“Show, Don’t Tell” but also “Less is More”: Using Scene and Summary in Short Story Writing
Most narratives rely on plot to engage readers, and most plots rely on scenes in order to create a solid structure. Scenes can control the pace of a story and introduce character development. However, while scene is very powerful, there is another tool writers can use: summary. Summary can be used in place of scene to accomplish many of the same things, but summary can also be used to influence characters within the story, or the readers themselves.
In this workshop, we will examine several short stories to look for successful examples of using both scene and summary. Writers can bring in their own drafts with the goal of revising them, or will be able to generate drafts. Writers in this workshop will find their own happy mediums between “show, don’t tell,” and “less is more.”
Meet the teaching artist: Specializing in fiction through the NEOMFA program, Bridgid Cassin has worked as writer and editor for Youngstown State University’s New Frontiers research publication while also serving on the staff of the Jenny literary magazine. She has led workshops for Lit Youngstown, Winter Wheat, and the Hoyt Center for the Arts in Newcastle, PA. Bridgid has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and attended the Juniper Summer Writing Institute in 2018. Bridgid previously earned Master’s in English from St. John’s University, and also completed a certificate in Children’s and YA Literature at YSU.
Using Scene and Summary in Short Story Writing. Teens & Adults. All experience levels welcome.Wednesday, August 14, 7-9:00 p.m., St. John’s Episcopal Church, 323 Wick Ave. Course fee: $15 (pay at workshop). Need-based scholarships are available. Register here: Deadline August 10.
This workshop will focus on submitting poems and short prose (fiction, nonfiction, essay) for literary journals, anthologies and contests. We will discuss how to find print and online publications that might be a good fit, how to write a cover letter, how to track submissions, and how to find and enter contests. Whether you are new to publishing or an old hat looking for a jump-start, join us for this four-week workshop.
Submitting Poems & Short Prose for Publication. Teens & Adults. All experience levels welcome.Thursdays, May 23-June 13, 7-8:30 p.m., St. John’s Episcopal Church, 323 Wick Ave. Course fee: $25. Need-based scholarships are available. Register here: Deadline May 20.
Karen Schubert is the author of five poetry chapbooks, most recently Dear Youngstown (NightBallet Press). She has published dozens of poems, fiction, creative nonfiction, essays, reviews and interviews in journals including National Poetry Review, Apple Valley Review, diode poetry journal,Waccamaw and Terrain.org.
TheFlash Fictionworkshop will focus on experimentation and practice of flash fiction forms as well as the questions—what is flash fiction, how is its power achieved? During this five-week course students will examine and write stories that fall into five flash fiction categories: flash fiction (1000-1500); sudden flash fiction (750 words); microfiction (100 words); the six-word story; and the final class will be on marketing.There will be reading and writing assignments in and outside of class.
Flash Fiction Workshop. Teens & Adults. All experience levels welcome.Tuesdays, March 5-April 2, 7-8:30 p.m., St. John’s Episcopal Church, 323 Wick Ave. Course fee: $25. Need-based scholarships are available (LitYoungstown@gmail.com). Registration Deadline March 1.
Please bring paper/notebook and pens, or an ipad or laptop to class.
Arya F. Jenkins is a writer/teacher/editor. Her flash fiction has been published in numerous journals and zines such as Anti-Heroin Chic, Black Scat Review, Brilliant Corners, Cider Press Review, The Feminist Wire, Front Porch Review, KYSO Flash, The Matador Review, Metafore Literary Magazine and Mojave Literary Review. Her fiction was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2017 and her fiction and flash fiction garnered three nominations in 2018. She has published two poetry chapbooks and her short story collectionBlue Songs in an Open Keywas published by Fomite Press November 2018.Blue Songs in an Open Keyis available viawww.aryafjenkins.com.
Arya has taught creative writing at Fairfield University and Mahoning County Career and Technical Center. She has worked as an editor for numerous writers, and as a newspaper, magazine and book editor.
Registration is now closed. Thank you for such an enthusiastic response!
Join us for an enjoyable, high-energy day of writing and storytelling Saturday, February 16, 9:30-3:00, at St. John’s Episcopal Church and the main library on Wick Ave. Seats are limited so register soon, but if you are unable to attend, please let us know right away. The deadline is February 1 or when all seats are full.
Word play, blackout poetry, writing the fantastical, adding mystery to your story, free writing and many more topics and activities will be on the menu, as well as cookies & open mic for those who would like to bring a poem or story to share.
The Winter Writing Camp is co-hosted by St. John’s Episcopal Church and the Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County, with sessions for all writers, from kindergarten up, and all levels of experience. Participants under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult.
Free registration includes lunch. Free childcare all day for children 5 and under. It is allowable for adults to bring small, non-disruptive children into sessions, but we hope that offering childcare will give adults a moment to enjoy uninterrupted time with older children.
If you have a disability, please let us know when you register. We’d like to the make the day as enjoyable as possible for you.
We will meet at 9:30 at St. John’s, where each participant will receive a schedule and list of sessions. Please park in the lot at St. John’s or the library, or behind St. John’s on Walnut St. by the MVR. As we will be walking between buildings, weather-wise outerwear and footwear are recommended.
Questions? Let us know: Info@LitYoungstown.org.
Join us in thanking our sponsors who make this day possible: the Nathalie & James Andrews Foundation; Harrington, Hoppe & Mitchell, Ltd.; the Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley; Maureen Reardon; Crist & Rosemary Weaver; the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Youngstown & Cultivate: a Co-op Café. Thank you!
Join us at the Lakeland Literary Festival! Lit Youngstown is pleased to be invited to participate in the book fair at Lakeland Community College in Kirtland, Ohio. We will leave at 7:00 a.m. from our office at St. John’s Episcopal Church, 323 Wick Ave. Like to ride up with us? Please let us know: LitYoungstown@gmail.com.
Celebrate the many exciting forms of literature with noted writers. The Lakeland Literary Festival is being held Nov. 30, 2018, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in HIVE in the H-Building.
Acclaimed writers and poets will present a variety of workshops in areas such as non-fiction, fiction, poetry, translation and publishing. There will also be a book fair with many presses, magazines and organizations.
This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required for the workshops. Register here.
The event will begin with a continental breakfast and then the workshops will run from 9-10 a.m., 10:15-11:15 a.m. and 11:30-12:30 p.m. Lunch will be available for purchase from food trucks on the campus. After lunch, at 1 p.m., keynote speaker Dave Lucas, Poet Laureate of the State of Ohio will speak. The event will close with a poetry reading by winners of the 31st Annual Poetry Competition, slated from 2-3 p.m.
For more information, contact Assistant Professor James DeMonte at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 440.525.7458.
Join the 100+ writers and editors already registered for two days of literary goodness! We have invited an incredible faculty of accomplished visiting writers, and dozens of excellent presenters. There will be two days of creative readings, workshops, craft talks, panels on publishing, editing, writer and all kinds of topics.
More information on the festival and registration is here.
Please join us in thanking our community partners the Nathalie & James Andrews Foundation, Nancy Beeghly, Liz Hill, the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts, the Ohio Arts Council, the Purple Cat, Sojourn to the Past, St. John’s Episcopal Church, YSU College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, YSU Department of Women & Gender Studies, YSU English Department.
The Fall Literary Festival is made possible in part by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature to the Ohio Arts Council (OAC). The OAC is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically.
Save the dates! This year’s festivals will feature workshops, craft talks, a publishing panel, and readings by these accomplished visiting writers.
Please join us in thanking our community partners for helping to make the festival possible: the Nathalie & James Andrews Foundation, the Purple Cat, the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts, Sojourn to the Past, St. John’s Episcopal Church, YSU College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, YSU Department of Women & Gender Studies, YSU English Department.
Lesley Nneka Arimah was born in the UK and grew up wherever her father was stationed for work, which was sometimes Nigeria. Her work has received grants and
Lesley Nneka Arimah
awards from Commonwealth Writers, AWP, the Elizabeth George Foundation, the Jerome Foundation and others. She was selected for the National Book Foundation’s 5 Under 35. Her short story collection What It Means When a Man Falls From The Sky was published by Riverhead in April 2017. She currently lives in Minneapolis.
after majoring in English in college to writing and publishing fiction. In 2009, she published her first novel for teens with HarperCollins. Freaked is the story of a teenaged boy obsessed with the Grateful Dead. She followed with a second novel in 2010 entitled Stranded, a mystery set in Iowa surrounding the discovery of an abandoned baby.
John Kerstetter, the author of Crossings: A Doctor-Soldier’s Story (Random House 2017), received his medical degree from the Mayo Medical School in Rochester, Minnesota, and his MFA degree from Ashland University in Ohio. He
served as a combat physician and flight surgeon for the U.S. Army and completed three combat tours in Iraq. His writing has appeared in The Best American Essays, River Teeth, and other literary journals.
Jacqui Lipton, LL.B., M.F.A., Ph.D. is a law professor and writer as well as the director of Authography LLC, a company dedicated to helping authors and artists meet their personal and professional goals. She writes regular columns on legal issues for authors for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Bulletin, Savvy Authors, and Luna
Station Quarterly. She holds an MFA in fiction writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts and a Ph.D. in law from Cambridge University. Her forthcoming book, LAW & AUTHORS: A LEGAL HANDBOOK FOR WRITERS will be published in 2019 by University of California Press.
Dave Lucas is the author of Weather (Georgia, 2011), which received the 2012 Ohioana Book Award in Poetry. He is a co-founder of Brews + Prose at Market Garden Brewery and of Cleveland Book Week. In 2018 he was appointed the second Poet Laureate of the State of Ohio.
Craig Paulenich is the author of two books of poetry, Drift of the Hunt (Nobobdaddies Press, 2006) and Blood Will Tell (BlazeVOX [books], 2009) and editor (with Kent Johnson) of the anthology, Beneath A Single Moon: Buddhism in Contemporary American Poetry (Shambhala Press, 1991). His poems have appeared in The Georgia Poetry Review, Tar River Poetry, Kansas Quarterly, the Minnesota Review, the South Carolina Review, Southern Poetry Review, Artful Dodge, and many others. He has been nominated for three Pushcart Prizes. He earned an MFA in Poetry at the University of Pittsburgh, a Ph.D. in English at Bowling Green
State University, and is Professor of English at Kent State University-Salem. He is a co-founder and faculty with the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, the nation’s only creative writing consortium. He’s currently working on a book of poems about John Brown. He and his wife, Karla, live on a 27-acre farm outside Guilford Lake, Ohio.
Judith Vollmer is the author of five full-length books of poetry, including most recently The Apollonia Poems, awarded the University of Wisconsin Press Four Lakes Prize in 2016 and published last year. She has received fellowships and residencies from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Corporation of Yaddo, and the American
Academy in Rome; and the Brittingham, the Cleveland State, and the Center for Book Arts publication awards. Her poems, essays, and reviews have appeared in Poetry International, Poet Lore, The Cambridge Companion to Baudelaire, Prairie Schooner, The Women’s Review of Books, among many others. She teaches in the MFA Program in Poetry & Poetry in Translation at Drew University.
Join Rikki Santer in exploring ways that poetry and film can be in conversation with each other.In this workshop, Santer will present film clips and poems to demonstrate how the movies have influenced and inspired poets throughout the last century.She will also provide prompts that will guide participants to “read” a movie with more complexity as well as create poems in response to the cinema.
Saturday March 10, noon to 3:00, St. John’s Episcopal Church, 323 Wick Ave. $15.
Santer is a Columbus, Ohio, award-winning poet and educator who developed and taught a film studies curriculum to high school students and adults for seventeen years.She has published film reviews and studied film at New York University, The Ohio State University, Antioch University, The University of Montana, and Wesleyan University and currently serves on the advisory board of Film Columbus. She holds a master’s degree in journalism from Kent State University and a master’s of fine arts in creative writing from The Ohio State University. Her poetry has been published widely and Nightballet Press released her fifth poetry collection, Make Me That Happy.(www.rikkisanter.com)
Now more than ever, it is vital for writers of the Rust Belt to represent our sense of place with passion and insight. As politicians, commentators and the entertainment elite try to define us for their own purposes, we must observe and project the reality of our communities and the lives we live here. In this workshop, we will discuss techniques for writing about place, with an emphasis on the postindustrial landscape of Northeast Ohio. The session will include a writing exercise; participants should bring a notebook or laptop.
The Hard Way On Purpose: Friday, August 18, 3:00-4:30, St. John’s Episcopal Church, 323 Wick Ave. Course fee: $15. Register here.
Meet the Teaching Artist: David Giffels is the author of The Hard Way on Purpose: Essays and Dispatches From the Rust Belt (Scribner 2014), nominated for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay, and the memoir All the Way Home (William Morrow/HarperCollins 2008), winner of the Ohioana Book Award. His writing has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, the Atlantic.com, Parade, the Wall Street Journal, Esquire.com, Grantland.com, Redbook, and many other publications. He also was a writer for the MTV series Beavis and Butt-Head. He is an associate professor of English at University of Akron, where he teaches creative nonfiction in the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts Program.
Lit Youngstown’s Fall Literary Festival features readings, craft talks, writing workshops and a publishing panel, by acclaimed and accomplished faculty from Ohio and around the country.
Please register soon. We will take walk-ins, but pre-registration will allow us to plan more efficiently. Register electronically here or print and mail registration here: fall fest registration.
We look forward to seeing you there! In September, we will email more information about parking and other details. Questions? Email us at LitYoungstown@gmail.com.
Lit Youngstown Fall Literary Festival
Saturday, September 30, 2017
St. John’s Episcopal Church, 323 Wick Ave.
Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County, 305 Wick Ave.
McDonough Museum of Art, 525 Wick Ave.
8:00-9:00 St. John’s Episcopal Church Great Hall
Coffee, Pastries, Registration
8:30-9:45 St. John’s Episcopal Church Great Hall Poetry Through an Editor’s Eyes, Slapering Hol Press editors Susana H. Case & Margo Taft Stever (bring two poems in progress)
Prose Workshop, Christopher Barzak
Memoir Workshop, Kelly Bancroft
10:00-10:50 Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County
“Laying the Foundation: Concrete Imagery in Poetry,” Denise Duhamel
“Writing Historical Fiction: The Ever Unfolding Drama,” Robert Olmstead
“Not the Whole Truth: Writing Memoir,” Kelly Bancroft
11:00-11:45 Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County
Fiction Reading, Robert Olmstead
12:00 St. John’s Episcopal Church Great Hall
Lunch by Cultivate Co-op Cafe
1:00-1:45, St. John’s Episcopal Church Sanctuary
Poetry Reading, Susana Case & Margo Taft Stever
2:00-3:00 McDonough Museum of Art
On Publishing: Discussion and Q&A with Nin Andrews, Kelly Bancroft, Christopher Barzak, Susana Case, Denise Duhamel, Robert Olmstead, Margo Taft Stever
3:00-3:30 McDonough Museum of Art Screening of Kelly Bancroft’s short film Arriving at Bessie Cake by Selah Restaurant
3:45-4:45 St. John’s Episcopal Church Sanctuary
Poetry Reading: Nin Andrews & Denise Duhamel
Nin Andrews’s poems and stories have appeared in Ploughshares, The Paris Review, Best American Poetry, Best American Prose Poems, Sudden Stories: A Mammoth Anthology of Miniscule Fiction, The House of Your Dreams: An International Collection of Prose Poems, Seriously Funny, and Nothing to Declare: A Guide to the Flash Sequence. The recipient of two Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Awards, she is the author of six chapbooks and six full-length poetry collections. Why God Is a Woman won the 2016 Ohioana award in poetry; her most recent is Miss August (CavanKerry Press, 2017).
Kelly Bancroft won an Ohio Arts Council individual artist award and Ragdale writer residencies. Her poetry and prose have appeared in Puerto del Sol, Mudfish, XConnect, Jezebel and TIME, among others. A short documentary based on her family research was selected for this year’s Cleveland International Film Festival. She is currently working on a full-length play and short essays in memoir.
Christopher Barzak is author of the Crawford Fantasy Award novel, One for Sorrow, made into Jamie Marks is Dead, a Sundance feature film. The Love We Share Without Knowing was a finalist for the Nebula Award and the James Tiptree Jr. Award. Wonders of the Invisible World, (Knopf, 2015) received the Stonewall Honor Award from the American Library Association. He is author of two collections: Birds and Birthdays, surrealist fantasy stories, and Before and Afterlives, supernatural fantasies, which won Best Collection in the 2013 Shirley Jackson Awards. He teaches fiction writing in the NEOMFA program at YSU.
Susana H. Case is the author of five books of poetry, most recently, Drugstore Blue (Five Oaks Press, 2017)and 4 Rms w Vu from Mayapple Press, as well as four chapbooks. One of her collections, The Scottish Café, from Slapering Hol Press, was re-released in a dual-language English-Polish version, Kawiarnia Szkocka by Opole University Press in Poland. Her poems appear widely in magazines and anthologies. Case is a Professor and Program Coordinator at the New York Institute of Technology in New York City.
Denise Duhamel’s most recent book of poetry is Scald (Pittsburgh, 2017). Blowout (Pittsburgh, 2013) was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her other titles include Ka-Ching! (Pittsburgh, 2009); Two and Two (Pittsburgh, 2005); Queen for a Day: Selected and New Poems (Pittsburgh, 2001); The Star-Spangled Banner (Southern Illinois University Press, 1999); and Kinky (Orhisis, 1997). She and Maureen Seaton co-authored CAPRICE (Collaborations: Collected, Uncollected, and New) (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2015). Duhamel is a recipient of fellowships from the Guggenhiem Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. The guest editor is for The Best American Poetry 2013, she is a professor at Florida International University in Miami.
Robert Olmstead is the author of seven novels, the memoir Stay Here With Me, and River Dogs, a collection of short stories. His three most recent novels, known as the Childs Trilogy: Coal Black Horse, Far Bright Star, and The Coldest Night, have been optioned by Casey Affleck. Far Bright Star, declared one of the top ten westerns of the decade by Booklist will be directed by Affleck and star Joaquin Phoenix. Olmstead’s many awards include two Ohioana Book Awards, Amazon Top 100, Kirkus Top 25, Publisher’s Weekly Top 100, a Spur Award for Best Novel from the Western Writers of America, Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize for Fiction, a #1 Pick Booksense, Senior Arts Fellowships from Ohio and Pennsylvania, Idaho Press Club Award and Black Warrior Review Fiction Award, as well as Fellowships from the NEA and the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation.
Margo Taft Stever’s four poetry collections are The Lunatic Ball, Kattywompus Press, 2015; The Hudson Line, Main Street Rag, 2012; Frozen Spring, Mid-List Press First Series Award for Poetry, 2002; and Reading the Night Sky, Riverstone Poetry Chapbook Competition, 1996. In 2019, CRACKED PIANO, will be published by CavanKerry Press. Her poems have appeared widely in literary magazines and anthologies including Blackbird, Salamander, Prairie Schooner, Poem-A-Day, New England Review, Cincinnati Review, Rattapallax, Webster Review, Dire Elegies, Chance of a Ghost, and No More Masks. She is the founder of The Hudson Valley Writers’ Center and the founding and current co-editor of Slapering Hol Press. For more information, please see: www.margostever.com.
Profound thanks to our community partners, The Nathalie & James Andrews Foundation, St. John’s Episcopal Church, the Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County, the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts, the McDonough Museum of Art, the Youngstown State University Department of English and Dr. Barbara Brothers.
Lit Youngstown is proud to list The Fall Literary Festival in 100 Thousand Poets for Change, dedicated to using poetry as a means for creative voice, and as an expression of peace, justice and sustainability.