Category Archives: Events

The Witness Protection Program Poets Chapbook Launch

You’re invited! The Witness Protection Program Poets request the pleasure of your company at the LAUNCH PARTY for our new Chapbooks on Tuesday, May 18th at 3:00 PM. Zoom Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85937283823?pwd=TW1Kc005aVh1dS8rU1J0Y2ljZzZtdz09 FUN Please keep your microphone muted upon entry.

The Witness Protection Poets Chapbook Collective Presents

Lies and lockdowns

     elections and insurrections

uprisings and upheavals

     fires and floods—it’s been a world of dread

and extinction     hard pressed to find distinction.

     Yet

with changes and challenges 

inspiration    often perspiration

     always motivation—

 this group of poets has grabbed

     the bad

 turned lemons into sweet, sweet      pies.

                                                                                                                                                           

On Mayday, the Witness Protection Program Poets exchanged their first ever collection of chapbooks. Seventeen  writers dug deep into their hearts and souls to make sense of the world around us—for the happier or sadder, the bolder or the fearful, in awe or anger. 

Take founder Nick Triglia‘s 21 Reasons to Slit One’s Wrists— “2.                    ”  ( you fill in the blank!) in The Backroom of the Believe It or Not Museum of Prose and Poetry,   or  Betsy Roman’s, A Chronicle Through Chaos: A poetic preservation of unhinged history sifted from the debris of Election 2020— “Black lives    white lies    orange skiesperfectly sums it up.  

Antonia’ Allegra’s ConverSAYtions offers clever word play and solid advice: “Considering conflicting news/rushing at us like/water from a fire hose,/take U and E from FAUCETS/to reveal the FACTS.”  Valli Ferrell’s Lens, tells us How To Be Cheerful,  “Do appreciate/ do say it/ out loud to no one/ to the bird trill in the brittle cold air.” And  Dina Corcoran’s Christmas Cards reminds us: “My life is richer for [our] continued contact. . .[they] are treasures.”

The poems  take us on journeys of discovery, of contemplation, joy and song.  Marianne Lyon Travels with Aruba, her Love-Dog— “Come   love-dog let us take a meander. . . ” Cathy Carsell‘s Of Earth and Sky filled with poetic lyrics and refrains transport us away: “There’s music in the wind/in New Orleans late at night/as it moves through the treetops/on a warm spring night. . .Music in the wind/Listen in. . . .” 

These chapbooks offer us reflections on nature. Marilyn Dykstra writes in Full Circle ReflectionsSycamore Grove Park Haiku #3—”Black ashen earth/Soaked with recent autumn rains,/A green carpet sprouts“.  Nathaniel Winters advises us, “Without the birds and bees no flowers appear/food becomes scarce/animals and man become endangered/love can’t bloom” in Art of Living from his collection, Seeking SunshineAnd from Yvonne Henry’s poems and art work, 6:57 AM “The sun rose slightly/ askew/ causing/ for a moment/ the dove and I to tilt our heads.”

Diego on My Mind, Frida Kahlo

“Ekphrastic fantastic” poet James McDonald reflects on art in Visual Language, “Diego the last thought, always Diego/ my essence reaches out/ for rebirth in the rich soil/ fertile in death/ barren in life/ from Diego On My Mind. 

These writings cause us to consider our losses and our longings—from  “Tangential” by Sarah Miller in Off on a Tangent:  “Like the time my hand brushed her hair/ from her dying forehead/ like you wished you had” or, “Give me back that summer/ even the tattling sister/ once a waterskiing champion, destined/ for deep, slow rotting in her bones.” from “Deep, Slow” in Little Palace of Illness by Ana Manwaring, and from Things I’m Wrestling With , “Miscarriage” by Noel Robinson, “Pregnancy loss does not define a woman. It is merely the involuntary actions of the uterus that brings death to the fetus. If the life inside the mother perishes, she survives along with her dreams and hopes. I know, I am part of the woodwork containing the sorrow of the past. . . .” 

Finally, many of the poems, essays, and memoir written in these chapbooks make us look at our lives and into our hearts to know the truth of our own humanity. Through the eyes and words of others we come to complete ourselves. In the words of Arthur T. Robinson in his introduction to Riding the Goat: An Anti-memoir,  “. . .writers of all cultures , genders, and ages have wrestled with the tricky stance of writing. . . one’s past real, seeking out . . .  patterns, and  deducing vital lessons.”   

Join the conversation—come for the FUN!

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85937283823?pwd=TW1Kc005aVh1dS8rU1J0Y2ljZzZtdz09

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Hope and Determination

 

On March 10th I walked across the border into Tijuana on an adventure to discover the best street tacos and learn firsthand how refugees are faring at our locked-down border.  And while overlooking The Wall, clinking margarita glasses,  I didn’t imagine that 48 hours later I’d be back home with my husband, both unemployed refugees of COVID-19, locked down within my own borders at home.

 

Coronavirus has slowed things down.  My days are long and task-full as spring dries into our golden summer—I’ve pulled thistles, weeded the perennial borders, mowed the oats, piled the downed eucalyptus for dump truck pick up and filled jars of delicate Cecile Brunner roses to scent the house. I’ve cleaned my cupboards, closets, pantry, scrubbed baseboards, wiped the framed artwork, washed shelves, cabinets and walls and dusted away cobwebs. I’ve tried new recipes, invented my version of the Covidtini and howled with the neighbors at 8 pm.  Now I practice yoga with a Zoom group, walk with a masked walking group, virtually chat with girlfriends over wine, talk to friends for hours on the phone  and share socially distanced game afternoons with our neighbors. Wine and Punderdome anyone?

At first fear was the driving factor. How would we pay the mortgage? The insurances? Eat? Would we catch COVID? I remembered the Guatemalan moms and children in Tijuana, emigres from gang violence and poverty—waiting, hoping—even in the face of being 4000 names down on the US Immigration interview list.

 

In TJ,  what I found was hope and determination. I’m not going to let  Coronavirus get the better of my family. I learned Zoom and Canvas and restarted two of my classes. I joined a daily “write-in” and am busy writing the third novel in my Mexico series. I landed editing jobs, created a schedule and two months later, I’m more productive than before the virus. (Hoo boy! I’m tired.)

I credit my family’s recovery to the hope I found in the faces of people who don’t have our resources or opportunities. Every day I remember these refugees as I jot my gratitude in my journal or stop to smell the roses, iris, wild asters, lavender. . . . Lockdown has turned from a disaster to a happier, more relaxed and socially connected life. Imagine, I haven’t had to put gas in my car since the 4th of April! We’re managing to pay the bills, we’re spending more time happily at home (the 8 pm howling helps) and the stack of bedside books has dwindled.

Now please excuse me, it’s cocktail time, and I want to toast you with my newest creation, the I Beat It-tini. Here’s to all you writers. Now, let’s get back to work!

ZOOM and Canvas classes start up on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday  June 8th, 9th and 11th for six week sessions. Register for on-line Summer Writing Classes Now!

Mondays 2-4 on Zoom: Vintagehouse.org Fee (707​) 996​-0311 6/8-7/13
Tuesdays 10-12:30 on-line through Napa Valley College​  Fee  (707) 302-2452 6/9-7/14
Tuesdays 4-6 on Canvas​ through Napa Valley College Free  (707) 302-2452  6/9-7/14
Thursdays 2-4 on Zoom through Rianda House  Free (707) 968-5877 6/11-7/16
                See you in class!

Better busy than bored, cabin crazy or homicidal!

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Jane Cleland is Coming to Town!

Sisters in Crime Northern California presents:

 

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Jane Cleland Workshop:

Mastering Suspense, Structure & Plot

By integrating Jane’s 13 thinking, writing, and revising tips into your writing processes, you will write tighter, more polished first drafts.  Improve your story’s pace, while ratcheting up suspense. Use Jane’s tips as a checklist and a mandate toward your best writing ever.

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When:            June 1, 2019 from 1-4 PM 

Where:           Unity SF 

Address:         2222 Bush St. at Fillmore, San Francisco, CA 94115

Sign up to reserve your seat:         Eventbrite or Meetup

Jane-at-FL-Academy-Institute

Jane K. Cleland writes the multiple award-winning and bestselling Josie Prescott Antiques Mysteries [St. Martin’s Minotaur]. The 13th in the series, Hidden Treasure, will be published in spring 2020. Jane also writes about the craft of writing, including Mastering Plot Twists and the Agatha Award-winning and bestselling Mastering Suspense, Structure & Plot, both from Writer’s Digest Books.

SinC-NorCal and Capitol Crime members free. Non-members: $40.

Mastering-Suspense-Structure-Plot-cover-art-Jane-K.-Cleland

On when and how to make promises and reveal information, read Mastering Suspense, Structure and Plot.

—Dan Brown, New York Times #1 Bestselling Author, in his Masterclass on writing

P.S. I’m not missing this event! Do join me in San Francisco on June 1st! ~Ana

 

 

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Jan Burke Event in Oakland

Crime Fiction Author Jan Burke to Speak on

“Forensic Science and the Writer”

A Norcal Sisters in Crime Sponsored Program for

Writers and Readers

Time to put this on your schedule: Edgar Award winning author Jan Burke will join us for a tremendous program on forensics – a specialty of hers, you may know. Saturday, March 5 noon to 2 p.m. at the conveniently located (BART, driving) at The Telegraph Gallery Suite at Oakstop Workspace, 1721 Broadway in the heart of uptown Oakland. As members you get in for free. Non-members pay $10. There will be refreshments, time to chat with Jan after the program, and books to be bought and signed by her. Her visit is sponsored by the National Sisters in Crime through a new guest speaker program that brings nationally recognized SinC authors to the chapters.

Lots of details on our norcal web site – check it out, mark your calendars, and spread the word / invite friends!

 

jan-burke-press

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Sisters in Crime Fall Showcase

I just can’t wait for this event. Not only are these authors my “Sisters” and friends, but I’m reviewing some of their books. How wonderful to be able to hear the authors read from them. I hope some of you will join me at the Showcase.

SISTERS IN CRIME

Annual Fall Showcase

at

Books Inc. in The Marina

 Here’s the information:

The Northern California Chapter of Sisters in Crime proudly presents their Annual Fall Showcase! Featuring Juliet Blackwell, author of Spellcasting in Silk: A Witchcraft MysteryHeather Haven, author of Murder Is a Family Business; Ellen Kirschman, author of The Right Wrong Thing; Bette J.J. Lamb, authors of The Killing Vote and Bone Dust; Vinnie Hansen, contributor to the anthology Destination: Mystery; Eileen Magill, author of House of Homicide; Camille Minichino (writing as Jean Flowers), author of Death Takes Priority; and William Wallace, author of Dead Heat with a Reaper.

Event date:  Saturday, November 7, 2015 – 12:00pm

Event address:  Books Inc.     2251 Chestnut St, San Francisco, CA

And come back soon to read my review of Ellen Kirschman’s wonderful police drama, The Right Wrong Thing. Don’t miss the previously posted review of The Killing Vote.

BUY A SIGNED COPY!
$7.99
ISBN: 9780451465788
Availability: In Stock -Select for Store Locations
Published: New American Library – July 7th, 2015

$10.95
ISBN: 9780988408692
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Wives of Bath Press – January 2011

$26.95
ISBN: 9781608091546
Availability: In Stock -Select for Store Locations
Published: Oceanview Publishing – October 6th, 2015

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On the Edge—The Aqus Literary Speakeasy —189 H Street Petaluma—January 29th 7-9 PM

@ Aqus Cafe, Petaluma CA

@ Aqus Cafe, Petaluma CA

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