Celebrate the Books of the Year

logoThe Chicago Writers Association is inviting everyone to join them in congratulating the winners of the 2014 Book of the Year. In Print member Kristin Oakley won the Non-Traditional Fiction category with her debut novel, Carpe Diem, Illinois (A Leo Townsend Novel). Other winners include Rebecca Makkal in the Traditional Fiction category for The Hundred-Year House, Samantha Irby in the Traditional Non-Fiction category for Meaty and Scott Jacobs in the Non-Traditional Non-Fiction category for Famous Ski Hills in Wisconsin.

The awards will be held on Saturday, January 24 at 7:00 pm at The Book Cellar (4736 Lincoln Avenue, Chicago). Authors will read selections from their work, and be available to sign copies of their books. The event is free and open to the public.

On the Subject of Storytelling

by Bob Francis

If I point up, I may mean, “Sky.” I may be trying to wipe away the clouds to show you the moon and stars. I may be trying to explain our Place in the Universe. I may be trying to say, “Heaven”. I may be trying to usher you into a paradise place of mythical wonders, Gods Greek and otherwise.

But you may see me point up and think, “Overpass?”

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Why I Create

by Ted Iverson

At first I thought it was to satisfy a life’s dream,
Or
Maybe to relieve the stress, immerse myself into a new world to push aside the trials and tribulations of everyday life,
Or
I cannot lie; even ponder fame and fortune.

Then, finally the first book was completed and published. People began to read and comment: Intriguing, exciting, characters you want to follow, when is the next one going to be available? Those people enjoyed the book. They even told their children to read it and they enjoyed it.
It was then that I became aware.

I create, not for my own personal satisfaction or gain. Not for meaningless reasons. I create so that you the reader might immerse yourself, so that you might forget your troubles, if only one novel at a time.

I create to see you smile…

Ted is one of several In Print members to have his work featured at the Allegory Project, an art space and exhibition co-sponsored by the Art Matters Artist Coop and the Rockford Area Arts Council. The Allegory Project plans to have a theme that is explored in various art forms: painting and sculpture, photography, repurposed objects, and the spoken and written word.

Ted’s piece and the others have been framed at the gallery and are available for viewing from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm, on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The show space is on the northwest corner of Madison and Prairie Streets in Rockford.

Why I Write

by Karna Tecla

IMAGINE

Looking at a picture

And overhearing the conversations of the people captured;

Holding an object

And feeling the story of its past;

Lying, in bed, awake

And hearing the characters in your mind converse, lecture, and argue.

This is WHY I write –

To record the conversations, lectures, and arguments,

To tell the story of people and objects

To delve into issues and offer advice and insight.

Karna is one of several In Print members to have her work featured at the Allegory Project, an art space and exhibition co-sponsored by the Art Matters Artist Coop and the Rockford Area Arts Council. The Allegory Project plans to have a theme that is explored in various art forms: painting and sculpture, photography, repurposed objects, and the spoken and written word.

Karna’s piece and the others have been framed at the gallery and are available for viewing from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm, on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The show space is on the northwest corner of Madison and Prairie Streets in Rockford.

Why I Create

by Chris Cacciatore

I create stories because that’s who I am.

Ever since I can remember, I have been writing.  A high school English teacher once took a creative writing paragraph I wrote as an assignment and put it on the board after reading it in front of the class and giving it an A.  To me, that was validation that I had a way with words that the majority of my classmates did not.

After that, I had self confidence enough to submit several stories for the Wildcat Review, a collection of stories put out at the end of the year, and every single story I submitted was chosen.

That was not what kept me writing, however.  It was a burning desire to keep going, keep entertaining, and keep honing what I now considered a craft.  I wrote to amuse my sister and my mother, and impress my best friend, who was depressed and needed funny stories to help with her moods.  I wrote to amuse myself.

I created stories then because they, in turn, created laughter, sighs of contentment, wonderment, or delight for me.  And if I did share them, sent them to someone else to read,  my joy increased tenfold, because words I thought about, pulled out of the air around me made someone else’s day better for a little while, even if it was just my day.

I create stories now because I must.  It took me a very long time to realize that the best part of having a creative mind is actually forming that creativity into a product and releasing it into the world.

I create stories because that’s who I am.

Chris is one of several In Print members to have her work featured at the Allegory Project, an art space and exhibition co-sponsored by the Art Matters Artist Coop and the Rockford Area Arts Council. The Allegory Project plans to have a theme that is explored in various art forms: painting and sculpture, photography, repurposed objects, and the spoken and written word.

Chris’s piece and the others have been framed at the gallery and are available for viewing from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm, on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The show space is on the northwest corner of Madison and Prairie Streets in Rockford.

Why I Create

by Richard Pulfer

I create because . . .
What the Muse wants, the Muse gets.

Richard is one of several In Print members to have his work featured at the Allegory Project, an art space and exhibition co-sponsored by the Art Matters Artist Coop and the Rockford Area Arts Council. The Allegory Project plans to have a theme that is explored in various art forms: painting and sculpture, photography, repurposed objects, and the spoken and written word.

Richard’s piece and the others have been framed at the gallery and are available for viewing from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm, on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The show space is on the northwest corner of Madison and Prairie Streets in Rockford.

Why I Create

by Philip M. Warden

I create to give people a new world to explore.
To meet new friends that will become lifelong companions.
For when the adventure ends and the friends wave goodbye, a tear can be shed for having been a part of something greater than themselves.
‘Til we meet again, my dear friends.

Philip is one of several In Print members to have his work featured at the Allegory Project, an art space and exhibition co-sponsored by the Art Matters Artist Coop and the Rockford Area Arts Council. The Allegory Project plans to have a theme that is explored in various art forms: painting and sculpture, photography, repurposed objects, and the spoken and written word.

Philip’s piece and the others have been framed at the gallery and are available for viewing from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm, on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The show space is on the northwest corner of Madison and Prairie Streets in Rockford.

Why Do I Create? A Haiku Series

by Mary Lamphere

I create because
I would die if I didn’t
Truly, that’s no life.

I create because
It’s a crazy world out there
It’s what keeps me sane.

I create because
I would drown in ideas
A shark not swimming.

I create because
I am compelled, out of mind,
I can’t not create.

If I don’t create
Color me Violet and
Bring on the juicer.

Mary is one of several In Print members to have her work featured at the Allegory Project, an art space and exhibition co-sponsored by the Art Matters Artist Coop and the Rockford Area Arts Council. The Allegory Project plans to have a theme that is explored in various art forms: painting and sculpture, photography, repurposed objects, and the spoken and written word.

Mary’s piece and the others have been framed at the gallery and are available for viewing from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm, on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The show space is on the northwest corner of Madison and Prairie Streets in Rockford.

Writers as Readers Review – Bedrock Faith

Written by Catherine Conroy

BedrockFaith2-533x800Writers as Readers met Tuesday evening, November 4, to discuss Eric Charles May’s novel, Bedrock Faith. Eric May is an associate professor of Fiction Writing at Columbia College in Chicago and was a reporter for the Washington Post. With numerous publishing credits, Bedrock Faith, ten years in the creating, is his first novel.

Set in Chicago’s far south side of Parkland – “all black since 1870” – Stew Pot returns to the 129th Street neighborhood he terrorized until he was sent to prison when he was eighteen. Now, fourteen years later, in 1993, he goes to his next door neighbor, Mrs. Motley – whose garage he had burnt down – and asks to borrow a Bible. Later Stewpot tells her, “…my spiritual awakening came as a result of counsel from Brother Crown. He’s a man of God walking day and night in The Light. He’s turned a lot of fellows in prison around. The way I see it, sinning Stew Pot is dead. God gave me the strength to kill him.”

The neighborhood is thrown into chaos by Stew Pot when he reveals secrets in the name of bringing people into The Light. Relationships are turned upside-down. Retaliation is rampant. Near the end of the book, Mrs. Motely remembers that her mother always said, “The truth is in the light. The truth will set you free.” And we, the reader, are left to contemplate if this is true after all that has transpired.

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The Write City Looking for Submissions

CWALogoThe Chicago Writers Association’s online journal, The Write City Magazine, is looking for submissions. They welcome quality poetry, fiction and nonfiction, including short stories, personal essays, op-eds, biographies, autobiographies, memoirs, interviews, play and novel excerpts (if self-contained), plus writing tips and resources.

Submission guidelines: Include your full name, the title of your submission, your email address, and website link (if available) plus a personal photograph and a short 250 word bio.

Prose: Submit no more than one prose piece at a time. Prose should be single-spaced, Times New Roman font, and no longer than 1,500 words.

Poetry: Submit no more than three poems at a time. Poems should be single-spaced in a Times New Roman font.

Email submission to: kristinoakley@outlook.com. Please keep in mind that submissions may be edited.

Additionally, if you’re an editor or have editing experience and would like to volunteer your services to The Write City Magazine, contact Kristin Oakley, kristinoakley@outlook.com.