Tag Archives: Nonfiction

Workshop: Writing About Identity and the Fractured Self (Zoom)

Writing About Identity and the Fractured Self

In this workshop we will read and write pieces dealing with identity and how we understand our sense of self via an array of topics related to the fractured identity including heritage, sense of place etc. Examined works include those of Scott Russell Sanders, Mary Karr and Mark Doty.

Writing About Identity and the Fractured Self. Adults & teens, all experience levels welcome. Saturdays, March 20-April 17, 10:00 AM to noon, on Zoom. Course fee is $25 (scholarships are available). Please register here before March 13.

Meet the Teaching Artist: Anastasios Mihalopoulos holds a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry and English from Allegheny College. His thesis in creative nonfiction was titled, Distillations: Essays on Science and Singularity in the Self. He attended the Writing Workshops in Greece (WWIG) and is currently pursuing an M.F.A. in creative writing through the Northeast Ohio MFA program.

Food for Thought: The Hidden Half of Nature


We picked this book out half a year ago for our series on humankind in the natural world; who knew it would be so relevant?

The Hidden Half of Nature is described as an “ambitious and prodigiously researched book” that presents a “romantic view of the microbial world” by Sonia Shah, a science journalist writing for The New York Times.
“At the heart of this delightful book lies the simple belief that microbes have ‘shaped our past and how we treat them will shape our future in ways we are only beginning to understand.’” Publishers Weekly Review
“A must-read for avid gardeners, those interested in bolstering our precarious food supply, or anyone remotely concerned about their health and the soil under their feet.” Kirkus Reviews Review
“Eye opening … A must for all fascinated by the workings of the body and for those concerned with health care and the environment.” Booklist Continue reading

First Wednesday Moved to Second Wednesday

Have a great 4th, and we’ll see you on the 10th! We send out a special invitation to NEOMFA alumni, students & faculty. The open mic will be emceed by Joelle Lambert, so bring your poems & stories. Also, we’ll be celebrating National Piña Colada Day & National Pick Blueberries Day: a double-header! Wednesday July 10, 7:00, The Soap Gallery.

AlexBW (3)Alex DiFrancesco is a writer of fiction, creative nonfiction, and journalism who has published work in Tin House, The Washington Post, Pacific Standard, Brevity, and more. Their essay collection Psychopomps (Civil Coping Mechanisms Press) and their second novel All City (Seven Stories Press) were published in 2019. Their storytelling has been featured at The Fringe Festival, Life of the Law, The Queens Book Festival, and The Heart podcast. DiFrancesco is currently an MFA candidate at Cleveland State University. They can be found @DiFantastico on Twitter. Continue reading

Food for Thought: Founding Mothers: The Women Who Raised Our Nation

Cokie Roberts spoke to a packed house at Stambaugh Auditorium last year, and we have cokie_mothersselected her book to conclude our series of titles by recent author visitors to the Valley. About Founding Mothers, the Washington Post writes, “Just because the founding mothers were unappreciated in their own time doesn’t mean we have to continue the trend.”

You can find copies of the book at the Mahoning and Trumbull County libraries, YSU Maag Library via OhioLink, and at the YSU Barnes & Noble.

Food for Thought book discussion will be hosted by our community partner Cultivate Cafe, 901 Elm St., on Wednesday, May 8, 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. Haven’t read the book yet? No worries. Join us.

We will take the summer off and resume this fall with a series on humankind and the natural world.

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Food for Thought: I’m Still Here

Austin Channing Brown recently spoke at St. John’s Episcopal Church, so we have selected her book as part of our series of titles by recent author visitors to the Valley. About I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness the publisher writes, “Austin Channing Brown’s first encounter with a racialized America came at age 7, when she discovered her parents named her Austin to deceive future employers into thinking she was a white man. Growing up in majority-white schools, organizations, and churches, Austin writes, ‘I had to learn what it means to love blackness,’ a journey that led to a lifetime spent navigating America’s racial divide as a writer, speaker and expert who helps organizations practice genuine inclusion.” Continue reading

First Wednesday Features Lori Bodkin & Stacey Schneider

Join us for a nonfiction reading Wednesday, May 2, at the Soap Gallery, 117 S. Champion St. Following the reading, an open mic will be emceed by Jennifer Kuczek. Doors open at 7:15. Park on the street or in the lot on the corner of S. Champion and Front Streets.

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