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WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH—This November, fiction writers will have the chance to kick-off National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) with the North Carolina Writers' Network.

Author and NCWN trustee Michele T. Berger will host a NaNoWriMo launch party, "NaNoWriMo: Support, Sharing, and Tips," at the NCWN 2017 Fall Conference, November 3-5, in Wrightsville Beach.

Conference registration is now open.

Anyone planning to take part in NaNoWriMo, or anyone even mildly curious, is invited to meet for a casual, informal gathering, with some light refreshments, on Saturday, November 4, at 9:30 pm, following the conference Open Mics.

National Novel Writing Month asks writers to commit to writing 50,000 words during the thirty days of November. A 501(c)(3) non-profit that has become an international phenomenon, NaNoWriMo values "enthusiasm, determination, and a deadline...for anyone who has ever thought about writing a novel."

The NaNoWriMo website allows users to create accounts where they can plan their novel, receive online encouragement, and be part of a worldwide community of writers all trying to crank out 50K words in a month.

For more information about NaNoWriMo, click here.

Michele T. Berger is a professor, writer, creativity expert, and pug-lover. Her main love is writing speculative fiction, though she also is known to write poetry and creative nonfiction, too. Her fiction has appeared in UnCommon Origins: A Collection of Gods, Monsters, Nature and Science by Fighting Monkey Press; You Don’t Say: Stories in the Second Person by Ink Monkey Press; Flying South: A Literary Journal; 100wordstory; Thing Magazine; and The Red Clay Review. Her nonfiction writing and poetry have appeared in The Chapel Hill News, Glint Literary Journal, Oracle: Fine Arts Review, Trivia: Voices of Feminism, The Feminist Wire, Ms. Magazine, Carolina Woman Magazine, Western North Carolina Woman, A Letter to My Mom (Crown Press), Luminescent Threads: Connections to Octavia Butler (Twelfth Planet Press) and various zines. Her sci-fi novella “Reenu-You” was recently published by Book Smugglers Press.

At the NCWN 2017 Fall Conference, Michele will also lead the session "Charting Your Path to Publication: Tips, Techniques, and Lessons for Writers." This class will teach writers strategies to beat the odds of rejection.

“Charting Your Path” is designed for writers at all levels. Attendees will focus most of their time on how and where to submit short fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry. They’ll examine a variety of venues including literary journals, magazines, newspapers, anthologies as well as how to submit to agents and publishing houses. They will also discuss the role of author mindset as vital to publishing success. There is no one path to publication, but one can follow and replicate the strategies of accomplished writers. Each participant will leave with an action plan with concrete steps toward publication (or, if already published with a plan about how to become more widely so).

Pre-registration for the NCWN 2017 Fall Conference is open through October 27.

The exact  location of the NaNoWriMo launch party, "NaNoWriMo: Support, Sharing, and Tips," will be announced at the general sesesions during the conference, but the meeting will happen on-site at the Holiday Inn Resort, in a breakout room.

 Keep an eye on the Network's blog for more information about National Novel Writing Month! 

 

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH—Melissa Crowe, co-editor of Beloit Poetry Journal, will lead the session "Fine Lines" at the North Carolina Writers' Network 2017 Fall Conference, November 3-5, at the Holiday Inn Resort in Wrightsville Beach.

Registration is now open.

In this class, attendees will explore “line logic," the line as the poem’s primary unit of composition; they’ll pay some attention to how skilled poets make choices about line length and line breaks, and they’ll have a look at the ways in which contemporary poets trouble or test convention, fiddling with a line's music and structure, perhaps discovering new ways to create tension and energy. Participants will engage in exercises designed to get them experimenting with lines and line breaks in their own poems and should come away surprised at the difference this kind of attention to the line can make in their work.

NCWN has been celebrating literary journals this year, so we asked Melissa to tell us about her first publication.

"I was in the Ph.D program at the University of Georgia when I really started sending work out in earnest, and I was also the mother of a very small girl. I was mostly writing about her—the experience of pregnancy, birth, and mothering. These subjects were, aside from my coursework, about all I could manage to think about in those days. I was also hearing, on a pretty regular basis, that nobody likes 'mother poems.' Disheartening to say the least. But I kept writing them, and I kept sending them to magazines, and the first one to get picked up was 'Bruise,' a brief lyric about watching Annabelle walk for the first time. It appeared in the Winter/Spring 2003 issue of Crab Orchard Review. Suddenly I was a bonafide mother-poet, and suddenly that felt like a truly good thing. I’ve remained grateful to Allison Joseph and Jon Tribble ever since."

Melissa Crowe is the author of two chapbooks, Cirque du Crève-Cœur (dancing girl, 2007) and Girl, Giant (Finishing Line, 2013), and her poems and essays have appeared in the Atlanta Review, the Crab Orchard Review, and the Seneca Review, among other journals. She’s co-editor of Beloit Poetry Journal and coordinator of the MFA program in Creative Writing at UNCW. She lives in Wilmington with her husband, Mark, and their daughter, Annabelle.

The University of North Carolina at Wilmington Department of Creative Writing will sponsor the Closing Reception of Writers' Week, which leads directly into the Opening Reception of NCWN's 2017 Fall Conference, on Friday, November 3, beginning at 6:00 pm.

Fall Conference attracts hundreds of writers from around the country and provides a weekend full of activities that include lunch and dinner banquets with readings, keynotes, tracks in several genres, open mic sessions, and the opportunity for one-on-one manuscript critiques with editors or agents. This year's Master Classes will be led by Dan Albergotti (Poetry); Wendy Brenner (Creative Nonfiction); and Nina de Gramont (Fiction).

The nonprofit North Carolina Writers’ Network is the state’s oldest and largest literary arts services organization devoted to all writers, in all genres, at all stages of development. For additional information, visit www.ncwriters.org.

 

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH—Deonna Kelli Sayed joined the Network as its Membership Coordinator this summer, and she'll lead the class "The Writing Life: Strategies for Being an Artist in the Real World (or How to Make the Writing Life Happen)" at the North Carolina Writers' Network 2017 Fall Conference, November 3-5, at the Holiday Inn Resort in Wrightsville Beach.

Pre-registration is open through October 27.

Deonna Kelli Sayed is an internationally published author. Her books include Paranormal Obsession: America’s Fascination with Ghosts & Hauntings, Spooks & Spirits, a cultural studies discussion on why America loves high strangeness. Her essays appear in The New York Times' featured anthology, Love, Insh’allah: The Secret Love Lives of American Muslim Women, and Faithfully Feminist: Jewish, Christian and Muslim Women on Why We Stay. She was a freelance writer in the Kingdom of Bahrain, and is the recipient of state and national awards for her multimedia work in Yes!Weekly, an independent newspaper in Greensboro. She has appeared on NPR, The State of Things, Coast to Coast AM, and WUNC-TV. Deonna serves NCWN as Membership Coordinator, and is currently writing a memoir about faith, love, and ghosts.

NCWN has been celebrating literary journals this year, so we asked Deonna to tell us about her first publication.

"I think the first time I had something significant in a journal was after September 11, 2001. It wasn't literary; it was Foreign Policy in Focus, an academic journal. I wrote an op-ed with my then husband, an Afghan, about the situation in Afghanistan. It was first published in an English language paper in Pakistan, and then picked up by Foreign Policy in Focus.

"I was living in Azerbaijan and pregnant with my son, an Afghan-American, who was a combination of two cultures now in conflict. It was during that time when I started to seriously write, partially because I was in exile while America endured 9/11, and because I had nothing else to do while abroad.

"A few years later, I was living in the Kingdom of Bahrain. I started freelancing for English language magazines, and I started a writing workshop for expats and others. Living outside of the U.S. was a huge factor in my writing journey. I needed distance from the familiar. A geographical fix can do wonders.

"My story demonstrates that there are many paths to writing, and the process is sometimes influenced by events beyond our everyday world."

In "The Writing Life: Strategies for Being an Artist in the Real World (or How to Make a Writing Life Happen)," Deonna will explore various ways to honor creative space in the life you have. She’ll share writing models that highlight different approaches to creativity and craft, and how to navigate individual barriers to a successful writing practice. Participants will investigate how perceptions of creativity can erode writing confidence. The workshop will be part interactive, part lecture, and part celebration of the wild and wonderful world of writing.

Fall Conference attracts hundreds of writers from around the country and provides a weekend full of activities that include lunch and dinner banquets with readings, keynotes, tracks in several genres, open mic sessions, and the opportunity for one-on-one manuscript critiques with editors or agents. This year's Master Classes will be led by Dan Albergotti (Poetry); Wendy Brenner (Creative Nonfiction); and Nina de Gramont (Fiction). New York Times bestselling author Wiley Cash will give the Keynote Address.

Register here.

The nonprofit North Carolina Writers’ Network is the state’s oldest and largest literary arts services organization devoted to all writers, in all genres, at all stages of development. For additional information, visit www.ncwriters.org.

 

 
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