Danielle Marie Clark
The first Writers Under Thirty Reading, one in a new ongoing series developed by Great Lakes Commonwealth of Letters and Bombadil Books, opened with great reception on July 14, 2016. With ten readers and forty five in attendance, the Writers' Hub seemed alight with fresh talent from the local literary arts community. The event gave space for writers who had never read, such as GLCL intern Gracey Mussina, as well as opened the floor for more seasoned readers such as Corey Tyler and Kelly Booms. Readers read from a variety of genres, each sharing a beautiful narrative that really embodied what it means to be a writer at twenty (or twenty-nine and a few months).
Each reader approached the stage with a confidence and excitement that fed the positivity of the crowded room. Friends of Bombadil Books, GLCL and Danielle Marie Clark, as well as supporters of the literary arts, were treated to beautiful pieces that encapsulated feelings of loss, reconciliation, and wonderment. Reader Jackie Vega’s poems gave vision to the questioning of party culture in college towns, while Rori Meyer gave uplifting words of encouragement for her younger self. All readers brought well crafted poems, stories, and personal recollections. Photos of the event can be found on Bombadil Book’s Facebook page here.
Readers were incentivized to read by being entered into a drawing for a membership to the Writers' Hub; Annabelle Miller, a poet who recently graduated Grand Valley State University, was randomly selected for membership! GLCL is excited to have such a talented young writer join its rich writing community.
The next Writers Under Thirty event will be held at the Collective Artspace on August 18th, 2016 at 6:30pm. Event info can be found on the GLCL website or on Facebook here. We hope to see you there!
The parallels in yesterday's Writers Squared program were uncanny: interrogating feminine and masculine roles, family grievances--the stories told and the silences between/among those stories and the myths that form to fill the space, the songs we sing that are born from a wound. Iliana Rocha's book Karankawa explores those silences with a sassy excavation of pain and interest in pop-culture, reconstructing the stories of our origin, finding where one thread ends and another ties on, what we desire and the reality of what we desire conflicting with what is. W. Todd Kaneko's book The Dead Wrestler Elegies focuses, on many levels, on the legend of various dead professional wrestlers, the arcs of their stories, fused with the life of the speaker. And that brings up another point, both W. Todd and Iliana spoke about their relationships to their speaker's and how divorcing from autobiography, even if it's what sets a piece of writing in motion, is necessary for the truth that the language calls forward. Neither author found redemption in their process, perhaps no closure either, but discovered, in all its shapeshifting, angles of a greater truth. Magnificent thanks to both authors and everyone who came out and joined in the conversation. Our next Writers Squared is September 7 with Andy Mozina and Jaimy Gordon. Hope you'll consider stopping by.
A big thanks to NPO Showcase for exploring what GLCL is all about!
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