Word. Festival 2019 Full Schedule

Curious about our authors’ work? You can purchase their books from Blue Hill Books here.
All paid workshops require pre-registration

 Thursday, October 24

4-7 pm Word. Art. Opening
Cynthia Winings Gallery, 24 Parker Point Road
Join us for the kick-off of Word 2019 for the annual Word. Art. exhibit, featuring the work of Kifah Abdullah, John Baird, Kristy Cunnane, Katy Helman, Sonja Johanson, Katherine Koch, Buzz Masters, and Jennifer Lee Morrow. Katherine Koch will read at 6 pm.
FREE

Click on an author’s name to read a full bio

Friday, October 25

5 pm Benefit Reception
Blue Hill Inn, 40 Union St.
Meet and mingle with festival goers and visiting authors while enjoying delicious food at the historic Blue Hill Inn. Tickets available here

7 pm TALK: Dave Cullen in conversation with Brook Ewing Minner and Abigail Jakub
Emlen Hall, 17 Bay School Drive
With the publication of his landmark 2009 book, Columbine, Cullen, who was on the scene within hours of the massacre, became a go-to expert for the media on school shootings. Along the way, he suffered two bouts of secondary PTSD. He swore he would never again return to the scene of a ghastly crime. But Parkland was different. His new book Parkland: Birth of a Movement, is, by contrast, a story of hope: the genesis of the extraordinary March for Our Lives movement. Cullen will discuss his experiences writing and researching both books with Brook Ewing Minner, the Director of the Brooksville Free Public Library and the host of WERU’s Bookworm. Dave and Brook will then be joined on stage by Blue Hill’s own Abigail Jakub, now a student at the College of the Atlantic. During the 2018 midterm election, Abigail worked as an intern organizing hundreds of volunteers and launching canvasses across Hancock County. Since then, she has worked with the Maine People’s Alliance canvassing for paid time off for Maine workers.

Saturday, October 26

9-11 am WORKSHOP: Getting Unstuck with Cynthia Thayer
All writers have times when they feel “stuck.” Fear, procrastination, not knowing what direction to take, all contribute to our inability to get on with our writing. Sometimes it feels impossible to write that first sentence. Sometimes we’re at the climax and aren’t sure how to proceed. This workshop will touch on methods to get you writing again. We’ll do some exercises and have discussions that will help us move forward.
PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED

9-11 am WORKSHOP: Memoir-Writing with Katherine Koch
Why do you want to write a memoir? What has made it important, what’s making it urgent, to bring your past into the present? In this workshop we’ll discuss inspiration, process, points of view, dealing with resistance, using all the senses in writing, using research. What are some things to think about if you don’t have much experience as a prose writer? How do you keep focused on what’s most important, profound, particular to you, to your sense of your own experience, and to your heart? There will be several opportunities to write, as well as to read aloud and discuss what we’ve written. Bring paper and something to write with, and the titles and authors of some memoir writing you’ve been moved by. Most important, bring in a photo, a letter, or an object to write from.
PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED

9 am-3 pm WORKSHOP: Songcrafting with Noel Paul Stookey & George Emlen
This workshop will meet Saturday from 9 to 11 a.m., break for two hours for individual writing, then reconvene for song finishing from 1 to 3 pm. Longtime friends and collaborators, Stookey and Emlen will offer songwriting techniques to aspiring songwriters of all levels and genres, both in a group setting and one-on-one.
PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED

10-10:45 am WORKSHOP: Catch an Idea! with Charlotte Agell
Bass Room, Blue Hill Public Library, 5 Parker Point Road
Children ages 5-9 are invited to come to a writing/drawing mini-workshop offering 45 minutes of drawing and idea-catching, with a peek into the process behind book making.
FREE

10-11 am TALK: How to Raise a Reader with Maria Russo
Howard Room, Blue Hill Public Library, 5 Parker Point Road
Do you remember your first visit to where the wild things are? How about curling up for hours on end to discover the secret of the Sorcerer’s Stone? How to Raise a Reader shows you how to instill the joy and time-stopping pleasure of reading. Russo, who with Pamela Paul co-authored the wildly popular New York Times article with the same title, will discuss her new book, providing clear, practical advice as well as inspiration, wisdom, tips, and curated reading lists.
FREE

11:15 am-noon WORKSHOP: Lightning Round for Writers Young and Old with Ellen Booraem
Howard Room, Blue Hill Public Library, 5 Parker Point Road
Ages 10 and up. Stories are about people with burning needs or desires. Choose a character from an array of photos provided (a teenager? An old curmudgeon? An unhappy fairy?), and spend 45 minutes getting to know him or her through lightning-fast writing prompts. Maybe you’ll go home with a story to write! Participants should bring a laptop or a writing implement. Paper will be provided.
FREE

Noon-1 pm Festival Cafe
Blue Hill Congregational Church, 22 Tenney Hill
Looking for a quick bite to eat between events? Sandwiches, coffee, and other goodies can be purchased at the festival cafe in the Congregational Church basement.
DONATION

1-2 pm WORKSHOP: Bookmaking for All Ages with Mia Bogyo
Blue Hill Congregational Church, 22 Tenney Hill
Using a range of diverse materials and mediums, bookmaking explores the intersection of paperfolding, narrative, and visual design. Artists as young and as old as they come are welcome to participate. Come ready to play and explore in three dimensions!
FREE

POETRY CRAWL 

Readings will take place sequentially at different venues throughout downtown Blue Hill. Start at the beginning or jump in at any point to hear some of Maine's finest poets read their own work.

1-1:30 pm — Marie Epply, Blue Hill Books, 26 Pleasant St
1:50-2:20 pm — Mark Statman, Thurston Co., 66 Main St
2:40-3:10 pm — Sonja Johanson, Shaw Institute, 55 Main St
3:30-4 pm — Elizabeth Garber, 27 Water St Tea Room
4:20-4:50 pm — Kifah Abdullah, Congregational Church, 22 Tenney Hill
4:20-5:30 pm — Betsy Sholl, Congregational Church, 22 Tenney Hill

1-4 pm WORKSHOP: Fanfiction with Elizabeth Minkel
Fanfiction: when you take someone else’s characters (fictional or otherwise) and craft your own stories around them. The practice has deep roots—we’ve been reworking the same stories and characters for millennia. But in the modern, copyright-restricted era, fanfiction is written and shared in specific contexts, thousands of fans writing millions of stories about characters they love, mostly in communities online, written and distributed for free. It’s a practice that attracts writers of all skill levels and backgrounds, including published authors. Fanfiction can give you unique tools to tackle characterization, voice, perspective, structure, tone, and more. This workshop is designed for writers and editors of all backgrounds, from those who know nothing about fanfiction to people who read and write fic every day. Expect to dig into the craft of fic, and how it can improve your skills as a storyteller overall.  
PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED

1-3 pm — Ethics in Memoir, a panel organized by the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance
Howard Room, Blue Hill Public Library, 5 Parker Point Road
Speakers will include Taryn Bowe, Elizabeth Garber, Linda Buckmaster and Jaed Coffin
FREE

2-4 pm Art Show
Cynthia Winings Gallery, 24 Parker Point Road
Visual artists whose work incorporates the written word, featuring Mark Statman, Katherine Koch, Katy Helman, Kristy Cunnane, and Buzz Masters
FREE

6-7 pm Chowder Supper
Blue Hill Congregational Church, 22 Tenney Hill
Harbor House will provide a classic, simple, restorative New England supper featuring homemade food made with the freshest ingredients.
DONATION

7-8:30 pm — Joe Hill & Elizabeth Hand in conversation with Laura Miller
Blue Hill Congregational Church, 22 Tenney Hill
Two masters of the uncanny—mystery, fantasy, crime, and horror—discuss the art of fiction. Born in Bangor, Joe Hill is the No. 1 New York Times bestselling author of the novels The Fireman, Full Throttle, NOS4A2, Horns, and Heart-Shaped Box; Strange Weather, a collection of novellas; and the prize-winning story collection 20th Century Ghosts, as well as the Eisner Award-winning writer of a six-volume comic book series, Locke & Key. Lincolnville’s Elizabeth Hand is the author of numerous award-winning novels and collections of short fiction, including the series of psychological thrillers featuring Cass Neary, described as “one of noir's great anti-heroes” by Katherine Dunn, author of Geek Love. Publishers Weekly called Hand’s just-published historical crime novel Curious Toys "a phantasmagoric time trip tailor-made for fans of The Devil in the White City."
Laura Miller is books and culture columnist for Slate. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's, The Guardian and The New York Times Book Review, where she wrote the “Last Word.” She is the author of The Magician's Book: A Skeptic's Adventures in Narnia (Little, Brown, 2008) and editor of the "The Salon.com Reader's Guide to Contemporary Authors" (Penguin, 2000).
FREE   



Sunday, October 27

10am-Noon Festival Brunch
Mainescape, 48 South St.
Enjoy baked goods and other brunch staples, plus a made-to-order omelette bar manned by the Blue Hill Inn’s Duncan Hamilton—all surrounded by the beauty of an October morning in Maine in Mainescape’s heated greenhouse.
DONATION

1-2 pm TALK: Emily Nussbaum in conversation with Samantha Haskell
Blue Hill Public Library, 5 Parker Point Road
Words on the screen: The New Yorker’s fiercely original, Pulitzer Prize-winning television critic has just published I Like to Watch, a provocative collection of new and previously published essays arguing that we are what we watch. The New York Times has called I Like to Watch “confident, dauntless criticism — smart and spiky, brilliantly sure of itself.” Nussbaum will discuss the joys and challenges of writing about TV during its current, much-touted Golden Age.
Samantha Haskell is the owner of Blue Hill Books.
FREE

12:30-2:30 pm MASTER CLASS: Diving Deeper into Show Don’t Tell with Richard Blanco
Through conversation and exercises we’ll take a deep dive into the golden rule of writing poetry, “show don’t tell.” Though it’s a familiar rule we often apply instinctually, we’ll examine how it truly works and why, in order to gain a stronger, more purposeful command of it. In this context, we’ll also explore the dynamics between poet, poem, and reader. We’ll apply these discoveries by starting poems grounded in place and time, thinking about the relationship between the physical, tangible landscapes that we “show” and what they “tell” or convey about the intangible emotional landscapes at the heart of a poem.
PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED

2-4 pm Word. Art
Cynthia Winings Gallery, 24 Parker Point Road
FREE

4-5 pm Festival Finale: Richard Blanco & Paul Sullivan
Emlen Hall, 17 Bay School Drive
Join us for the premiere of an original, collaborative work created just for the Word festival. This performance piece will explore its creators’ immigrant roots—Paul Sullivan’s Irish heritage and Blanco’s from Cuba.
FREE