Jan 252015

Feb 1st is the deadline for submissions to Climate Crisis: Solutions, our March 15th event. Common ???’s: Are we REALLY expecting writers to envision solutions? Or just depictions of what the future might be like? It’s a tall order, but it’s the former. Before you give up, consider a couple of things, writers! Remember the precedent set by science fiction writers. Think of the technology we take for granted today that made its first appearance at the end of someone’s pen. When a poet withdrew a submission because “I’ve never been one for solutions, only asking questions and/or thinking about life on this planet”, I replied that the fact that your poetry has “no answers” shouldn’t deter you from writing (and sharing!) your careful observations, keen fears, wild schemes or “I-have-a-dreams” about our planet and our future. Whether your poems contain precise roadmaps and checklists which will lead us onto a clear path out of the acid-rain-soaked woods, or whether they just cause listeners and readers to pause to look at the world more closely, reflect on the intricacies of ecosystems, or think more critically about our global realities, please think about life on this planet, please ask the questions, please write about it as only a poet/writer can! Yes, we know you don’t have The Solution. But you have the heightened perceptions and the vision to ask really good questions and the words to ask them really well. You have the ability to phrase them in ways that people will notice and maybe remember. You may even have little solutions and medium solutions, and if you all try, and we all try, we are going to build up better questions and a lot of awareness and, I predict, a lot of solutions. Building blocks. Tipping points. A-ha moments. Everyone has a say in our future. Give it your best shot. -Anne Veague


Jan 132015

You don’t have to be a spoken word poet, a poet, or even a writer to be a judge at Slammin’ The Sun Down. What qualifies you is an open heart and an interest in writing and young people and how they see the world they are inheriting and trying to negotiate.  Come experience the teen spoken word poetry competitions where “The points are not the point; the poetry is the point” (but judges get to assign points anyway–after a full 5 minutes of training). Last year’s judges said “I’d love to help out again next year! I have been telling everyone–there is no shortage of young talent on the literary scene! I wasn’t expecting it to be such an inspiring 2 hours!”

This event’s hosts and teaching artists include: Adam Gottlieb, Robbie Q. Telfer, and Corey Davis Dillard. “Y’all don’t even KNOW the magic that can happen here!” says Diana Zwinak of Teen Writers and Artists Project, the organization that makes this great event a reality. Anne Veague of Waterline Writers adds, “The opportunity to experience STSD as a judge really is one of the best opportunities we can send your way–don’t miss it!”

SO, if YOU will be available on Sat, Jan 17, from 9:30-3 (or just from 9:30-12), email us at waterlinewriters@gmail.com. There is no cost to judges for admission and participation in the workshops. If you want to come just to watch (and maybe participate in the workshops), admission is $7. This year STSD will be held at a new location: JOHN F KENNEDY MIDDLE SCHOOL, 12350 ESSINGTON ROAD, PLAINFIELD, IL 60585   (815) 254-4005.  Here’s a rough schedule:

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Dec 192014

Need a last-minute gift for a young writer (or do you know a parent or grandparent who’d love this idea)? Enrollment is now open for Take My Word For It! classes at Water Street Studios for kids ages 8-12. TMWFI! is well-known in other areas but is brand new to the Chicago area! Classes begin Wed. January 21, 4-5 pm. Instructor: Kimberly Gotches (Kimberly is also one of Waterline Writers’ Dec 21st readers)! Sign up online or call 630-761-9977. Contact Chicago Area Director Trish Kredell at tmwfichicago@gmail.com.

Class description: What kind of writer are you and where will words take you today? Up a tree or behind the sun? Inside a velvet box or under a bridge? Take My Word For It! will ignite your passion for writing and help you feel safe and supported while you grow as a writer.  Since 2005, TMWFI! has worked with reluctant and enthusiastic writers alike, reminding kids that when it comes to their imaginations, the sky is the limit!

(Anne’s note: I would have given just about anything to take a class like this when I was a child–I might try to sign up even now!) Take My Word For It! 

New Take My Word For It! instructor Kimberly Gotches, preparing for “Truth From the Branches of My Family’s Tree”, the story she’s reading at Waterline Writers on Dec. 21st.


Nov 042014

Don’t underestimate the power of science and the scientific community to inform your writing! Not only do we have a world class art studio and gallery in our front yard (Water Street Studios, friends)…we also have a world class research facility in our, well, side yard. Take the time to visit Fermilab and indulge in the full tour–this amazing search for new knowledge on the frontiers of science is happening within your reach! As frosting on the cake, Fermilab hosts many cultural events and fascinating lectures, as well as prairie restoration and other outdoor activities. As frosting on the frosting, Fermilab boasts a beautiful art gallery which overlooks the atrium in Wilson Hall, the tallest building on its campus. This gallery is an often overlooked treasure on our eastern horizon. It is now open weekdays from 8-4:30 and at other times by appointment. The current show, Negentropy, is not-to-be-missed. Watch this beautiful video of current exhibitor Bruce Riley’s  work. Or check out Fermilab’s Community Newsletter, Science Next Door!   For more information, contact Georgia Schwender at georgia@fnal.gov.

Nov 042014

The Writers Center of Elgin Community College is hosting a Reading Series. Their event in November features members of the Teen Writers and Artists Project ! The event is Thursday, November 13th, at 7:30 pm. It’s held in Building H, Room H142 at Elgin Community College (1700 Spartan Drive, Elgin). For more information about this event and other activities of the Teen Writers and Artists Project, check out this video.

Oct 312014

Waterline Writers is back! On November 16th at 7 PM our writers transport us into foreign territory: David W. Berner glimpses a teen’s unexpected world, Thomas Chockley is our tour guide through visually amplified haiku, haibun & haiga, Richard Graves takes us back to Ramesh Shah’s humble beginnings, John K. Manos explores a life hijacked by freedom as well as prison, and poet Joan Colby’s Bittersweet brings us back to what we all recognize and know. 5-minute Open Mics follow each event! Join us 3rd Sundays September through May at Water Street Studios, 160 S. Water St. Batavia. $5 donation. Further information at www.waterlinewriters.org.

Sep 302014

nanowrimo-logoEvery November, people from around the world try to write a 50,000-word book in a month as part of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). Now you can too! Geneva Public Library is participating in a NaNoWriMo Library Crawl.  Attend this write-in at the Library on November 1st, from 1-3 pm, and visit others at participating locations during the month.

See http://naperwrimo.org/wiki/index.php?title=2014_Events for more write-ins and participating libraries. Questions? Contact Kimberly Gotches at 630-232-4806.