This past weekend Lit Cleveland helped kick off the 2017 Cleveland Humanities Festival with Crossing Borders: Immigrant Narratives. Crossing Borders was a two night staged dramitic reading directed by Marc Moritz starring Tim Keo, Leilani Barrett, Rocky Encalada, Tina Stump and Peggy Sullivan with music by Mike Bloom. The script was comprised of submissions from Lit Cle members and residents of Northeast Ohio. Both night were well attended with over 150 people on Saturday and just over 100 on Sunday. Stories included Thrity Umrigar's "American Promise", Daniel Gray-Kontar's "Genesis", Hathaway Brown Student Crystal Zhao's "Food and Family", and Amy Breau's "My Acadia". Below are the links to video from both nights courtesy of Catherine Young and the Cleveland Public Library.
We recently started a YouTube page so you can keep up with our programs and original content. Feel free to head over to our page Literary Cleveland and watch video of board President Susan Petrone's interview with best selling author Mary Doria Russell. We also have video of local writers Cindy Washabaugh and Diane Ferri sharing some of their poetry at our 2017 Winter Mixer.
Whether you call it flash fiction, nano fiction, or short short story, the “Keeping it Brief: Flash Fiction” workshop held on March 11th. Fearless, funny and indubitably encouraging local writer, educator and editor Laura Grace Weldon showed participants writing succinctly in small form is anything but small beans. The class gathered in the cozy basement of Mac’s Backs while experiencing a mixture of famous examples in literature, inspirational prompts, and solid submitting advice. Participants quickly bonded into a group of supportive pros. More than once, after a pen-nibbling prompt, a writer could be heard saying after sharing their work with the group: “This one is solid. I am really happy with it.” They learned that in 3 sentences, 6 words, or 140 characters you can not only create entire multi-layered thematic works, but you can make friends, be inspired, and create profound pieces of literature.
At Lit Cleveland's Feb. 22nd workshop, award-winning true crime writer Jane Turzillo explained the basics of how to find an interesting true crime case and where to go to find the information to explore it. This was a resource-rich workshop.
Turzillo talked about how to determine if a crime would be interesting enough to explore as an article or book. Is the crime layered? Is the crime itself interesting with enough suspects and unusual situations? Was there a trial? Is the victim at all sympathetic?
Next, Turzillo walked participants through where to find information ranging from newspaper archives to public documents like coroner reports to websites and useful books.
She shared some of her own experiences as a crime reporter and true crime history writer. She passed out a newspaper story of a crime committed in the 1980s, and the group walked through the steps of what aspects of the crime they would pursue if they were writing the story. After learning these approaches from Turzillo, they then went around the room to share what stories they would like to pursue. Everyone had a possible story, and Turzillo commented and offered insights as to what to do next. Afterwards, they felt more motivated to pursue their own true crime stories.
To create a strong community of readers and writers in Cleveland, Ohio through workshops, classes, readings and other events.