Claim Your Story

Writing Conference, Ashland, Oregon


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Claim Your Story 2014

Please mark your calendars for  Claim Your Story 2014.

Image by Billy Tice,  Austin, TX

Image by Billy Tice, Austin, Texas

          Saturday, October 4

     It will once again be held at the charming Lithia Springs Resort in Ashland, Oregon.

The schedule will be posted here soon along with ongoing writing inspiration so please check back.


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Maya Angelou

Statement from Dr. Maya Angelou’s Family: mangelou
Dr. Maya Angelou passed quietly in her home before 8:00 a.m. EST. Her family is extremely grateful that her ascension was not belabored by a loss of acuity or comprehension. She lived a life as a teacher, activist, artist and human being. She was a warrior for equality, tolerance and peace. The family is extremely appreciative of the time we had with her and we know that she is looking down upon us with love.
Guy B. Johnson

 


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The History of Poetry
Our masters are gone and if they returned
Who among us would hear them, who would know
The bodily sound of heaven of the heavenly sound
Of the body, endless and vanishing, that tuned
Our days before the wheeling stars
Were stripped of power? The answer is
None of us here. And what does it mean if we see
The moon-glazed mountains and the town with its silent doors
And water towers, and feel like raising our voices
Just a little, or sometimes during late autumn
When the evening flowers a moment over the western range
And we imagine angels rushing down the air’s cold steps
To wish us well, if we have lost our will,
And do nothing but doze, half hearing the sighs
Of this or that breeze drift aimlessly over the failed farms
And wasted gardens? These days when we waken.
Everything shines with the same blue light
That filled our sleep moments before,
So we do nothing but count the trees, the clouds,
The few birds left; then we decide that we shouldn’t
Be hard on ourselves, that the past was no better
Than now, for hasn’t the enemy always existed,
And wasn’t the church of the world always in ruins?
 – Mark Strand

 


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Midge Raymond answers questions about the writing life

MidgeRaymond-photo     Q: What is your best advice for writers in 20 words or less?

     A:Write what you love, and don’t worry about the market for your work until you’re    finished writing.

     Q:What inspires you?

     A: The world around me has always been my biggest inspiration —it’s an endless source of material,and I’m endlessly curious about human beings and what makes them tick. Paying attention is what leads me to story ideas, and it’s also where I get fuel for the emotions behind the writing, for example, by witnessing something either troubling, or beautiful, or bizarre.

Q: Where is your favorite place to write?

B: My very favorite place to write is the Whiteley Center on San Juan Island, where I did a residency last year. I got more work done there in ten days than I had throughout the entire year. Otherwise, I’ll write anywhere; it’s finding the time that’s my challenge! I love to take a notebook somewhere, like Lithia Park, to explore the beginnings of a story. When I’m at the end, in a revision stage, I like to print everything out and go to a cafe with my pages and a red pen. Otherwise I’m happy if I can find the time to sit on the sofa or at the kitchen table with my laptop.

Q:How do you see the future of publishing?

A: I am very optimistic about the future of publishing. Despite all the disruptions to traditional publishing, there are also wonderful new opportunities that allow self-published authors and small presses to thrive.

For more insights and inspiration from Midge visit her here.