The cold temperatures on Wednesday, November 18, 2015 were hardly a detriment to the thirty members of the Cape Cod Writers Center who attended Writers Night Out at Uno’s Chicago Grille on Route 132 in Hyannis to hear former Bsoton Globe reporter, columnist and editor Susan Trausch speak about “the reporter’s eye.”


After cocktails and a delicious buffet dinner,Susan, who is also a board member of the Cape Cod Writers Center,  presented an informative and often amusing explanation of the unqiue way reporters obtain their news and explained how that  skill can be used to inspire fiction.  Among her  suggestions was the importance of carrying a notebook to record snippets of overheard conversation;  scanninng the newspaper for stories that contain the germ of a plot;  observing the behavior of others;  and keeping a checklist of a character’s preferences and dislikes.

By the end of the evening, our members were not only inspired but obtained important lessons for writing their own fiction.

With thanks to Susan for a truly exicting evening!

Upcoming on December 5: Breakfast with the Authors

by web editor on November 21, 2014

In just two weeks the Cape Cod Writers Center will host the holiday program of our Breakfast with the Authors series. The breakfast will be Friday, December 5, 9:30-11:30 at the Resort and Conference Center, 35 Scudder Avenue in Hyannis.

This program has something for everyone. If you like smart and sultry mysteries, you’ll want to hear Arlene Kay speak about Gilt Trip, the latest in the Boston Uncommons series. For history buffs, or anyone with a young adult on your shopping list, Martin W. Sandler will present Imprisoned: The Betrayal of Japanese Americans during World War II. And for warmth and humor, you can’t beat Dr. Nick Trout’s latest novel about the delightful exploits of veterinarian Cyrus Mills, Dog Gone, Back Soon.

gilt trip   imprisoned   dog gone






This is bound to be a popular program, so reservations are strongly recommended. The cost is just $15 for CCWC members or $20 for non-members and includes a continental breakfast, brief talks by all three authors, Q&A, and an opportunity to buy books and get them signed for yourself or anyone on your holiday shopping list.

Reserve your space by emailing or calling 508-420-0200.

Saturday in East Dennis: “Women Creating Havoc”

by web editor on November 14, 2014

The Cape Cod Branch of the National League of American Pen Women
invites you a special event:

Women Creating Havoc
A Celebration of Art

havocSaturday, November 15
1:30PM – 4:00PM
Jacob Sears Memorial Library
25 Center Street
East Dennis, MA

Meet the creative minds behind some great works and get a little jump on your holiday shopping as local Pen Women sign books, autograph paintings and note cards, answering questions, and giving short talks about their work.

For more about this event and NLAPW’s Cape Cod branch, visit their website:

Twenty four teenagers turned out on Saturday morning, November 8, for day-long writing instruction with the Cape Cod Writers Center ‘s Tomorrow’s Writers Today program at the Barnstable Intermediate School.

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Two acclaiimed authors, novelist Heidi Schmidt and nonfiction author Chip Bishop, instructed the students in their respective genres, and offered each of the individual students feedback for their writing.

Heidi Schmidt TWT  Nov 2014C Bishop TWT Nov 2014









By the end of the day, the students had learned a lot, and many plan to attend the next Tomorrow’s Writers Today workshops in 2015.

Here are some of their comments from the exit surveys: 

“It was amazing to be able to get feedback from actual authors. I would definitely come back.”
“It was fun very useful and excellent.  It helped me with understanding my writing very much.”
“Honestly, wonderful job!”
“They (the teachers) opened up new ideas and writing styles for me. ”
“I loved the fiction writing. It was fun!”
“They taught me a lot of new writing techniques that have given me new inspiration to improve my fiction and nonfiction.”
“They helped critique my writing.”
“They (the teachers) really know what they were talking about.”
“I learned a lot of new things.”

Calliope Poetry Readings at the West Falmouth Library

by web editor on November 7, 2014

Calliope Pic

Please join us for the next Calliope Poetry Reading

Sunday, November 16th, 3 PM 
Open Mic Sign-up, 2:45 PM.
$5 suggested donation.


Jericho Brown’s latest poetry collection, The New Testament, was recently published by Copper Canyon Press (2014).  His first book, Please (New Issues, 2008) won the 2009 American Book Award.  His poems have appeared in The Nation, The New Yorker, The New Republic and The Best American Poetry.  He is a recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a Bunting Fellowship from the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University, and a Whiting Writer’s Award.  He also received two travel fellowships to the Krakow Poetry Seminar in Poland.  Jericho grew up in Louisiana and earned his Ph.D. in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Houston.  He is an assistant professor in the creative writing program at Emory University in Atlanta.

Frannie Lindsay’s fourth volume of poetry, Our Vanishing, was released from Red Hen Press in 2014 as the Benjamin Saltman Award winner.  Her other three books are  Mayweed (The Word Works); Lamb (Perugia Press) and Where She Always Was (Utah State University Press).  In 2008 she was chosen as the winner of The Missouri Review Prize in poetry.  Her poems have appeared in The Best American Poetry of 2014, The Atlantic Monthly, The Yale Review, The Harvard Review, Prairie Schooner, and in many other journals.  In addition, Frannie’s poems have been featured on Poetry Daily, Verse Daily, A Writer’s Almanac and Ted Kooser’s column, American Life in Poetry.  She has held fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Massachusetts Cultural Council.  Frannie lives in Belmont, MA. and is a classical pianist.

Jennifer Markell’s first book of poetry, Samsara, was published in 2014 by the Turning Point imprint of WordTech Communications.  She is also the author of an award-winning chapbook, Leaving the Green Elm Market.  Her poems have been published in The Atlanta Review, Consequence, The Hawaii Pacific Review, Rhino and in The Aurorean, where she was the featured poet.  Her poetry also was published in Poetry from Sojourner, A Feminist Anthology and has been displayed at Boston City Hall.  She was selected to read her work at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.  A member of the Jamaica Pond Poets, Jennifer works as a psychotherapist with a special interest in therapeutic uses of writing.

Directions:  From Bourne Bridge.  Rt. 28 south to Thomas Landers Road exit, right off ramp to Rt. 28A south (left), about 1 1/2 miles.  Just past Old Dock Rd., on right, West Falmouth Library is on the left, with parking.

From Woods Hole.  Woods Hole Rd. to Palmer Ave. to Rt. 28 north to Brick Kiln Rd. exit, left off the ramp to Rt. 28A (stop sign).  Take a right, and go less than I mile.  West Falmouth Library is on the right, with parking (before the library, across from the Quaker Meeting House.)

No December Reading.
Next Calliope Poetry Reading will be on
Sunday, January 11th, 3 PM, featuring Kim Baker, JD Scrmgeour, Cammy Thomas, and our open mic readers.

Visit the Calliope website or Facebook Page

Member News for November

by web editor on November 3, 2014

Here’s a roundup of our CCWC Members’ writing news for November:

Catherine Allen of Orleans, Massachusetts and Santa Fe, New Mexico has a new book out that is an #1 Best Seller in two categories. It is a book about Boomers reinventing retirement and passionately planning for their next chapter of life. It is called Revolutionary Retirement: What’s Next For You? For upcoming events and more about the book, go to

Chip Bishop will speak and sign copies of his book, Quentin and Flora: A Roosevelt and a Vanderbilt in Love during the Great War, Thursday, Nov. 13 at 2 p.m. at the South Dennis Public Library and later that evening at 7 p.m. at the Eldredge Library in Chatham. Both events are free and open to the public.

Anita A. Caruso, author of the memoir As Ever, Pudd—A Love Story that Never Ends, has author events in November at Quashnet school in Mashpee, the Harwich Council on Aging, Jacob Sears Memorial Library in Dennis, and Corpus Christy Parish in Sandwich. See her website for details:

Kyle Chirgwin’s childrens book My Big Tow: The Adventures of Captain Recovery received a five star review from Red City reviews. It has also received three five star reviews on

While visiting England, Dean Coe presented his children’s book Chesterton Keeps His Town Jumping, set in Sandwich, Massachusetts, at the Roger Manwood School in Sandwich, UK. The book and visit book have been the impetus to a student exchange to introduce local history and traditions between the sister communities.

Yvonne deSousa is excited to report that her book, MS Madness! A “Giggle More, Cry Less” Story of Multiple Sclerosis received an excellent review in recent edition of The Motivator, the magazine published by the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America. You can read the review online here. She will be discussing MS Madness! at the Ames Free Library in North Easton on November 3rd at 6:30 PM.

Devon Ellington’s airship steampunk story “Loyalty Strata” will appear in the New Legends: Mercenaries, Engineers, and Captains, releasing in late November at the Miami International Book Fair.

Join Gina Fava on her suspense thriller book tour for The Sculptor, and The Race! Fall is filled with exciting signings and events–visit for details.

Diane Finney has published a breast cancer memoir entitled To Know Sweet You Must Taste Sour.  Diane shares her positive attitude and offers tips that would help anyone who is facing a cancer challenge or other form of adversity. Find out more at Available on Amazon.

Trisha Leaver teaches “The Craft of the Short Story” on Thurs. Nov. 6 from 6-8 PM at Marstons Mills Public Library. Workshop is free, but please sign up ahead of time, Trisha also has a launch party for her co-authored book Creed at the Marstons Mills Public Library on Sat. Nov. 22 from 4-7 PM. Please rsvp at

Diane McDonough’s poem, “November Afternoon at the Farmer’s Market,” will be published in The Weekly Avocet, November 5, 2014.

Lisa Rehfuss is pleased to announce that Molly and Buttercup, Postcards from the Bed and the Shed, ( enjoys a one year anniversary of bringing safe pen pals to children between the ages of 7-12.

Rick Shakalis’ novel The Shoemaker’s Castle is scheduled to be released by mid-December. It’s based on the life of Thomas Gustave Plant, born dirt poor in Bath Maine in the middle 1800s who  became one of the richest men in the country and built “The Castle in the Clouds” in New Hampshire yet died a pauper.

After the success of Barbara Eppich Struna’s first historical novel, The Old Cape House, and reaching almost 8000 copies sold within the first year, Barbara and her publisher, Booktrope of Seattle WA, are proud to announce the release of her latest historical fiction, The Old Cape Teapot. It’s available as an ebook and paperback online everywhere and across the Cape. She’ll also be selling, signing, and talking at several venues through the holidays, please see her blog for details.

C.E. Zaniboni has been offered a contract for the first book in her series, Iced At Midnight, by Gypsy Shadow Publishing. The book will be out in the first quarter of 2015.

CCWC Logo Quill onlyCurrent CCWC members are invited to submit their news to the next Member News Roundup, which will be posted to our blog and Facebook page on the first Monday in December. To have your news included, please email a one or two sentence announcement to no later than Friday, November 28. Write “Member News” in the subject line, and be sure the announcement includes your name exactly as you would like it to appear. We do not have room for longer articles or reviews, but you may include an email or website link so readers may contact you or find further information. If you have multiple events, signings, etc. coming up, the best way to publicize these is with a link to a calendar on your own blog or website. (Please note that we reserve the right to edit any announcement for length or for potentially offensive or controversial content.)

“Everything goes along smoothly in life until one day something happens… and nothing’s ever exactly the same.”

That transformation is what poet/author Charles Coe, calls The Defining Moment and was the subject of a fascinating Cape Cod Writers Center Pathways to Publication workshop on Saturday morning, October 25,  at the Resort and Conference Center at Hyannis.


Charles Coe at Podium


Charles opened the program by asking the fourteen attendees to recall important moments from their childhood on paper and then describe them to the rest of the class. What emerged were a series of stunning events which, as Charles observed, could easily become the engine for at least one powerful story or novel. The morning continued with related  assignments and ended at noon — much too soon for all concerned.


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Bravo to Charles Coe and those who attended this remarkable session!

While it’s nearly a year away, it’s never too early to mark your calendars for the 2015 Cape Cod Writers Center Conference, August 6-9, 2015 at the Resort and Conference Center at Hyannis.  Already we are planning an exciting program of  keynote speakers, distinguished faculty and special events.

More specific details to follow in a few months! 

Imagination is integral to man’s progress, but especially for creative people. Without it  books, poetry, plays and movies would not be written. That was the fascinating analysis presented by Nina Schuessler, Producing Artistic Director of the Harwich Junior Theater, on Wednesday evening, October 22, at the  Cape Cod Writers Center’s Writers Night Out and Annual Meeting at the Resort and Conference Center at Hyannis.

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Before Nina’s presentation, thirty five CCWC members who attended the meeting enjoyed drinks and a buffet dinner, followed by a business meeting. Jim Hill, the CCWC’s Vice President, announced the four new board members, who were then approved by the membership. CCWC’s Executive Director, Nancy Rubin Stuart, announced member news and future events, including the Pathways to Publication workshop on Saturday, October 25, with prominent Boston poet, Charles Coe.

As if in proof of the power of imagination, several members appeared in a creative series of Halloween costumes. Below are a few examples inspired by the publishing industry.

There’s just one week left for talented young writers in grades 7 – 12 to sign up for the Cape Cod Writers Center’s next Tomorrow’s Writers Today workshop. The program will be held on November 8, 8:30 – 3:30 at the Barnstable Intermediate School in Hyannis.

CCWC14_-75Tomorrow’s Writers Today is tuition-free and gives students the rare opportunity to work one-on-one and in small groups with authors who oversee their work, share concepts, and provide insights into the realities of professional writing, literature, and journalism.

Applications must be mailed to the Cape Cod Writers Center and postmarked by October 27.

For more information and a downloadable application, click here.

You can also request an application by email at