Encouragement and Inspiration
Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 1:00 pm
Poet/writer John Yamrus discussed his nearly 50 years as a writer, and why in his latest book he had decided to finally take his readers on a walk down Memory Lane in a short memoir that chronicles his days spent growing up in a coal mining family in Wilkes-Barre, Pa, in the 1950s.
Here is a review by Wayne F. Burke about Memory Lane:
"This beautifully written memoir is also a meditation and consideration of the power of memory to evoke and its tendency to falsify, or lie. The unreliability of memory is as much subject as the life the memoir describes--and what a life! At a distance of sixty years Yamrus manages, through language, to convey the sense of incredulity and innocence felt by a child growing up poor in a Pennsylvania coal-town in America in the 1950's. In a voice beguiling, and disarming, and reminiscent in its authentic-sounding originality to that of William Saroyan's, Yamrus admits to his inadequacy to recreate, on paper, a childhood, and his capacity to dis-remember, yet plunges ahead, making us, the readers, sort of co-conspirators along the way... This is a tribute to the writing. This memoir-in-the-making, is high art. The details Yamrus chooses--his Uncle's missing "pointer finger," his grandmother's "clunky black shoes...with block heels," the way his father wore a baseball cap "slung off to the side," give verisimilitude, which, coupled with the stylish, and no doubt hard-earned craft of the prose, make "Memory Lane" memorable indeed.
Since 1970 John Yamrus (www.johnyamrus.com) has published 26 volumes of poetry and 2 novels. He has also had nearly 2,000 poems published in print magazines around the world. Selections of his poetry have been translated into several languages, including Spanish, Swedish, French, Japanese, Italian, Romanian, Albanian and Bengali. His poetry is regularly taught in colleges and universities. His newest book, MEMORY LANE, a memoir looking back at his childhood growing up in a Pennsylvania coal mining community, is a highly anticipated addition to his published work.
Saturday, February 3, 2018 at 1:00 pm
Heather gave a talk about her path to publication on her just-launched first novel.
Heather Christie (www.HeatherChristieBooks.com) is a wife, mother of two teenagers, writer, real estate broker, amateur cook, exercise freak, and avid reader. She holds a BA in Literary Studies from the University of Texas, Dallas and an MFA in Creative Writing from Pine Manor College, Boston, MA. When she's not selling houses, she's writing books and blogging at www.HeatherChristieBooks.com. Kirkus Reviews calls Heather’s debut novel, What The Valley Knows, “A taut, compelling family tale.” Her work has been published by Writer’s Digest, Scary Mommy, Elephant Journal, Mamapedia, The Good Men Project, Grown & Flown, Baltimore Child, Parent.co, Bon Bon Break, Her View From Home, the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop, Sammichs and Psych Meds, and The Lighter Side of Real Estate. Heather was a member of the 2017 Listen To Your Mother cast.
Saturday, March 3, 2018 at 1:00 pm
Everything you always wanted to know about agents, publishers, copyrights, licensing, publishing, printing costs, ISBN's, e-books, publishing platforms, subscription sales, and more. This workshop was an overview of CJ's journey, including everything anyone should know about the business side of writing, printing, publishing, and getting paid for your writing. Whether you are an already-published author who wants to get up to date on all the recent changes in the world of publishing or a budding author who has yet to write your first book, this was definitely one of those workshops that will inspire.
CJ Rhoads (www.HPLConsortium.com/ForAuthors) is a multi-dimensional, multi-faceted dynamo. She is a successful entrepreneur of multiple companies, a hardworking volunteer for non-profits, and a professor of business at Kutztown University. One of the many projects she has been working on for several years (but is still not yet ready to fully launch) is a way to help budding authors who need just a little bit a help, for not a lot of money, to publish their books. She sees the needs because she has experienced them all over the past 15 years as her 9 books got published. Agents, publishers, contracts, self-publishing, printers, hardback books, softback books, e-books: you name it, she's experienced it, and now she will share her experiences with you.
Saturday, April 7, 2018 at 1:00 pm
Joseph is in midst of rewriting a memoir of his career as a cult interventionist and how he got into that strange line of work. He finished a 400-page manuscript ten years ago, but no publisher would accept it. We went over goals and what we should avoid when writing a memoir.
Joseph Szimhart (www.jszimhart.com/about_me) is an Artist, published author, mental health worker, and cult information consultant. He has had an art studio at Goggleworks in Reading since 2011 and studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.
Joseph has also worked as a Crisis Intake Caseworker at Montgomery County Emergency Services since 2000. He also worked as a cult interventionist, consultant, and lecturer since 1980. Joseph has had many media appearances, research and opinion articles and book reviews published in professional journals and books on cults.
Joseph has written a novel: Mushroom Satori: The Cult Diary published in 2013 by Aperture Press in Reading, PA and has an undergraduate degree in Arts and Sciences from the University of Dayton. His writing and art has been featured in the cover story in ICSA Today magazine, 2017: “Retribing the Planet: Shamanism Repurposed for Modern Times” (International Cultic Studies Magazine, Vol. 8: No. 2)
Saturday, May 5, 2018 at 1:00 pm
An interactive exploration of Dave’s work to explore and portray the live and times of a woman who was way ahead of her time here in Berks County.
Dave Kline is a business person, musician, composer, entertainer, writer, photographer, traveler and bard who has traveled the world bringing back folkloric tales of traditions, customs and culture. Dave writes, produces and hosts the award-winning, weekly Mountain Folk radio and web show that is herd on terrestrial radio stations in the USA, as well as internationally via satellite and Inet networks, including Apple iTunes and PlanetBluegrass Network. Dave writes the weekly Mountain Folklore column for Berks County Magazine in the Reading Eagle newspaper, has written and taken photographs for other publications such as Pennsylvania magazine and is an experienced mountain guide with more than 50 trips to the alps and beyond to his credit.
Saturday, June 9, 2018 at 1:00 pm
Writing is an invaluable tool for self-development. It is an exercise in organizing our experiences, both real and imaginary, through language. However, writing is also a means of communication and communication necessitates an audience. Garrett Buhl Robinson described his adventures in his attempts to reach the public. His presentation included excerpts from his performance works adapted directly from his books. Through this, he revealed ways to engage, entertain, enrich and inspire the public through the literary arts.
Garrett Buhl Robinson (www.gbrobinson.com) left his home town in Alabama by jumping on a coal train in 1992. For over 25 years, he has been wandering around the country, supporting himself with various jobs while studying intensely and writing prolifically. In 2012, he began marketing his books and performing his works directly to the public in Manhattan. In 2015, he made his Off-Broadway debut performing his solo musical, Letters to Zoey, which he adapted from his second novel, Zoë. In 2017, he published his 5th book of poetry – Fortune. His website is: www.gbrobinson.com