Calling all writers, poets and illustrators who are serious about seeing their work come to life in a contemplative collection of stories, poems and cover art. 

For the fourth year, the Palos Verdes Library District Writing Month (PVLDWriMo 2019) will begin a November series of four writer’s workshops, presentations and write-ins for those registering to participate in the 2019 anthology and artistic cover competitions.

The events allow writers to work on whatever they want—whether it’s a novel, poetry, nonfiction or memoirs and submit work for possible publication in a compiled anthology.

Additionally, there will be a traditional contest for the cover art and the title of the anthology. All submissions must must be received by Adult Services Librarian and PVLDWriMo organizer Deb Ripley by Dec. 2. 

“We have people who are published, publishers, writing for fun—any kind of writing you can think of—participants really run the gamut,” said Ripley who expects about 50 participants. “Somebody asked me this year about swear words, but we stick with First Amendment use. Anything that would incite violence or pornography against children would not be considered.” 

If writers would like to submit small illustrations or black and white photographs with their work, or specifically formatted text, Ripley said she will do her best to offer this service, but no guarantees. Also, the books will be in an 8” x 10” format. 

Ripley said there are some important “Rules of Engagement” changes this year: 

To be eligible to submit an entry for the anthology, registered participants must attend at least three of the four November workshops listed the flyer packet obtained from the library. Bookmarks provided in the packet must be stamped for each workshop attended. 

Plus, the public and participants are invited to a reading event on January 18, 2020 at the Peninsula Center Library Community Room. Selected writers who appear in the anthology will be introduced and read from their submissions.

Steven Reigns, West Hollywood’s Inaugural Poet Laureate is an educator, editor and author who created an autobiographical poetry workshop. As one of the lecturers during the November series, Reigns urges folks to participate who might not necessarily have perfect grammar or spelling ability. 

“We’re in a culture that discourages creativity or self disclosure,” said Reigns who has presented poignant lectures and workshops to the LGBT adult and youth community. “It’s always great to get people in a room and do both those things. People not only learn the craft of poetry in my workshop, but they get to know themselves on a deeper level.” 

Ripley said she was a first-time organizer, first-time writer and first-time participant in last year’s PVLDWriMo. Ultimately, she is one of the now-published writers featured in the 2018 anthology. 

“Learning from all kinds of people who write in all kinds of ways is really fun,” Ripley said. “I never realized the generosity of the writing community or how much people love to write and share that love. There is no commitment, no pressure. This is just for the pure love of writing.” 

If you want to go:

For more information about rules of participation, email Deb Ripley at dripley@plvd.or or call 310-377-9584, ext. 217. 

Dates and themes for the workshops at the Peninsula Center Library are:

Nov. 4 from 6 to 8 p.m.—Steven Reigns presents Poetry as Memoir

Nov. 9 from 2 to 3:30 p.m.—Lisa Manterfield presents Writer’s Toolbox: Get to “The End” 

Nov. 23 from 2 to :30 p.m.—Mathieu Cailler presents Fiction: From Conception to Publication

Join fellow writers in companionable quiet and “Write-in” for up to two hours. Writer’s solace, in the form of caffeine and sugar will be provided. 

“Write-in” events include:

Nov. 2 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Miraleste Library

Nov. 12 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Peninsula Center Library

Nov. 18 from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Malaga Cove Library

Nov. 30 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Peninsula Center Library

*Updated on Nov. 1 to fix a typo in Deb Ripley's contact information and to remove the Nov. 2 workshop for Ngozi Oparah as it is already full.

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