Ave., Duluth. Show up to sign up, trivia, and half-priced wine.

March 22 (Thur) 5:30 pm –  Katharine Johnson will be signing her One Book Read The Wind and the Drum at the Duluth League of Women Voters gathering, Valentini’s, 1400 London Rd., Duluth.

Ryan Vine

March 24 (Sat)  7:30-9 pm – Spirit Lake Poetry Series at Prøve Collective presents Ryan Vine – Ryan Vine will read from his collection To Keep Him Hidden (Salmon, 2018). The Duluth-based poet has been published in The American Poetry Review, Ploughshares, Poetry Ireland Review, Verse Daily and on National Public Radio. Ryan’s chapbook, Distant Engines (Backwaters Press, 2006), won a Weldon Kees Award and it spent time on the Poetry Foundation’s contemporary best-seller list. Ryan is associate professor, a member of the Honors faculty, the Rose Warner Professor, and Chair of the English Department at the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth. Prøve Collective, 21 N. Lake Ave., Duluth.

Norita Dittberner-Jax

March 25 (Sun) 2-4 pm – “Two Cities -Two Waters” – Pushcart Prize nominee Norita Dittberner-Jax of the Twin Cities will team up with 2012 Duluth Poet Laureate Deborah Cooper for a reading from their books at Karpeles

Deb Cooper

Manuscript Museum 902 E. 1st St., Duluth. They hope that their words will “light our way in times of darkness, in our personal struggles and along our communal path.” Deborah will be reading from her book Blue Window, and new pieces. Nortia will read from Crossing the Waters and other works. Sam Black will provide piano music, and a reception will follow the event. Free and open to the public.

April 4 (Wed) 7 pm – To celebrate the start of National Poetry Month, Zenith Bookstore is thrilled to host James Lenfestey, who will discuss and read from his recent collection A Marriage Book. James will be introduced by Duluth Poet Laureate Ellie Schoenfeld. James P. Lenfestey is the author of Seeking the Cave: A Pilgrimage to Cold Mountain, a Minnesota Book Award finalist, and multiple collections of poems, including A Marriage Book (forthcoming). He co-edited the anthology Robert Bly in This World (University of Minnesota Press). He is chair of the Literary Witness poetry series and teaches at the Mackinac Island Poetry Festival. Zenith Bookstore, 318 N Central Ave., Duluth.

KUDOS – News about our members

Pedal, Pole and Pant: Canada and Beyond is the second book by marathon athlete and Bayfield County author, Jim Anderson. It’s a 200-page, “photo tour” of Canada, one marathon at a time. Published by LSW member James Brakken’s Badger Valley Publishing, Anderson’s book also includes treks in Mexico, the Grand Canyon, and the Great Wall of China. Anderson looks into the history of each province and offers his readers far more than how, where, or when to run. Both of his books (the first on his quest to run in every U.S. state) show us the people and past of the places he runs. See both books (and excerpts) at along with 9 other “up north” books.

Jan Chronister has poems forthcoming in Red Earth Review, Pure Slush, Subterranean Blues, Nonbinary Review and The Thunderbird Review. Origami Poems Project published a micro-chapbook by Jan titled “From Seed.” One of Jan’s poems will be included in the New River Press anthology on Bob Dylan.

Gavin Glen’s poem “I Breathe to Blow the Storm Away” will be published in The Thunderbird Review.  The publication party is planned for Thursday, April 12 beginning at 4:00 p.m. in the FDLTCC Commons with the reading starting at about 4:30 p.m.

Dianna Hunter’s memoir, Wild Mares: My Lesbian Back-to-the-Land Life, will ship to bookstores in March from the University of Minnesota Press. A firsthand view of the lesbian feminist movement and women’s community at and after the moment of inception, Wild Mares is a richly contextualized view of identity politics lived and learned in real life and, literally, on the ground, in the fertile soil of struggling small farms in the American heartland. A reading and book signing with music by Terrol and Jane will take place at Peace Church Sunday, April 29, at 2 p.m. For more information and early orders:

Cheryl W. Wilke’s second picture book At the Cabin: in the Woods by the Lake Up North (Raven Productions, Inc.), has been nominated for the 30th Annual Northeastern Minnesota Book Awards in the Children’s Literature category. Through rich, lyrical language, the author story tells about a child reluctant to leave the electronic entertainment of a city home for the family’s rustic cabin up north. But once there, the simple pleasures of campfires, hikes, and dips in the lake win the child over. When the time comes to return home, the child doesn’t want to leave.

Marie Zhuikov’s nonfiction essay, “An Evening Dog Walk,” was accepted for publication in the upcoming Thunderbird Review. It’s a poignant tale of a neighborhood dog walk and dating at 50.


Breathe Free Press Essayist Writing Retreat
June 3–13, 2018 in Sperlonga, Italy
(Only 3 spaces available; deadline to apply March 15)

LSW member Gavin Glen is going to this retreat in June and invites other LSW members to consider joining him. All participants have the opportunity to publish their retreat work on and your writing will be published in an anthology. Breathe Free Press is a literary magazine of essayism: The personal made global and the global made personal. Stay at an oceanfront hotel on the coast of Italy between Rome and Naples. $1900.00 includes the writing retreat, oceanfront double occupancy room, breakfast, and amenities. Learn more and apply at

Bridging the Gap Writing Workshop coming to Duluth June 2-3, 2018. Bridging the Gap is a writing workshop for both civilian and veteran writers designed to improve their skills in telling stories about military life. Writers will be offered classes in the craft of writing, motivation, networking, and lessons in how to get published. This workshop is open to writers of any background that want to improve their skills at storytelling about military life. Anyone is welcome: civilians, family members, and/or veterans. On Saturday night, 2 June, from 7-9 pm in the Northern Lights Theater there will be a free Public Reading + Panel Discussion with Dave Chrisinger, Randy Brown, Mary Doyle, Andria Williams, and LSW member Eric Chandler (Director, Bridging the Gap). This activity is made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, thanks to legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. For details visit the Bridging the Gap website

Open LSW writing groups

March 18 (Sun) 1:30 pm – LSW Memoir Group will meet at the home of Ray Allard/Gerri Williams, 210 West Kent Road, Duluth. Bring something to read or you can just listen. The meeting is open.