Tag Archives: Culture

Writing Retreat in Venice, Italy

Writing Retreat in Venice, Italy!

The Pink Panged writing retreat in Venice is for women only during June 11-15, 2017. If you’re looking for inspiration for your next novel, this might be the spot. The retreat is filled with adventure, culture, art, shopping, restaurants, and history. During Pink Panged writing retreat in Venice authors will:

  • Express themselves through the written word
  • Experience Venice’s age-old beauty
  • Immerse themselves in Italian culture
  • Participate in Pink Pangea’s interactive workshops
  • Connect with participants from all over the world
  • Feel emotionally refreshed and physically rejuvenated

If you’re wanting to visit this scenic place and write your novel, hurry because seats are filling fast! And enjoy your writing vacation.

P. D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

James Jones Fellowship Contest

The James Jones Fellowship Contest is for a novel-in-progress by a United States unpublished author. The award is given annually with a grand prize of $10,000. There are two runner-ups given a prize of $1000 each. A selection from the winning work will be published in Provincetown Arts. In order to enter, the author needs to submit the first 50 pages of the novel-in-progress, a two-page outline, and a $30 entry fee.

According to the web page, the award is intended to honor the spirit of unblinking honesty, determination, and insight into the cultural and social issues exemplified by the late James Jones, author of From Here to Eternity and other prose narratives of distinction. Authors can submit online or via SASE. The deadline for the contest is March 15, 2017. For complete guidelines, please visit the fellowship website. As always, good luck.

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

Need A Sensitivity Reader?

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Writing In The Margins has helped writers create appealing words to readers for awhile. What I didn’t know, they also have dedicated time to help writers find sensitivity readers. With publishers understanding the need for diverse voices in today’s world, there’s been a push for these types of manuscripts. For those unfamiliar, the diversity push means publishers are looking for stories told by the minority voices.

But, what if you’re a male or female heterosexual Caucasian in perfect health who has a great story idea for a Muslim main character, or a fabulous manuscript for a lead character with autism? Does this mean you shouldn’t write it? Of course you should. However, what this really means is you’re possibly not the best person to write the story. But wait, I just told you to write the story. Of course, you can absorb yourself into research. After all, you can find nearly everything on the internet these days, and writer’s have done so with secondary characters. But, there is something else they do, which I recently learned about during WriteOnCon.

If you want to write a story with a diverse leading character and you’re obviously not what our culture considers to be a minority, then getting a sensitivity reader might be what you need when writing outside of your own culture and experience. Writing In The Margins has a list of sensitivity readers of Muslim, Judaism, Autism, African-American, Japanese, LGBT, Deafness, Latina, Transgender, and more!

This is how the site defines the sensitivity reader: A sensitivity reader reads through a manuscript for issues of representation and for instances of bias on the page.  The goal of a sensitivity reader isn’t to edit a manuscript clarity and logic, although that may be an additional service offered. A sensitivity reader reviews a manuscript for internalized bias and negatively charged language.  A sensitivity reader is there to help make sure you do not make a mistake, but they are also NOT a guarantee against making a mistake.

If you want to write a story with leading diverse characters and aren’t a minority, use someone from the site’s list to polish your script. As always, good luck!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.

2017 Poetry Competition

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The Society of Classical Poets is holding a poetry contest with a monetary prize! Metered and rhythmed poetry is preferred but not required. They usually do not publish love poems, free verse, or overly dark poems that don’t teach a positive lesson. Poems are judged based on both form and character. The poem should ideally be written in 2016, but does not have to be. It is okay if you have submitted it to other contests or posted it on your blog.

The poems must be within the four themes used by the Society, and at least one poem must be in the “Issues of Our Age” theme:

(1) Beautiful & Sublime: Beauty in human nature, culture, the natural world, classical art forms, and the divine.

(2) Humor & Riddles: Clean humor only please.

(3) The Issues of Our Age:

A. Terrorism. Terrorists and their ideology plague the world like a hate-filled cancer that does not seem to go away. How can the world defeat such an invisible foe?
B. The Environment. Though debate remains over climate change and GMOs, environmental pollution undeniably compromises our water and air. Nature’s beauty and purity plays victim to technology and industrialization.
C. Human Rights in China. In a globalized world, the human rights violations in China are essentially in our own backyard. Particularly heinous is the persecution of the peaceful meditation practice Falun Gong. Poetry in this category may also be submitted here.

(4) Great Culture: Good figures, stories, and other elements from classical (pre-1900) history and literature. Grand prize is $500 and there is a high school prize of $100. (Look to the site for additional prizes.) The deadline is December 31, 2016 with winners announced February 1, 2017. As always, good luck!

P.D. Pabst
Blogger and writer of MG/YA fiction.