Applications for our Summer in Paris (July 16-21, 2020) Writing Retreat are now live! Apply by May 30, 2020!


The Cambridge Writers’ Workshop Summer in Paris Writing Retreat will take place July 16-21, 2020 in Paris, France. The retreat offers participating writers of all genres and levels to work alongside award-winning authors and editors. Participating writers will hone their craft and expand their writing skills, while working on new or existing projects. There will also be time to explore the city of Paris in all of its historical, literary, and romantic charm. Situated in heart of Paris’ Montparnasse neighborhood, amongst the fresh and popular open air markets and charming boutiques, the hotel stay is full of Parisian charm.

Retreat activities will include craft of writing seminars and creative writing workshops, and a chance to explore the literary history of Paris. If you’re serious about writing and want to bask in some exquisite French culture this summer, join our retreat in Paris! Tuition is $3,875, which includes lodging in central Paris, creative writing workshops and writing seminars with our supportive and award-winning faculty of writers and editors, and daily breakfast.

Faculty includes internationally renowned authors, David Shields (personal essayist, documentary filmmaker), Diana Norma Szokolyai (poetry, nonfiction), and Rita Banerjee (poetry, nonfiction, fiction).

If you’d like to join us in Paris, please apply online by May 30, 2020, and include $10 application screening fee and a 5-10 page writing sample of poetry or prose. Please also include the following in your cover letter:

1. Full Legal Name
2. Contact & Address
3. Age & Nationality
4. Prior creative writing experience and publications
5. Creative writing goals for the retreat
6. Short one paragraph biography
7. Contact of Two Personal References (Name, Email, Address, Phone, Relationship to Applicant)

Due to limited seats, early applications are strongly encouraged.  Our Scholarship deadline is March 1, 2020, and thus, we encourage applicants to complete their applications by our priority deadline of March 1, 2020. Our Paris retreat tends to fill up quickly, so feel free to send in your application early.

Featured Faculty:

jUSEu2sSo4RfT2C6eSXb6-plQPuQlknv-LggVh9tpUs David Shields is the internationally bestselling author of twenty-two books, including Reality Hunger (named one of the best books of 2010 by more than thirty publications), The Thing About Life Is That One Day You’ll Be Dead (New York Times bestseller), Black Planet (finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award), and Other People: Takes & Mistakes (NYTBR Editors’ Choice). The film adaptation of I Think You’re Totally Wrong: A Quarrel was released by First Pond Entertainment in 2017. Nobody Hates Trump More Than Trump: An Intervention was published in 2018; The Trouble With Men: Reflections on Sex, Love, Marriage, Porn, and Power is forthcoming in March 2019. A recipient of Guggenheim and NEA fellowships and a senior contributing editor of Conjunctions, Shields has published essays and stories in the New York Times Magazine, Harper’s, Esquire, Yale Review, Salon, Slate, A Public Space, McSweeney’s, and Believer. His work has been translated into two dozen languages.

Diana Norma Szokolyai is a writer and Executive Artistic Director of Cambridge Writers’ Workshop. Her edited volume, CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing, will be released by C&R Press in May 2018.  She is author of the poetry collections Parallel Sparrows (honorable mention for Best Poetry Book in the 2014 Paris Book Festival) and Roses in the Snow (first runner-­up Best Poetry Book at the 2009 DIY Book Festival). She also records her poetry with musicians and has collaborated with several composers including David Krebs (US), Robert Lemay (Canada), Claudio Gabriele (Italy), Peter James (UK), Jason Haye (UK), and Sebastian Wesman (Estonia). Diana Norma is a founding member of the performing arts groups Sounds in Bloom, ChagallPAC, and The Brooklyn Soundpainting Ensemble. Her poetry-music collaboration with Flux Without Pause, “Space Mothlight,” hit #16 on the Creative Commons Hot 100 list in 2015, and can be found in the curated WFMU Free Music Archive. Her work has been recently reviewed by The London Grip and published in VIDA: Reports from the Field, The Fiction Project, Quail Bell Magazine, Lyre Lyre, The Boston Globe, Dr. Hurley’s Snake Oil Cure, The Dudley Review and Up the Staircase QuarterlyThe Million Line Poem, The Cambridge Community Poem, and elsewhere, as well as anthologized in Our Last Walk, The Highwaymen NYC #2, Other Countries: Contemporary Poets Rewiring History, Always Wondering, and Teachers as Writers.  She is currently at work on her next book and an album of poetry & music.  Diana Norma holds a M.A. in French (UCONN, La Sorbonne) and an Ed.M in Arts in Education (Harvard).

ritabanerjee

Rita Banerjee is the Executive Creative Director of the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop and editor of CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing (C&R Press, May 2018).   She is the author of the poetry collection Echo in Four Beats (Finishing Line Press, March 2018), which was nominated for the 2019 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize at the Academy of American Poets, featured on the Ruth Stone Foundation podcast, and named one of Book Riot’s “Must-Read Poetic Voices of Split This Rock 2018”, and was selected by Finishing Line Press as their 2018 nominee for the National Book Award in Poetry.  Banerjee is also the author of the novella “A Night with Kali” in Approaching Footsteps (Spider Road Press, 2016), and the poetry chapbook Cracklers at Night (Finishing Line Press, 2010).  She is the co-writer and co-director of Burning Down the Louvre (2020), a documentary film about race, intimacy, and tribalism in the United States and in France.  She received her doctorate in Comparative Literature from Harvard and her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Washington, and she is a recipient of a Vermont Studio Center Artist’s Grant, the Tom and Laurel Nebel Fellowship, and South Asia Initiative and Tata Grants.  Her writing appears in the Academy of American PoetsPoets & Writers, PANK, Nat. Brut.The ScofieldThe Rumpus, Painted Bride Quarterly, Mass Poetry, Hyphen Magazine, Los Angeles Review of BooksElectric Literature, VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, AWP WC&C Quarterly, Queen Mob’s Tea House, Riot Grrrl Magazine, The Fiction Project, Objet d’Art, KBOO Radio’s APA Compass, and elsewhere. She is the Director of the MFA in Writing & Publishing program at the Vermont College of Fine Arts and an Associate Scholar of Comparative Literature at Harvard.  She is currently working on a novel, a book on South Asian literary modernisms, and a collection of lyric essays on race, sex, politics, and everything cool.  Her writing is represented by agents Jeff Kleinman and Jamie Chambliss of Folio Literary Management.

FAQ:

What Happens After I apply?
Once you apply, you can expect to hear from us within 10-14 days and know whether you were accepted into the program.

What is the process of paying tuition?
Once you are accepted into the program, you will need to pay a 30% tuition deposit to hold your seat within 3-5 days of acceptance. Please note that the deposit is non-refundable. The remainder of tuition will be due by May 30, 2020. Our standard and preferred method of payment is PayPal invoice, which does have a service fee. You can also mail us a check. Please email us if you prefer to send a check and we will give you the mailing address.

What is included in tuition?

    • lodging in central Paris
    • daily breakfast at the hotel
    • creative writing workshops
    • craft of writing seminars
    • a celebratory meet-&-greet dinner with faculty

Where will the program be held?
The program will be held at Hôtel du Midi Paris Montparnasse, 4 Avenue René Coty, 14th Arr., 75014, Paris, France.

What language is the program in?
The program is in English, but French or other non-anglophones are welcome as long as you can speak, read and write in English!

I’m local to Paris. Is there a tuition only option?
Yes. For more information, please inquire at directors@cambridgewritersworkshop.org.

What if the deadline has passed? Can I still apply?
Sometimes, we do have seats open after our deadlines have passed. Please apply or just email us directly at directors@cambridgewritersworkshop.org to check whether there is still availability.

Applications for our Spring in New Orleans Writing Retreat (March 19-22, 2020) are now live! Apply by March 10, 2020!

The Cambridge Writers’ Workshop is pleased to announce our fourth annual Spring in New Orleans Writing Retreat! Apply to the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop Spring in New Orleans (March 19-22, 2020) Writing Retreat by March 10, 2020 on cww.submmittable.com! Known for its Spanish and French architecture, live jazz, Cajun food, and street festivals, New Orleans offers an inspirational and one-of-a-kind experience for writers. Our retreat features multi-genre workshops, as well as craft seminars and time to write. The faculty includes award-winning writers & playwrights: Stephen Aubrey, Rita Banerjee, and Diana Norma Szokolyai. All genres welcome. Genres include playwriting, nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. This year, we will also be exploring writing for live action roleplay (LARP) theater with an expert. The cost of the retreat is $1650, which includes tuition, lodging, and some meals. If you’d like to join us in NOLA, please apply by our priority deadline of March 1, 2020 by submitting 5-10 pages of poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, or a play with a $10 application fee, a cover letter, and references at cww.submittable.com. Please also include the following in your cover letter:
    1. Full Legal Name
    2. Contact Information (Email, Address, Phone)
    3. Age & Nationality
    4. Prior Workshop Experience and Publications
    5. Creative Writing Goals for the Retreat
    6. Short One-paragraph Biography
    7. Contact info of Two Personal References (Name, Email, Address, Phone, Relationship to Applicant)
Due to limited seats, early applications are encouraged. Our Scholarship Deadline for our 2020 retreats is March 1, 2020.  Thus, applications are encouraged by our priority deadline of March 1, 2020.  All applications will be reviewed through March 10, 2020.
apply

Priority Deadline: March 1, 2020

Featured Faculty:

Stephen Aubrey is a Brooklyn-based writer and dramaturg. He is co-artistic director and resident playwright of The Assembly theater company. His plays have been produced at The New Ohio Theater, The Living Theater, The Flea Theater, The Collapsable Hole, and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. His writing has appeared in Electric Literature, Publishing Genius, and The Brooklyn Review. He teaches creative writing and literature in the CUNY system.

ritabanerjee

Rita Banerjee is the Executive Creative Director of the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop and editor of CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing (C&R Press, May 2018).   She is the author of the poetry collection Echo in Four Beats (Finishing Line Press, March 2018), which was nominated for the 2019 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize at the Academy of American Poets, featured on the Ruth Stone Foundation podcast, and named one of Book Riot’s “Must-Read Poetic Voices of Split This Rock 2018”, and was selected by Finishing Line Press as their 2018 nominee for the National Book Award in Poetry.  Banerjee is also the author of the novella “A Night with Kali” in Approaching Footsteps (Spider Road Press, 2016), and the poetry chapbook Cracklers at Night (Finishing Line Press, 2010).  She is the co-writer and co-director of Burning Down the Louvre (2020), a documentary film about race, intimacy, and tribalism in the United States and in France.  She received her doctorate in Comparative Literature from Harvard and her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Washington, and she is a recipient of a Vermont Studio Center Artist’s Grant, the Tom and Laurel Nebel Fellowship, and South Asia Initiative and Tata Grants.  Her writing appears in the Academy of American PoetsPoets & Writers, PANK, Nat. Brut.The ScofieldThe Rumpus, Painted Bride Quarterly, Mass Poetry, Hyphen Magazine, Los Angeles Review of BooksElectric Literature, VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, AWP WC&C Quarterly, Queen Mob’s Tea House, Riot Grrrl Magazine, The Fiction Project, Objet d’Art, KBOO Radio’s APA Compass, and elsewhere. She is the Director of the MFA in Writing & Publishing program at the Vermont College of Fine Arts and an Associate Scholar of Comparative Literature at Harvard.  She is currently working on a novel, a book on South Asian literary modernisms, and a collection of lyric essays on race, sex, politics, and everything cool.  Her writing is represented by agents Jeff Kleinman and Jamie Chambliss of Folio Literary Management.

Diana Norma Szokolyai is a writer and Executive Artistic Director of Cambridge Writers’ Workshop. Her edited volume, CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing, will be released by C&R Press in May 2018.  She is author of the poetry collections Parallel Sparrows (honorable mention for Best Poetry Book in the 2014 Paris Book Festival) and Roses in the Snow (first runner-­up Best Poetry Book at the 2009 DIY Book Festival). She also records her poetry with musicians and has collaborated with several composers including David Krebs (US), Robert Lemay (Canada), Claudio Gabriele (Italy), Peter James (UK), Jason Haye (UK), and Sebastian Wesman (Estonia). Diana Norma is a founding member of the performing arts groups Sounds in Bloom, ChagallPAC, and The Brooklyn Soundpainting Ensemble. Her poetry-music collaboration with Flux Without Pause, “Space Mothlight,” hit #16 on the Creative Commons Hot 100 list in 2015, and can be found in the curated WFMU Free Music Archive. Her work has been recently reviewed by The London Grip and published in VIDA: Reports from the Field, The Fiction Project, Quail Bell Magazine, Lyre Lyre, The Boston Globe, Dr. Hurley’s Snake Oil Cure, The Dudley Review and Up the Staircase QuarterlyThe Million Line Poem, The Cambridge Community Poem, and elsewhere, as well as anthologized in Our Last Walk, The Highwaymen NYC #2, Other Countries: Contemporary Poets Rewiring History, Always Wondering, and Teachers as Writers.  She is currently at work on her next book and an album of poetry & music.  Diana Norma holds a M.A. in French (UCONN, La Sorbonne) and an Ed.M in Arts in Education (Harvard).

   

FAQ:

What happens after I apply? Once you apply, you can expect to hear from us within 10-14 days and know whether you were accepted into the program.

What is the process of paying tuition? Once you are accepted into the program, you will need to pay a 30% tuition deposit to hold your seat within 3-5 days of acceptance. This amount is non-refundable. The remainder of tuition will be due by March 10, 2020. Our standard and preferred method of payment is PayPal invoice. You can also mail us a check. Please email us at directors [at]cambridgewritersworkshop.org and we will provide instructions for mailing.

What is included in tuition?

    • creative writing workshops
    • craft of writing seminars
    • lodging in NOLA
    • breakfasts & some other meals

I’m local to New Orleans. Is there a tuition only option?

Yes. For more information, please inquire at directors[at]cambridgewritersworkshop.org.

What are accommodations like?

During the retreat, we will be staying at the lovely Pelham Hotel. The hotel is centrally located and within walking distance to the French Quarter, Bourbon St, Convention Center and the Superdome. In this location, you will have access to museums, historical sites, malls, and many other exciting attractions!

Apply for Spring & Summer 2020 Writing Retreat Scholarships by March 1, 2020!

Based on financial need and merit, scholarships of $250-$500 are available for our retreats.  Further financial assistance may be available for students in need.

If you are planning to apply for a scholarship for our 2020 Spring in New Orleans (March 19-22, 2020) or Summer in Paris (July 16-21, 2020) Writing Retreats, please submit a retreat application above, and a separate scholarship application with the information requested below. Please indicate which scholarship you are applying for, your reasons for applying, and which retreat you would like to be considered for.

applyDeadline: March 1, 2019

  • Diversity Scholarship: Diversity scholarships will be offered to minorities who show a commitment to creative writing. In your one-page cover letter, please describe how our writing retreat would make a difference in your writing life. Include a short bio (150-200 words).
  • Student Scholarship: Student scholarships will be offered to students (both undergraduate and graduate, full or part time) who show a commitment to creative writing. In your one-page cover letter, please describe how our writing retreat would make a difference in your writing life. Include a short bio (150-200 words).
  • Writer/Parent Scholarship: Writers/Parent scholarships will be offered to writers who show a commitment to creative writing and are raising children (infant through college). In your one-page cover letter, please describe how our writing retreat would make a difference in your writing life. Include a short bio (150-200 words).

Please email info@cambridgewritersworkshop.org if you have any questions.

Happy New Year ’20 from the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop!!

From our staff and board at the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop, we’d like to wish you a festive, fun, and very creative New Year 2020!

Let’s make this next decade shine for creativity, art, and new voices in the field!  Thank you to all of the writers, colleagues, artists, and institutions that have supported the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop since 2008!  We’re looking forward to seeing what our second decade brings!

More news regarding accepted authors for Disobedient Futures will be announced in Spring 2020!

The Cambridge Writers’ Workshop will also be at the AWP 2020 Conference in San Antonio, TX from March 4-7, 2020.  Come stop by our AWP Bookfair Table T2164!  We will also be having an off-site reading for AWP 2020 so stay tuned for details about that!  And of course, check our CWW Creative Director Rita Banerjee’s panel “Dismantling the White Imagination: On Intimacy in Creative Nonfiction” on Saturday, March 7 from 9-10:15 am in Room 205, Henry B. González Convention Center, Meeting Room Level (San Antonio, TX).

Finally, we are delighted to announce our instructors for our Spring and Summer 2020 writing retreats.  Our 2020 award-winning faculty includes essayist David Shields, playwright Stephen Aubrey, poet Diana Norma Szokolyai, and poet and essayist Rita Banerjee.  Course registration for our 2020 Spring in New Orleans Writing Retreat (March 19-22) and Summer in Paris Writing Retreat (July 16-21) will be going live on this website and on cww.submittable.com shortly!  So stay tuned!

 

And in the meantime, let’s have an amazing 2020!  Here’s to the return of the “Roaring 20’s” and art that’s not afraid to make the world vibrate just a little bit!

Cheers,
The Cambridge Writers’ Workshop

Disobedient Futures – Final Call for Submissions – November 1, 2019 Deadline

Dear Writers, in honor of all the buzz around Disobedient Futures generated at the Brooklyn Book Festival in September 2019, we will be extending the call for submissions for our new anthology to November 1, 2019.  The editorial team is currently reviewing all submitted work and will be in touch with all of the writers and artists who submitted through the Winter 2019-2020 season.  The final roster of accepted authors for our new anthology will be announced in Spring 2020.

And if you’d like to submit your work before our final deadline, please do so by November 1, 2020 at cww.submittable.comMore info about our new anthology follows below:

Cambridge Writers’ Workshop welcomes submissions of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, mixed-genre work, plays, and screenplays on the topic of “Disobedient Futures” for our new speculative literature anthology. Writers are encouraged to imagine what the future cultures of America and the world might look like, and submit their work on the following topics:

Disobedient Women: How might women, feminists, female-identifying, and/or non-binary individuals disobey and reconfigure our understandings of power and femininity and masculinity in the future?

Disobedient Tribes: What if Americans found a way to subvert racial categories and challenge tribalism and cultures of fear? How might tribes disobey the rules of the game and create new types of community identities and cultural bridges?

Disobedient Class: Could Americans in the future overcome systems of class oppression and capitalist gluttony? How might individuals in the future subvert class hierarchies?

Disobedient Futures: Tell us what the future cultures of America and the world have in store. How might the emerging generations of today and tomorrow reconfigure today’s value systems, challenge today’s modes of violence, oppression, and power, and create new visions of society? Give us your best speculative writing which explores the possibilities and disruptions of disobedient futures.

Writers are welcome to submit utopian, dystopian, parallel history, futuristic, alternative reality, speculative essay, and even purely speculative fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and theatre. Optimistic and pessimistic tales of the future are welcome in equal measure, but gratuitous violence and discrimination are not. Poetry submissions should be 3-5 pages in length. Prose submissions can be 10-20 pages in length.  Excerpts from longer works with synopses are welcome. Previously published work of which the author holds copyright and the right to republication is acceptable for submission. Visual art related to these categories of Disobedient Futures is also welcome.  Submit your retelling of the future today!

Submit your work at cww.submittable.com || Deadline: November 1, 2019

Poets House Reading feat. Rita Banerjee, James Ragan, & Finishing Line Press Authors – September 13, 7-10 pm

On Friday, September 13, from 7 pm – 10 pm, join Finishing Line Press at the Poets House  (10 River Terrace, New York, NY 10282 ) for a reading by FLP poets James Ragan, Rita Banerjee, Deborah Kahan Kolb, Stephanie Laterza, Danelle Lejeune, Mark A. Murphy, Dawn Marar, Katherine E. Schneider and others.

This event is free and open to the public.  The reading by Finishing Line Poets will be followed by an Open Mic portion.  Snacks and drinks will be provided.  This event is made possible through Poets House’s Literary Partners program. Poets House is an ADA accessible facility.  For more information, please visit Poets House or Finishing Line Press’s events page.

Rita Banerjee’s essay “Birth of Cool” on 9/11 and a generation coming of age and keeping its cool debuts in Hunger Mountain

18 years and 12 hours ago, Rita Banerjee was in the middle of a generation coming of age and witnessing 9/11. Her essay “Birth of Cool” captures how a generation of young people watched 9/11 and kept their cool.

An excerpt from “Birth of Cool,” which debuts in Hunger Mountain (Issue 23: Silence & Power) follows below:

Lauren played her Gibson on the phone for me. Voodoo Child. Learning Hendrix one blistered finger at a time. Stairway to Heaven. A poster of Jimmy Page and Robert Plant hung on her bedroom wall. Plant made love to the microphone in his too-tight jeans and denim jacket. His threads hadn’t been washed in decades. Neither had he. His hair was a total mess: wastrel, lion, drunken boat. His stance suggested everything hot and sticky and full of sweat. Plant sang as if his life depended on it. As if Page were a living siren: all dark curls and velvet. Soft everywhere. And cool where it mattered. Who was the devil and who the angel here? Their hair, their dishabille, their guitar riffs, their primal screams. What were Plant and Page selling to us, neo-nostalgic teens of the ’90s? Was it sex or something else? A taste of barely contained passion or total apathy? Whatever it was, it became the object of our attraction, our envy. Could a woman ever be so decadent? So illustrious? So free?

Lauren bent over her guitar and strummed, as if she were searching for an answer, as if the metallic edge of her Gibson could vibrate to the right pitch of cool. Her mom had immigrated from Hong Kong and her dad came from nowhere Zen, New Jersey. They spoke Cantonese on the phone together when they wanted to keep their secrets secret. But Lauren, always listening when she shouldn’t have, found out that her mother was pregnant anyway. Her father played in garage bands. He was born with an electric guitar. And so was she. When our history teacher went around the class and asked what kind of music do you listen to? I said, “Garbage,” and Lauren, “Hendrix.”

At her sweet sixteen, we sang “Landslide,” in an improvised, acoustic harmony. Her living room, surrounded by turn-of-the-century Qing chests and miniature lacquered paintings, felt like a recording studio that afternoon. Red cushions, low lights, and dark walnut furniture. A makeshift cabaret for a bunch of girls, barely legal. Gillian with her dark hair and half-smile, belting out the lyrics louder than anyone else. As if she were Stevie Nicks, herself, and knew the truth about pain. Her parents had divorced. Ours just seemed to fight all the time. So Gillian held the honor of being part mystic, part witch in our tribe.

At another sweet sixteen, Maddy sang, “I Will Survive,” and we girls danced primitive, like women, as if our lives depended on it. What heartaches had we experienced? What did we know about life at sixteen? Most of us hadn’t seriously been in love yet. With a man or a woman. We were just beginning to learn what it meant to come of age. To gaze into the future. To gaze back, an old crone, towards all the mistakes and milestones of our life. And what we saw, at sixteen, frightened us. We were experienced. We sang Fleetwood Mac, Hendrix, and Led Zeppelin together in Lauren’s living room, as if classic rock could keep the future at bay. As if these staged rebels in their infinite costumes, postures, and expressions of cool could save us. Save us from becoming adults. Save us from becoming women. Save us from a million taboos and stigmas and haunting forms of socialization.

“Darling go make it happen,” Lauren’s voice picked up tempo on the phone, “take the world in a love embrace.” Her guitar kept up the song’s dirty rhythm and twanged just when it mattered. I tried to impress her by playing back Joplin, Brubeck, Bach, Beethoven, Yann Tiersen, different time signatures, and chord progressions on the piano. In the ’90s, we spent so many afternoons like that. On the second line just for us: chatterboxes, klutzes, not yet agents of our lives. Girls. Our songs fused and interrogated one another. They hardly made sense. But that’s how we were. She and me. Latchkey kids. Part-time musicians. Like a true nature’s child. Our jams short-circuited every style in history.

To read the full essay, order a copy of Hunger Mountain or visit their website here.

Diana Norma Szokolyai Poetry Performances & Workshop at CROSSING WATER FESTIVAL 9/10 – 9/15 2019

 

As CWW Artistic Director, I’m thrilled to be a part of the Crossing Water Festival, an interdisciplinary arts festival in and around the Beverly/Salem Bridge in Massachusetts. The arts festival features visual art, literary arts, music, dance, video projection art, & more.

Tuesday, September 10th at 7 p.m   Improbable Poetry Tour

 Salem Side of Bridge on the pier of Remond Park, 1 Bridge Street, Salem MA. 01970

Thanks to Colleen Michaels for inviting me to read along with other poets. The reading begins promptly at 7:00 pm with a performance of Lucille Clifton’s “Blessing the Boats” featuring poet Krysten Hill and choreographer Betsy Miller. Each poet will read a poem written about the theme: bridges. As we read, dancers will dance across the bridge in the background.

This is going to be visually sublime, and I cannot wait. I was out on the pier tonight, and the smell of the water and the sight of the sailboats against the pink sky while Dennis played with his jazz band was breathtakingly beautiful.

The following Events are all held on the Beverly Side of the bridge near the Harbormaster’s station. As you cross the bridge from Salem to Beverly, it’s on the right.

Friday, September 13th 8 p.m. Poetry-Music-Video Projection Installation & FILM SCREENING OF THE CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI

Beverly Side of Bridge, Beverly Harbormaster 11 Cabot St, Beverly, MA 01915

My poem “Space Mothlight” will be projected onto a 17 ft. pyramid opening before the film, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari is screened onto the pyramid, with a live film score!

Facebook Event 

Saturday September 14th at 3-5 p.m. MINDFULNESS WRITING WORKSHOP under the Pyramid (Free and open to all)
Beverly Side of Bridge, Beverly Harbormaster 11 Cabot St, Beverly, MA 01915

All Genres and Levels Welcome! We will be writing underneath the pyramid, working under a full moon, with the soothing water next to us. Come experiment with mindfulness exercises that will open up your creativity channels. Come with a writing utensil and your favorite notebook, but if you don’t have these, I’ll have writing materials.

Later on Saturday, in the same place, under the pyramid installation, I’ll perform my poetry in the following musical acts:

6-8 p.m. HOWL QUARTET (Experimental Contemporary Ensemble)

Performance Poet Diana Norma Szokolyai (Salem)

Saxophonist Etienne Rolin ( France)

Guitarist Brian Abbot (Canada)

Saxophonist Dennis Shafer (Salem)

8-9 p.m. RENDRGRAM (experimental Contemporary Art)

experimental music-art- installation exploring glitch art and rendering the digital world into the physical world…come see the music under the 18ft pyramid!

RendrGram Facebook Event

Sunday, September 15th, at 7:30 p.m. at AMES Hall Salem YMCA–METAMORPHOSES Performance

with Solo Saxophone/Dance/Poetry Interludes

Facebook Event for Metamorphoses

https://www.creativenorthshore.com/north-shore-events/chagallpac-metamorphoses-dance-performance/

Electric Metamorphoses and Movement: A Dance Choreography with Works for Saxophone by Dennis Shafer and ChagallPAC Artists

Choreography and Dance by Betsy Miller, Emily Beattie, Juliana Tilbury,  Rebecca Lang, Angelina Benitez, Jake Crawford, Becky Jo Roland

Poetry Performance: Diana Norma Szokolyai

Costume design by Lee Davis

Lighting/Projection by Siriphong Tipayakisorn

 

Cambridge Writers’ Workshop Summer in Paris 2019 Retreat Schedule Announced

The Cambridge Writers’ Workshop Summer in Paris Writing Retreat will take place from July 17-22, 2019.  Situated in heart of Paris’ Montparnasse neighborhood, amongst the fresh and popular open air markets and charming boutiques, the hotel stay is full of Parisian charm and our classes will take place in a beautiful Moroccan themed room that opens to a courtyard that can also be used by our writers.  Retreat activities will include craft of writing seminars and creative writing workshops, literary tours of Paris. If you’re serious about writing and want to soak in some exquisite French culture this summer, join our retreat in Paris!   The faculty includes award-winning writers Kazim Ali, Rita Banerjee, and Diana Norma Szokolyai.  Genres include poetry, fiction, and nonfiction.

The schedule for the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop Summer in Paris Retreat (July 17-22, 2019) has been announced.  More details about classes and instructors follow below! À bientôt!

Schedule:

Writing about Space and Place (with Kazim Ali)
We experience place through multiple present tense lenses– sensory perception, kinesthetic observation, relationship of inner reality to outer surroundings– as well as through history, language, geography, botany, biology and zoology.

Craft Seminar:
We will look at a number of writers who have engaged space and place in their work and discuss what techniques and forms they developed, often very site-specific. Writers discussed will include Layli Long Soldier, Craig Santos Perez, Cristina Peri Rossi and Georges Perec

Generative Workshop:
Using techniques of walking meditation, we will experience the surrounding neighborhood of the conference venue (including the Cemeterie Montparnasse) as a launch point to generate work and provide feedback and critique to one another.

Ekphrasis: Writing Confronts Visual Art (with Diana Norma Szokolyai)

The word “ekphrasis” comes from the Greek, referring to a literary response to a visual scene, or more commonly, a work of art. By engaging in the imaginative act of reflecting on the action of a work of visual art, the writer expands the meaning of the art. After reading literary examples and holding a discussion about applying the practice of ekphrasis to our own writing, our classroom will be one of the most beautiful museums in Paris: The Musée D’Orsay.

Flâneurs, Essays, and Provocateurs (with Rita Banerjee)

An essay is an attempt.  A trial. A test. In this class, we will explore how evocative essays are attempted and constructed.  We will explore how being a flâneur and an essayist are intimately combined. And we will study how essayists from Montaigne to James Baldwin to Lauren Elkin to Edmund White to David Shields to Yoko Tawada redefine the environment they inhabit and create a space for electric art.

Featured Faculty:

Kazim Ali was born in the United Kingdom to Muslim parents of Indian, Iranian and Egyptian descent. He received a B.A. and M.A. from the University of Albany-SUNY, and an M.F.A. from New York University. His books encompass several volumes of poetry, including Inquisition, Sky Ward, winner of the Ohioana Book Award in Poetry; The Far Mosque, winner of Alice James Books’ New England/New York Award; The Fortieth DayAll One’s Blue; and the cross-genre text Bright Felon. His novels include the recently published The Secret Room: A String Quartet and among his books of essays are the hybrid memoir Silver Road: Essays, Maps & Calligraphies and Fasting for Ramadan: Notes from a Spiritual Practice. Ali has taught at various colleges and universities, including Oberlin College, Davidson College, St. Mary’s College of California, and Naropa University. He is currently a professor of Literature and Writing at the University of California, San Diego.

ritabanerjeeRita Banerjee is the Executive Creative Director of the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop and editor of CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing (C&R Press, May 2018).  She is the author of the poetry collection Echo in Four Beats (Finishing Line Press, March 2018),which was named one of Book Riot’s “Must-Read Poetic Voices of Split This Rock 2018”, was nominated for the 2018 Kate Tufts Discovery Award, and was selected by Finishing Line Press as their 2018 nominee for the National Book Award in Poetry.  Banerjee is also the author of the novella “A Night with Kali” in Approaching Footsteps (Spider Road Press, 2016), and the poetry chapbook Cracklers at Night (Finishing Line Press, 2010). She received her doctorate in Comparative Literature from Harvard and her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Washington, and she is a recipient of a Vermont Studio Center Artist’s Grant, the Tom and Laurel Nebel Fellowship, and South Asia Initiative and Tata Grants. Her writing appears in the Academy of American PoetsPoets & Writers, Nat. Brut.The ScofieldThe Rumpus, Painted Bride Quarterly, Mass Poetry, Hyphen Magazine, Los Angeles Review of BooksElectric Literature, VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, AWP WC&C Quarterly, Queen Mob’s Tea House, Tahoma Literary Review, Riot Grrrl Magazine, The Fiction Project, Objet d’Art, KBOO Radio’s APA Compass, and elsewhere. She is the Director of the MFA in Writing & Publishing program at the Vermont College of Fine Arts, an Associate Scholar at Harvard, and the judge for the 2017 Minerva Rising “Dare to Speak” Poetry Chapbook Contest. She is currently working on a novel, a documentary film about race and intimacy, a book on South Asian literary modernisms, and a collection of lyric essays on race, sex, politics, and everything cool.

Diana Norma Szokolyai is an author, educator, interdisciplinary artist and artistic director. Her books are CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos & Sourcebook for Creative Writing(edited anthology), Parallel Sparrows(poetry + photography), Roses in the Snow (poetry + photography), and Blue Beard, Remixed (poetry + short story + art). Her poetry was shortlisted for the 2018 Bridport Prize and received honorable mention in the 87thAnnual Writer’s Digest Competition (2018). She also performs her poetry with music and her collaboration with Project 5 a.m., “Space Mothlight,” hit #16 on the Creative Commons Hot 100 list in 2015 and can be found in the curated WFMU Free Music Archive. She is Executive Artistic Director of Cambridge Writers’ Workshop, where she leads writing retreats, and Co-Director of Chagall Performance Art Collaborative. She holds an Ed.M in Arts in Education from Harvard University and an M.A. in French from the University of Connecticut.

Cambridge Writers’ Workshop Summer in Paris Writing Retreat (July 17-22, 2019) – Apply by June 15, 2019!

The Cambridge Writers’ Workshop Summer in Paris Writing Retreat will take place July 17-22, 2019 in Paris, France. The retreat offers participating writers of all genres and levels to work alongside award-winning authors and editors. Participating writers will hone their craft and expand their writing skills, while working on new or existing projects.

There will also be time to explore the city of Paris in all of its historical, literary, and romantic charm. Situated in heart of Paris’ Montparnasse neighborhood, amongst the fresh and popular open air markets and charming boutiques, the hotel stay is full of Parisian charm and our classes will take place in a beautiful Moroccan themed room that opens to a courtyard that can also be used by our writers.

Retreat activities will include craft of writing seminars and creative writing workshops, literary tours of Paris. If you’re serious about writing and want to soak in some exquisite French culture this summer, join our retreat in Paris! Tuition is $3250, which includes lodging in central Paris, daily creative writing workshops and writing seminars, daily breakfast, and a walking tour of “literary” Paris.

Faculty includes internationally renowned author Kazim Ali (fiction, poetry), Diana Norma Szokolyai(poetry, nonfiction), Rita Banerjee (poetry, nonfiction, fiction).

Schedule:

Writing about Space and Place (with Kazim Ali)
We experience place through multiple present tense lenses– sensory perception, kinesthetic observation, relationship of inner reality to outer surroundings– as well as through history, language, geography, botany, biology and zoology.

Craft Seminar:
We will look at a number of writers who have engaged space and place in their work and discuss what techniques and forms they developed, often very site-specific. Writers discussed will include Layli Long Soldier, Craig Santos Perez, Cristina Peri Rossi and Georges Perec

Generative Workshop:
Using techniques of walking meditation, we will experience the surrounding neighborhood of the conference venue (including the Cemeterie Montparnasse) as a launch point to generate work and provide feedback and critique to one another.

Ekphrasis: Writing Confronts Visual Art (with Diana Norma Szokolyai)

The word “ekphrasis” comes from the Greek, referring to a literary response to a visual scene, or more commonly, a work of art. By engaging in the imaginative act of reflecting on the action of a work of visual art, the writer expands the meaning of the art. After reading literary examples and holding a discussion about applying the practice of ekphrasis to our own writing, our classroom will be one of the most beautiful museums in Paris: The Musée D’Orsay.

Flâneurs, Essays, and Provocateurs (with Rita Banerjee)

An essay is an attempt.  A trial. A test. In this class, we will explore how evocative essays are attempted and constructed.  We will explore how being a flâneur and an essayist are intimately combined. And we will study how essayists from Montaigne to John McPhee to Richard Rodriguez to David Shields to Teju Cole and Lauren Elkin redefine the environment they inhabit and create a space for electric art.

Featured Faculty:

Photo by Tanya Rosen-Jones

Kazim Ali was born in the United Kingdom to Muslim parents of Indian, Iranian and Egyptian descent. He received a B.A. and M.A. from the University of Albany-SUNY, and an M.F.A. from New York University. His books encompass several volumes of poetry, including Inquisition, Sky Ward, winner of the Ohioana Book Award in Poetry; The Far Mosque, winner of Alice James Books’ New England/New York Award; The Fortieth DayAll One’s Blue; and the cross-genre text Bright Felon. His novels include the recently published The Secret Room: A String Quartet and among his books of essays are the hybrid memoir Silver Road: Essays, Maps & Calligraphies and Fasting for Ramadan: Notes from a Spiritual Practice. Ali has taught at various colleges and universities, including Oberlin College, Davidson College, St. Mary’s College of California, and Naropa University. He is currently a professor of Literature and Writing at the University of California, San Diego.

ritabanerjeeRita Banerjee is the Executive Creative Director of the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop and editor of CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing (C&R Press, May 2018).  She is the author of the poetry collection Echo in Four Beats (Finishing Line Press, March 2018),which was named one of Book Riot’s “Must-Read Poetic Voices of Split This Rock 2018”, was nominated for the 2018 Kate Tufts Discovery Award, and was selected by Finishing Line Press as their 2018 nominee for the National Book Award in Poetry.  Banerjee is also the author of the novella “A Night with Kali” in Approaching Footsteps (Spider Road Press, 2016), and the poetry chapbook Cracklers at Night (Finishing Line Press, 2010). She received her doctorate in Comparative Literature from Harvard and her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Washington, and she is a recipient of a Vermont Studio Center Artist’s Grant, the Tom and Laurel Nebel Fellowship, and South Asia Initiative and Tata Grants. Her writing appears in the Academy of American PoetsPoets & Writers, Nat. Brut.The ScofieldThe Rumpus, Painted Bride Quarterly, Mass Poetry, Hyphen Magazine, Los Angeles Review of BooksElectric Literature, VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, AWP WC&C Quarterly, Queen Mob’s Tea House, Tahoma Literary Review, Riot Grrrl Magazine, The Fiction Project, Objet d’Art, KBOO Radio’s APA Compass, and elsewhere. She is the Director of the MFA in Writing & Publishing program at the Vermont College of Fine Arts, an Associate Scholar at Harvard, and the judge for the 2017 Minerva Rising “Dare to Speak” Poetry Chapbook Contest. She is currently working on a novel, a documentary film about race and intimacy, a book on South Asian literary modernisms, and a collection of lyric essays on race, sex, politics, and everything cool.

Diana Norma Szokolyai is a writer and Executive Artistic Director of Cambridge Writers’ Workshop. Her edited volume, CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing, will be released by C&R Press in May 2018.  She is author of the poetry collections Parallel Sparrows (honorable mention for Best Poetry Book in the 2014 Paris Book Festival) and Roses in the Snow (first runner-­up Best Poetry Book at the 2009 DIY Book Festival). She also records her poetry with musicians and has collaborated with several composers including David Krebs (US), Robert Lemay (Canada), Claudio Gabriele (Italy), Peter James (UK), Jason Haye (UK), and Sebastian Wesman (Estonia). Diana Norma is a founding member of the performing arts groups Sounds in Bloom, ChagallPAC, and The Brooklyn Soundpainting Ensemble. Her poetry-music collaboration with Flux Without Pause, “Space Mothlight,” hit #16 on the Creative Commons Hot 100 list in 2015, and can be found in the curated WFMU Free Music Archive. Her work has been recently reviewed by The London Grip and published in VIDA: Reports from the Field, The Fiction Project, Quail Bell Magazine, Lyre Lyre, The Boston Globe, Dr. Hurley’s Snake Oil Cure, The Dudley Review and Up the Staircase QuarterlyThe Million Line Poem, The Cambridge Community Poem, and elsewhere, as well as anthologized in Our Last Walk, The Highwaymen NYC #2, Other Countries: Contemporary Poets Rewiring History, Always Wondering, and Teachers as Writers.  She is currently at work on her next book and an album of poetry & music.  Diana Norma holds a M.A. in French (UCONN, La Sorbonne) and an Ed.M in Arts in Education (Harvard).

If you’d like to join us in Paris, please apply online by June 15, 2019, and include $10 application screening fee and a 5-10 page writing sample of poetry or prose.  Please also include the following in your cover letter:

1. Full Legal Name
2. Contact & Address
3. Age & Nationality
4. Prior creative writing experience and publications
5. Creative writing goals for the retreat
6. Short one paragraph biography
7. Contact of Two Personal References (Name, Email, Address, Phone, Relationship to Applicant)

(Due to limited seats, early applications are encouraged, but check for rolling admission after deadline, depending on availability). More information available at cww.nyc

apply

Deadline: June 15, 2019