Monday, June 8, 2015

The Masters Review Short Story Contest deadline July 15

$20 entry fee

Spread the Word: Short Story Award for New Writers

$2000 + publication and consideration by Curtis Brown Agency

Submissions for our anthology closed this spring and we were blown away by the quality of the writing, the heart behind the stories, the straight up talent behind your work. We want to see more. Acknowledge more. The Masters Review Short Story Award for New Writers is open NOW through July 15 and will pay $2000 and publication to the best short story. Second and third place stories will be paid $200 and $100 respectively and considered for publication. No guidelines. Just your best writing under 6000 words. If you haven’t published a novel, you qualify.
Inspired? Awesome. You can SUBMIT HERE.
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Wednesday, May 20, 2015


The Mill: A Place for Writers 
"Mill Saturday Event."
This workshop will consist of:
--presentation of short poem forms
--examination of short poems by authors, such as Lorine Niedecker, Cid Corman, Jonathan Green, and Tom Montag
--time for participants to write and discuss their work
What is "very short"? For our purposes, poems with a maximum of 30-35 syllables.
When: Saturday, May 30, 2015, 1-4 PM
Where: Monte Alverno Retreat Center, 1000 N. Ballard Rd., Appleton WI 54911. Class size limited to 12.
Total Cost: $55 (nonrefundable deposit of $25). Please send check for $25 to: The Mill, PO Box 861, Appleton WI 54912.
Deposit Due: May 25
**Please bring your own writing utensils and paper. Other class materials provided.

For more information, contact Karla Huston at or Steve Polansky at

Friday, May 15, 2015

Jade Ring and Lindemann Humor Contests now open!

Wisconsin Writers Association Contests
Submission Deadline: July 31st
Spring to Your Contest
Quick Links

Welcome to the Wisconsin Writers Association's 2015 contest season! We invite you to enter the Jade Ring categories and the Florence Lindemann humor contest. Each year, writers from across the state hone their skills and present their work to exceptional judges. Now we offer the opportunity to get personal feedback from each judge, making entering a contest not only a measure of your skill, but a way to get important insight as to your strengths and weaknesses as an ever-evolving writer. Enter often and enter early to get the most out of this contest season! 
Poetry: Sarah Busse
Sarah Busse (Sarah Sadie) is co-editor of Cowfeather Press and one of two Poets Laureate of Madison, Wisconsin (2012-2015), where she lives with her family. Her poems and books have won multiple prizes, including the Posner and Niedecker Prizes (CWW) and a Pushcart. A new chapbook, Do-It-Yourself Paper Airplanes, was published by Five Oaks Press in spring 2015, and a second full-length collection, We Are Traveling Through Dark at Tremendous Speeds is forthcoming from Lit Fest Press in the fall. These days you can find her at @sarahsadie1313 and
, or out on her screen porch, with a fresh mug of coffee and a blank page before her.

Nonfiction: Richard "Dick" Radtke

Richard Radtke is the author of six novels; two collection of short stories; and a memoir, Persistence of Vision. His work has appeared in the Wisconsin Academy Review; Prime Times; Julien's Journal; Writers of Wisconsin anthology; Lines in the Sand; and the Wisconsin Writer's Jade Ring Anthology.

Dick served as a lecturer at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication, and operated his own writing and editing firm, Dick Radtke Public Relations.

His business writing included contributions to a wide spectrum of consumer trade and general publications. He is the author of more than 50 books and papers on financial management and related subjects. He lives in Madison, Wisconsin with his wife Clare and their dog Rocky.

Fiction: Pam Hayry
Pam is an 8th grade teacher in Spencer. 

Florence Lindemann: Diana Schramer
Diana is the owner of Write Way Copyediting.

Diana Schramer is a freelance copy editor and owner of Write Way Copyediting LLC. She has edited numerous books, fiction (including paranormal and sci-fi) and nonfiction (including memoir, spirituality, religion, wellness, addiction and recovery, and true crime). She also edits personal essays, blog posts, newsletters, and business-related documents. Diana is a member of and is the south-central region coordinator for Wisconsin Writer's Association, Inc. and a member of American Copy Editors Society (ACES) and National Association of Independent Writers and Editors (NAIWE). For more information about Diana and to follow her blog, please visit

Ann Garvin speaks in Waukesha June 6

From the desk of Kathie Giorgio, Director, AllWriters' Workplace & Workshop LLC:
WAUKESHA – Expert plotting is the best way to keep readers turning pages, all the way to the end. Whether you have just the germ of an idea or a whole complicated manuscript, this workshop will illuminate for you the numerous way structure is used to achieve cohesion and will help you find the most gripping way to tell your story. On Saturday, June 6th, Ann Garvin will illustrate the most compelling way to tell a tale. AllWriters’ Workplace & Workshop welcomes special guest lecturer ANN GARVIN with her workshop, THE MOST COMPELLING WAY TO TELL A TALE: PLOT AND COHESION.
Whether you are working on a novel, short story, essay, or memoir, each work must tell a compelling story and maintain the energy of that story all the way through to the end. There are lots of ways to tell a story, but expert plotting is the best way to keep readers turning the pages. Plotting also helps with cohesion, resisting the mid-draft slump and can ultimately save time. This workshop examines the numerous ways structure is used to achieve cohesion and will help you find the most compelling way to tell your story. This workshop is for writers with just a germ of an idea or a whole complicated manuscript.
ANN GARVIN’s decades of teaching health and studying what makes people tick proved a perfect backdrop for her novels On Maggie’s Watch and The Dog Year. Her teaching position as an adjunct in the Masters of Fine Arts position at Southern New Hampshire University allows her to marry her love of people, story, and writing and help others do the same. She is a featured writer for, where she writes on entrepreneurs, health, and how to save the world. Ann is devoted to helping people find health and tell their stories, and fundraises for and animal rescues. Ann, a natural storyteller, is a sought-after speaker and educator at conferences where writing, health, and human nature are discussed.
Celebrity Saturdays are a great chance to broaden your knowledge of what it takes to be successful and to learn from writers who are already knee deep in an author’s life. Ann Garvin’s workshop will be held on Saturday, June 6th, 2015. This event runs from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and costs $85, which includes a lunch catered by Waukesha’s own CafĂ© de Art.
AllWriters’ Workplace and Workshop offers on-site and online writing courses in all genres and abilities of creative writing, as well as coaching, editing, and marketing services. A schedule of classes, with online registration, is available at or by calling (262) 446-0284. AllWriters’ is located at 234 Brook Street, Unit 2, in historic downtown Waukesha, as featured in Milwaukee’s Journal Sentinel. 

Summer Hanford
AllWriters’ Assistant

234 Brook St., Unit 2
Waukesha WI 53188
Phone: (262) 446-0284
Please "like" Author Kathie Giorgio on Facebook, and follow KathieGiorgio on Twitter!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Gritty Small Town Baseball fiction from the 60s

January 2014, Black Rose Writing
ISBN: 978-1612963068
Print $15.95
E-book $6.99
Buy on Amazon

From the publisher:
From right field of the sparse Ashippun's Fireman's Park to the vacated County Stadium dugout of the Braves final Milwaukee home game in 1965, The Ashippun Trap takes readers on a wild nostalgic ride using a unique blend of baseball fiction and extensively-researched baseball fact. Parlee is an aging town baseball player who's just good enough to be able to hustle the game for his own financial gain during an era where large crowds blur the lines between amateur and pro players. With age and other factors waiting on deck, Parlee contemplates his limited baseball future from his dim and damp vantage point in Ashippun's right field. Forty miles to the east, under the bright Major League lights of Milwaukee's County Stadium, Braves backup catcher Gene Oliver, Parlee's childhood friend from a chance meeting on an Iowa farm years earlier, also considers life without baseball as he and his teammates play in front of thousands of empty seats each day while being forced to endure the Braves' final, lame duck season in Milwaukee. Parlee and his hand-picked crew of talented feral ballplayers jump in Parlee's 1959 Chevy Impala and head off on a 90-mile beer-fueled journey to a weekend tournament in Plymouth where the pay out attracts the best amateur players in Wisconsin. The trip eventually ends with Parlee and Gene Oliver narrating their view of the aftermath of the Brave's final game in Milwaukee from the vacated County Stadium dugout as they search each other's soul for a compass to guide their own baseball futures. Readers ride along but there's no sense in fastening their seatbelts because none exist on this carefree, nostalgic ride that puts the reader in the wooden grandstand's front row for a first-hand look at the dirty, salty side of baseball with a fresh look at the Braves' one-of-a-kind final season in Milwaukee

My review:
What an interesting concept - small town baseball during the height of the 60s craze before television eliminated small town camaraderie and made monsters of us. If you love really gritty baseball stories from the small town team perspective, you'll enjoy Doug Welch's book. An entertaining story, Welch tracks one fictional summer league set among real south central communities in Wisconsin, its ups and downs, during the final home league of the Milwaukee Braves. If you didn't know what it was like back then, you will after reading this book. All the color (and language), ins and dirty little secrets come to life.

Recommended for later high school age and up - told from the manager, Parlee's, perspective throughout. Uses real-time plays from the major league, listened to by the characters while on a road trip.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Upcoming Reader and Writers Delights - Conferences and Book Festivals

Spring is the time of delight to pick up your summer reading, meet your favorite authors and find a new one to love, for writers to connect and network!

Check out these events in and around Wisconsin:

April 20-26, Fox Cities Book Festival; some events beginning the 14th; Appleton area

May 8-9, Lakefly Writers Conference, Oshkosh, Wisconsin, with Michael Perry as a keynote speaker. Author Showcase Saturday May 9, 8 am to 3 pm.

Writing Day Workshop in Milwaukee, with Chuck Sambuchino of Writers Digest, Friday May 15. Plenty of openings.

Saturday May 16, Author Showcase II in West Bend, WI, at the Threshold, Inc. Scavenger hunt for prizes! 2380 W Washington St. 10 am - 2 pm

Novel in Progress Bookcamp is May 17-23 in West Bend, WI, featuring SJ Rozan. Lisa Lickel will be teaching too. Editors and agents pitching sessions.

June 6 & 7 - Printer's Row Lit Fest, Chicago, Illinois: The Midwest's largest free outdoor book event

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

More Summer Hiker Fare with Rob Bignell

DULUTH, Minn. (April 13, 2015) – A new hiking guidebook details more than 200 day hiking trails in Minnesota’s North Shore, Arrowhead and St. Croix River regions.

Headin’ to the Cabin: Day Hiking Trails of Northeast Minnesota, by Wisconsin author Rob Bignell, marks the second book in the “Headin’ to the Cabin” series. It was released Monday, April 13.

The new book “Headin’ to the Cabin: Day Hiking Trails of Northeast Minnesota” (Atiswinic Press) describes more than 200 trails along the North Shore and St. Croix River and in the Arrowhead.

Day Hiking Trails of Northeast Minnesota covers trails covers trails in or near Chisago, Pine, Carlton, St. Louis, Lake, and Cook counties. It includes Voyageurs and Isle Royale national parks, the Superior National Forest and Boundary Waters Canoe Wilderness Area, and each state park in the region.

“Northeast Minnesota is a hiker’s Shangri-La,” Bignell said. “From rocky beaches along Lake Superior to waterfalls surrounded by luxuriant pine forests, from a mine 52 stories below ground to a hill nearly half-a-mile above sea level, from nearly 2-billion-year-old lava rock to lakes formed just a few thousand years ago, northeast Minnesota offers an incredible number of sights for day hikers to enjoy.”

The books provide a plethora of information about each featured trail, including:

  • Driving directions to the trail
  • Where to park and find the trailhead
  • Course the trail takes
  • Scenic points to look for on the trail
  • Wildlife and flora you might spot
  • Interesting tidbits about the area’s geology and history
  • Trailside amenities such as water fountains and bathrooms
  • Best times to hike the trail

Following each featured trail are brief descriptions of other nearby day hiking trails.

“These trails are perfect for families with children or anyone who wants to spend just a couple of hours outdoors enjoying and discovering nature,” Bignell said. The trails run from a third of a mile to 6 miles in length, with most only a mile to three miles long.

Book specs:
Headin’ to the Cabin: Day Hiking Trails of Northeast Minnesota
Publish date: April 13, 2015
Publisher: Atiswinic Press
ISBN: 978-0-9896723-5-1
Price: $11.95 (paperback), $1.99 (ebook)
Pages: 164 (paperback)
Cover: Paper (paperback)
Trim Size: 5.5 x 8.5 (paperback)
BUY: Paperback, KindleNookApple iPad/iBooksSony ReaderKoboe-reading apps

“Headin’ to the Cabin’ is the latest in several bestselling hiking guidebooks Bignell has authored. Last year, Day Hiking the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway reached No. 1 on’s bestsellers list for Travel>Midwest books. Day Hiking Trails of Northwest Wisconsin, the first book in the Headin’ to the Cabin series, was a bestselling travel e-book on two years ago.

An avid backpacker, long-time editor, and Wisconsin native, Bignell is uniquely qualified to write about hiking, especially for families. Bignell has served in the Army National Guard and taught middle school students in New Mexico and Wisconsin. His newspaper work has won several journalism awards, from editorial writing to sports reporting. In 2001, The Prescott Journal, which he served as managing editor of, was named Wisconsin’s Weekly Newspaper of the Year.

This is Bignell’s 15th hiking guidebook, almost all of which focus on Wisconsin and Minnesota. He now lives with his son in western Wisconsin.

Headin’ to the Cabin guidebook series author Rob Bignell