Leave the Dishes: Making Art While Raising Children

A New Year’s Gift to You: Writing and Visual Artist Residencies for Parents (II)
by Claudia F. Savage

The list for residencies available to parents seems to grow every day. But while some places seem to think a cramped one-bedroom apartment next to other artists who are up till 2 a.m. is perfect for a mother-artist and her infant, other places, like the assortment below, have really thought through the needs of a parent attending a residency. The Writer’s Colony at Dairy Hollow, The Atlantic Center for the Arts, and The Millay Colony are perfect for the mother-artist who is able to travel alone (maybe for the first time since the kids!) and craves quiet time to write, paint or sculpt in the presence of other adults. Island Hill House and Women’s Studio Workshop let you bring your kids along.

Island Hill House Artist Residency Program
The Hill House is a two-story log cabin in northern Michigan that can accommodate up to four people at one time. “If you are selected,” according to Yvonne Stephens, director, “you have the whole house to yourself.” It is a rural area that gets heavy snow, so artists should be prepared for isolation.

Where: East Jordan, Michigan
How Long: 2-4 weeks
What You Get: An artist may bring up to three children and/or caregivers while in residence. The house accommodates up to four people (two bedrooms and two bathrooms). Basic child safety equipment, a pack-and-play, and a highchair are included, and two artist parents may be in residence together if they are both accepted into the program. The residency also fully stocks the kitchen with whatever you desire, including fresh local foods in summer and fall specifically. Though no stipend is offered, childcare is available and covered.
Artistic Disciplines Funded: writers, visual artists, dancers and musicians
Apply: Application deadline is April 1 (for June-November residency) and October 1 (for December-May residency), application fee is $25, submit.

The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow (My Time Fellowship)
Dairy Hollow’s mission is “to provide time, lodging, feeding, and artistic community to writers in the historic arts village of Eureka Springs, Arkansas.”

Where: Eureka Springs, Arkansas
How Long: Two weeks
What You Get: Stipend of $1,500 to help pay for child care, travel expenses, or time lost at work. Private suite with writing space and bathroom. Dinner five nights a week in community dining room; community kitchen stocked for breakfast and lunch.
Artistic Disciplines Funded: writers (composers, culinary writers, fiction writers and poets)
Apply: Application deadline is July 31, application fee is $35, submit.

Women’s Studio Workshop
Women’s Studio Workshop (WSW) offers a Parent Residency Grant for woman artists with dependent children under the age of 15.

Where: Rosendale, New York
How Long: Four weeks (January-June or September-December)
What You Get: $250 travel stipend and $1,000 stipend for child care at WSW or child care at home. A dedicated studio and two-bedroom apartment with bathroom, kitchen and living area for the parent-artist and her children. Facilities for etching, hand papermaking, letterpress, silkscreen, book arts, photography and ceramics.
Artistic Disciplines Funded: visual artists
Apply: Application deadline is October 15, no application fee, submit.

Atlantic Center for the Arts (ACA)
A three-week residency where Associate Artists (writing, visual art, music or dance) work with a Master Artist and collaborate with each other. Nick Conroy, residency and program director, says, “Once accepted to the ACA, literary or visual parent-artists provide a copy of their child’s birth certificate with their financial aid application and the $800 residency tuition is covered.”

Where: New Smyrna, Florida
How Long: Three weeks
What You Get: Free residency tuition (valued at $800 and covering full room and board) for one parent-artist, visual artist studio, dining hall, recording facility, library and performance space.
Artistic Disciplines Funded: writers or visual artists
Apply: Application deadlines vary based on residency session, application fee is $25, submit.

The Millay Colony
According to Caroline Crumpacker, executive director of The Millay Colony, “Millay’s Virtual Residency accommodates artists who cannot spend prolonged time away from home but could benefit from the support of a residency in modified form.” Residents can stay for as long as they want over the course of a month. Crumpacker says, “We make it possible for parents to come here solo, by making our residencies as flexible and accessible to parents as we can. This residency is specifically for parents who can’t take long chunks away from home but need extra help with childcare and a special getaway.” The resident artist can, for example, participate on weekends only (with a minimum of five nights and days at the residency and the intent to continue specific work at home during the rest of the residency month).

Where: Austerlitz, New York
How Long: Several options (twelve days, two weeks, one month, or their “virtual” residency for a month).
What You Get: Free room and board for your stay, with a $1,000 stipend for “virtual” residents to assist in securing time off/childcare/travel to and from the colony/art supplies or other resources necessary to the making of new work.
Artistic Disciplines Funded: writers, visual artists, dancers, or composers/musicians
Apply: Application deadlines vary based on residency session (October 1 for April, May, June, and July or March 1 for August, September, October, and November), application fee is $35, submit.

 

Claudia F. SavageClaudia F. Savage has been a chef for people recovering from illness, a book editor, and a teacher of poetry to young women in Appalachia, ranchers in Colorado, and urbanites in Portland. Her first book, The Limited Visibility of Bees, was named a finalist for the New Issues Press Poetry Prize. Her poetry and interview credits include CutBank, Nimrod, The Denver Quarterly, VoiceCatcher, Iron Horse, The Buddhist Poetry Review, and Bookslut. Her published chapbook is called The Last One Eaten: A Maligned Vegetable’s History. Savage is a member of the poetry/music duo, THrum, whose album is forthcoming in spring 2015. This article continues her series for VoiceCatcher, Leave the Dishes: Making Art While Raising Children.

Catch These Voices and Visions!

Christine DupresMon., Feb. 23, 2015, at 7:00 p.m., Christine Dupres will read and appear in conversation with Elissa Washuta at the Central Library in downtown Seattle, Wa. They will also discuss Cowlitz identity in light of a recent federal decision to grant land and casino rights to the tribe in Southern Washington. Dupres’ poetry appears in the Winter 2015 issue of VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices and visions.

 

March 8 2015Several VoiceCatcher authors are among those who will read on International Women’s Day:
Of Course I’m a Feminist!
Hosted by Ellen Goldberg
Sunday, March 8, 6:00-8:00 p.m.
TaborSpace
5441 SE Belmont St.
Portland, OR 97215

Featuring: Frances Payne Adler, Judith Arcana, Shawn Aveningo, Gail Barker, Judith Barrington, Emily Carr, Brittney Corrigan, Pam Crow, Linda Ferguson, Andrea Hollander, Tricia Knoll, Elise Kuechle, Carter McKenzie, Penelope Schott, Marilyn Stablein, Ila Suzanne, Carlyn Syvanen, and Sharon Wood-Wortman.

 

"The Way a Woman Knows" by Carolyn MartinBook launch for The Way a Woman Knows, by VoiceCatcher’s Carolyn Martin! Everyone is invited to join in the celebration.

Sunday, March 22, 2:00-4:00 p.m.
TaborSpace
5441 SE Belmont St.
Portland, OR 97215

Reading will take place in the dining room on lower level. Light refreshments.

 

 

Sarah FaganVoiceCatcher art editor and contributor Sarah Fagan is teaming up with other artists and businesses in Portland this summer. They will offer budding artists half-day, themed camps in Portland. For more information see: Treasure Island: A Pirate and Explorers Camp, ages 5-7, July 20-24, and Pioneer Camp for Girls, ages 8-11, Aug. 10-14, 2015.

 

Let us know of other offerings VoiceCatcher members are making in the community!

Catch These Voices!

February 17, 2015 Reading Features Voicecatcher's  Shawn Aveningo And Dan Raphael

February 17, 2015 Reading Features Voicecatcher’s
Shawn Aveningo And Dan Raphael

A Milepost 5 reading featuring VoiceCatcher’s Shawn Aveningo, and Dan Raphael. An open mic follows.

Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015
Doors open at 7:00 p.m, reading begins 7:30 p.m.
850 NE 81st Ave
Portland, Oregon 97213
New venue: The Chapel Theater

Spon­sored by Elohi Gadugi Jour­nal and Artists’ Mile­post. Hosted by Duane Poncy.

 

 

March 8 2015Several VoiceCatcher authors are among those who will read on International Women’s Day:

Of Course I’m a Feminist!
Hosted by Ellen Goldberg
Sunday, March 8, 6:00-8:00 p.m.
TaborSpace
5441 SE Belmont St.
Portland, Oregon 97215

Featuring: Frances Payne Adler, Judith Arcana, Shawn Aveningo, Gail Barker, Judith Barrington, Emily Carr, Brittney Corrigan, Pam Crow, Linda Ferguson, Andrea Hollander, Tricia Knoll, Elise Kuechle, Carter McKenzie, Penelope Schott, Marilyn Stablein, Ila Suzanne, Carlyn Syvanen, and Sharon Wood-Wortman.

 

"The Way a Woman Knows" by Carolyn MartinBook launch for The Way a Woman Knows, by VoiceCatcher’s Carolyn Martin! Everyone is invited to join in the celebration.

Sunday, March 22, 2:00-4:00 p.m.
TaborSpace
5441 SE Belmont St.
Portland, Oregon 97215

Reading will take place in the dining room on lower level. Light refreshments.

 

Let us know of other offerings VoiceCatcher members are making in the community!

The Knotty and Nice of Indie Publishing

The Importance of Personal Blogs, Profiles and Author Sites
by Theresa Snyder

Getting your name out there is a major key to an author’s success. It is paramount that you create and maintain an author blog and website. There are several tools you can use to push readers to your sites.

I have had a blog for years. I enjoy blogging and appreciate the 29,000 folks worldwide who support it by reading. When I first started, it was just a story blog that I faithfully posted to on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Posting regularly and with something of interest is one key to building a consistent following. From the beginning, I have alternated between posting a sci-fi story and a fantasy. I am pleased to say that every month or so it picks up 1,000 new hits.

I recently put an email capture for a newsletter on my blog. I have not printed one yet, but when I finish posting my books on Smashwords, I will make a general announcement using the newsletter to tell my readers the books are available on multiple platforms. I have heard other authors say, “I wish I had put an email capture on my blog much sooner.” In my case, I missed the first 10,000 readers.

When I first started, I could not afford a Web host. I bought my website name, TheresaSnyderAuthor.com, anyway. I redirected this link to the blog, hence my site is my blog. It has grown over the years and many things have been added.

There are links to all the books, a link to all my interviews, podcasts and guest blogs. All my social links are listed here. There is a link to my “After Thoughts,” which is simply musings about general things that interest me. It is my writing life on a page. Currently, my dear techie friend is creating a landing page with links so it will appear a bit cleaner. Essentially, if I get a reader to come here, they have all they need to read, buy and get to know me as an author.

Once you have your blog or site set up then you can branch out, but don’t drive folks to those other author sites. It can be beneficial to place your profile on any number of sites on the Internet. You will be there if someone is searching, but you still want to drive them to your site. Spending time building author sites such as GoodReads, iAuthor, Wattpad, and Bubblish can prove very useful. I have a presence on some of these sites, which means if someone is just surfing the site they may bump into me.

I have had the opportunity to build two other sites with fellow authors. This hopefully helps us all because of the draw of multiple authors to a site.

The Twin Cities project was formed Christmas of 2013. Another author wanted to get four or five authors together to write a series of books set in the same location with the same set of rules, much like the multiple authors writing the Star Trek series.

Five of us bought into his idea. It is called the Twin Cities Series and we chose it to be a setting of the imagination. The Realms is the place where the creatures live which humans think are paranormal, mythological, or fanciful. It was my first dive into paranormal and I love it. The series is a commitment for all of us. We look at it as something that can evolve and change with us as we grow as writers. The series does not have a site, but has a Facebook page and a blog that receives regular hits.

The Society of Enlightened Dragonologists is the second multi-author site. This was formed by me and another author to promote dragons as creatures with personalities, rather than just killing machines, as most adult dragon books portray them. We have found that the adults on social media want their dragons friendly and approachable. We aim to please and draw them to our books at the same time. Many authors have joined us on the site and have access to write on the site based on common rules.

Associating with Facebook pages, blogs or sites that have readers who might be interested in your work is a great idea, but remember to drive your tweets and social media to your site, not someone else’s. A reader could get distracted by other “bright, shiny authors.”

 

Theresa SnyderTheresa Snyder is a multi-genre writer with an internationally read blog. She grew up on a diet of black-and-white, sci-fi films like Forbidden Planet and The Day the Earth Stood Still. She is a voracious reader and her character-driven writing is influenced by the early works of Anne McCaffrey, Ray Bradbury, Robert Heinlein and L. Ron Hubbard. This is the fifth installment of her column for VoiceCatcher on self-publishing.

February Prompt: Hear It Through the Grapevine

by Thea Constantine

“Whisper In My Ear” by Rennett Stowe, via Wikimedia Commons

While we all try our best to be ourselves, who we are in one place is not necessarily who we are in another. The persona we show co-workers in an office environment is different from the one we display on vacation, or at home with friends or family. We are not being phony or inauthentic, but we are definitely different.

Who we are to the other characters in our lives varies, too. The closer people are to us, the more they see. The co-workers in that office environment who see you from 9 to 5 will likely have a viewpoint with a focus different from that of your parent or sibling, who has seen you from the earliest days. A great way to explore any character is to listen to what others say of them.

One of the things I love about a good mystery is following the detective as he or she questions everyone about the victim. The ex-wife or jilted lover gives us the juicy details the one-time partner left out. The cop who pulls someone over for a DUI, or catches him shoplifting, may have a darker tale to tell than that of the devoted grandmother. Slowly but surely, we begin to build a picture of the victim’s character – even though he may no longer be able to speak for himself.

But you don’t have to be a mystery writer to make this work for you.

Jean Baptiste Alphonse Karr – journalist, novelist, editor of Le Figaro and the man who gave us plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose (the original French for “the more things change, the more they stay the same”) – once said, “Every man possesses three characters: that which he exhibits, that which he really has, and that which he believes he has.”

Take a look at the characters in your pieces. What do the other characters say about them? Do they notice unusual details? These details can go a long way to help you flesh out your characters and fill their veins with something more than ink. You can use this for memoir, too. You may be surprised, for instance, to discover what the people in your life notice about the way you react to stress or challenges.

Exploring as many of these aspects of your characters as possible can help answer not only your questions about who they are, but also help your plot or dialogue. Grab a piece of paper and make a list of everyone close to the primary character in your story, poem or memoir. Now ask each of them to describe that person, tell a story about them, or perhaps write them a letter. When you are done, take a peek at who’s looking back at you.

 

TThea Constantinehea Constantine is a writer and certified AWA facilitator with PDX Writers. Her short stories have most recently appeared in In Focus, the quarterly magazine of the PEN Cyprus Center; Stellazine; Roving Writers; “On the Yellow Line,” a weekly column for Street Roots; and an original serial for the online magazine The Black Boot. Her work has been included in a number of anthologies. She just won 1st Place Short Story in the maiden edition of the Watercress Journal. She is currently at work on her first novel, Stumptown.

About Our Readers: January 29, 2015 Event

Tiah Linder RaphaelHear these contributors and meet other VoiceCatcher members including the new president of the board of directors, Tiah Lindner Raphael, at the Rain or Shine Coffee House, Portland, Oregon, Thursday, January 29, 2015. Come before the 7:00 p.m. reading to mingle and have a bite or something to drink.

Our readers from the Winter 2015 issue of VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices and visions:

Kelly CoughlinKelly Coughlin is a fire lookout at Dutchman Peak in Southern Oregon. She has been a firefighter for the US Forest Service since 2001. Having had a long-standing habit of writing and taking pictures wherever she goes, she has documented her fire career in words and pictures. Kelly lives in Portland, Oregon during her off-seasons. She has co-founded a writer’s group and has also helped select entries for a recent Write Around Portland anthology. In 2013, she won a fellowship to the Tomales Bay “Writing by Writers” conference. 

Deborah DombrowskiDeborah Dombrowski is a writer and photographer who discovered Portland at the age of 22 and has lived here ever since. She fell in love with the visual world and earned a BFA in photography, but is also drawn to the perceptions and secrets that a poem can hold. Deborah is fascinated by the way a poem accumulates meaning and sound so that it becomes a room that contains comings and goings. Her website brings words and images together to consider the passage of time.

Stephanie GolischA 2014 Oregon Literary Arts fellow, Stephanie Golisch writes screenplays, short stories and travel essays. She has spied on penguins in New Zealand and Chile, hiked the Yellow Mountain in China and endured several traffic jams on the Autobahn. She has been published in Bengal Lights, Word Riot, and Mission at Tenth. She will have pieces in upcoming issues of Rivet and Ragazine. She lives in Portland. Read about her adventures on and off the road.

Christa KaainoaA life-long Oregonian, Christa Kaainoa is a writer, rock climber, feminist, activist, and life enthusiast. She teaches middle school English at Catlin Gabel School in Portland, Oregon. Her poetry is featured in the Winter 2015 issue of VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions.

Annie LighthartAnnie Lighthart started writing poetry after her first visit to an Oregon old-growth forest. Since those first strange days, she published her poetry collection Iron String with Oregon’s own Airlie Press and earned an MFA in Poetry from Vermont College. Annie has taught at Boston College, as a poet in the schools, and now teaches poetry workshops through Mountain Writers. She lives in a small green corner of Portland, Oregon. 

Audra McNameeAudra McNamee is a freshman at Franklin High School, dabbling in writing and drawing and, Audra says, “in gently meta third-person biographies.” She’s still trying to figure out why she writes, but suspects it has something to do with excess commas.

Here is the flyer (PDF) for this event, for your own sharing and posting.

The Sixth Issue of VoiceCatcher’s Journal Is Now Live!

by Carolyn Martin, Managing Editor

The editors of VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions are proud to announce the release of the Winter 2015 issue. This issue is filled with the work of twenty poets, five prose writers, four artists and five young voices – most of whom are making their first appearance in our publication.

The editorial team for this content-rich and visually unique issue includes Poetry Co-Editors Burky Achilles, Pattie Palmer-Baker, Tiah Lindner Raphael and Cindy Stewart-Rinier; Prose Co-Editors Michelle Fredette and Helen Sinoradzki; Art Editor Sarah Fagan; and Young Voices Editor Kris Demien.

VoiceCatcher’s new journal designer, Shawn Aveningo, created a new platform that makes navigating this issue, as well as all our archived issues, much easier. Look for the new features Shawn has added – like a list of every contributor from every issue with a link to her work.

We invite all of you not only to read the journal, but to spread the news about its release to your networks of friends and colleagues. We anticipate that by March 1, 2015, when we open the submission window for the Summer 2015 issue, the first six VoiceCatcher issues will have attracted more than 30,000 first-time visitors. An impressive track record for a local online publication!

Come meet some of the 2015 Winter issue authors and hear them read their work! The first reading is 7:00 pm, Thursday, January 29th at the Rain or Shine Coffee House.

 

Carolyn MartinCarolyn Martin is blissfully retired in the hinterlands of Clackamas County, Oregon. She served as the president of VoiceCatcher’s board of directors from 2010 to 2014, as well as the managing editor of five issues of VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions.

 

Save the Dates! 2015 Event Calendar

VoiceCatcher women reading and sharing:

Thursday, January 29, 2015
VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions – Reading
Rain or Shine Coffee House
5941 SE Division St.
Portland, OR
7:00-9:00 p.m.

Saturday, March 28, 2015
VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions – Reading
Multnomah County Central Library
US Bank Room
801 S.W. 10th Avenue
Portland, OR 97205
1:00-3:00 p.m.

Monday, April 20, 2015
VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions  Reading
The Glyph Café and Art Space
804 NW Couch Street
Portland, OR
5:00-7:00 p.m.

Thursday, May 14, 2015
VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions  – Reading
The Waypost
3120 N. Williams Avenue
Portland, OR
7:00-9:00 p.m.

The Knotty and Nice of Indie Publishing

Reviews, Interviews, Podcasts and YouTube
by Theresa Snyder

Let’s talk about reaching out to your readers and potential readers.

Remember once the reader reaches your author page on Amazon or Smashwords, they look at the book’s cover, the description and then the reviews.

Reviews are what authors crave. We indie authors do not have a publisher to tell us how great our current book is and most of us do not want to hit you over the head with the “please read me” tweets. It is so wonderful when someone reviews you and you can quote them as saying you are well written, clever, prolific, a multi-genre genius, whatever.

We live for reviews and are thankful to those who give them. A tip I picked up by reading other indie authors’ books is to insert an “author’s note” in the back of each book, calling for a few words and a sprinkle of stars on any social, media or platform site. It works.

I believe interviews are the next best thing to reviews. An interview allows me to show some of my human side and to talk about my books. Sometimes I even take “Farloft,” my dragon, along with me. He is a great asset as long as he doesn’t break something or set off the smoke alarms. I have done blog interviews and radio interviews and even a YouTube appearance. They are all good for tweeting and letting folks know more about you as a person and an author. Besides, they are just fun to do.

How do you get the interviews? Make a connection. Don’t simply push the follow button on Twitter; take a moment to check out the person you are following. If they are a blogger, reviewer, or media personality, try to cultivate a friendship. Take the time to retweet them and chat with them. Many are looking for someone to interview. They do this to pull folks to their own site. You can use the opportunity to chat about your work. If you keep retweeting those lovely interviews and they see how clever you are, they will eventually start coming to you. My goal this past year was to do an interview or guest blog post each month. I have done that and, in several months, had more than one interview.

A couple of months ago a fellow author and follower decided to change direction in his career. He wanted not only to write, but to try doing book trailers, bios and voice-over work. He put his heart and soul into it. The results are on my author page on Amazon, my blog, and my YouTube channel. He did a fine job and I am honored to have been among one of those he chose to be his firsts. For your reference, his Twitter handle is @Hamburger_Fry.

Radio interviews and podcasts are great fun and lovely items to post. I was lucky enough to be chosen for a radio interview based on my association with VoiceCatcher. The radio station caters to authors, readers, publishers and librarians. Since then I have done two more interviews, one with the Effortless English group and one with Cherrie McKenzie of CoActive Dreams. I have another scheduled with a CBS affiliate in March. Interviews of this type are more difficult to come by but well worth it because they are geared specifically to your reading audience.

What does all this get you? It moves you closer to your readers. Readers want to get to know you. They want to feel as though they have a personal connection to you. It makes them feel as though they have shared in your experiences and makes them want to support you in your desire to make a living as a writer.

 

Theresa SnyderTheresa Snyder is a multi-genre writer with an internationally read blog. She grew up on a diet of black-and-white, sci-fi films like Forbidden Planet and The Day the Earth Stood Still. She is a voracious reader and her character-driven writing is influenced by the early works of Anne McCaffrey, Ray Bradbury, Robert Heinlein and L. Ron Hubbard. This is the fourth installment of her column for VoiceCatcher on self-publishing.