30 September: Current Progress

It’s the end of September, and you know what that means – time for the monthly update!

This month, there was a lot going on in terms of planning for the UT Writer’s Guild, so I didn’t make much progress on most of my larger projects.  However, I did make a lot of progress at my writing job, which I feel is pretty good – right?

In the most recent (September 26) print issue of UT News, five of my stories were printed:

There are several other things I’ve been part of, as well!  The Writer’s Guild recently co-sponsored a poetry reading event for Banned Books Week at UT.  UTWG will have its next meeting Friday, October 7 at 5 p.m. in Student Union Room 3016 on UT’s Main Campus.

I feel like I got so much accomplished this month, even if I really didn’t do much at all… I’m still working on the following projects:

  • The Final Experiment (editing)
  • The Rules (on hold)
  • …and a couple other things

From now until December, though, I’ll be concentrating on preparing for and writing my National Novel Writing Month project, tentatively titled “Victorious.”  Check back soon to learn more about this project!

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UTWG and The Mill to co-host poetry reading

The UT Writer’s Guild and The Mill literary magazine will host a Banned Books Week poetry reading Wednesday, September 28 at 7 p.m. in Room 2240 of the Field House on the University of Toledo’s Main Campus.

The featured poet at the event is Zach Fishel, a graduate student at UT.

The reading, presented in open mic format, will also feature The Mill editor in chief Peter Faziani and UTWG president Michael Beers reading their own work.

Several other students will read at the event as well, including members of the UT Writer’s Guild.

Banned Books Week 2011Banned Books Week is an annual event sponsored by the American Library Association to raise awareness of books banned and challenged in schools and libraries. Banned Books Week encourages the sharing of literature and ideas between and among groups.

Contact UTWG vice president Feliza Casano (feliza [dot] casano [at] rockets [dot] utoledo [dot] edu) for more information or to sign up to read.  You may also contact Feliza for more information about the UT Writer’s Guild.

Links:

Banned Books Week 2011: Name Your Poison

Banned Books Week, an observation held each year by the American Library Association, starts today and lasts through October 1, the end of this week, to raise awareness of books that are currently or have been banned from schools, libraries, and more simply because they were controversial.

Some books that have been banned include J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, perhaps most famously; classic novels such as J. D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye and John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men; and children’s stories such as Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time and Dav Pikley’s Captain Underpants series.

These books have been challenged by parents and community members for many reasons, from offenses to religious beliefs to the idea that children and teens shouldn’t be exposed to the ideas inside the books.

Are these reasons appropriate?  I say no.

Books exist to help people expand their horizons past what they normally experience, and by banning books from children and teens, these horizons are held in stasis.

This year for Banned Books Week, please take some time to visit the ALA’s page on Banned Books.  Pick one out of the list – maybe one that’s already in your library – and read it, share it, and talk about it with your friends and family members.  If you have children, read one of the books on the list to them and talk to them about it.

Closing books closes out ideas.  Keep ideas alive this year by opening a book and giving it the good old once-over.

What Banned Book are you reading this week?  I’ll be reading Margaret Atwood’s post-apocalyptic novel A Handmaid’s Tale.