Guest Reviewer Leslie Slape kicks off WordFest 2010

Local storyteller and Daily News crime reporter Leslie Slape will be the first WordFest Guest Reviewer in 2010. Leslie will be reviewing stories by two newcomers and one long time regular at the monthly writers and readers gathering on Tuesday, January 5.

Dan Di Iullo will be reading a chapter from his novel, “White Rock Chronicles.” In addition to the novel, Dan has written a play that was performed at the Loves Street Playhouse in Woodland last November, and another play that will be produced at the Astor Street Opry Playhouse in Astoria in February.

E. Bryan Calhoun has been writing for a number years, especially screenplays. He will be reading a short story entitled, “Fireman, Brothers are Forever,” about a young man whose family died in a fire that he believes he caused.

The third presenter will be Ned Piper, a regular at WordFest and one of its founders. Ned will read a short story entitled, “Too Big for His Britches,” concerning some mobsters welcoming home one of their members who spent a week with the boss at his villa in Puerto Vallarta. Ned, an avid reader, is also a Cowlitz PUD commissioner, and writes a monthly column for The Columbia River Reader.

WordFest occurs on the first Tuesday of each month, 6:00-8:00 pm, at The Brits Tea Shoppe, located at 1427 Commerce Avenue in Longview. It is free and open to the public, and offers an open mic time following the presenters.

A select menu is offered by Brits owner Alice Dietz for those who wish to enjoy a meal with the readings. Doors open at 5:30 pm.

Leslie Slape presents “The Comedy of Crime” at December WordFest

On December 1st, Leslie Slape will be reading from “The Comedy of Crime,” funny stories drawn from her life as a crime reporter for The Daily News.

 Leslie is also a professional storyteller with the Storytellers Network. Her non-journalism writing has appeared in The Cowlitz County Historical Quarterly, The Salal Review, and in the book, “The Healing Heart: Families,” edited by Dave Albert and Allison Cox. She also wrote the play, “This Island Earth,” with Don Correll, which was produced at Lower Columbia College in spring 2009.

Peg Miller will read her story, “A Christmas Mistake,” about things that go wrong and go right at a Christmas dinner. It’s part of a series of short stories where food plays a prominent role.

Peg is a retired teacher and school librarian. Over a period of twenty-four years, she taught Literature for Children at Lower Columbia College, and in 2010, she will be teaching a class, “Write Your Life Story,” also through LCC.

Chuck Taylor will be reading from his 4th novel, in progress, “The Caverns of Acold,” a young adult novel about a brother and sister, who, on a visit with their father to Antarctica, fall through a crevasse, landing in another realm far below the surface, populated by the descendents of the Oceanids, who were featured in the myths of the Greeks and Romans.

Jane Still will be the guest reviewer for the evening. Her first book, a collection of humorous essays entitled, “Mother’s Daze/No Dignity,” will be released this spring.

Following the scheduled presenters, there will be an open mic time.

WordFest is a gathering of writers and readers who meet on the first Tuesday of each month at The Brits Tea Shoppe, 1427 Commerce Avenue, in Longview, from 6:00-8:00 p.m. A select menu is available for people who wish to enjoy a meal or coffee and dessert with the readings. Doors open at 5:30 pm.




Editor Ruth Thompson is Guest Reviewer at November WordFest

On Tuesday, November 3,  WordFest will feature long-time editor Ruth Thompson as November’s guest reviewer. Ruth is the editor for Illumination Arts, a publisher of illustrated children’s books. She is also an independent editor, was the Kelso High School librarian for over 20 years, and is President Emeritus of the Washington State Association of School Librarians.

Ruth will be reviewing  three stories. Judge Ed Putka will read his story, “A Union Ship.” Poet Elizabeth Evans will present her short story, “Moving On,” about a young girl and her family seeking food and work during the Great Depression.

And a  younger voice at WordFest, Chris Mahon who is a student, will read his tale, “Tarinen and His Gaining of the Staff of Anu Nairan”–“one of many legends of Tairinen, the wizard who would live to see the End of All Things,” says Chris. “I’ve studied myths and legends for about four years and have enjoyed writing since elementary school.”

We will meet at The Brits, 1427 Commerce Avenue in Longview, 6:00-8:00 pm.

The Brits owner, Alice Dietz, will again offer a select menu  for those who wish to enjoy a meal with the readings (Did you see those luscious desserts she had last time?) The Brits opens at 5:30 pm.

October WordFest Goes Creepy

Featured at WordFest on October 6th will be one of the giants of Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror writing.

William F. Nolan, best known for his science fiction classic, Logan’s Run, has written novels, short stories, verse, screenplays for film and television, as well as critical studies of Dashiell Hammett and Ray Bradbury.

He has received numerous awards, including twice winning the Edgar Allan Poe Award from the Mystery Writers of America, being voted a “Living Legend in Dark Fantasy” by the International Horror Guild, and receiving the honorary title of “Author Emeritus” by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc.

He wrote or co-wrote the screenplays for the films, The Legend of Machine Gun Kelly (1975), Logan’s Run (1976), and Burnt Offerings (1976), as well as the television adaptation of Henry James’ Turn of the Screw, Terror at London Bridge, and The Kansas City Massacre. Career collections of his writings have been published in Things Beyond Midnight (1984) and William F. Nolan’s Dark Universe (2001).

Joining Nolan will be James R. Beach, publisher of Dark Discoveries magazine, and his co-editor and writer, Jason V. Brock. They will be speaking about the horror, sci-fi, and fantasy genres, and with Nolan, will take questions from the audience. Complimentary copies of Dark Discoveries will be available.

During the Open Mic period, participants are encouraged to share their own creepy stories and writings in recognition of Hallowe’en. People can sign up to read for 10 minutes.

The event is free and open to the public. The Brits owner Alice Dietz offers a select menu for those who wish to enjoy dinner with the readings and discussion. The Brits opens at 5:30 pm.