We’re writing to ask for your continued support and involvement in 2019. Whether you are a member of Lit Cleveland or a participant in one of our many programs for writers and readers, you are helping build a vibrant literary arts community in Northeast Ohio, and your increased participation is vital.
This year, we collaborated with Seeds of Literacy in the Mt. Pleasant neighborhood to develop Cleveland Stories, an anthology of writing about the places we call home. We staged two performances of a reading at the Cleveland Humanities Festival featuring local writers on the theme of health. We launched and published two issues of the Gordon Square Review, a literary journal that shows off Cleveland to a worldwide audience. And in the midst of all that, Literary Cleveland put on a variety of free seminars and paid classes on topics from family history to public poetry, for writers at all levels of experience.
Did we mention the Inkubator? No? It’s Literary Cleveland’s signature annual event—five days of classes, seminars, discussions, and random meetings amid the density of Cleveland’s writing community. And it’s free to attend, too.
Don’t you want to be part of that? By joining Literary Cleveland today or renewing your annual membership, you help us do these wonderful things. Plus, you’ll get discounted rates on workshops and classes, and all new members who join before December 31 will receive three extra months of membership (through March 31, 2020).
If you are currently a member of Literary Cleveland, we hope you can also make an additional gift to make sure we can keep bringing and improving our programs for Northeast Ohio's literary community. Please make your gift today!
Thank you all for your continuing support of our mission.
On Wed. 10/24, Mt. Pleasant residents and participants of our Cleveland Stories community writing program gathered at Seeds of Literacy for the release of Cleveland Stories: Vol 1, a printed anthology of poems, personal stories, and essays by individuals with a strong connection to Mt. Pleasant and surrounding areas on Cleveland's southeast side.
Attendees enjoyed readings by anthology contributors, who shared compelling tales of growing up in Mt. Pleasant, as well as reflections on how the neighborhood and Cleveland proper has changed over time, among other topics.
Our sincere gratitude goes out to everyone who contributed a story to this anthology, and to all who joined us in supporting and celebrating the voices of Mt. Pleasant residents throughout our Cleveland Stories program. Purchase a copy of Cleveland Stories: Vol 1 here, and be sure to check out the many oral history interviews and photographs we've uploaded as well.
This past Saturday, October 20th, was the first Cleveland Drafts festival, a collaborative event from several literary organizations around Cleveland. The event lasted the entire day, starting with a discussion panel at Visible Voice Books put on by Brews + Prose, and ending with a reading and after-party from Twelve Literary Arts at Lava Lounge.
Literary Cleveland and Gordon Square Review hosted the 5:00 reading hour at Hotz Cafe, featuring Angelo Maneage, Conor Bracken, Amber Taliancich Allen, and Michelle R. Smith.
Overall, Cleveland Drafts was a hit, and we can't wait for next year!
Check out the photos from Saturday below:
Literary Cleveland, a nonprofit organization committed to building a strong literary community in Northeast Ohio, is set to host a reading celebrating the release of Cleveland Stories: Vol 1 at Seeds of Literacy's east side location on 13815 Kinsman Road in Cleveland on Wed. 10/24 at 6 p.m.
The anthology features stories, poems, and essays by residents of Mt. Pleasant and surrounding neighborhoods, and is the culmination of Cleveland Stories, an ongoing place-based writing program serving residents on Cleveland’s east side.
“Included here are voices you don’t get to hear often enough writing about Cleveland’s less-shiny east side neighborhoods,” writes Lit Cleveland director Lee Chilcote in the introduction to the anthology. “We hope that these stories, about poverty, homelessness, addiction and violence, but also about model parents, black urban migration and growing up in the city, help to give readers a more complete understanding of these neighborhoods.”
In partnership with Seeds of Literacy, Neighborhood Connections, and Cleveland State University’s Center for Public History and Digital Humanities, Lit Cleveland has hosted writing workshops and oral history interviews in recent months aimed at helping current and former Mt. Pleasant residents reconnect with the history of their neighborhood and share their visions for its future. The Cleveland Stories: Vol 1 anthology is the culmination of these efforts.
Lit Cleveland invites the community to take part in its upcoming reading and celebration at Seeds of Literacy’s east side campus on Kinsman Road. Attendees can pick up a free copy of the anthology and enjoy readings by contributors and light refreshments.
Literary Cleveland’s mission is to create and nurture a vibrant literary arts community in Northeast Ohio. For more information on upcoming events, check out our website at www.litcleveland.org or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram @litcleveland.
"I’m not a person who tells someone how to read my book, that’s not my job” -- an afternoon with author Paul Beatty
This year's Writers and Readers series continued Saturday with a full day of programming at Cleveland Public Library's main branch. Attendees first gathered for an interactive poetry workshop led by Dr. Mary E. Weems titled "It's All About Race: Using Poetry to Resist Racism," before participating in a special craft Q&A with Man Booker Prize winning author Paul Beatty. Beatty, author of The Sellout, Slumberland, Tuff, and other novels, capped off the day by discussing his approach to the craft of writing alongside Oberlin professor Gillian Johns. Check out a few lovely photos from the day below, courtesy of Cleveland Public Library.
Our Writers and Readers series with Cleveland Public Library continues Sat. 10/13 with journalist José Antonio Vargas, and concludes Sat. 11/10 with author Susan Orlean. For more on this year's Writers and Readers series, go to our blog.
Literary Cleveland, Northeast Ohio’s emerging literary arts nonprofit organization, is seeking an executive director to lead and execute its mission to create and nurture a vibrant literary arts community in Northeast Ohio. As the face and spokesperson of the organization, this position is an opportunity to write the future for the region’s literary arts community by creating and implementing innovative programming for local readers and writers. The role requires a visionary multi-tasker with a working knowledge of the literary arts community of Northeast Ohio, as well as effective nonprofit management, business, fundraising, grant writing, and donor relations experience to strengthen and cultivate Literary Cleveland’s growing membership. Salary range is $45,000 - $55,000 plus a modest benefits package. Please submit cover letter and résumé to email@example.com by 10/18/2018.
Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Executive Director (ED) will assume and maintain responsibility for Literary Cleveland’s staff, day-to-day operations, finances and programs. The ED will assure that the staff executes the organization’s mission and strategic and business plans. Through expertise, strong organizational skills, connections and passion, the ED will guide this young organization to an impactful future.
Program & Curriculum Development
Marketing and Communication
Salary and Benefits
Salary range: $45,000 - $55,000. Small monthly medical stipend and matching contribution to a retirement account.
Please submit a cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than October 18, 2018, at 12 noon.
Dear community members,
In the past year, Literary Cleveland has continued to grow in response to the needs of the writing and reading community. We have conducted over 200 hours of programming, grown our membership, held another successful Inkubator, and formed strong partnerships in the community. Thank you for helping us achieve these successes.
In 2019, Literary Cleveland will go through some changes that reflect the organization’s evolution. Executive Director and co-founder Lee Chilcote has decided to step down at the end of the year from his leadership position to focus on his personal writing goals, teaching and family. However, he will be helping the new Executive Director transition into his / her role in 2019. We plan on announcing the new hire in late fall of 2018. We're excited for Lee and for Literary Cleveland as it continues to evolve into one of the linchpins of Northeast Ohio's literary community.
Given the deep talent pool in our community, the board is confident it will find another dynamic and passionate person to lead the organization into the future. Please find the job description here.
Lee Chilcote Susan Oelbracht
Executive Director Board President
Benjamin Percy, author of The Dark Net and keynote speaker at this year's Inkubator festival at Cleveland Public Library, shares tips for "writing around your life" and staying disciplined as a writer. Click here to check out an excerpt of his talk with Cleveland-based author Brad Ricca.
Our signature Cleveland Inkubator literary arts festival returned for the 4th consecutive year to bring nearly a week of stellar programming to Cleveland's community of writers and readers. This year's Inkubator conference at Cleveland Public Library -- which followed a number of free literary events, including a craft talk with acclaimed author Benjamin Percy, book swap and NEOMFA reading, LGBTQ storytelling event, and more -- was a great success, drawing nearly 300 readers and writers from Northeast Ohio. During the conference, participants attended an array of writing workshops and craft talks on topics ranging from literary journalism to speculative fiction and beyond. The conference also featured inspiring performances by members of Bullets into Bells and a robust Resource Fair staffed by local literary arts organizations, public libraries, and independent presses.
All in all, this year's Inkubator festival drew close to 500 participants and helped further our mission of creating and nurturing a vibrant literary arts community in Northeast Ohio.
Thanks again to our sponsors Cuyahoga Arts and Culture, Cleveland Public Library, OverDrive, and Council Gardens for helping make this special week possible. Thanks also to our dedicated staff, board members, and volunteers for lending your time, energy, and talents throughout the week. Finally, a thank you to all who attended for proving again just how vibrant and diverse Northeast Ohio's literary community is.
Click "play" on the slideshow below to check out photos from the week.
On Saturday, July 7th, Literary Cleveland's Cleveland Stories Program had another successful workshop with a presentation by Mark Souther. Souther is the director of the Center for Public History and Digital Humanities and a professor at Cleveland State University.
Souther began his presentation at the Mt. Pleasant branch of Cleveland Public Library with a question: Why oral history? Oral history adds to the historical record, fills the gaps in our understanding, and gives voice to our neighbors. Souther has been involved in multiple oral history projects and is the author of several books, including Believing in Cleveland: Managing Decline in 'The Best Location in the Nation.'
The presentation broke down the steps of planning and preparing for an oral history interview, from choosing someone to interview to planning the interview and the protocol for the interview itself.
The group discussed the positives and negatives of interviewing close acquaintances and family, techniques to keep the interview professional but not boring, and how to navigate recording the interview with digital records or phones.
Cleveland Stories is presented in collaboration with Seeds of Literacy and Neighborhood Connections.
To create a strong community of readers and writers in Cleveland, Ohio through workshops, classes, readings and other events.