Pop-Up Writing Retreat at the Flatiron Writers Room Saturday January 28, 2017

This day is for You and Your Writing.

Writing is a lonely business–but it doesn’t have to be! Make writing time one of your New Year’s resolutions and join us in our new space at the Flatiron Writers Room in West Asheville for a day-long retreat that includes communal writing, time for yourself, an individual session with novelist Heather Newton and fellowship with other participants. You can also add on an optional neck and shoulder massage. Save the date now and let your loved ones know that this gift of writing time is what you want for the holidays! See complete agenda and cancellation policy below and register via Eventbrite here: Retreat Registration

You may register by check by mailing your check and a valid email address so we can send you event information to: Flatiron Writers Room, LLC, 252 Brevard Rd., Asheville, NC  28806. Space is limited–you will be registered if space is available when we receive your check.  We will email you confirmation of registration.

Retreat Agenda:

9:30-10:00am: Get settled, get coffee or tea and a pastry, meet other participants and your hosts Maggie Marshall and Heather Newton, choose a time for your individual meeting with Heather and your optional 20-minute “Writer’s Massage” – a neck, head and shoulder massage by a professional massage therapist. Parking is available in the rear of our building or along Covington Street.

10:00-10:45am: Communal writing prompt led by Heather and time to get to know each other.

10:45-noon: Individual writing time. You’ll be writing in proximity to others, with your cell phone turned off. We may have internet but we won’t tell you the password. Please respect your fellow writers by being quiet during writing time.  We’ll provide a telephone number where your loved ones can reach you in a genuine emergency. It may help you to come prepared with a personal goal or task that you’d like to tackle this morning.

Noon-1pm: Lunch. We hope you’ll join us next door at UpCountry to get to know us and your fellow retreaters (cost not included in retreat fee), but you are also welcome to find lunch on your own. Ask us for recommendations for good places to eat close by.

1 pm-4pm: Individual writing time. Need a prompt? A craft book? We’ll have both available for you in the Flatiron Writers Room. Also during this time for an additional $20 fee, slip out for your massage.

4pm: Pencils down. Congratulate yourself for a day well spent bending words to your will. Join your fellow writers for a glass of wine or beer or a non-alcoholic beverage and let us know how your day went.

Throughout the day (10:45am-4pm):

Meet Heather just a few doors down at Izzy’s coffee shop at your assigned time, to talk about whatever you want. Is a character giving you trouble? Need to make a choice about point of view? Want to talk about how to find an agent or pitch your book? Need to commiserate about lack of time to write? This twenty minutes is for you to use in any way you wish. If ambulating the one block to Izzy’s is a problem for you, simply let us know and Heather will meet with you at the Flatiron Writers Room.

Throughout the day, Maggie will be available at the Flatiron Writers Room if you have questions or needs. We’ll provide snacks and beverages, and let us know if you need anything. 20-minute “Writer’s Massage” will be provided in the afternoon for an additional $20 fee courtesy of Melissa Burdeos of Curative Massage & Bodywork. Register for this add-on through Eventbrite.

Inclement weather: If we postpone the retreat due to weather, we will email you and post an announcement on our website by 7am on January 28, 2017. The weather make-up day for the retreat is Saturday, February 4, 2017.

The Flatiron Writers Room reserves the right to cancel the retreat if not enough people sign up, in which case you will receive a full refund.

You may cancel your registration up until January 21, 2017 via Eventbrite for a full refund. After that date, no refunds will be made.

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Coming Soon: The Flatiron Writers Room!

The Flatiron Writers are thrilled to announce the opening of the Flatiron Writers Room in early 2017, a space for workshops, retreats and other events for the western North Carolina literary community. The Flatiron Writers Room, at 5 Covington Street off of Haywood Road in West Asheville, will host future Flatiron Writers events and be available for rent by writers who want to teach, host a book launch, or hold a writers’ group or book club meeting. We look forward to coordinating with regional writers and writers’ organizations so that writers in our community know about all of the wonderful events and opportunities available to them. Watch this space for more information, including a chance to register for a Pop-Up Writers Retreat at the Flatiron Writers Room on Saturday, January 28, 2017.

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Flatiron Writers Present: Publicity and the Writing Life With Publicist Kima Jones

These days, whether you land a contract with a large publishing house, small press or self-publish, responsibility for publicizing your book will fall on you. Publicity means sales. But how does publicity work? This workshop (for poets, fiction and non-fiction writers), taught by Los Angeles book publicist Kima Jones, helps writers and artists develop social media strategies that support their larger artistic goals by teaching the how-to’s of personal brand curation and writing compelling content that leads to online community growth.

WHEN: Saturday, July 9, 2016, noon to 2 p.m.
WHERE:  Lenoir-Rhyne Center for Graduate Studies (2nd Floor Boardroom) in the Asheville Chamber of Commerce Building, 36 Montford Ave., Asheville, NC  28801
COST: $35–No refunds after July 4, 2016.
REGISTER HERE:Eventbrite - Flatiron Writers Present: Publicity and the Writing Life With Publicist Kima Jones
FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO PAY BY CHECK: Contact Maggie Marshall (828)772-4286.

ABOUT KIMA JONES:

kima smilingKima Jones founded and operates Jack Jones Literary Arts, a book publicity company. Her clients include Nina Revoyr, Khadijah Queen, Tyehimba Jess, Sarah Schulman, Dolen Perkins-Valdez, Desiree Cooper, Kimbilio Fiction and BinderCon. As a writer, she has received fellowships from PEN Center USA Emerging VoicesKimbilio Fiction,Yaddo and The MacDowell Colony, as the 2014-2015 Gerald Freund Fellow. She has been published at Guernica, NPR, PANK, Scratch Magazine and The Rumpus among others. Her short story “Nine” received notable mention in Best American Science Fiction. She is an MFA candidate in fiction and Rodney Jack Scholar in the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.

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Join Us For Prose to Picture: Screen Adaptation Workshop With Maryedith Burrell

Flatiron Flyer 2.sigJoin the Flatiron Writers for this workshop with award-winning actor and screenwriter Maryedith Burrell:

When: 10:00am-3:00pm, Saturday, September 26, 2015

Where: IMPORTANT CHANGE:  The workshop will take place at the NYS3 Studio, 2002 Riverside Drive, Studio 42-O, Asheville, NC 28804.  Directions below.

Cost: $65 per person–Register by clicking the PayPal button below:

Prose To Picture is for any writer who has ever wondered how a good book can become a bad movie or vice versa.  It is a four hour workshop specifically designed to introduce writers of other media to the fine art of screenplay.  Using  lecture, film clips, on site exercises, discussion and hand outs, students get the basics of visual storytelling and dramatic structure plus an opportunity to try their hand at adaptation. No one becomes a screenwriter overnight, but Prose To Picture can be an invaluable first step!Participants should bring a brown bag lunch, pen and paper or a laptop.

MARYEDITH BURRELL - Photo - photo credit Michael MauneyAbout Flatiron member Maryedith Burrell:

Maryedith Burrell is an award-winning writer/performer/director who has written for every major studio and network in the U.S. and England.  With eight features, twelve TV movies, six series and three TV pilots to her credit, she  landed a coveted overall deal with Disney that set her up to be a script doctor on numerous film and television projects.  Most recently, she scripted  Emily Post for Sony.  Also a documentarian, Ms. Burrell has produced for National Geographic, TLC, A&E, History Channel with the latest being NYC: Inside Out for Discovery.  Her essay “An Affair To Forget” appears in the bestseller What Was I Thinking? (St. Martin’s Press.) As an actress, she starred in the TV series Fridays, Throb, Parenthood, Jackie Thomas Show, played recurring characters on Seinfeld and Home Improvement, and has appeared on everything from SNL to The Tonight Show. #OUCH!, a one-woman comedy about her orthopedic adventure in the American health care system, is currently touring and enjoying sold-out audiences.

To register with a check instead of PayPal, email info@flatironwriters.com. See our Workshops and Events page for cancellation policy.

DIRECTIONS to the New York Studio For Stage And Screen (NYS3)
2002 Riverside Dr., Asheville NC 28804:

From I-26 — ( @9 min.) Take I-26 North, Exit 24 for Elk Mountain Rd. toward Woodfin, Turn left on Elk Mountain Rd., Turn left onto Riverside Drive. #2002 is a brick warehouse building with several studios. (GPS will take you to the back of the building!) Park in front or in the small parking lot across Riverside Drive. Follow signs to our studio. There is no cell phone reception inside.

From Asheville – (@11 min.) Go north on Riverside Dr. along the river toward Woodfin. ( You will pass the Bywater etc.) #2002 is a brick warehouse building on your left. (GPS will take you to the back of the building!)

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Join Us For Page to Podium Saturday April 25, 2015

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Where: Unitarian Universalist Church

1 Edwin Place, Asheville, NC 28801

Cost: $65 per person

To register with a check instead of PayPal, email info@flatironwriters.com

Participants should bring a brown bag lunch

Writers are often daunted by the idea of reading their work aloud, whether in a classroom situation or public presentation. This workshop will teach writers to prepare and present confident, clear public readings using the same tools employed by professional  actors:

  • Warming up the vocal instrument
  • Rehearsing the material
  • Calming the nerves
  • Delivering the  work

These tools can aid any writer. Neither acting nor public speaking experience is necessary to benefit from the craft of acting.

During the course of this workshop you will:

  • Bring a piece of your work you wish to read (one page, double-spaced, two copies).
  • Be led in voice and body warm-ups using breathing and vocal exercises.
  • Read aloud excerpts of published works by other writers to study pacing, phrasing, word choice and themes.
  • Will be coached individually by Mel as you read your work, with the class observing.
  • Time permitting, you will get a second opportunity to read for the class integrating the techniques you’ve learned.

Whether reading for an audience of one or one hundred, every writer can benefit from the self-editing techniques learned when reading their work aloud.

About Mel Ryane

Mel Ryane has had a long and distinguished acting career in both the United States and her native Canada. Her work has included both classical and modern theatre as well as film and television. She was a company member of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival and Shaw Festival, and has performed on the stages of the Manitoba Theatre Center, Vancouver Playhouse, Belfry Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, New Mexico Rep, Magnus Theatre, Old Globe Theatre, Toronto Free Theatre and Theatre Passe Muraille, among others. She has also worked as an acting and dialogue coach on film and TV projects, taught presentation technique at the corporate level, and has presented this workshop at writer’s conferences across North America. Mel will give a talk about her memoir, “Teaching Will: What Shakespeare and Ten Kids Gave Me That Hollywood Couldn’t,” at Malaprop’s Bookstore & Cafe on Sunday, April 26, 2015 at 3 p.m..

Praise from other Flatiron Writers workshops:

–”I thoroughly enjoyed your workshop and have many ideas to take home with me!”

–”Practical and utilitarian. Exactly what I was looking for.”

–”Thank you so much–I was hanging on every word!”

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Creating Your Writing Life Seminar

Flatiron Writers Present “Creating Your Writing Life”

On Saturday, April 13, 2013 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. the Flatiron Writers will offer an encore presenation of  “Creating Your Writing Life.” This all-day seminar, moderated by novelist Heather Newton, is designed for those who want to want to make regular and sustainable room in their lives for writing. The workshop will focus on Routines and Rituals, Space and Environment, Writing Process, and Community. Participants will have social time during a brown-bag lunch to connect with others to explore forming or joining critique groups.

When: 10:00 am – 3:00 pm Saturday, April 13, 2013
Where: Sandburg Hall, Unitarian Universalist Church of Asheville, One Edwin Place, Asheville, NC, 28801
Cost: $55 per person

Click here for more information and to register.

Praise for the “Creating Your Writing Life” seminar from last year’s participants:

–“I thoroughly enjoyed your workshop and have many ideas to take home with me!”

–“Practical and utilitarian. Exactly what I was looking for.”

–“Impressive speakers–I liked hearing their experiences.”

–“Thank you so much–I was hanging on every word!”

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Visual Tools for Writers

Storyboards are illustrations placed in sequence to help visualize a scene or narrative. Used for 80 years or more in film and animation studios, they have a lot to offer writers. While some storyboards for movies are regarded as works of art in and of themselves, drawing ability is not necessary to use storyboards. Stick figures are characters too.

I tend to use storyboards when I am writing complex actions. It’s easy to get caught up in the words and have the actions lose their gravity. By sketching the scene, even in the most basic form, I can track movements and consequences. It grounds the action, making it more believable. The reader can follow the action without backtracking to figure out what’s happening to who, where and when.

Storyboards can help writers with pacing. A quick sketch of the basics of each scene can show slow spots. Five consecutive scenes of two talking heads smoking cigarettes in coffee shops? Might be exactly what you’re after. Or it might be worth revisiting…

Storyboarding on Post-it notes is an effective way to play with your narrative sequence. Seeing your whole story in a single glance helps you build coherence. It’s wonderfully easy to explore options as you move scenes around. Doing this with pictures, rather than written notes, gives the process immediacy. You can see more of your story with one look and you can evaluate options faster.

For writers, storyboarding is a thinking-and-doing tool, not a work of art. Don’t stress about your artistic ability.

If you are interested in learning more about using visual tools please consider attending my Graphic Facilitation Workshop Saturday April 28, 2012, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the Handmade in America offices in downtown Asheville.

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Lynne Barrett’s Plot Workshop

On 
Sunday, 
March 
25,
the 
Flatiron 
Writers 
sponsored
 a 
three‐hour 
workshop 
by
 Lynne Barrett
 on
 Plot 
followed
 by 
a 
reading
 from
 her 
latest work, 
Magpies.
 Lynne
 is
 an
 incredibly
 talented
 teacher 
and
 an 
acute reader 
of fiction, 
and
 three 
of 
our
 Flatiron members
 are
 lucky enough
 to have studied 
with her.


For her presentation, she
 took
 apart the
 structure 
of
 the 
Hansel 
and 
Gretel fairy
tale,
 mapping
 it 
out
 visually
 to
 show
 the various elements
 that
 are used, 
such
 as the
 basics
 of 
the
 plot; the 
catalyst
 that 
activates 
the plot,
 which 
must 
be 
resolved; the
 power
 various 
characters 
have 
or 
haven’t;
 the 
boundaries and
 thresholds
 of the
 story;
 the
bright
 and
 dark
 spots
 in
 the narrative;
 strategies 
used
 by
 the
 characters 
to
 achieve 
their goals; 
and
 so on.

The rendering 
of 
the
 fairy 
tale
 into its 
various 
parts was 
Awesome
 (to use 
our
 grandson’s favorite word).
 But
 what 
was 
most
 significant
 for 
me
 was
 her
 discussion
 of
 the
 power
 structure
 in
 the 
piece.
 I
 have 
been stuck
 in 
a
 short story for 
a 
month.
 It
 took
 me
 five
 tries 
to 
find
 the right 
opening 
and, 
usually, once 
I 
have 
that, 
the
 rest 
of
 the 
story
 flows.
 Not
 this 
time. 
The 
story was 
flat 
and I 
couldn’t 
figure
 out the
 problem 
until
 I saw Lynne’s 
mapping 
of 
the power structure
 of 
the
 characters.
 There
 it
 was
 in front 
of 
me.
 I
 had 
no 
power structure
 in the 
piece, therefore
 no 
one
 character
 dominated.
 There 
was 
no 
one 
to 
fight
 against and 
overcome,
 because by
 the
 end 
of 
a
 story,
 the
 power 
structure
 must reverse.
 The
 example
 in 
Hansel and
 Gretel:
 at
 the 
beginning,
 the
 stepmother
 has 
the
 power
 and 
is 
at 
the 
top, 
while 
Gretel
 is
 powerless 
at
 the 
bottom; 
at 
the 
end,
 Gretel 
has 
the 
power 
and
 is 
at
 the
 top,
and
 the
 stepmother
 is 
dead.

There 
was my
 solution. 
As
 soon
 as 
I
 sign 
off, I’m
 going back
 to
 that 
story and
 figure
 out
 the
 power
 structure 
I 
need
 to 
successfully
 complete the
 story.


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Plot: The Map of Your Story- Workshop & Reading by Lynne Barrett

UPDATE: This workshop is completely full! Thanks to everyone who signed up, we look forward to seeing you on Sunday. Everyone is still welcome to come to the reading at 6:00 p.m.

The Flatiron Writers are delighted to announce that author Lynne Barrett will teach a workshop: Plot: The Map of Your Story, and read from her new book Magpies, winner of the Florida Book Awards Gold Medal in General Fiction, on March 25th in Asheville.

WHEN: Sunday, March 25, 2012: Workshop 2-5 PM, 5-6 PM Social Hour, Signing & Mingling, 6 PM Reading.

WHERE: Battery Park Book Exchange & Champagne Bar, Asheville, NC, Grove Arcade (1 Page Ave.), Asheville, NC 28801.

COST: Workshop $30 Preregistration/$35 at Event. Reading at 6 PM is FREE and open to the public.

HOW TO PRE-REGISTER: Email Barrett@fiu.edu to be sent pre-payment information & confirmation.

ABOUT LYNNE BARRETT

Lynne Barrett’s book Magpies has just been awarded the Gold Medal for General Fiction in the Florida Book Awards. Her other story collections are The Secret Names of Women, and The Land of Go and she co-edited Birth, A Literary Companion and The James M. Cain Cookbook. Barrett has received the Mystery Writers of America Edgar Allan Poe award for best mystery story and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs. Her work has been published in Blue Christmas, Delta Blues, Miami Noir, One Year to a Writing Life, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, The Written Wardrobe, The Southern Women’s Review, and many other anthologies and magazines. She lives in Miami, where she is a professor in the M.F.A. program at Florida International University. You can learn more at www.LynneBarrett.com

ABOUT THE WORKSHOP: PLOT: THE MAP OF YOUR STORY

Writers are often daunted by plot, but understanding it can help you find the core of your story. This workshop will cover the fundamentals of plot and structure with an emphasis on revision strategies, scene, significant action, the roles of characters, complication, movement, and satisfying resolution. The concepts apply to all forms of fiction and are useful for narrative nonfiction and memoir.

PRAISE FOR MAGPIES

“Sentence for sentence, Barrett is a superb writer…But what separates her from many contemporary short fiction writers is her consummate storytelling ability.”
—The Rumpus

“As eerie as it is richly imagined.”
—Publishers Weekly

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Barney Rosset

I was deeply saddened this week to learn of Barney Rosset’s death. This “most dangerous man in publishing” probably made a huge difference in your reading life, whether you know it or not. Here is what he meant to me:
I guess I was about thirteen when, in the storage shed behind our house among my father’s moldy piles of Crawdaddy and Bilboard and MAD Magazine, I came across a few issues of Evergreen Review. I don’t remember exactly what I read in those pages, and most of it I probably only pretended to get, but I do remember thinking: I want to be the sort of person who reads this sort of thing. In college, while writing a research paper on censorship, I rediscovered Evergreen Review and Barney Rosset. By then, I had read D.H. Lawrence, Henry Miller, Nabokov and most of the beats (these from my mother’s piles), and I was being introduced to Beckett, Stoppard and Pinter—I was a theatre major after all. I learned that for all of these, I had Barney Rosset to thank.
At 39, I wrote my first short story—about eighteen months ago. Well, that’s when I finished it. Writing it had taken me many months—stealing time at home during kids’ naps, or in waiting rooms typing entire paragraphs on the tiny keyboard of my blackberry, or scribbling on a legal pad in the grocery store parking lot à la Jill McCorkle. When the story was done, someone told me the next step was to submit it. Okay, whatever that means. So—before googling “short story magazines” and randomly selecting a few of them, based on the criteria that the name sounded cool and that they took electronic submissions (the effort of a bunch of printing and post-officing would mean that I was taking this seriously, but if all I did was push a couple of buttons, it could still be considered a whim, therefore rejection would be less painful)—yes, before I did that, I googled Evergreen Review and was surprised to find that the risk-taking, rule-breaking Mr. Rosset was still at it. So I took a little risk of my own. I pushed the buttons and sent my story through the interwebs to this icon of quality counterculture. What the hell, right? And—lo and behold—they took it.
On the phone with Aliya Tyus-Barnwell, the managing editor, I was beside myself, “You mean THE Barney Rosset himself actually read my story?”
“Of course,” she said, “he read it, and he wants us to publish it.”
Last January Evergreen Review published Sidewalk, my first story—and thereby gave me permission to take this seriously. Without that validation, I may not have had the confidence to keep writing. As it is, I can’t seem to stop. Thank you, Barney Rosset, for everything, and may light perpetual shine upon you.
In addition to Evergreen Review, A.K. Benninghofen’s stories have appeared in Connotation Press and Necessary Fiction.

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