September 2018 NorthWords

Writers Cafe
Sat Sept 8, 9-11 am
Perk Place, 1336 W. Arrowhead Road, Duluth

Join us on Saturday 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 a great way to meet fellow LSW members, network, and find members for your writing group. It’s casual and friendly (and Perk Place has really good coffee).

Leaves of Grass – Illuminated
A solo performance by Patrick Scully
Celebrating Walt Whitman
Wed Sept 12, 7 pm
Teatro Zuccone, Downtown Duluth
Tickets $10; at and at the box office

Patrick Scully as Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman is considered to be America’s great poet, but his work was very controversial for its time, particularly his poetry collection Leaves of Grass (1855). Leaves of Grass was described as obscene for its overt sexuality, while it received praised from Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. In Leaves of Grass—Illuminated, Patrick Scully embodies Whitman in his “multitudes,” exploring his inclusiveness and embrace of all humankind.

PATRICK SCULLY is a Minneapolis-based performing artist. Leaves of Grass–Illuminated has premiered in New York City and Minneapolis, and will be performed July 12-14, 2019, at the Guthrie Theater, shortly after the 200th anniversary of Whitman’s birth.

This activity is made possible by the voters of MN through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund, and is sponsored by Lake Superior Writers. The performance includes video projections depicting nudity. 

Author Michael Fedo
Writing Workshop & Book Release Party
Sept 16 (Sun)
Workshop: 2-3:30 pm
Reading and book signing: 4 pm

Lake Superior Writers and Holy Cow! Press present a writing workshop and book release party celebrating Michael Fedo’s new memoir, Don’t Quit Your Day Job: The Adventures of a Midlist Author on Sunday, September 16, 2018, at the August Fitger Room in the Fitger’s Complex, 600 E. Superior St., Duluth. The workshop will take place from 2-3:30 PM, followed by the reading and book signing at 4 PM.

Don’t Quit Your Day Job: The Adventures of a Midlist Author recounts the five-decade writing career of Michael Fedo. This book should engage general readers curious about the literary life of a workaday writer, as well as aspiring authors-in-waiting.

Fedo’s writing workshop will focus on crafting publishable op-ed essays. His op-ed pieces have appeared in the Christian Science Monitor, Newsday, Chicago Tribune, and the Providence Journal, among others. Fedo will discuss types of op-ed essays and publications. For the first ten enrollees, Fedo will read and critique individual op-ed pieces. Submissions should run 600-800 words. The workshop costs $10 for Lake Superior Writers members; $20 for non-members. To register, contact

Michael Fedo has published hundreds of articles and essays in The New York Times, Christian Science Monitor, Los Angeles Times, Reader’s Digest, and elsewhere. Don’t Quit Your Day Job: The Adventures of a Midlist Author is his tenth book.

LSW Panel: “Getting Started”
Oct 6 (Sat) 1-3 pm
The College of Saint Scholastica Science Building Rm 1109
LSW members – free; general public – $5

Join us on October 6th for “Getting Started,” a panel combining the wisdom of published poets, and fiction and nonfiction writers. Sheila Packa, Naomi Musch, Bob “Astro Bob” King, and Emily Stone will describe their process for getting started, and offer a variety of prompts for you to jumpstart your own new projects. Come ready to learn and try some new techniques – you might start a surprising new enterprise!

Writing for Beginners
Workshop with Alice Marks
4 sessions Saturdays in October

Alice Marks

This class is for the beginning writer; someone who has always wanted to write. Writers will be encouraged to write in their prefered genre as they learn some of the “tricks of the trade.” Each class will provide timed writing opportunities, including exercises and personal creating. Participants will learn the art of gentle critiquing as each reads and asks for critiques. While not denying that writing can be hard work, this class will stress the joy and therapeutic value of writing and strive to make the writing fun, rather than daunting, for each new writer.

This is a four-session class, and will take place every Saturday morning in October 2018 (Oct 6, 13, 20, 27) from 10am-12pm at Duluth Sister Cities (the Lake Superior Writer’s office).

Cost: $50/LSW members, $85/non-LSW members (includes one-year Lake Superior Writers membership).

Scholarships are available. To sign up, please email Jenna at

The Manuscript Swap is for authors with completed, unpublished novel-length manuscripts who are willing to review someone else’s novel-length manuscript in exchange for feedback on their own. It’s peer-to-peer feedback, hosted by LSW. This program is designed to connect local authors with serious, positive feedback from another local writer on an unpublished manuscript. Note that this program is not a good fit for authors seeking professional editing or proofreading services. Please visit Manuscript Swap for full information.

Oct 6 – Oct 27 10 am – 12:30 pm
“Playing With Poetic Forms”
Taught by Jan Chronister at WITC-Superior

Try your hand at using various poetic forms. Discover how being limited by a specific structure can actually be liberating! There will be examples, class discussion/feedback and weekly writing prompts and assignments. Submission opportunities will be shared. Class is held on Saturday Oct 6 – Oct 27 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Cost is $49.50 ($27 seniors) Please register in advance at – Catalog # 60-801-600/course # 64342 (these numbers are needed to register).

Call for Writers Cafe Hosts

We’ve been thrilled with the regular attendance of LSW members at the Writer’s Cafe at Perk Place the second Saturday of every month. To continue it’s ongoing success, we are looking for LSW members to volunteer to be hosts. We’re looking for six people to volunteer to host two Writer’s Cafes a year (about a 4-6 hour commitment a year, total).

As a host, you’ll be responsible for calling a week ahead to ensure the table is reserved at Perk Place, welcoming people at the beginning of the session, ensuring people feel welcome and introduce themselves, and facilitate meaningful conversations around writing. No experience or expert-level writing expertise is required; just a passion for writing and helping writers network in the northland! For training, we’ll have you co-host with someone so you can get a feel for it before you host solo. Couples and two-person host teams are also encouraged to apply.

If you’re interested in hosting, please email Jenna at

Literary events in our region

Sept 9 (Sun) 1-4 pm. Meet and greet Duluth writer Katie Berg author of North Shore Adventures. Free admission. Zenith Bookstore, 318 N Central Ave., Duluth. (218) 606-1777.

Sept 10 (Mon) 7 pm. Join Cassandra Csencsitz and family for the launch of Alcoholite at the Altar: The Writer and Addiction, the collected writings of Roger Forseth (1927-2016). Professor, recovering alcoholic, and founder of Dionysos: Journal of Literature and Addiction, Forseth dedicated his career to studying our greatest writers and their double-edged muse—at once creative lubricant and crippling disease. Free admission. Zenith Bookstore, 318 N Central Ave., Duluth. (218) 606-1777.

Sept 11 (Tue) 7 pm – Cary Griffiths will read and sign his book Gunflint Burning: Fire in the Boundary Waters at the Mienders Public Library in Pipestone, Minnesota.

Sept 14 (Fri) 7 pm. Zenith Bookstore is thrilled to welcome William Kent Krueger who will read from and sign Desolation Mountain, the latest thriller in the beloved Cork O’Connor mystery series. Zenith Bookstore, 318 N Central Ave., Duluth. (218) 606-1777.

Sept 15 (Sat) – Katharine Johnson and illustrator Alicia Schwab will be presenting The Mukluk Ball at the Minnesota Children’s Book Festival in Red Wing. Check their website for details.

Sept 18 (Tue) 7 pm. Author and illustrator Anastasia Higginbotham presents Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness. The fourth and latest book in her Ordinary Terrible Things Series, a white child sees TV coverage of a police shooting—and has some questions. Zenith Bookstore, 318 N Central Ave., Duluth. (218) 606-1777.

Sept 18 (Tue) 7 pm – Cary Griffiths will speak to the Minnesota Rovers about his book Lost in the Wild at MacCalester College in St. Paul.

Sept 22 (Sat) – James Brakken will show his latest short story collection, Billyboy, the Corner Bar Bear plus 36 Fairly True Tales from Up North at the Hayward, Wisconsin Fall Fest. Sales will benefit the Sawyer County Historical Society Museum.

Sept 22 (Sat) 9 am-noon – Sharon Chmielarz / little eternities will do a workshop called “Torque Your Writing” for the Jackpine Writers’ Bloc at the Smokey Hills Resort, Osage, Minnesota.

Sept 23 (Sun) 2-4 pm – Living off the grid in small-town middle America, capturing scenes of survival and reckoning, and examining family and personal histories are recurring themes in Jan Chronister’s full-length poetry collection CAUGHT BETWEEN COASTS. The “coasts” map birth and death, brother and sister, child and parent, along the shores of Lake Michigan and Lake Superior where Chronister has lived. The publication release party will feature music by Sarah Jane Hale and Joe Lindzius, the acoustic duo known as Similar Dogs. Light refreshments will be served. Lake Superior Estuarium on Barker’s Island, Superior, Wisconsin. Go to for information.

Sept 27 (Thur) 7 pm. Award-winning Minnesota author Sarah Stonich presents her novel Laurentian Divide. Zenith Bookstore, 318 N Central Ave., Duluth. (218) 606-1777.

Sept 27 (Thur) 6 pm – Katharine Johnson will lead a discussion of her historical fiction book The Wind and the Drum at Kaleva Hall in Virginia. All are welcome.

Sept 29 (Sat) 6 pm. Zenith Bookstore welcome musician, artist, and now author Dessa to West Duluth. Dessa will discuss, read from, and sign her new memoir My Own Devices – True Stories from the Road on Music, Science, and Senseless Love at Zenith Bookstore, 318 N Central Ave., Duluth. This is a ticketed event. $30 advanced ticket includes 1 copy of My Own Devices. Tickets may be purchased at Zenith Bookstore, by phone at (218) 606-1777, or online at

Sept 29 (Sat) – Katharine Johnson will be signing her books at the Cloquet Public Library event for local authors.

Sept 29 (Sat) – James Brakken will show his books at Redbery Books at the Cable, Wisconsin, Fall Fest.

KUDOS – News about our members

Gary Boelhower’s poem “From Somewhere Inside” was published in the fall 2018 issue of Twyckenham Notes, and can be read and listened to at

Jan Chronister’s new poetry collection Caught Between Coasts will be released at a publication party on Sunday Sept 23, 2-4 pm at Lake Superior Estuarium on Barker’s Island, Superior, Wisconsin. (See Literary Events in our Region for more info.)

Carol Dunbar’s short story “Saving Stobs” won first place for the Hal Prize for fiction. This year the contest was judged by author Peter Geye.

Laura Hansen’s poem “Sometimes I Pray That You Won’t Talk to Me” was featured in Alison McGhee’s blog at the end of July as The Poem of the Week. You can read Laura’s poem and more from McGhee’s blog by going to The poem is also included in Hansen’s 2016 collection, Deja Vu. More at

Molly Hoeg had a story published in the Fall 2018 issue of Minnesota Trails Magazine called “Cycling the Skyline.” Editor Jan Lasar followed her cycling journey across Duluth taking great photos all along the way, and a photo of Molly biking across one of the bridges on Seven Bridges Road, Duluth was featured on the cover of the magazine.

Thomas Wayne King’s textbook Modern Morse Code in Rehabilitation and Education: New Applications in Assistive Technology (Allyn & Bacon, Boston. 2000) is a central influence in his collaboration with Adaptive Design Association NYC (MacArthur Foundation Award recipient, 2015) and Google’s May 8, 2018 release of Gboard, providing adapted computer and digital device access via Morse Code inputs and other methods for persons of diverse abilities. Tom and his wife Debbi will be in New York City, September 13-17 to work with ADA NYC staff and teams of Google developers to refine and enhance this historic merging of older technology with state-of-the-art machine learning that can help people worldwide who are struggling with speech and writing.

Marcia Neely’s novel Deep Grass Roots was recently published by Beavers Pond Press. The novel portrays the story of two young women who leave Minnesota in 1900 to homestead in northwestern North Dakota. Inspired by experiences of the author’s grandmother, Neely portrays daily life in the small community of hearty Norwegians. Marcia Neely is a former small-town newspaper publisher who lives in Saint Cloud. She previously self-published two non-fiction books. Books are available on the author’s website on-line store:, by emailing the author at, or on Amazon.


Sara Livingston Floerke to offer writing classes for middle and high school students

Sara Livingston Floerke has been teaching writing and grammar classes to homeschool students for the past eight years. This year she is offering a middle school writing class focused on analyzing and writing about the Narnia series, beginning with The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Her high school level writing class will be creating research papers and discussing literature based on the theme of Metamorphosis.

Classes will be held once a week on Tuesdays in the Gold Room at the downtown Duluth Public Library beginning on September 18, 2018. Cost is $100/semester for the middle school class and $110/semester for the high school class. Please contact Sara at or 218/340-5302 if interested.

Writing Residency in Door County, Wisconsin

Write On Door County accepts applications for writer residencies year round. Write On provides a place of solitude and reflection on nearly 40 acres of woods, orchards, and meadows nestled between the water of Green Bay and Lake Michigan. They welcome applications from emerging and established writers in any contemporary literary genre. Applications are also accepted from literary arts administrators who need time away to envision a new program, edit materials, or find renewal for their own creative work. There is a $25 application fee. Most residencies are for a week long stay.  The program is run by Executive Director  Jeord Santek, former Senior Director at the Loft.  Here is the link for more information.

Ariel Anthology seeks poetry submissions

Submissions are now open for the Ariel Anthology, Issue 5. The theme is journeys. Open to Wisconsin poets over 18. Deadline is September 16. For complete details and guidelines, please email

REWILD Writing Workshop
Sept 7-9, Gunflint Trail

REWILD is an immersive workshop where you spend a weekend “on assignment” as a nature writer. The inaugural workshop will be held at a historic camp on the edge of the Boundary Waters.

REWILD 2018 will take place in northern Minnesota. You’ll venture out on a day trip to a hidden waterfall in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Take time to journal, swim, practice your photography, or simply relax. Immerse yourself in seminars, practicums, and creative experiences. At a comfortable lakeside lodge, a working professional writer will guide you step by step through the process of writing your own nature vignette—a miniature version of the kind of story you see featured on magazine covers.

At the end of the workshop, you’ll have a chance to give a reading and be applauded for your work. You may also choose to have your story published on the forthcoming Wildhaus Studio blog.  Before and after the in-person workshop, you’ll enjoy three private mini-workshops delivered live online (and recorded for your convenience) to jumpstart your writing practice for 2019. For curious writers of all levels, REWILD is a weekend to develop as a writer and inspire new possibilities for your creative life.

INSTRUCTOR: Shelby Gonzalez is a senior writer for REI Co-op and founder of Wildhaus, an independent writing studio. Her background includes an adventure column (Miss Guided), hundreds of published stories, and a managing editor role at Northern Wilds magazine. Her most recent feature is about volcanoes and the search for alien life.

TUITION: $597 – For more information:

Open LSW writing groups

Sept 16 (Sun) 1:30 pm – The LSW Memoir Group will meet on the third Sunday of the month, at the home of Ray Allard, 210 West Kent Road. We are looking for those who would like feedback on their writings, in a comfortable and non-judgmental environment. Memoirists and writers are welcome. Bring something of yours to read. You’ll find us friendly. Reach Ray at for questions.

Sept 19 (third Wednesday) 6 pm – The Third Wednesday Writers Group will meet at the Perkins restaurant at the Miller Hill Mall, 1302 Miller Trunk Highway, Duluth. We are an open genre group for all writing venues (poetry, memoir, long prose, short prose, fiction/nonfiction, etc.). The group is facilitated by Rodney Savary, 218-464-7701,

Sept 20 (Thur) 11 am – Writers’ Square Table discussion group will meet at the Sami Center of North America, 4915 E. Superior St., Suite 205 (Enter from Pitt St.)