The Wenatchee Valley is a hotbed of creativity and lair of literature! We don't know if we should credit the beautiful scenery, the interesting characters, or an extensive, collective history of creating, but this area is teeming with talent and inspiration. From excellent publications and accomplished authors to writing workshops, indie bookstores, and open mic nights, you can find it right (or should I say write?) here!
Where to start? Write on the River is a thriving organization focused on fostering the writing arts in North Central Washington and nurturing writers from inspiration to publication. They organize events, workshops, and speakers year-round offering writers the opportunity to hone their craft and network with other writers and people in the industry.For inspiration, pick up a local publication that features North Central Washington writers like Foothills Magazine, The Good Life Magazine, Kid Connect, and WenatcheeOutdoors.org.Who to read?Poet and professor Derek Sheffield will engage your senses with his full-length book of poems, Through the Second Skin. The acclaimed and accessible collection draws the reader in with a fierce attention to detail. Derek also teaches poetry and ecological writing at Wenatchee Valley College and is the poetry editor of Terrain.org.
A fierce book advocate, Dan Gemeinhart has been encouraging kids to read for decades, first as a librarian (at our very own Mission View Elementary) and now as a highly acclaimed middle-grade author of four action-packed, emotionally hard-hitting books. His much anticipated fifth book, The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise, comes out in early January and promises to take you on an extraordinary, wrenching quest.Kay Kenyon is a pillar in the writing community both locally and nationally. She is the author of over a dozen science fiction and fantasy novels including her latest Dark Talents trilogy (At the Table of Wolves, Serpent in the Heather, and Nest of the Monarch) the third of which is coming out in 2019. She is also offering a seven-week novel writing course (starting mid-February) intended for writers wishing to pursue a publishing career.
For more recommendations on what to read, check out the fabulous bookstores in the valley! They are huge supporters of our local authors and often host talks, signings, readings, and more. A few gems in the valley include: Riverwalk Books (Chelan), A Book for All Seasons (Leavenworth), The Bookery (Ephrata), and Ye Olde Bookshoppe (Wenatchee).How to get involved?Grab your work in progress and join one of these writer-friendly events:
- The Shrub-steppe Poetry Podium, the last Wednesday of the month at Radar Station
- The Shrub-steppe Poetry Café, the third Thursday of each month (contact Susan Blair at firstname.lastname@example.org)
- "Writers Meeting Writers", the third Saturday of the month at the Wenatchee Library (www.writeontheriver.org)
- Open mic/writing sessions at Ye Olde Bookshop on Wednesdays at 6:00 ( 509-888-6306)
Even if you're not ready to share your own work, it's always fun to hear what other people are writing. And if you're not into the group scene, grab your computer or notebook and head to a local coffee shop, library, or favorite scenic spot and find your muse! Do you have something to add?This post is indicative of the rich writing community we enjoy in the Wenatchee Valley, however, it is in no way comprehensive. There is far more talent in the valley than we can cover. If you'd like to give a shout out to your favorite local author, publication, event, etc. please leave us a comment!