New York Writers Workshop
New York Public Library
Chatham Square Library (Chinatown)
with Timothy Tomlinson
The memory is a rich source of material (among other things). So are people. So is place. In this workshop, we’ll dig into memory, excavate a person or persons, and locate them in a specific place. We’ll look at an example or two of poems that do something similar, then we’ll write our own.
Tim Tomlinson is co-founder of New York Writers Workshop, and co-author of its popular text, The Portable MFA in Creative Writing. His poems have been published in the Philippines, China, the Bahamas, the UK, and in numerous venues in the US, including Caribbean Vistas, Citron Review, New York Quarterly, Soundings Review, and the Tule Review. He teaches in New York University’s Global Liberal Studies program.
New Amsterdam Library (Lower Manhattan)
Poetry as Reflection
with Eléna Rivera
This will be an exploratory workshop where we will read one or two poems, write in response to those poems, and then work with image, sound, feeling as a way of reflecting our experience of the animate and inanimate around us.
Eléna Rivera’s most recent book is The Perforated Map (Shearsman Books, 2011). She won the Robert Fagles prize for her translation of Bernard Noël’s The Rest of the Voyage (Graywolf Press, 2011). She teaches in the Liberal Arts Program of the School for Continuing and Professional Studies at New York University, with Poets & Writers, and is on the faculty of the Institute for Writing and Thinking at Bard College and the Stonecoast MFA program at the University of Southern Maine.
Mulberry Street Library (SoHo)
The Poetics of Comics
with Alissa Torres
Combine a love of poetry with a love of comics. We’ll explore David Morice’s “Poetry Comics” to see what comics and poems have in common. From there, we’ll make our own comic panels of poetry.
Alissa Torres is the author of AMERICAN WIDOW (art by Sungyoon Choi), a graphic novel memoir, about her experiences as a 9/11 widow and new mother. She has written many personal essays and articles for salon.com and for other publications. Her book was listed as a New York Times Editors’ Choice, September 14, 2008, and was also an award finalist for the 2008 Books for a Better Life – First Books Category. In 2007, she won the State Farm Embrace Life award. She currently teaches academic writing and test taking skills to individuals and groups. She also teaches workshops with New York Writers Workshop.
67th Street Library (Upper East Side)
Poems of the Everyday
with Hermine Meinhard
Poems offer us fresh experiences of the sights and sounds, smells and tastes of living. In this workshop we will read a poem by the quintessentially American poet William Carlos Williams. Then together we will construct a 3-dimensional collage of everyday objects that will stimulate the writing of poems.
Hermine Meinhard’s book Bright Turquoise Umbrella, published by Tupelo Press, was a finalist for the Poetry Society of America’s Norma Farber First Book Award. Her poems have appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Barrow Street, Drunken Boat, Verse Daily and many other publications. Meinhard is a faculty member of NYU’s McGhee Division, and teaches workshops at the JCC of Manhattan and NYPL through New York Writers Workshop. She has an MFA in poetry from Sarah Lawrence College.
Yorkville Library (Upper East Side)
The Imagery of Poetry
with Donna Kaz
To write a poem is to shine a light on an image or a moment of intensity. These moments are stored not as ideas or abstractions but as sights, smells, tastes, sounds and touch that have remained with us. Using examples and writing prompts each participant will explore images to free the poem found inside lasting images.
Donna Kaz has been published in Lilith, Turning Wheel, Step Away Magazine (2013 Pushcart Prize nomination) Trivia: Voices of Feminism, Western Press Books, Mason’s Road and the Women’s Studies Quarterly. She has been a featured reader at the Pulse Poetry Slam, Carpo, Uncle Mo’s and Wordstock and is the recipient of residency fellowships from Yaddo, Djerassi, The Blue Mountain Center, CAP21, Wurlitzer and The Ucross Foundation. This year she was awarded an Elizabeth George Foundation Grant. MFA Queens University of Charlotte.
Bloomingdale Library (Upper West Side)
Inhabiting the World: Writing “Found Object” Poetry
with Robert J. Levy
The world around us is filled with unvoiced magic; the mute objects we encounter every day hold mysteries that can be expressed through the liberating power of poetry. In this workshop, we will read Charles Simic’s Poem “Stone” as a prompt that will then inspire us to write our own poems—an imaginative exercise in which we will “go inside” a common object – a pencil, a tree, a fork – and express its innermost essence. By the workshop’s end each participant will have written a brief poem.
Robert J. Levy’s work has appeared in Poetry, Paris Review, Georgia Review, Kenyon Review, Prairie Schooner, Boulevard, Southern Review, North American Review, Gettysburg Review, Threepenny Review and Poetry Daily among many others. He has won an NEA Fellowship, fellowships at Yaddo and The MacDowell Colony, and multiple awards from the Poetry Society of America. He has published two full-length books: Whistle Maker (winner of the Anhinga Prize) and In the Century of Small Gestures (Defined Providence) as well as five chapbooks. He has given readings for the Academy of American Poets and the West Side Y. He has taught poetry workshops at Marymount Manhattan College. He holds a B.A. in liberal arts from St. John’s College in Annapolis, Md., and an M.A. in English literature from Oxford University.
Washington Heights Library
Spring Things: Celebrate with Poetry!
with Catherine Wald
How do you experience spring? In this workshop, participants will read and write poems that explore the ways we talk about the season as well as its meaning as a symbol and metaphor.
Catherine Wald’s poetry includes the chapbook, Distant, burned-out stars (Finishing Line Press), and poems in American Journal of Nursing, Buddhist Poetry Review, Chronogram, Crime Poetry Weekly, Friends Journal, Jewish Literary Journal, Westchester Review.
Hamilton Grange Library (Harlem)
Finding the Universal in the Specific
with Devin Kelly
In this life, we are surrounded by objects that trigger strong memories and feelings, perhaps of love or loss or all the things in between. This workshop will explore how different poets find access to such universal themes through the specific objects of our world, and how we ourselves can do the same. Using examples as models, as well as various exercises, each participant will finish a poem that strives for feeling, set off by the everyday things and moments of this world.
Devin Kelly is an MFA student at Sarah Lawrence College, by way of Fordham University. He has read as part of Lamprophonic’s Emerging New York City Writers Series, as well as the Sarah Lawrence Poetry Festival. He attended the Sirenland Writer’s Conference, hosted by One Story, and his fiction and poetry have been featured in Catch & Release, Columbia Journal’s online supplement, as well as Dunes Review and Steel Toe Review. He teaches Creative Writing and English classes to 7th graders and high schoolers in Queens and currently lives in Harlem.
Pleiades and Haiku Poetry Workshop
with Lorraine Currelley
Pleiades and Haiku poetry workshop participants will learn how to construct and create Pleiades and Haiku poems. On completion participants will take part in a workshop poetry reading.
Lorraine Currelley, poet, writer, educator, and Mental Health Counselor is the Founder/Director of Poets Network & Exchange, a positive and supportive space
for poets and writers at all levels, where she facilitates poetry and creative writing workshops and produces featured poetry readings, open mics and literary events. Poets Network & Exchange has expanded to include a Scholar Lecture Series. Scholars of various disciplines are invited to lecture and facilitate workshops. She is a 2014 S.P.A.R.C. (Seniors Partnering with the Arts Recipient and a new member of the Pearls of Wisdom Storytellers. She has taught poetry and creative writing workshops for three years. Her poetry is anthologized in Gaptooth Girlfriends: The Third Act, Mandela (an international anthology), Blind Beggar Press 35th Anniversary Anthology and Writing For Peace DoveTales 2014. She sits on the boards and advisory panels for Writing for Peace and Ensemble du Monde, Maestro Marlon Daniel.
Writing to Heal
with Loren Kleinman
In post-modern society, the sick person reclaims the authority and power to speak their own story and reconstructs a new life narrative from the wreckage of illness or bodily injury. The workshop will guide the writer through reading and writing trauma narratives. Each participant will complete a poem. What else can we do but write about our pain?
Bio: Loren Kleinman’s poetry has appeared in journals such as Nimrod, Wilderness House Literary Review, Paterson Literary Review, Narrative Northeast and Journal of New Jersey Poets. Her interviews appeared in IndieReader, USA Today and The Huffington Post. She is the author of Flamenco Sketches and Indie Authors Naked, which was an Amazon Top 100 bestseller in Journalism in the UK and USA. Her second poetry collection The Dark Cave Between My Ribs released March 2014 (Winter Goose Publishing) and was #11 in Women’s Poetry on Amazon Kindle. Kleinman is currently working on a literary romance novel, This Way to Forever and her third collection of poetry Breakable Things. She runs an author interview series on The Huffington Post Books community blogs vertical.
5pm – 6pm
Memory and Our Common Lives
with Kip Zegers
We will read one or two poems that use memory as a springboard, do a writing exercise together, and then work with a series of memories to build a poem.
Kip Zegers has published 9 books. The latest is The Poet of Schools, Dos Madres Press, 2014. He has taught Creative Writing for 29 years at Hunter College High School. He has degrees from John Carroll University and Northwestern University, and he has studied at Union Theological Seminary.
Writing Poetry With Many Voices
with Emma Goldman-Sherman
Living in New York City, we all get to cross paths daily with fascinating people. Writing outside ourselves can free us to discover different kinds of poems. In this workshop we will explore how voices can inspire us to create new poems. With examples and writing exercises, each participant will complete a poem.
BIO: Emma Goldman-Sherman has published poetry in American Athenaeum, Broad Magazine, The Manhattan Times, and Adrienne Rich: A Tribute Anthology. Her plays (including Perfect Women, Wombshot, and The Lock) have been produced in New York City, London and Zagreb. She has an MFA from the University of Iowa.
Tell Me A Story: Narrative in Poetry
with Guen Murroni
Story telling is an art form that can take many forms and shapes — a song, a novel, a film, and of course, a poem. This workshop will be dedicated to narrative as a technique to convey a feeling through the different images that compose a story. Participants will read a sample of narrative poetry like American soul and jazz poet Gil Scott-Heron’s Pieces of a Man and start working on their own poem through the use of character, setting and plot. A theme will be picked on the day collectively from the initial reading of the poem, to create a common ground for creative composition.
Guen Murroni is a writer based in London. Her background is in theatre, film, narrative and copywriting. She has worked in theatre in Italy, receiving commissions and a prize in 2010 for her latest play as well as holding writing and drama workshops in the City of Lodi’s prison and for Connections Youth Theatre Festival. She is now working in film as writer and director, her shorts have been shown at Scene: Brooklyn, the Williamsburg Independent Film Festival, the Budapest International Film Festival and Art of Brooklyn Film Festival. She has recently completed her first novel “The Jiggle” and is now working on a feature film.
New Dorp Library
Poetry that Punches a Clock
with Jen Fitzgerald
Staten Island is a predominately blue-collar and working class borough of people who know what it means to labor. Many of us hold jobs with the City of New York, and that relationship has been historically difficult. This workshop will focus on the poetry of labor and pieces that showcase the different ways in which people relate to the Best City in the World. Each participant will leave having written their own labor poem.
Jen Fitzgerald is a poet and a native New Yorker who received her MFA in Poetry at Lesley University. She is the Count Director for VIDA: Women in Literary Arts. With John Ebersole, she is the host of the New Books in Poetry Podcast as part of the New Books Network. Her poetry of Hurricane Sandy has been featured on PBS Newshour, and other works on Harriet: The Poetry Foundation Blog, Tin House, and AAWW: Open City, among others.
Mariners Harbor Library
Writing Confessional Poetry
with Maria DiLorenzo
Writing from personal experience can make us more emotionally aware and lead us to new discoveries of the self. A type of poetry that emerged in the 1950’s and 1960’s, confessional poetry, discussed topics such as death, relationships, and emotions, which before were off limits. In this workshop we will explore why writing from personal experience is so significant, engaging, and why it can even be considered daring in some cases. We will read and discuss poems by Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton, two major confessional poets of our time. Participants will then write their own confessional poem which will then be shared with the group if time permits.
Maria DiLorenzo’s work has appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, The Café Review, The Flea, Connotations Press, Barrier Islands Review, Hawaii Pacific Review, Pennsylvania Literary Journal, New York Liberty Star, and others. Since 2011 she has been researching and writing a true crime/nonfiction work which is forthcoming. Currently she teaches English and Creative Writing at Middlesex County College, Brookdale Community College, and Saint John Vianney High School. She holds a MFA in poetry from Hunter College.
Participants will be given free copies of Shakespeare’s
Sonnets courtesy of World Book Night US.
For the addresses and contact numbers of these library branches, please visit http://www.nypl.org/locations.
The Greenwich Village Literary Pub Crawl will be doing a special Poetry Pub Crawl!
This three hour tour focuses on sites, locations and bars that were popular to some of the most passionate and influential poets of our time.
Hear stories of the village, see the spots that inspired them, and enjoy performances of some of the greatest poems to come out of Greenwich Village.
April 26th at 2pm
Beginning at the White Horse Tavern
567 Hudson Street (at 11th Street)
Tickets $20 and $15 for students/seniors
Guides will be Marissa Levien and Eric Chase,
poems by Edna St. Vincent Millay, Dylan Thomas, Diane Di Prima, Amiri Baraka, Hart Crane, Walt Whitman, Edgar Allan Poe and many more.
Mention NYWW and get 25% off admission.
Tim Tomlinson, President of the New York Writers Workshop discusses the history and various services/activities of the group at their 2012 FUNdraiser event.
Check out the some of NYC’s funniest comics, including Ophira Eisenberg, Emily Heller, Jon Fisch, Babes in the Woods and more at the 2012 FUNdraiser for the New York Writers Resources.