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Newly Opened Writers’ Residency in Roxbury

Roxbury, an international destination in recent years given its wildly popular attractions The Roxbury Motel and Plattekill Mountain, is now home to a Writers’ Residency, newly opened by writer Annie DeWitt and photographer Jerome Jakubiec. The three-day residency program includes accommodations, meals, workshops and manuscript review by DeWitt, who teaches writing at Columbia University and is the author of White Nights in Split Town City, greatly reviewed by The New York Times.

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© 2018 Simona David

The residency, which opened on July 11, hosted an inaugural Editors’ Panel on July 13, featuring Jonny Diamond, editor in chief of LitHub, and Tracy O’Neill, author of the acclaimed novel The Hopeful and editor of the literary journal Epiphany. Diamond and O’Neill talked about the submission process to literary journals.

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© 2018 Simona David

Read full article in Chronogram to learn more about this marvelous retreat in the Catskill Mountains.

AMR Open Art Studios Tour 2018

AMR 2018 Catskill Mountain Guide Ad

AMR (Andes – Margaretville – Roxbury) Open Studios Tour 2018 will take place Saturday and Sunday, July 28 – 29 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. with close to thirty participating artists in the Central Catskill Mountains. Artists working in all media and artistic disciplines – painters, sculptors, photographers, printmakers, ceramicists, furniture designers and textile artists – will show their creative spaces, and demonstrate and talk about their work. Located in a bucolic scenery, all studios provide a unique experience for visitors to explore the area and learn directly from the artists.

Launched in 2012, AMR Open Art Studios Tour has grown into a major cultural attraction, as open art studio tours have become more and more common all over the country. Studio visits trigger questions that aren’t often asked in formal settings such as galleries and museums, and allow for a more intimate interaction with the art work. Building on a century-long tradition that started with the Hudson River School, contemporary artists continue to be inspired and moved by the region once known as America’s First Wilderness, and what we refer to today as the place where American art was born.

Participating artists this year include Adam Cohen, Amy Masters, Ted Sheridan, Alan Powell, Lisbeth Firmin, Ellen Wong, Peter Yamaoka, Gerda van Leeuwen, Frank Manzo, Helene Manzo, Tabitha Gilmore Barnes, Gary Mayer, Barbara Alyn, Oneida Hammond, Ken Hiratsuka, Roshan Houshmand, Agnes Freas, Esther de Jong, Lesley Powell, Rosamond Welchman, Robert Axelrod, Deborah Ruggerio, Gary Mead, Anthony Margiotta, Rebecca Andre, Patrice Lorenz, Sharon Suess and Gail Freund. All artists will show works in progress and finished works, sell, and give lectures and demonstrations. Art writer Simona David, author of “How Art Is Made: In the Catskills,” will be on site and talk about the tradition of making art in the Catskills, and highlight some of the current trends and accomplishments.

“The canvas is now my stage,” says multi-disciplinary artist Lesley A. Powell. After years of working as a choreographer, Powell found her fascination for movement transposed into color and lines whether be in watercolor, oil or collages and depicting both human body and natural environment. As a choreographer, Powell’s interest revolved around the dancer’s ability to change the performance space. As a visual artist, she focuses again on the human body, and on her love of nature. Dancers are often present in her paintings as are circus scenes and nudes.

Ellen Wong, who has participated in the AMR Open Art Studios Tour every year since its inception, was initially trained as an abstract painter, but fell in love with the Catskill Mountains scenery, and that changed everything. “To capture the sound, the movement of the water and the energy all around me, I found myself inventing new ways to move paint on the canvas, I had to keep moving, finding a fluidity in the paint and vitality in brush strokes that I had been striving for,” she says. This year during the Open Art Studios Tour, Wong will be showing recent works as well as some of her earlier landscapes depicting nature at the center of her creations as muse, teacher and guide.

Painter Deborah Ruggiero will participate in the AMR Open Art Studios Tour for the first time this year. “Through a variety of media and techniques I hope to encourage the viewer to look a little more closely at nature’s intricate beauty at different times of the day, changing with the seasons to experience and savor the essence and beauty in nature,” she says. “Whether it’s in the solidarity of a rock formation or in the delicacy of the flower petals that bloom in the spring for only a short period of time, there’s a magnificent canvas to experience every day. All one has to do is take the time to look, see and experience,” she adds.

Textile artist Tabitha Gilmore-Barnes, who has participated in the AMR Open Art Studios Tour every year since 2012, loves talking about and demonstrating weaving in her Catskill Mountains studio where she operates an AVL DOBBY professional loom. “This tour brings friends and visitors to my studio where we discuss what weaving is all about, how I specifically source local wool and alpaca fleeces to use in my products and tapestries, and how the studio views of the Catskills offer constant inspiration for my choice of colors and art themes. This is a fun time to meet others, and also to be inspired by the works of my fellow tour members.”

Mark your calendar for AMR Open Art Studios Tour 2018, a self-driving tour experience through the region’s most scenic vistas. Detailed brochures will be made available at all area’s businesses.

For more information, visit www.amropenstudios.org and www.facebook.com/amropenstudios/.

The AMR – Andes, Roxbury, Margaretville – Open Studios Tour 2018 is funded by the Delaware County Department of Economic Development – Tourism Advisory Board and The Lindsay A. and Olive B. O’Connor Foundation, and by the 29 participating artists and their 35+ community business sponsors. Additional community support from the Longyear Gallery (Margaretville) and the MARK Project (Arkville).

 

Art in the Catskills 2018 Events

How Art Is Made

4/29 Writers Unbound Literary Festival, Union Grove Distillery, Arkville, NY

6/23 Catskill Interpretive Center Book Festival, Mt. Tremper, NY

7/28 – 29 AMR Open Art Studio Tour, Halcottsville, NY

8/19 Blink Art Gallery, Andes, NY

9/8 Zadock Pratt Museum, Prattsville, NY


Look for our news releases to learn more about upcoming events.

At Writers Unbound Fifth Annual Catskills Literary Festival

April 29, 2018

Union Grove Distillery

Arkville, New York

 

WRITERS UNBOUND – Fifth Annual Catskills Literary Festival

Writers in the Mountains invites you to its fifth annual Catskills literary festival. The daylong event welcomes all writers and readers, artists and audience, and community members from every walk to enjoy a warm gathering of successful and fascinating writers, illustrators, editors, educators, booksellers, and publishers from Syracuse to New York City and points between and beyond. The program includes poetry and fiction readings, a talk by keynote speaker Jan Albert, a panel on news and trends in publishing, illustration, and a few well-kept surprises.

Writers Unbound Flyer

Emmy Award-winning, Jan Albert has worked on documentaries for CBS, NBC, and PBS, produced presentations for the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Library of Congress, and interviewed hundreds of creatives including Joan Didion and Stephane Grappelli. Albert currently blogs for PsychologyToday.com.

Featured Poet this year is New York Times best-selling author Beth Lisick. Lisick has appeared in films that have screened at Cannes, Sundance, and the San Francisco International Film Festival.

The program is as follows:

12:30 p.m.—Poetry Reading hosted by Sharon Israel, author of Voice Lesson / Featured Poet Beth Lisick

1:00 p.m.—Publishing Panel / Group Discussion Addressing the Latest News and Trends in Publishing

Panelists include Leslie T. Sharpe (author), Sari Botton (editor), Anique Taylor (educator), and Roz Foster (literary agent). Moderated by Simona David.

1:30 p.m.—Keynote Address with Jan Albert

2:30 p.m.—Illustrator’s Moment with cookbook editor Carrie Bradley Neves and illustrator and children’s book author Durga Yael Bernhard

3:00 p.m. —Writing Fiction: Leaping from the Known to Unknown with Ginnah Howard

3:30 p.m. — Catskill Fish Stories / Angler Tall Tales: The Ones That Didn’t Get Away, reading moderated by Dr. Bil Birns (readers include Stephen Sautner, Leslie T. Sharpe, Anique Taylor, and Sharon Israel)

4:00 p.m. — The Bounty of Books Raffle, with a prize of ten selected book titles, will be awarded (come early, tickets are limited!), and the winner of the Best Cover Contest will be announced.

Throughout the day, participating authors will read from their works and share their stories with the audience. Admission is free.

Come by to shop for books directly from their authors, hear readings and peer-to-peer discussions (always with a Q and A element), join in an enticing raffle (books are the prize, of course), and vote in the Best Book Cover contest. Union Grove’s hand-crafted vodka drinks as well as beer and soft drinks will be on sale. (Note, there is no food sold at Union Grove, but the Arkville Bread & Breakfast Diner is right next door.)

For more information, visit writersinthemountains.org

Random Context – Literary Salon

Writers in the Mountains (WIM) is happy to announce the launch of RANDOM CONTEXT, our new and informal literary salon, to be held quarterly (every three months) at Union Grove Distillery, located at the junction of Routes 28 and 38 in Arkville, New York. The inaugural RANDOM CONTEXT is Sunday afternoon, March 18, from 3 to 5 p.m. All writers are welcome to come and read their poetry or excerpts from their novels, short fiction, essays, or other creative nonfiction pieces in the warm and inviting front room of the fabulous Union Grove Distillery.

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In March, RANDOM CONTEXT will feature the poet and creative nonfiction writer Anique Sara Taylor, with the rest of the afternoon filled with 5-minute open-mic slots.

Come read and listen (all interested listening non-writers are very welcome) and meet and mingle in front of the fireplace. Who knows? Maybe new literary alliances will emerge from conversations and encounters. Union Grove’s superb craft cocktails, craft beers, and chips will be available for purchase to enhance the afternoon’s enjoyment.

Writers in the Mountains is a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit organization with a mission to provide a nurturing environment for the practice, appreciation, and sharing of creative writing. For more information, visit writersinthemountains.org.

To Trust or Not to Trust

Dr. Curtis Dozier from Vassar College wrote an article in August 2016 titled Hillary Clinton and the Rhetoric of Trust, essentially claiming that, when it comes to establishing trust, we hold women accountable to standards that weren’t designed for them.

I respectfully disagree. Assessing trust is no different for women than it is for men. Credibility has two dimensions, expertise (competence) and trustworthiness. While competence can be easily proven by a track record of achievements, trustworthiness comes down to demonstrating honesty, reliability and fairness.

Dozier, who teaches Classical Rhetoric and Presidential Campaigns, uses Aristotle’s Rhetoric as a framework of analysis to assess political candidates’ use of rhetorical devices founded in Antiquity. Dozier claims that, since during Aristotle’s time women didn’t participate in politics, Aristotle’s views on what makes a good persuader must have been skewed in favor of men. In fact, the persuasion techniques proposed by Aristotle in his Rhetoric (logos / logical argument, ethos / the credibility of the speaker, and pathos / emotional appeals) have been used successfully in all aspects of life ever since, and are not limited to politics.

When it comes to establishing trust, Dozier points out to one constituent of trustworthiness in particular – courage, which in ancient Greece was firmly associated with men (or manliness). The word Aristotle used for courage was andreia which also meant man, a position that, Dozier thought, put women at a disadvantage. The author fails to mention however that female courage wasn’t alien to ancient Greeks, after all they had a Goddess of War, Athena, who was also the Goddess of Wisdom. Granted, that’s mythology, but it does tell us something about the Greek psyche.

When it comes to wisdom, Dozier explains that “Aristotle did not discuss sophia, “wisdom”, in concrete terms, but a fragment of Euripides declares that “a woman-hearted spirit is not a part of a wise (sophos) man” (Erechtheus fr. 53.33 Austin).” Again, the author fails to mention that, after all, in Greek mythology there is a Goddess of Wisdom, Athena.

Dozier also claims that “We expect our politicians to use his [Aristotle] techniques, because that’s what they’ve always done and it’s what we’re used to hearing.” I respectfully disagree: I believe that politicians (and not only) continue to use these persuasion techniques simply because they work.

The article did not go far enough, in my opinion, to analyze the extent to which the speaker’s likeability influences his / her perceived credibility (there is extensive research on this topic). Ordinarily, likeable communicators are perceived as more credible than the unlikeable ones – that is why charisma is so important in politics. There are scales for measuring both the speaker’s credibility and likeability.

WRITERS IN THE MOUNTAINS (WIM) PRESENTS AT THE CATSKILL INTERPRETIVE CENTER’S BOOK FAIR, SATURDAY, JUNE 24, 2017

Writers in the Mountains (WIM), a literary nonprofit organization serving the Catskills and the Hudson Valley area since 1992, offers a variety of creative writing workshops year round, and hosts numerous literary events to promote the written word throughout our region and beyond.
On Saturday, June 24, 2017, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Writers in the Mountains will present at the Maurice D. Hinchey Catskill Interpretive Center’s Book Fair in Mount Tremper, and introduce some of its finest writers and poets. Presenters include nature writer Leslie T. Sharpe; art writer Simona David; poets Sharon Israel, Sharon Ruetenik, and Lissa Kiernan; fiction and creative nonfiction writers Anique Taylor and Carrie Bradley Neves; and monologist Bonnie Lykes. There will be readings, short presentations, and illustrative class exercises.
Leslie T. Sharpe is a writer, editor, and educator. A member of PEN American Center, she is the author of Editing Fact and Fiction: A Concise Guide to Book Editing (Cambridge University Press, 1994), which is regarded as a “modern editing classic” and “On Writing Smart: Tips and Tidbits,” featured in The Business of Writing (Allworth, 2012). Her new book, The Quarry Fox and Other Critters of the Wild Catskills, published by The Overlook Press in March 2017, is a lyric narrative look at the wild animals of the Catskill Mountains. Ms. Sharpe will be reading excerpts from her new book, and will discuss the genre of nature writing, as it relates to the Catskill Mountains.
Simona David, president of Writers in the Mountains, is a writer and media consultant. She is the author of Self-Publishing and Book Marketing, A Research Guide (2013), Art in the Catskills (3rd. edition, 2016), and How Art Is Made: In the Catskills (2017). Ms. David will discuss her latest book How Art Is Made: In the Catskills, released earlier this year. The book pays homage to the place where American art was born through a series of conversations with some of the world’s most accomplished artists who live and work in the Catskill Mountains.
Sharon Israel is the host of Planet Poet-Words in Space, an edition of The Writer’s Voice program on WIOX 91.3 FM in Roxbury, New York, and serves on WIM’s board of directors. She has just released her first chapbook Voice Lesson, published by Post Traumatic Press. Her work most recently appeared in Per Contra, SPANK the CARP, 5:2 Crime Poetry Weekly, Medical Literary Messenger, and Spry Literary Journal. In 2016, Ms. Israel appeared as a panelist at the Massachusetts Poetry Festival in Salem, Mass. As a poet and soprano, she collaborates with her husband, composer Robert Cucinotta, on works for voice, live instruments, and electronics. Ms. Israel will be reading selected poems from Voice Lesson.
Anique Taylor has co-authored works for HBO, Scholastic, and Simon & Schuster. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The World (St. Mark’s Poetry Project), Rattle, Common Ground Review, Adanna, Earth’s Daughters, Stillwater Review, and e-Bibliotekos’ Pain and Memory. She’s has been a featured writer at New York City readings including St. Mark’s Poetry Project, Dixon Place, the Speakeasy, and Cedar Tavern. Her chapbook Poems is published by Unimproved Editions Inc. Her chapbook Where Space Bends was chosen as a finalist for both Minerva Rising and Blue Light Press’s 2014 Poetry Chapbook Competitions; and her collection Under the Ice Moon was a finalist in Blue Light Press’s 2015 Competition. She holds a Poetry MFA from Drew University, a Drawing MFA from Pratt Institute, and a diplome in French Literature from the Sorbonne. She teaches Creative Nonfiction for Writers in the Mountains.
Sharon Ruetenik is the author of a poetry chapbook, The Wooden Bowl. She is currently working on a manuscript of sevenlings. Her work has appeared in print and online journals, most recently The Green Door. Ruetenik was awarded a poetry fellowship at the Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts. As a speaker for the New York Council for the Humanities, she has lectured on short stories, novellas, and poetry. Her day job is working at SUNY Delhi as the coordinator of the Writing Center, the international student advisor, and adjunct instructor in composition and literature. She teaches for Writers in the Mountains The Journey from Theme to Images to Poem.
Lissa Kiernan is the founding director of the Poetry Barn in West Hurley. Her first full-length volume of poetry, Two Faint Lines in the Violet, was a 2014 Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Award finalist, as well as a finalist for the Julie Suk Award for Best Poetry Book by an Independent Press. Her first book of prose, Glass Needles & Goose Quills: Elementary Lessons in Atomic Properties, Nuclear Families & Radical Poetics will be published later this month. Ms. Kiernan holds an MA from the New School and an MFA from the Stonecoast Creative Writing program, and she teaches for Writers in the Mountains It’s Elemental: The Art of Revision in Poetry.
Carrie Bradley Neves is an Upstate New York native who grew up outside Albany and returned to the area a little over a decade ago. She has a bachelor’s degree in English literature from Williams College, where she also studied playwriting and poetry; and a master’s degree in fiction writing from the University of New Hampshire, where she studied fiction writing and poetry. For the last twenty-five years, Carrie has focused many of her writing goals on writing lyrics, making records, performing, and touring as a singer-songwriter and violinist. Other current writing and activities and projects include secretaryship of her college alumni publication, writing for her town newspaper, The Times of Halcott, and new work on a musical play. Her work-for-pay life is as a copy editor, specializing in cookbooks. She serves on WIM’s
Board of Directors.
Bonnie Lykes is a monologist, performance artist, and voice-over artist. Her work has been featured in Crack The Spine Literary Journal in both poetry and creative nonfiction, and is also featured in the subscription podcast “The Strange Recital.’ Ms. Lykes is a founder and president of the nonprofit organization Reservoir Food Pantry in Upstate New York. She is the host of Nonfiction Railroad Hour, an edition of the Writer’s Voice on WIOX 91.3 FM in Roxbury, New York, and serves on WIM’s board of directors.
To learn more about Writers in the Mountains, visit writersinthemountains.org.