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Selkirk College brings A Stone’s Throw Writing Symposium to Nelson

On November 4, bridge the gap with writers just a stone’s throw away. Selkirk College’s Stone’s Throw Writing Symposium connects writers from the region with those across the border at Spokane’s Eastern Washington University. Registration is now open. — Submitted

Selkirk College and Spokane’s Eastern Washington University (EWU) are uniting writers of the regions in an upcoming symposium taking place in Nelson.

A Stone’s Throw Writing Symposium invites local writers to sign up for workshops lead by EWU Creative Writing Masters of Fine Arts students taking place on November 4. The afternoon of creative exploration will be followed by an evening social and reading by EWU’s faculty and graduate students.

“Writers love to cross boundaries,” say organizers Almeda Glenn Miller and Leesa Dean, creative writing faculty at Selkirk College. “We are a small region teeming with writers, and the closest city to us with an established literary scene is just over the border in Spokane, Washington. Spokane’s Get Lit! Festival inspired us and we decided it was time to bridge the gap between our writing communities.”

A graduate of the EWU Creative Writing MFA Program Miller adds, “We have an opportunity to share what concerns, inspires, and unites us as writers.”

The Saturday workshops take place at Selkirk College's Tenth Street Campus from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. There are four themes to choose from:

It's Fiction Time: Should my story take place over fifty years, or two minutes? Should I flash backward, or forward? Time plays a critical role in fiction. In this generative workshop, we will explore multiple techniques for using time to shape story. Examining models for our own writing, we will generate scenes and an outline for a larger piece.

Seeing Your Story - Imagery and Characterization in Fiction: Evocative images and peculiar details help fill your stories with vivid scenes and authentic characters. In this generative workshop, we will look at examples of stories with effective imagery and practice “seeing” your own scenes through a series of freewriting exercises. You will walk away with new characters, surprising new details and a different way of looking at descriptive imagery.

Structuring Your Secrets - Crafting Nonfiction Essays: This workshop will focus on the many ways a nonfiction writer can structure a memoir or personal essay. We'll give a craft talk on popular essay structures, and through writing prompts you will experiment with different structures. We will explore both traditional and experimental essay forms, and students should walk away with the beginnings of essays and a variety of tools to build them.

Picture This - Creating, Enhancing, and Sustaining Images in Poetry: A poem can attempt to do a lot of things: create rhythm, elicit emotion, tell a story, bring readers to a time and place. One important piece of poetry is the creation of images for readers. In this workshop, participants will read and discuss poems that exemplify image making, as well as write, read, and workshop their own original writing with a focus on finding fresh, inventive, and bold images for their work.

Registration for A Stone’s Throw is now open until Friday, October 27. Admission to the symposium includes workshop, reading and social is $25 for Selkirk College students and $35 for community members. Limited spaces are available in each workshop.

To register, go to www.selkirk.ca/stones-throw.

The evening reading starts at 7:30 p.m. at 91 Baker Street (above the Chamber of Commerce in Railtown). Non-workshop participants are welcome to come to the reading. Admission is by donation.