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Thursday, April 24, 7pm-9pm
M. L. Liebler Presents Detroit Tonight Live with appearances by poets John Sinclair, Mary Jo Firth Gillett, Mark James Andrews & Tom Brzezina, writer Alexander Morgan, musician Salvatore Aiello, laugh coach Mr. Silly.
The Jazz Cafe at The Music Hall, 350 Madison Detroit, MI 48226, (Across from The Gem Theater, Comerica Park & Ford Field).  Plenty of close, safe, lighted parking. Free Admission.
Sponsored in part by Springfed Arts

Springfed Arts Backyard Bash

Save the Date!  Saturday, May 17, 6 pm
Honored guests will be Dorianne Laux, internationallyacclaimed poet and teacher,
and Michele Ramo, jazz violin, guitar and mandolin composer/instrumentalist/teacher, appearing with his award winning Michele Ramo World Jazz Orchestra.

The benefit will be held in a backyard.
More information will leak out soon.

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Lamb's Retreat for Songwriters

The 20th annual Lamb's Retreat for Songwriters

November 6-9, 2014 Staff: To be announced.
November 13-16, 2014 Staff: To be announced.

Directed by John D. Lamb.

Birchwood Inn, Harbor Springs, Michigan

2013 Facebook photo album

Ronny Cox writes about Lamb's Retreat

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Backyard Bash PDF Print E-mail

Tickets online here.

Springfed Arts Backyard Bash
c'è la luna (there is a moon)
Saturday, May 17, 6 pm
Honored guests will be Dorianne Laux, internationally acclaimed poet and teacher, and Michele Ramo, violin, guitar and mandolin composer/instrumentalist/teacher, appearing with his award winning Michele Ramo World Jazz Orchestra.  We will serve food from Royal Oak's Trattoria Da Luigi and Luigi Catering, handcrafted beer from Lily's Seafood and much more under the big tent.  You can win raffle prizes and bid on silent auction items.  The proceeds of the benefit go toward building scholarship funds for Springfed Arts' retreats, writing classes and showcases. It's our only fundraiser of the year and we depend on a portion of the proceeds for help with our operating costs.
The benefit is chaired by Rebecca Vlasic and Lisa Galperin D'Agnillo.  Tickets start at $60.  The benefit will be held at the Rebecca Vlasic home in Birmingham.  Tickets and info online at  For more information on how to donate goods or services please contact Executive Director John D. Lamb at (248) 589-3913 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Your Generous Contribution:
Supports the Writers Scholarship Fund
Underwrites creative writing workshops/readings
Sponsors visits by songwriters/authors/poets
Enrico Caruso Pkg — $1000 +
6 SABB tix, 6 Raffle tix
Mario Lanza Pkg — $500 +
5 SABB tix, 5 Raffle tix
Luciano Pavarotti Pkg — $300 +
3 SABB tix, 3 Raffle tix
Andrea Bocelli Pkg — $150 +
2 SABB tix, 2 raffle tix
Friend — $ 60 per ticket
Springfed Arts is a Non-Profit 501 (c) (3) Organization
Your contribution is tax-deductible less $30 per attendee.
John D. Lamb, Executive Director
P.O. Box 304 – Royal Oak, MI 48068-0304
Tickets available online or by phone at 248-589-3913

Dorianne LauxDorianne Laux’s fifth collection, The Book of Men, is currently available from W.W. Norton. Her fourth book of poems, Facts about the Moon, is the recipient of the Oregon Book Award and was short-listed for the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize. Laux is also author of Awake, What We Carry, finalist for the National Book Critic’s Circle Award, and Smoke, as well as two fine small press editions, Superman: The Chapbook and Dark Charms, both from Red Dragonfly Press. Co-author of The Poet's Companion: A Guide to the Pleasures of Writing Poetry, she’s the recipient of two Best American Poetry Prizes, a Pushcart Prize, two fellowships from The National Endowment for the Arts and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Widely anthologized, her work has appeared in the Best of APR, The Norton Anthology of Contemporary Poetry and The Best of the Net. In 2001, she was invited by late poet laureate Stanley Kunitz to read at the Library of Congress.  Laux has been teaching poetry in private and public venues since 1990 and since 2004 at Pacific University’s Low-Residency MFA Program. In the summers she teaches at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California and Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill. Her poems have been translated into French, Spanish, Italian, Korean, Romanian, Dutch, Afrikaans and Brazilian Portuguese, and her selected works, In a Room with a Rag in my Hand, have been translated into Arabic by Camel/Kalima Press. Recent poems appear in The American Poetry Review, Cimarron Review, Cerise Press, Margie, The Seattle Review, Tin House and The Valparaiso Review. She and her husband, poet Joseph Millar, moved to Raleigh in 2008 where she teaches poetry in the MFA program at North Carolina State University. Laux has been a Springfed Arts Writing contest judge and has been on staff for several Springfed Arts retreats, including the Walloon Writers’ Retreat.

Michele RamoMichele Ramo was born in the Mediterranean fishing village of Mazara Del Vallo, Italy, on the coast of Sicily, population 300. His playgrounds were vast grape-vineyards, rocky hillsides and olive orchards. He played guitar with the barbers in the little town square and hid his school books in the fields of ancient volcanic caves because he only wanted to play music.  At age 13 he entered music conservatory where he took up violin studies. By 17 he had his first professional contract with the Italian State Opera House "Teatro Massimo" in Palermo.  After five years in various Italian state symphony orchestras, at age 23, Ramo made musical shock waves within his circles by quitting and moving to the United States to pursue his work as a composer and instrumentalist in jazz. His first stop was New York City. Unable to speak English and soon out of money, he went to Detroit where he knew a friend from his village. He befriended jazz greats such as trumpeter Marcus Belgrave, pianist Harold Mckinney, and drummer Roy Brooks. In 1994, he married singer Heidi Hepler, a former Miss Michigan.  They often perform together.  Ramo currently teaches Jazz Violin, Guitar & Mandolin in his private studio and Jazz Guitar at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. The Michele Ramo Jazz World Orchestra have been featured at concert events along with world renowned artists including Yo Yo Ma, James Galway, Ertha Kitt, Barbara Cook, James Levine and the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra.  Ramo’s newest CD is A Cigar and a Scotch-Live at Jenuwine, featuring 8 original compositions fusing elements of Traditional Jazz, Afro-Brazilian Samba, Cuban Montuno, Bossa Nova and Jazz Ballads with some of the top-notch musicians of Detroit.

March Newsletter Print E-mail

Springfed Arts E-Newsletter features:
*Spring classes start the week of April 7.
* Writing Contest deadline April 15.
*Backyard Benefit, May 17.  
*More news: Musing, Hoffecker book, DeCillis book, Woodward Lecture Series, Rochester Writers Workshop, Writers at the Carr Series in Detroit, A Rally of Writers in Lansing, Detroit Working Writers Conference in Clinton Twp., Three Ponds Farm Writing Retreat in Big Rapids, Lamb's Retreat in Harbor Springs.

Springfed Arts Backyard Bash
Save the Date!  Saturday, May 17, 6 pm
Honored guests will be Dorianne Laux, internationally acclaimed poet and teacher, and Michele Ramo, jazz violin, guitar and mandolin composer/instrumentalist/teacher, appearing with his award winning Michele Ramo World Jazz Orchestra.  Tickets start at $60.  The benefit will be held in a Birmingham backyard.  For more information on how to donate goods or services please contact Executive Director John D. Lamb at (248) 589-3913 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

2014 Springfed Arts Writers Contest
Poetry & Prose Prizes: 1st Prize $150, 2nd Prize $100, 3rd Prize $75.
RULES: This Members Only contest is funded and sponsored by Springfed Arts. Submission Guidelines:  Free submission for current and 2014 Springfed Arts members only. No name on poetry or prose submission pages.  Prose (prose includes fiction, nonfiction & memoir) must be double-spaced 10 pages or less, pages stapled. (An excerpt of a longer piece may be used.)  A cover page should include your name, address, phone, email, and title of piece.  Poetry should include 3 poems no more than 5 total pages, with name, address, phone, email, and titles of poems on cover sheet.  All submissions must be typewritten. Include your membership check if you are joining or renewing.  There is no contest application form.  Your membership will suffice.  Outside envelope should state” poetry contest” or “fiction contest” in the lower left hand corner.  Deadline must be postmarked by April 15, 2014. Entries must be unpublished.  Manuscripts that do not follow the above rules will be discarded. Your manuscript is non-returnable.  Winners will be announced in the May newsletter and will be invited to read at a Springfed Arts event.
The 2014 judge for poetry is Jim Daniels.  The 2014 judge for prose is Jack Driscoll. (Judges bios are on the contest link at our website).
Springfed Arts entrusts a preliminary judge who culls through all submissions.  We send 15 finalist poem entries to the poetry judge and 5 finalist prose entries to the prose judge.  Writers who teach for Springfed Arts are not eligible to enter the contest.

Springfed Arts MEMBERSHIP DRIVE 2014
Your support helps us to continue our programs. This includes retreats, classes and showcases for writers, poets and songwriters throughout Michigan.
Basic Membership $50
Student and Under-employed Membership $40
You receive:
• Newsletter delivered to your computer/Smartphone (occasional hard copy to your home).
• Free entry in Poetry/Prose Contest.
• $75 towards Springfed Arts retreats.
• Discount on all workshops offered & more.
Supporting Membership $300 - $900
All of the above and $100 towards any Springfed writers’ retreat.
Benefactor Membership $1000+
All of the above plus $150 towards any Springfed writers’ retreat.
All dollars to Springfed Arts are tax deductible.
Please join up or renew.
Easy to do online at

More news:

Musing Series
Sunday, March 16, 2pm-4pm.
Joy Gaines Friedler: Poet
Emily Rose and Aileed St. John: Singer-songwriter duet.
Hosted by Ann Holdreith at The Hannan House in Midtown, 4750 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, 48201, 248-583-7765.  Free Parking in back lot or on street.  Open mic, poets and musicians welcome.

After the Silence at Baldwin Public Library
March 22, 2pm
Karin Hoffecker will read from her first work of fiction, After the Silence.  She will be signing copies at the reading.  Recently released by Amazon Books, After the Silence tells the story of Kate, a young woman who confronts the crippling effects of childhood molestation, and growing up in a family dominated by an alcoholic mother.  “Kate, who appears fragile and overcome by disabling panic attacks, refuses to give up on herself. With the help of faithful friends, and a compassionate doctor, Kate breaks the bonds of her past and triumphs to recovery and forgiveness,” Hoffecker said.  It is a love story; one of recovery and redemption.  Hoffecker, now a retired College English Instructor, has had her award-winning poems published in such prestigious journals as Penumbra, The Comstock Review and Mona Poetica.
Baldwin Public Library, 300 Merrill St., Birmingham, MI 48009

Strings Attached
Poems by Diane DeCillis

Series:  Made in Michigan Writers Series.  Published by: Wayne State University Press
Available May 2014
In Strings Attached, poet Diane DeCillis takes inspiration from the story of the elephant calf with a thin rope tied to its leg. Even when it grows into a massive animal, the elephant thinks the same string still restrains it and never attempts to break free. This powerful, funny, and sometimes self-deprecating collection considers all the ways that strings bind us in relationships and explores their constant tightening and loosening. Although we may never sever the strings attached to our wounds, DeCillis shows that when given enough slack we can create the illusion of having been set free.
The poems in Strings Attached consider tension in a variety of relationships. The short string of an American girl raised in Detroit by a resentful Lebanese grandmother whose culture values boys over girls. The attachment to a strong mother who exemplifies feminism but who is mostly absent in order to support the family. The cosmopolitan father who abandons but captivates, and the strings of relationships with older men, built on longing for the missing father. The long strings of a secret life that teach you to be distant. The strings that cuff you to your home, and the triumph of loosening them after years of agoraphobia. The frayed strings that come from being too American in a Lebanese culture. The strings of food and tradition that connect to family and friends.
DeCillis’s verse reflects an insistent search for identity and the happy discovery that outsider status can be a good thing, a kind of earned badge that provides new ways of seeing. All poetry readers will relate to the personal and perceptive verse of this debut collection.

Woodward Lecture Series
Thursday, March 20 at 7:00 p.m.
In writing, performance and visual art that incisively satirizes and confuses pop culture and the art world, Jayson Scott Musson provokes the boundaries that define cultural stereotypes. Musson's most well-known project is Hennessy Youngman, a character who hosts an episodic internet series, Art Thoughtz, in which he pits hip-hop and art world idioms against each other in a dual parody of cultural clichés.
Thursday, March 27 at 7:00 p.m.
Newsome works in performance, photography, collage, video, sculpture and sound, developing mixed-media works that examine the intersection of pop and subculture forms.
Thursday, April 24 at 5:30 p.m.
Writer, art critic, curator and activist Lippard delivers a talk on "Undermining: Land Use Politics and Art"
Wendell W. Anderson Jr. Auditorium
Walter B. Ford II Building
Since 1998, the CCS Woodward Lecture Series has remained one of the most high-profile visiting artist programs in southeastern Michigan.  Each year, the Series brings distinguished artists, critics, curators and scholars to the CCS campus to lecture on their work or fields of interest, and to engage CCS students in extracurricular activities such as critiques, workshops, demonstrations, tours and studio visits. The Woodward Lecture Series’ notable visitors are recognized for their innovative, rigorous and culturally diverse work, and it remains CCS’ goal for the Series to create a broad, continuing dialogue around contemporary art practice and interpretation.
·    All lectures are free and open to the public.
·    Seating and parking are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
·    Free parking available in the CCS Parking Structure, located on Brush Street, just north of Frederick Douglass.
For more information, please call 313-664-7800 or visit:

Rochester Writers presents a Spring Workshop with Stan Williams
Saturday, April 5, Oakland University.
Dr. Williams will present his full-day workshop on the 18+ Secrets of Successful Story Structure for Screenwriters, Novelists, and other Writers of shorter works. This will be a classroom-style event at OU, very similar to the Rochester Writers' Conference set-up using just one room. Included will be all day refreshments and lunch. Regular registration will be $100, but the first 25 people can use the link below to register for only $75. Details available at
If you decide to sign-up, remember to use the link here to save, the first 25 save 25% (the discount is only available with this email link)
If you attended one of Stan Williams' workshops in 2012 or 2013, this full-day event is just what you asked for!
Haven't heard Stan speak before - he was extremely popular two years in a row at the Rochester Writers' Conference - this is rare chance to attend his full-day workshop in the Metro Detroit area. His Los Angeles workshops usually go for $150 or more.
The winners of the Rochester Writers 2013 Writing Contest will be announced soon - Awards will be presented at this event.

Writers @ the Carr Series
Stevie Wonder Tribute

A literary and musical tribute to Stevie Wonder will take place on Saturday, April 5 from 2-4 p.m. at the Carr Center in Harmonie Park. Author Curtis L. Crisler will read from a new literary collection, Wonderkind. The event is free and open to the public.  Wonderkind, described by Crisler as “an elegiac urban fantasy suite,” is a literary collection on the musical genius of Saginaw’s own Stevie Wonder, Motown artist, songwriter, record producer and Songwriter and Rock ’n Roll Hall of Famer. The reading is part of a presentation for the Michigan Humanities Council, “Life, Imagined: Michiganders in Literature,” which features literary works about notable Michiganders. Crisler will be joined by Karen S. Williams, author of Peninsula: Poems of Michigan.
In addition to a musical tribute to Stevie Wonder, a live podcast of the event will be recorded.
Saturday, April 5, 2pm-4pm.
Carr Center, 311 E. Grand River, Detroit, MI  48226, (313) 965-8430

Writing Seminar April 5
Curtis L. Crisler, Aquarius Press/Willow Books author, editor, and National Book Award nominee, will host a seminar Saturday, April 5 from 12:30-1:45 p.m. at the Carr Center in Harmonie Park. Writers at all levels as well as educators working with young adults are welcome. Crisler will share his expertise and experiences beginning with his award-winning Tough Boy Sonatas to his most recent project, Wonderkind, a poetry collection on the musical genius of Saginaw’s own Stevie Wonder, Motown artist, songwriter, record producer and Songwriter and Rock ’n Roll Hall of Famer.  Crisler is the author of two previous Willow Books titles, Pulling Scabs, a poetry collection, and Dreamist: a mixed-genre novel. Seminar attendees are invited to also attend Crisler’s reading fromWonderkind immediately following the seminar. The reading is free and open to the public.
Registration for the seminar is required. To register, visit  or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
Event Details
Writing Seminar with Curtis L. Crisler
Saturday, April 5, 12:30pm-1:45pm
Carr Center, 311 E. Grand River, Detroit, MI  48226, (313) 965-8430

A Rally of Writers
April 12, 2014
Conference Center, West Campus, LCC, Lansing MI
Keynote: Fleda Brown, “Madness and Responsibility – The Writer’s Contrary Companions.”  Fleda is author of eight collections of poetry, one of essays, and memoir, she has won a Pushcart, the Felix Pollack Prize, the Philip Levine Prize, and a Great Lakes Colleges Award.
16 Sessions
Fleda Brown: The Motion of Memoir
Saladin Ahmed: Mideast Fiction
Andrea King Collier: Stepping It Up (adv. nf)
Teresa Crumpton: Dazzling Dialog
George Dila: Ending the Short Story
Anneliese Finke: Simple Gifts (poetry)
Denise Hill: Nonfiction for Newbies
Beverly Jenkins: Characters Who Breathe
Jen McConnel: YA vs NA
Rick Murcer: Marketing for Self-Publishing
Lev Raphael: Avoiding Bad Sex
Lori Nelson Spielman: Landing An Agent
Jeff Vande Zande: Screenplay Format 101
Some sessions will be repeated
$75 in advance
Students: $55
Available: Manuscript Review (March 20); Lunch w/Networking (April 6)
Rally Warm-Up: April 11, 7:00 pm Free
Importance of Early Words: Talking, Reading, Writing
Schuler Books, Eastwood Mall, Lansing
Details at
or 517-372-3385

Detroit Working Writers Presents “A Writers’ Worth”
May 17, 2014
Detroit Working Writers will sponsor a writing conference, themed "A Writer's Worth," on Saturday, May 17, 2014 from 9:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. at the Main Branch of the Clinton-Macomb Public Library. The event offers a chance to learn more about your craft and enter a statewide writing competition that consists of five categories and offers cash prizes. Categories include Young Adult/New Adult Fiction, Creative Non-Fiction, Poetry, Children’s Literature, and Adult Fiction.
Fourteen 50-minute workshops with topics as varied as “Social Media 101” and “The Art of Copyediting” to “Secrets to a Successful Freelance Business” and “What Agents Want and How to Give it to Them” will be presented. The complete list of workshops is available on the website listed below. There, participants can select four workshops that most meet their needs and attend them throughout the day.
The event also features a keynote address by Karen Dionne, founder of the nationally-known Backspace Writers group. A continental breakfast and lunch is included in the registration fee, which is $60 for DWW Members, $125 for Non-Members through March 15, $150 after March 15.
Detroit Working Writers is the oldest writing group in Michigan and is a Detroit 300 Heritage Organization. Registration is now open, but space is limited. Entries to the writing competitions must be submitted by March 25. To register, submit work for the competition, select workshops or find additional information, go to
Three Ponds Farm Writing Retreat
June 13-14
“Characterization:  A workshop for fiction writers”
(tips, prompts, and critiques) with Betty Stolarek (novelist, author of One Amber Bead) and Phillip Sterling (poet/short fiction, author of In Which Brief Stories Are Told).
Tentative schedule:    
Friday:    12-1 p.m registration
2-5 p.m. workshop with Phillip Sterling
5-7 p.m. social hour and light dinner
7 p.m. reading by faculty/special guests

Saturday:    8-9 a.m. breakfast
9-12 workshop with Betty Stolarek
12-1 lunch
1-4 p.m. workshop/critique with Sterling/Stolarek
4 p.m. participant reading
$200 per writer* (includes all workshop fees & meals**)
Three Ponds Farm, 18741 Milton Road, Big Rapids, MI 49307
For more information, manuscript submission requirements, or registration, contact:
Betty Stolarek, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , 231-796-2707
*Limited to 10 participants
**Some overnight accommodations, including breakfast, are available at Three Ponds Farm for an additional $50/room/night.
To register, send check for $100.00 (workshop only) or $125.00 (for workshop and accommodation) to Betty Stolarek at Three Ponds Farm address
The 20th annual Lamb's Retreat for Songwriters
November 6-9, 2014 Staff: Michael Smith, Tom Prasada-Rao, Whit Hill, Jenny Bienemann, Robin Bienemann and more TBA
November 13-16, 2014 Staff: Mark Stuart, Jan Krist, Kitty Donohoe, Annie Capps, Melissa Greener and more TBA.
Artists-in-residence Nov 7-17: Dalis Allen, Chuck Brodsky, Kirby, Dennis Kingsbury
Directed by John D. Lamb.
Packages include gala reception, 3 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners for each weekend.
Retreat is open to all songwriters, their friends and family.
Concerts open to public Saturdays, November 8 & 15, 2014, 8pm.
Birchwood Inn, 7291 S. Lake Shore Drive, Harbor Springs, MI, 49740
Register at

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