Saturday, November 24, 2018

Meeting Minutes November 15, 2018

Our meeting commenced at 6 pm. Three of our members attended Joy Choquette's workshops on November 7th and 14th. Unfortunately, Joy could not be with us for this meeting.  Judy asked on her behalf if anyone would be interested in a blogging workshop.  Several members expressed interest.  There will be more information in the future if Joy decides to hold the workshop.

2 group members are attempting NaNoWrimo. Alternatives to a full novel were proposed for those interested in participating in the remainder of NaNo. Members could write: a blog a day, article a day, short story a day, book proposal or query letters.

Becky proposed a couple of ideas for future group activities
1. The Creativity Project: An Awesometastic Story Collection by Colby Sharp Combines art and writing
2. A writing prompt box.  2 prompts are pulled each month and the entire group attempts a piece (poem, short story, essay, memoir) based on one of the prompts. Becky will bring in a prompt box for December's meeting.


Hunger Mountain: Reminder to all.  There are 5 contests/categories.  Submission of original, previously unpublished work is from October 1-March 1. Find all of the information HERE and happy writing!

Burlington Writer's Workshop offers several workshops monthly on a variety of topics.  The next submission period for their "Mud Season Review" begins December 1st. Find all of the information HERE


Literary North " Read author interviews, discussions about our favorite books, tips about literary resources, and news and notes about northern New England books and authors." Please find more information HERE. Among the listings is a book event featuring local author Stephen Payne and his latest work "Life on a Cliff" Saturday, December 1, 2018 10:00 AM  2:00 PM Bridgeside Books
29 Stowe Street Waterbury, VT


Corrina Thurston is having a book launch and event on December 5th at the New Moon Cafe in Burlington. Her newest book is "Disappearing Act" You can find more details HERE.

Michelle discussed her experiences with NaNo up to this point in the month. Annie read her short story. It was compared to the short story "The Shack" by William Young. Scott read 2 of his song lyrics, including "Pretty Push". Don read his entry for the Emotion Speaks "Anxiety" exhibit. The meeting concluded at 7:30.

Our next meeting is Thursday December 27th.  To celebrate the festive season, please bring something light to share (cookies, bread etc)

Monday, October 22, 2018

Meeting Minutes October 18th, 2018

Our meeting commenced at 6 pm without our fearless leader.  Missed you Becky!

We discussed upcoming workshops, contests and exhibitions, details below.  Three members shared their work. Barbara read a chapter from her modern fantasy novel, Richard read a short story titled "The Truth of It" and Michelle read her upcoming entry for the Green Mountain Power contest. Our meeting concluded at 7 pm


We have a slew of contests with deadlines ranging from October 30th to March 1st 2019.  Please keep an eye on our Facebook PAGE for regular updates.  Here is just a partial list. Follow the links provided for detailed information.  Happy writing!

  1. Columbia College Literary Review Editor's Prize. Deadline December 1st.  Details found HERE
  2. Wild Proton. Deadline November 1st. Details found HERE
  3. Deadline October 30th. Details found HERE
  4.  Fiddlehead story and poem contest. Deadline. December 3rd. Details to be found HERE
  5. The Birdy Poetry Prize by Meadowlark books. Deadline December 1st. Details found HERE
  6. Vermont Writer's Prize co-sponsored by Green Mountain Power and Vermont Magazine. Deadline November 1st. Details found HERE
  7. Hunger Mountain. Deadline March 1st. Details found HERE 
NANOWRIMO! November is national writing month.  Are you brave enough to try and write a novel in a month? If you dare then find details HERE.  Good luck!

Great Christmas Read

Looking for volunteers to read a holiday/Christmas-themed book to be shown on NW Access TV in December. (It’s easy – you sit in a chair and read. Out loud.)
Anybody got a favorite – or what about an original Christmas story? We’ll be filming in November. Contact Becky

The deadline to submit your art/writing to the Emotion Speaks "Anxiety" is October 26th. There will be an open house for the exhibition on Friday, November 9th at the Swanton Library. Details HERE


Write Your First Novel (Workshop with JP Choquette). The deadline for registration is November 1st. Swanton Writer's Group members get a $5 discount. Details found HERE

Local citizens and business owners in conjunction with SAC are proposing the formation of 2 groups. An Entrepreneur group which will likely meet for breakfast, and a Faith Based artist group. Plans are tentative at this time. The hope is to have something in place by late December or early January. More details when available.

Book Recommendation

Ghost Boy: The Miraculous Escape of a Misdiagnosed Boy Trapped Inside His Own Body by Martin Pistorius.

....Ghost Boy is the heart-wrenching story of one boy’s return to life through the power of love and faith. In these pages, readers see a parent’s resilience, the consequences of misdiagnosis, abuse at the hands of cruel caretakers, and the unthinkable duration of Martin’s mental alertness betrayed by his lifeless body.

We also see a life reclaimed—a business created, a new love kindled—all from a wheelchair. Martin's emergence from his own darkness invites us to celebrate our own lives and fight for a better life for others.

Our next meeting will be on November 15th at 6 pm at the Swanton Library.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Meeting Minutes September 20, 2018

Meeting commenced at 6 p.m. We discussed several upcoming writing contests, events and workshops detailed below.

Next was the announcement of the winner of the Edwin M. Church Award. Congratulations to our own Don Lefebrve for his winning entry: "The Farm Connection". A beautiful memoir about farm life in mid-twentieth century VT.  Second place went to Joy Choquette. Third to Tom Benton. The Swanton Library in conjunction with SAC is hoping to publish a book containing all 10 contest entries and the winning youth entry written by Emmett Mathieu "Tracks of Destiny"

Judy shared news regarding a potential movie project in 2019. A grant is being written to fund the writing, production and editing of a short film relating to the 'year of the salmon', which is 2019. There will be more details released in the next few months, including how local writers and film buffs can get involved with the project.  Keep an eye on the SAC website as well as this blog. The idea of recording podcasts of local authors reading their respective works was floated again. There might be grant money available to fund such a project and the library has the equipment to record and edit. More details to follow.

Nancy returned Flat Stanley and Flat Stella. Pictures to follow.  Becky took them for the next month.  She is planning to send them to NYC, among other places.

Three group members read their work, or had it read for them. Emmet, Nancy and Don. The latter read his winning contest entry: The Farm Connection"


Hunger Mountain: Four annual contests will open for submissions on October 1st. The Howard Frank Mosher Short Fiction Prize, The Hunger Mountain Creative Nonfiction Prize, The Ruth Stone Poetry Prize, and The Katherine Paterson Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing. Submission details and the names of past winners and their work can be found HERE. The deadline for all submissions is March 1, 2019. Happy writing!

Vermont Writer's Prize: There is still time to enter this contest co-sponsored by Green Mountain Power and Vermont Magazine. Deadline is November 1. Details can be found HERE


Registration forms and canvases are now available for the SAC exhibition "Emotion Speaks" The one word theme is Anxiety. Find more details HERE. Please see a SAC member or stop in at the Swanton Library to pick up your materials.  A $5 fee is payable by cash, check or paypal.


Burlington Book Festival: October 12-14 at the UVM Alumni House Silver Pavilion and various other locations. A variety of talks and workshops will occur over the 3 days. Concluded by a presentation by nationally known personality Garrison Keillor. Find all the details HERE,

Burlington Writer's Workshop: Regular meetings are held in their Burlington location.  Find details on current and upcoming events HERE

Corrina Thurston is holding 3 workshops this fall at the My-T-Fine restaurant in Swanton. Corrina is the author of 2 books: "How To Build Your Art Business: With Limited Time Or Energy" and "How To Communicate Effectively: For Artists & Creatives" Workshops will be held on 3 Thursday evenings starting at 6 pm. The subjects and dates: September 27th "How to Market Your Art", October 4th "Social Media for Artists", October 25th "Creating Your Best Artist Statement" More details to be found HERE.

Meeting concluded at 7:40. Our next meeting is Thursday October 18th. 6 p.m. at the Swanton Library.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Meeting Minutes for August 16th

The meeting commenced at 6 pm. We had a short discussion about memoir writing.  Author Gene Shepherd was mentioned specifically his work "In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash"  The group also discussed a play writing exercise and the possibility of recording group members work and broadcasting it on local TV or radio.

Renee shared her adventures with Flat Stanley and Flat Stella. Follow the LINK to view her google doc journal.  Nancy Fuller took 'the Flats' for their next adventure.

Upcoming Events/Contests/Exhibits

Swanton Arts Spectacular: August 25th. The Writer's Group in conjunction with SAC will be sponsoring a local author's panel. The following authors are committed: Chloe Viner, Pat Esden, Bill Schubart, Tammy Hetrick, Jerry Johnson, Bethany Morrow, and our own Rebecca Rupp! Hope to see everyone there! It is possible the winner of the Edwin M. Church Award will be announced.

League of Vermont Writers presents: Other Paths to Publication, Independent Presses and Self-Publishing. October 6, 2018. Time: 8:30 am-5 pm. Location: Trinity Episcopal Church in Shelburne.  Find all the details HERE. There is a registration fee. Bill Schubart is one of the speakers

Swanton Arts Council is sponsoring an arts exhibit entitled "Emotion Speaks". The theme for the exhibit is "Anxiety". The deadline for submission is October 26th.  The opening reception will be held on November 9th and the artwork will remain on display until mid December.  Upon registration entrants will receive an 8x8 canvas.  This canvas must be used for the exhibit. Entrants can create a visual, physical or written piece which exemplifies their perception of the emotion anxiety. Multiple entries are encouraged. Further details and a registration form will be available at the Swanton Arts Spectacular and announced here in a separate entry. Questions can be emailed to Judy Paxmam HERE 

Four of our group members read their work: Annie read a portion of one of 3 novels of Emmet Mathieu's proposed scifi series "Phoenix". Renee read a short piece about a man suffering from a mental disorder who thought bugs had literally invaded and consumed his body. Judy read Elizabeth Nance's short story "Going Home". Nancy read her short story "A Post Modern Romance". 

Please check out Nancy's art exhibit "Art by Nancy Fuller" at the Alburgh Library.  It will be on display until the end of August.  Meeting adjourned at 7:40. Upcoming meeting is September 20th at 6 pm at the Swanton Library.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Meeting Minutes July 12th

The meeting commenced at 6 pm. We discussed upcoming events, established and proposed. Two members of the Swanton community came to the meeting and were introduced. Scott and Judy announced an appearance on AM 620.  They were going to be interviewed on Wednesday, July 18th at 7:40 for approximately 15 minutes.  Topics included: The Swanton Arts Spectacular, Author panel and various arts events sponsored by SAC.  A link to SAC (Swanton Arts Council) website has been added to the sidebar of this blog.

We discussed poetry. What defines a poem and various types and authors were mentioned. Specific recommendations were: Stephen Vincent Benet's "John Brown's Body" and Kwame Alexander's "Booked" and "Solo"

Additional topics were: play writing, Tom Stoppard's "Arcadia" was recommended, Becky proposed writing short plays as a writing exercise for the group. Writing memoirs as fiction due to the challenges of discussing living family members and friends in print and, Commonplace" books

"Commonplace" books as defined on wikipedia:  A commonplace book from the mid-17th century. Commonplace books (or commonplaces) are a way to compile knowledge, usually by writing information into books. Such books are essentially scrapbooks filled with items of every kind: recipes, quotes, letters, poems, tables of weights and measures, proverbs, prayers, legal formulas.

Flat Stella and Stanley were handed out.  Adventures to be chronicled and shared by group members monthly. 2 group members read their work.

Upcoming Events and Contests

Edwin M Church Award: Deadline is July 31st. Application can be found HERE

Swanton Arts Spectacular: August 25th. The Writer's Group in conjunction with SAC will be sponsoring a local author's panel. The following authors are committed: Chloe VinerPat Esden, Bill Schubart, Tammy Hetrick, Jerry Johnson, Bethany Morrow, and our own Rebecca Rupp!

In Discussion: A Single concept art show. Idea is that all contributors would be given a limited space - say, a 10 x 10-inch square - and would be challenged to respond, in text, print, art, or combo, to a single word, such as HOPE or DESPAIR.  More details in a future post.

Book Recommendations

The Great American Read. A PBS presentation hosted by Meredith Vieira. Click HERE to see the list of books and read more.

Meeting adjourned at 7:20. Next meeting is Thursday August 16th at 6 pm Swanton library.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Contests for July

A list of contests to appeal to all writers.

Miami University PressThe Miami University Novella Prize is awarded annually to a novella-length manuscript of original fiction (18,000–40,000 words). The winner receives $750, a standard contract, publication and 10 copies of the book

Glimmer Train:Open to all subjects, all themes, and all writers. Most entries run from 3,000 to 6,000 words, but any lengths from 3,000 to 20,000 words are welcome.

2018 Constance Rooke CNF Prize:The Constance Rooke Creative Nonfiction Prize is awarded to the best work submitted to the magazine’s annual contest for a genre that embraces, but is not limited to, the personal essay, memoir, narrative nonfiction, social commentary, travel writing, historical accounts, and biography, all enhanced by such elements as description, dramatic scenes, dialogue, and characterization.

Prairie SchoonerOur annual summer nonfiction contest opens May 15 to all types of creative nonfiction essays up to 5,000 words. The entry fee is $20 and includes a copy of the Spring 2019 issue of Prairie Schooner, in which the winning essay will appear.

Blue Mesa Review: accepts previously unpublished work in Fiction (up to 6,000 words), Nonfiction (up to 6,000 words), Poetry (up to 3 poems), and Visual Art. We have a rotating editorial board, so each issue is fresh and unique. In general, we are seeking strong voices and lively, compelling narrative with a fine eye for craft. We look forward to reading your best work!

The Aesthetica Creative Writing Award:The Aesthetica Creative Writing Award is an international literary prize that celebrates excellence in Poetry and Short Fiction. Hosted by the international art and culture publication, Aesthetica Magazine. With the aim to support and nurture new writing talent, it awards publication within an inspiring anthology to a shortlist of 60 writers, including a winner from each category.

The AnzaldĂșa Poetry Prize: 
Opens: 15 April 2018Deadline: 15 August 2018
Guest Judge: Cynthia Cruz
Awards: First place is publication, $1,000 prize, and 25 contributor copies. Up to five finalists will be announced, and all poems will be considered for publication as a general submission.
Reading Fee: $15
Submit: Open—submit today!

Broken River Prize: The Broken River Prize is an annual poetry chapbook contest from Platypus Press. Each year a different poet will judge the contest—this year’s judge is poet and teacher Eduardo C. Corral.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Details and application for the Edwin M. Church Award for local writers

With thanks to Judy and SAC here is a direct link to the details and application for the Edwin M. Church Award for local writers.  Deadline is August 1st. Let's get writing people!

Meeting Minutes November 15, 2018

Our meeting commenced at 6 pm. Three of our members attended Joy Choquette's workshops on November 7th and 14th. Unfortunately, Joy coul...