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Flagler to host literary conference dedicated to 'Wanderlust'

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Kelle Groom

Kelle Groom is currently completing a national tour in connection with her memoir, “I Wore the Ocean in the Shape of a Girl.”

Oct. 23, 2012

Readers and writers who are tempted by travel should save the date for the return of a regional favorite literary conference.

The Florida Literary Arts Coalition Other Words Conference, held Nov. 8-10 hosted at Flagler College, will include panels, readings, workshops and an independent literary book fair. The theme of the conference this year is “Wanderlust: Writing and Travel.”

In keeping with the conference theme, panelists will discuss (among other topics) writers’ retreats, imaginative travel writing, developing a sense of place in poetry and fiction, and the journeys writers take. The conference will also feature pragmatic, nuts-and-bolts panels about publishing, submitting work, agents, editors, small presses, teaching creative writing and collaboration. In-depth writing workshops in fiction, poetry, screenwriting and nonfiction will also be offered.

Evening readings by acclaimed writers and teachers are free and open to the public. Gold Medal Florida Book Award winner for poetry Stephen Kampa will lead the opening celebration reading Nov. 8 at 7:30 p.m. in the Flagler Room in Ponce Hall. Enid Shomer, Barnes & Noble Discover Award winner, author of the new novel, “The Twelve Rooms of the Nile,” and past Florida Book Award Gold Medalist for fiction, will follow. On Nov. 9 at 7:30 p.m., also in the Flagler Room, conference attendees will have an opportunity to participate in a group reading or “renga.”

The Nov. 10 reading, which takes place at 7:30 p.m. in the Flagler Room, offers an opportunity to hear from two of Florida’s best and most widely travelled prose writers, Kelle Groom and Bob Shacochis.

Groom is currently completing a national tour in connection with her memoir, “I Wore the Ocean in the Shape of a Girl,” which is a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers pick, a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice selection, a Library Journal Best Memoir of 2011, an Oprah.com O Magazine selection and an Oxford American Editor’s Pick. Her poetry collections are “Five Kingdoms,” “Luckily” and “Underwater City.” Her work has appeared in “Best American Poetry 2010,” The New Yorker, Ploughshares and Poetry, among others.

Shacochis, acclaimed for both his fiction and nonfiction, is well-known for writing about travel in both. His new novel, set on several continents, is “The Woman Who Lost Her Soul,” scheduled for publication this year by Grove/Atlantic. His first collection of stories, “Easy in the Islands,” won the National Book Award for First Fiction in 1985. He is a former columnist for Gentleman’s Quarterly and a contributing editor for both Outside and Harper’s. A collection of his columns for GQ, “Domesticity: A Gastronomic Interpretation of Love,” was published by Scribner. He has received a James Michener Fellowship and a grant from the NEA.

Complete conference schedule and registration information is available at www.floridarts.org. Call (904) 819-6400 or visit www.flagler.edu/writers for more information.

For general Flagler College news and events visit www.flagler.edu/our-community.


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