As part of our partnership with the Door County Reads program, Write On is pleased to present a one-day mini-conference on writing about the natural world around us. Fiction, poetry, and nonfiction workshops are offered, with opportunities to explore and engage with nature. Register for all three workshops or take part in just one! Workshops are offered free of charge but registration is requested by calling 920-868-1457 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fiction Workshop with Peter Geye, 9 – 10:30 am.
Ever notice how a good film director often uses many different camera angles? How those camera angles effect the story through shifts in point of view and the film goers own sense of orientation? You can do the same thing in your writing, and not just through characters, but through the landscape as well. In this workshop, we’ll step out into the elements to consider the natural world. Weather, topography, flora and fauna, the water, the elements, we’ll consider all of it as we do writing exercises. Then we’ll take the writing exercises back into the classroom to discuss ways of employing them. Bring a pen and notebook–and plenty of layers to bundle up in!–and we’ll start looking at the world through a keen writer’s eye.
Peter Geye was born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota where he continues to live. He received his BA from the University of Minnesota, his MFA from the University of New Orleans, and his PhD from Western Michigan University, where he taught creative writing and was editor of Third Coast. He has also been a bartender, bookseller, banker, copywriter, and cook. His series of novels, The Lighthouse Road, Safe from the Sea, and Wintering, follow generations of the Eide family in northern Minnesota.
Poetry Workshop with Sharon Auberle, 11 am – 12:30 pm.
In this workshop, I would like participants to go back in time, see with the eyes of the children we once were. Remember a little creek you once loved, a mountain, a fox you saw in the woods, or a bear in the wild or the zoo. With some fun exercises designed to awaken those memories we will, hopefully, rekindle the feelings of amazement your childhood self gloried in, and apply them to your writing today. I will emphasize the playful aspect, take away some of the seriousness which can constrict writing for many people and just have fun! Having done several workshops with children, I will incorporate some of the same ideas as we return to a way of looking at Nature with the simple delight and awe we once felt.
Sharon Auberle currently serves as Door County Poet Laureate. She is the author of the poetry collections Saturday Nights at the Crystal Ball, Crow Ink, and Wind Where Music Was, a collaboration with Ralph Murre. In addition to being a poet, Sharon is a photographer and artist. You can find out more about her on her blog, Mimi’s Golightly Cafe.
Nonfiction Workshop with Amber Stoner, 1:30 – 4:00 pm.
Gather for an hour-long walk (weather permitting) on the beautiful trails of Crossroads at Big Creek, followed by an afternoon of writing. With prompts inspired by our time outside and by The Death and Life of the Great Lakes by Dan Egan, we will discover what memories bubble up when we are connected to nature and what relationships exist between where we are, where we’ve been and where we’re going. We’ll write to share, to laugh, to savor, to deepen our connection to our surroundings, our memories, and our humanity. No writing experience necessary; today, you’ll find guidance, support and a welcoming atmosphere for getting our stories on paper. Together, we’ll discuss and write about place, memory and what it means to interact with nature nearby.
While primarily a nonfiction writer, Amber’s workshop is ideal for writers of all genres.
Amber D. Stoner is a writer, editor, and book artist living in Minnesota. She’s also a hiker, paddler, trail runner, mom, yoga enthusiast, and volunteer. Amber was a Loft Mentor Series finalist in Creative Nonfiction in 2010 and 2011. Her writing has appeared in River Teeth blog, Creative Nonfiction, and MinnPost.com. Her handmade books have been in exhibition at Minnesota Center for Book Arts and included on The Floating Library, a Minnesota public art project. She has edited nonfiction books, essays, novels, and screenplays. Amber holds a master’s degree in environmental health sciences with a concentration in environmental chemistry. Previously, she worked for 8 years as an ESL science editor.