Tag Archives: Books

Food for Thought: Phenomenal Women

phenomenalwomennewThe next book discussion will take up Phenomenal Women: Twelve Youngstown Stories. This collection of oral histories, edited and published by Lit Youngstown, is in the stacks at the public library and branches, and is available for $16 at Three Sheep Gallery & Workshop, Tyler History Center and at upcoming Lit Youngstown events.

We will meet at Cultivate Cafe, 901 Elm St., on Wednesday, March 14, from 6:00-7:00 pm. If you would like to order a bite to eat, please arrive well before the counter closes at 6:00.

We are in the midst of a series of books that explore the American experience. Peruse the rest of the titles here. Haven’t read the book yet? No worries. Join us.

Poets Adam Hughes & Stephanie Sesic March 7

Wednesday, March 7, The Soap Gallery, 117 S. Champion St. Doors open at 7:15, reading begins at 7:30. Open mic follows the reading.

adam hughesAdam Hughes is the author of four full-length collections, most recently Allow the Stars to Catch Me When I Rise (Salmon Poetry, 2017) and Deep Cries Out to Deep (Aldrich Press, 2017). He resides in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains.

Stephanie Sesic teaches writing and literature at Kent State stephanie sesicUniversity and Cuyahoga Community College. Her work has appeared most recently online in Rascal. Her chapbook, The Intimate Verge, was published by Pudding House Publications in 2008. Her work reveals an obsession with the sky and tends to stick to the classic themes of sex and death.

Food for Thought: Citizen

Citizen 1345Our next book discussion will focus on the award-winning book-length poem “Citizen” by Claudia Rankine. Read a New Yorker review here.

We will meet at Cultivate Cafe, 901 Elm St., on Wednesday, February 14, from 6:00-7:00 pm. If you would like to order a bite to eat, please arrive well before the counter closes at 6:00.

We are in the midst of a series of books that explore the American experience. Peruse the rest of the titles here.

 

On the Road with Phenomenal Women

It was a great privilege to take our oral history project, Phenomenal Women: Twelve Youngstown Stories, to Arkansas in early November.

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At the inaugural C.D. Wright Women Writers Conference at the University of Central Arkansas, we were included on a panel of presenters from Indiana, Nebraska and Ohio. The focus of our talk was the ways that literary arts might be used give a voice to women and girls, to create bridges of understanding, healing, and empowerment. Audience members asked several questions about our project.

2. Reaching Out: Organizations and Institutions Using Literary Arts as Outreach with Women and Girls
(Karen Schubert, Janine Harrison, Laura Madeline Wiseman, and Colleen Wells)
Location: Art Lecture Hall, McCastlain Hall
The literary arts are a means for giving voice to women and girls. This panel will discuss several outreach writing projects dealing with such themes as writing resistance to violence; therapy and trauma; empowerment and connection; and bridging gulfs in sociohistorical experience. From readings to roundtables to workshops to oral histories, presenters will expand on the power of the literary arts to create a space for women and girls.

The conference was named for C.D. Wright, a celebrated poet from Arkansas.

ft smith From there, we presented at the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith, under the invitation of Professor Christian Anton Gerard. Three Fort Smith students performed the Phenomenal Women staged reading.

staged reading ft smith

 

 

Even though the details of the stories in Phenomenal Women are specific to Youngstown, they are well received wherever we take them. The themes of love, loss, work, family, struggle, change and hope are universal, and the poignant, tender and funny storytelling is powerful.

 

 

October Reading at Soap Gallery

October’s First Wednesday Series Reading features local writer Nancy Christie and J. Everett Prewitt of Cleveland. We’ll meet at the Soap Gallery this time, 117 S. Champion St., at 7:15. An open mic will follow, emceed by Venise Abell.

nancy_christieNancy Christie is the author of the fiction collection, Traveling Left of Center and Other Stories (a runner-up in the 2016 Shelf Unbound Competition), the inspirational book, The Gifts Of Change and numerous short stories including one that was shortlisted for Pulp Literature’s 2016 The Raven Short Story Contest. She is also the founder of “Celebrate Short Fiction” Day and host of the monthly Monday Night Writers group in Canfield, OH. Her “Rut-Busting” Workshop for Writers helps participants identify their objectives, overcome self-imposed barriers and get out of their writing rut. For more information, visit her website at www.nancychristie.com.

J. Everett Prewitt is a Vietnam veteran and a former Army officer. He holds a B.A. from everett_prewittLincoln University and an M.S. in Urban Studies from Cleveland State. His novel Snake Walkers won the Bronze Award for General Fiction in ForeWord Magazine’s Book of the Year contest, and was honored by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. A Long Way Back received numerous awards, including first place in the Independent Publishers of New England. A novella titled Something About Ann, and a series of short stories related to A Long Way Back including the award winning The Last Time I Saw Willie, will be available in 2017. Prewitt lives in Shaker Heights. http://eprewitt.com/

Food for Thought: The Weight of Heaven

Our new series examines the rich diversity of the American experience. The first title is The Weight of Heaven by Thrity Umrigar, a novelist who emigrated from India static1.squarespaceat age 21 and now teaches at Case Western Reserve.

The Weight of Heaven is about an American couple who move to India for the husband’s job, after they have lost their only child.

We will discuss the book at Cultivate Co-op Cafe, 901 Elm St., 5:00-6:00, Thursday, September 14.

The rest of the titles in this series are listed here.

Poetry Reading September 6

Join us Wednesday September 6 at 7:00 at Suzie’s Dogs & Drafts in downtown Youngstown, as we welcome Meg Johnson of Iowa and Caryl Pagel of Cleveland. Open mic to follow, emceed by Ron Book. Lit Youngstown’s First Wednesday Readers Series is funded in part by the Nathalie and James Andrews Foundation.

meg_johnsonMeg Johnson is the author of the full length poetry collection Inappropriate Sleepover (The National Poetry Review Press, 2014). Her second book, The Crimes of Clara Turlington, won the 2015 Vignette Collection Award and was recently published by Vine Leaves Press. Meg’s poems have appeared in Hobart, Nashville Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, The Puritan, Sugar House Review, Verse Daily, and others. Her nonfiction has appeared in BUST, Ms. Magazine, The Good Men Project, and Bustle. She received her MFA in creative writing from the NEOMFA Program and is the editor of Dressing Room Poetry Journal. Visit her at: www.megjohnson.org

Caryl Pagel is the author of two collections of poetry, TWICE TOLD (H_NG M_N Books, caryl_pagel2014) and EXPERIMENTS I SHOULD LIKE TRIED AT MY OWN DEATH (Factory Hollow Press, 2012) as well as two chapbooks, MAUSOLEUM (WinterRedpress, 2013) and VISIONS, CRISIS APPARITIONS, AND OTHER EXCEPTIONAL EXPERIENCES (Factory Hollow Press, 2008). Her poems and essays have appeared in AGNI, Denver Quarterly, Essay Press, The Iowa Review, Jacket2, The Mississippi Review, and Devil’s Lake, among other journals, and she is currently at work on a collection of essays entitled THE REALITY OF THE UNSEEN. Caryl is the co-founder and editor of Rescue Press, a poetry editor at jubilat, and the Director of the Cleveland State University Poetry Center. She teaches undergraduate classes in creative writing at Cleveland State as well graduate poetry and nonfiction classes in the NEOMFA Program in Eastern Ohio.