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Workshop [clear filter]
Wednesday, April 13


My Worst Job: A Writing Workshop with Carolyne Wright

My Worst Job and Other True (or False) Confessions

What was your worst job interview, or job, or date, or marriage?  The most exquisitely embarrassing moment, the time you wished the earth would open and swallow you?  Tell of that hellhole you crawled out of to laugh another day, and in the confessions (real or imagined) you write in this workshop!

Bring your own pen/pencil and paper and be ready to write! $20 students/$30 general. Registration through BrownPaperTickets.com

Special thanks to our partners INK and the Spark Center for hosting this workshop.

Wednesday April 13, 2016 10:00am - 11:00am
Spark Center 1214 W Summit Pkwy, Spokane, WA 99201
Saturday, April 16


Images & Objects: Writing Workshop with Serena Crawford
Images and Objects: Engaging Your Reader

As fiction writers, we strive to build worlds that readers can enter. We want our audience to experience our stories through our characters’ eyes and ears. In this workshop, we will explore the use of images and objects as a way to hook readers, immerse them in our stories, and keep them glued to the page. As we write and develop our craft, we will also have the chance to share our work. This will be an activity-based workshop with several writing activities/sessions, short craft discussions, analysis of a short excerpt, and opportunities for participants to share work.

Two-hour writing workshop with fiction writer Serena Crawford.
Workshop registration via BrownPaperTickets.com.

Serena Crawford’s story collection, Here Among Strangers, won the Spokane Prize for Short Fiction. Her work has appeared in Epoch, Ascent, The Rumpus, Beloit Fiction Journal, The McNeese Review, and elsewhere. She has taught creative writing for Writers in the Schools, the University of Portland, and the University of Oregon. The recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship and an Oregon Literary Fellowship, she lives in Portland, Oregon.  

Saturday April 16, 2016 9:30am - 11:30am
Spokane Convention Center 334 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201


Surprising Yourself: Writing Workshop with Diane Cook
Surprising Yourself: Writing Workshop with Diane Cook9:30-11:30 a.m. Saturday 4/16

My favorite reading moments are when I come upon something in the story that takes me completely by surprise. Being taken by surprise is also my favorite moment when I'm writing. It might sound counter-intuitive, but it's possible to turn off your critical--even conscious--mind when writing new material. And doing so can lead you to new turns and twists in your work that are revelatory and unexpected. In this session, we'll use writing exercises  to help us explore the hidden spaces of the scenes we're trying to bring to life. And we'll work to turn off that inner editor who sometimes says, Stop! You can't do that. In this session, we'll aim to overcome that voice and write ourselves into a place of surprise. Bring a short scene or moment from something you're working on. And bring a lot of paper (or your computer.) We'll be writing a lot. Registration through Brown Paper Tickets.

Diane Cook is the author of the story collection Man V. Nature, and was formerly a producer for the radio show, This American Life. Man V. Nature was a finalist for the Guardian First Book Award, Believer Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction, and received Honorable Mention for the PEN/Hemingway award. Her stories have appeared in Harpers, Tin House, Granta, and elsewhere and anthologized in Best American Short Stories. She is the recipient of a 2016 fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. She lives in Oakland, CA.


Saturday April 16, 2016 9:30am - 11:30am
Spokane Convention Center 334 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201


Word Pyromania: Poetry Workshop with Rob Carney


The playwright Tom Stoppard was once asked, “Where do your ideas come from?” He answered, “I wish I knew. I’d move there.” Nevertheless, he’s had a career full of ideas, and he’s shaped them into great plays. For instance, a friend gave him a note once, telling him Freud, Lenin, and James Joyce all lived on the same block in Zurich in 1916 and he should write a play about it. It turned out to be true and that the dadaist Tristan Tzara lived nearby also, but no play arose from those facts until Stoppard discovered that Joyce and a minor diplomat named Henry Carr were embroiled in a lawsuit and counter suit over the cost of a suit. Carr had purchased it as his costume for the part of Jack Worthing in Joyce’s production of The Importance of Being Earnest, and Joyce wouldn’t pay him back. The play is called Travesties. It’s pretty brilliant. And the point is that it probably came not from facts and ideas but from fun with language, from the multiple meanings of the word “suit.”

This poetry workshop will be about fun with words. We’ll take a shot at one or two exercises less about whamming our ideas into lines for poems and more about letting language discover what it wants to. 

Come with pens, paper, and a readiness to see what some new exercises might compel you to discover. Workshop registration via BrownPaperTickets.com.

Rob Carney is originally from Washington State and earned his BA from Pacific Lutheran University, his MFA from Eastern Washington University, and his PhD from the University of Louisiana-Lafayette. He is a two-time winner of the Utah Book Award for Poetry and the author of three previous books and three chapbooks of poems, including Story Problems and Weather Report from Somondoco Press. His work has appeared in Cave Wall, Mid-American Review, Poetry Northwest, Quarterly West, Redactions, River Styx, Sugar House Review, other journals, as well as the Norton anthology, Flash Fiction Forward. In 2014 he received the Robinson Jeffers Tor House Prize for Poetry. His most recently published collection of work, 88 MAPS, is about the places, times, and wildness we should say yes to, and it’s about looking at all our real and figurative cul-de-sacs and saying no. Currently, he is a Professor of English at Utah Valley University.

Saturday April 16, 2016 9:30am - 11:30am
Spokane Convention Center 334 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201


Workshop: Harnessing the Power of Place with Joe Wilkins

Layers of Landscape: Harnessing the Power of Place

Though we live in a world chock full of chain restaurants and department stores, on-screen communications, and cross-country airplane travel, we ignore the power of place at our own psychological and, increasingly, physical peril. Truly, place and landscape are active forces in all our lives. They shape and re-shape us; they offer us foundation and refuge; they challenge us to be good citizens of our biotic and built communities. In life and in writing, we ought to be aware of this; we ought to try to understand and harness the power of place. This session offers writers four ways they might begin to do just that. Participants are asked to bring a pen and paper or a laptop computer for in-session writing.

$20 students/$30 general. Workshop registration through BrownPaperTickets.com.

Saturday April 16, 2016 9:30am - 11:30am
Spokane Convention Center 334 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201


Writing Workshop for Undergraduate Students

Gonzaga University’s literary journal, Reflection, will be hosting an hour-long workshop for undergraduate students wishing to expand their own writing in the hopes of future publication. This event will take place on April 16th at the Spokane Convention Center as part of the Get Lit! Festival. The focus of this workshop will be to encourage students to continue producing work that may be considered for their own school publications. The workshop itself will consist of two 20-minute prompts in which the students will be able to create pieces based off of these prompts. Following the writing, there will be an opportunity for the writers to share a piece that they began in the workshop with the incentive that these works will eventually grow into pieces to be considered for their school literary journals in the upcoming year. Gonzaga is excited to get students thinking, producing, and submitting as part of this highly esteemed GetLit! Festival and we hope to see you there!

Free, no pre-registration required. Spokane Convention Center, Room 202A.

Saturday April 16, 2016 12:00pm - 1:00pm
Spokane Convention Center 334 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201


Making Your Own Comic or Graphic Novel: Tips for Artists and Writers
Making your own comic or graphic novel can be a challenge.  Coming up with ideas, writing a script, designing your own characters, finding artists or drawing your own book, printing, marketing, Kickstarter (crowdfunding), can all be very daunting to the person who wants to step out on their own to tell the stories that are important to them. Join Manny Trembley to learn about the steps it takes as well as ask any questions you might have. You don't need to reinvent publishing a comic.  Learn from Manny's successes and failures as he has traversed the rocky landscape of self-publishing.

Free; no pre-registration required.

avatar for Manny Trembley

Manny Trembley

Manny Trembley is a two-time Eisner Award nominated author, illustrator, father of two boys, Jasper and Jared, and husband.  He is a video game designer and spends his free time making graphic novels. He has created five successful Kickstarters. The first was Martin Monsterman and... Read More →

Saturday April 16, 2016 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Spokane Convention Center 334 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201


If You Ain't No Place
You'd be crazy to miss out on this: a one-of-a-kind writing workshop and craft discussion with not one, but two current poets laureate: Tod Marshall (Washington State) and Laura Read (City of Spokane). This is an opportunity not to be missed! Free; no pre-registration required.

If You Ain’t No Place

Our title is from Richard Hugo’s The Triggering Town.  In his book, Hugo reminds poets of the importance of identifying the “where” of a poem and how rooting creativity to place can allow the imagination to grow in unexpected ways.  In this workshop, we will explore ways to connect our imagination to the real and imagined landscapes of Spokane and, more broadly, Washington. 

There are many ways, of course, that we can think about “place.”  Perhaps specific flora and fauna conjure up place for us (salmon and Arrowleaf Balsamroot, delicious huckleberries).  Perhaps titles of towns and neighborhoods or geological phenomena do the same (Anacortes, Mt. Rainier, Hillyard, and Twisp; The Columbia, Steptoe Butte, and sharp columns of basalt, to name only a few).  Perhaps people—individuals or groups—make a “where” vivid in our minds (The Legion of Boom or the Wobblies, Chief Garry or Ken Griffey Junior, Jimmy Marks or Kurt Cobain, Hope Solo or Sherman Alexie, Bing Crosby or Cathy McMorris Rodgers—to name only a few). 

Using a controlled range of diction and some parameters regarding line and sound texture, we will form a supportive community to draft a poem that might reveal something about where we are and who we are.

Special thanks to Humanities Washington, ArtsWA, and the City of Spokane for recognizing the importance of poet laureate programs in our communities.

avatar for Tod Marshall

Tod Marshall

Tod Marshall is Washington State’s Poet Laureate and a professor at Gonzaga University. His books of poetry include Bugle, The Tangled Line, and Dare Say. He has also published a collection of his interviews with contemporary poets, Range of the Possible, and an attendant anthology... Read More →
avatar for Laura Read

Laura Read

Laura Read is Spokane’s second poet laureate, appointed to the position October, 2015. She is the author of the chapbook The Chewbacca on Hollywood Boulevard Reminds Me of You and the collection Instructions for My Mother’s Funeral, which won the 2011 AWP Donald Hall Prize... Read More →

Saturday April 16, 2016 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Spokane Convention Center 334 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201


Synergy for the Lone Playwright: A Playwriting Workshop with Marc Beaudin

Theatre is perhaps the most collaborative art form. Directors, scenic designers, actors, lighting designers, costumers, sound engineers and makeup artists all work together toward a shared vision to create a living work of art. Throughout the process, they challenge and inspire each other. A creative spark in one field will open up new ideas and understandings in others. However, there is often one artist within the project who is isolated from this collaborative synergy: the playwright.

While some playwrights believe in the value of their isolation, assuming it results in their work being “pure” or “unadulterated,” I contend that they revel in their lonely garret to the detriment of their work and of the art of theatre. The greater the ability to listen and respond to the other artists involved, the stronger the synergistic effects will be. Developing a script with the director and actors who will eventually stage it provides a chance to test every line and action against the truth of performance.

But if this isn’t possible, what can be done? This workshop will explore techniques for gaining the benefits of collaboration even when one is working alone. We’ll discuss ways to tap into the writer’s imaginative powers to collaborate with hypothetical actors and to see one’s work as part of the grand, interlocking machinery of theatre. This will result not only in stronger writing, but ones more likely to find production.

We will also examine the roots of character, action, conflict and arc to determine what makes a scene – and how a scene is not a script and a script is not a play and a play is not theatre. We’ll discover what is needed for each of these building blocks to lead to the next. Finally, we’ll consider the value of subtext, mystery and uncertainty in creating true theatre.

$20 student, $30 general. Registration through BrownPaperTickets.com.

Saturday April 16, 2016 3:30pm - 5:30pm
Spokane Convention Center 334 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201