Opportunities and Announcements: Week of September 8, 2014

If you’re a member of the Burlington Writers Workshop, it’s likely that you measure yourself using two yardsticks: (1) The quality of your writing and (2) the quality of the feedback you give to your fellow writers.

In both cases, the word “quality” is a matter of opinion. What makes a piece of writing good is up for debate. Ditto for feedback.

However, there are techniques you can use to help move your writing along, and there are steps you can take to becoming a better provider of feedback. I’ve outlined some steps that I hope you’ll consider. We ought to give each other the best possible response at every single workshop, and reading this, IMHO, is a good way to start.

Okay. Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get on to this week’s opportunities and announcements.

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Flynn Center Blogging Update

flynnpaintingDid you happen to catch what BWW writers are saying about shows at Burlington’s Flynn Center?

The BWW and the Flynn are partnering to provide articles about the Flynn’s 2013-14 season. They’re all posted on the Flynn Center’s blog. The idea is to create conversations about art. In short: so far, so good!

Danielle Theirry kicked off the project with this personal essay on historical reenactments. Inspired by Ain Gordon’s “Not What Happened,” her essay gets at the heart of one of the themes of the play: the ability to see life from the perspective of another person. Theirry also followed up with this post-performance review.

We’ve heard from Erika Nichols on Aparna Ramaswamy’s performance; Jim Gamble describes music “out of bounds” with his article on Alejandro Escovedo and Shelby Lynne; and Kerstin Lange asserts that we all should hear a little music, especially that of the Johannes String Quartet.

Amanda Vella’s forthcoming article on Reggie Watts is sure to provoke some discussion about the eccentric comedian. And we’ll be writing lots more in the coming season, so please do join the conversation at the Flynn Center Blog.

Write For The Flynn Center Blog!

flynncenterA few months ago, John Killacky, the Executive Director of the Flynn Center for the Performing Arts in Burlington, asked me to find members of the Burlington Writers Workshop who could write for the Flynn Center Blog in exchange for free tickets to shows. Members responded enthusiastically, because who doesn’t want to see a free show AND have a reason to create a conversation about it?

The Flynn has recently released its line-up for the Flynn Center’s 2013-2014 season. Now we need your help.
Here’s how this works: Burlington Writers Workshop members will request one of these events (send request to me at peter@burlingtonwritersworkshop.com). First-come-first-served. Anyone who signs up for an event and hasn’t attended a BWW meeting will be encouraged to do so. You gotta give feedback to your fellow writers at a meeting before you can get anything here!

Adams FamilySo let’s say you’ve chosen to see “The Addams Family” on October 28th. You’ll write something about or inspired by “The Addams Family” at least a week (preferably two weeks) before the performance. Then you’ll send it to me. Then I’ll work with you on edits, then I’ll send it to the Flynn!

Once you’ve written that first piece, you’ll be free to pick up your tickets at the box office. And after the show, you’ll write another piece about or inspired by what you’ve seen. The link to the performance you’ve seen must be clear, of course.

This joint effort is an attempt to (1) provide BWW members with another place to showcase their work and (2) generate conversations about meaningful art and performances in our very artsy Vermont community.

So please do send me a note if you’re interested in participating! And sign up to become a member of The Burlington Writers Workshop at Meetup.com. Our workshops, events, and membership itself are free and they always will be.