In honor of National Poetry Month, the Cape Cod Writers Center invited acclaimed poets Alice Kociemba and Gregory Hischak to read from their work at the April 15 Writers Night Out meeting at Uno’s Chicago Grille on Route 132 in Hyannis.


Alice–who hosts Calliope, a poetry reading series at the West Falmouth Library–is the 2015 Guest Editor of Common Threads, the poetry discussion project of Mass Poetry and the author of a forthcoming book, Bourne Bridge. After the buffet dinner, she read a series of fascinating poems from her recent work.


She was followed by Gregory Hischak, Associate Director of the Edward Gorey House in Yarmouth, among whose poetry collections are the 2012 Parts & Labor. In 2014 Gregory was the Regional Winner of the National Poetry Competition. Those who heard him read at Writers Night Out understood why he received that honor.


Thank you Alice and Gregory for a truly captivating evening!

Member News for April

by web editor on April 6, 2015

Take a look at what our busy members are up to:

Revolutionary Retirement: What’s Next for You?, a self-published book by Catherine Allen from Orleans and Santa Fe, has been picked up by Career Press of New Jersey and will be published and promoted again this fall. She was a recent guest on CCWC’s television show Books and the World.

Sharon Anderson’s sixteenth book, Sacred Grids – Creating Crystal Grids with Sacred Geometry, was published in March on Amazon. Sharon appreciates the support and feedback of her CCWC writing group in Osterville.

Jim Hill is teaching a class on writing picture books at the Cotuit Center for the Arts beginning May 4th. In six weeks you’ll learn about plot, character, pacing, and other important elements in creating a good story. You’ll examine books to discover what makes them successful and join your classmates in writing your own stories, learning to make them stronger via supportive critique. The class will include lectures, workshops, and group work. Click here for more information.

Trisha Leaver’s YA contemporary novel, The Secrets We Keep will release April 28th with FSG/ Macmillan. The book reflects on the complicated bond between sisters and the lengths they will go to to keep each other’s secrets safe. A launch Party and signing has been scheduled for Monday, May 4th at 6pm at the Sturgis Public Library, Barnstable. The Secrets We Keep is available at Barnes & Noble, Titcomb’s Bookshop, and Amazon.

David Litwack’s The Daughter of the Sea and the Sky is now available as an Audio Book. You can listen to a sample here.

Judith Partelow will be one of the featured readers for Voices of the Poet at the Brewster Ladies’ Library on April 25th, 1-3 pm, as well as a reader for the Steeple Street Poets at the Massachusetts Poetry Festival in Salem on May 2nd: Go to for information on her book of poems, A Woman’s Heart.

Dwight Ritter is off to Indianapolis for the Christamore House Authors Luncheon and book signing. This annual event benefits the Christamore House, an inner city community house providing scholarships and financial aid to deserving students and families. Then May 2nd he will be doing a book signing during the Brewster in Bloom celebration in front of the Brewster Bookstore.

Rick Shakalis would like to thank Beth Butler of Centerville Library for hosting his author talk/book signing for The Shoemaker’s Castle on March 28. They had a very good turnout and sold some books.

Michael Shapiro won Third Honorable Mention in Cape Cod Prime Time Writers Contest for his poem “Mulching.”

Maxim D. Shrayer has a new story in Cosmonauts Avenue, a new Montreal-based magazine: Shrayer and his colleagues at South Chatham Writers’ Workshop are currently reading applications for the July nonfiction sessions of the workshop. For additional info, go to:

Barbara Struna’s interview about her second historical novel, The Old Cape Teapot recently aired; you can view video here: Books of the World: Barbara Eppich Struna. Barbara is now off to Hollywood for research on her next historical novel, The Old Cape Inn, which alternates between 1947 and the present day for a Hollywood mystery and a search on Cape Cod.

Katrina Valenzuela was accepted to The National League of American Pen Women, Inc. in Letters and also in the new category of Music/Choreography. She is the only one in this category as of now.

Ric Wasley’s latest novel, The Girl with the Faraway Eyes, was released in March by Wild Child Publishing in California. It’s available here in paperback and Kindle versions:

Congratulations to CCWC member and former SIEGE drummer Robert R. Williams who has become a music and pop culture reviewer for the CVLTNation webzine!  Mr. Williams’ anti-war rock opera So Be It is also slated for release by Deep 6 Records of Los Angeles.

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 May. To have your news included, please email a one or two sentence announcement to no later than Friday, May 1. 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.)

BC-Mercy-Otis-Warren-Award-Image-2The Cape Cod Writers Center is once again a proud sponsor of the Mercy Otis Warren Cape Cod Woman of the Year contest. Please pick up nomination forms at your library or town hall or by using the link below. Nominate a deserving woman. The winner will be honored at Tales of Cape Cod, June 8th, and will ride in the Barnstable Fourth of July Parade.

To find out more or download a nomination form, click here!

Fiction Writers: Don’t Miss This Great Workshop!

by web editor on March 30, 2015

On Sunday, May 17, join best-selling author Carole Bugge (aka CE Lawrence) at the Dedham Hilton for a writing workshop entitled Villains, Heroes, and Sidekicks—Crafting Characters that thrill readers (and SELL books) .

sisters in crimeThis fun, informative, interactive session is brought to you by the New England chapter of Sisters In Crime and is appropriate for fiction writers in any genre, not just mystery. Cape Cod Writers Center members may attend for a special price of just $25, including lunch!

Click here for details and a registration link.


The Cape Cod Writers Center is now accepting applications for our final Tomorrow’s Writers Today program of the current school year, to be held on Saturday, May 2 from 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM at the Sturgis East High School in Hyannis.

This fun-filled, inspiring, free workshop gives talented writers in grades 7 through 12 the rare opportunity to learn from successful professional authors and to hone their literary skills.

Meet Our Faculty:

indira ganesanIndira Ganesan is the author of three novels, the most recent, As Sweet As Honey (2013) from Knopf. She held a Mary Ingraham Bunting Fellowship at Radcliffe College, residencies at The MacDowell Colony and the Paden Institute for Writers of Color, and served as a judge for the 2014 Pen/Hemingway Award for Debut Fiction. She teaches part-time at Emerson College.


ThomasMcNeelyThomas McNeely is a former Wallace Stegner and National Endowment for the Arts fellow who has taught fiction writing at Stanford University, Emerson College, and the Grub Street Writing Workshops; his stories have appeared in The Atlantic, Ploughshares, and many other magazines and anthologies. His debut novel, Ghost Horse, was published in 2014.

The deadline to apply is April 20, 2015. Interested students may apply to the program by completing an application (available at the link below) and submitting it, along with a brief writing sample. For more information or to receive an application by email, contact or call 508-420-0200.

Click here to download more information and an application for Tomorrow’s Writers Today, May 2015.

It’s never too early to start planning for the 2015 Cape Cod Writers Center Conference at the Resort and Conference Center at Hyannis, August 6-9, 2015.  Below you’ll find a list of our distinguished faculty who will inspire and instruct you to help you reach your literary goals.


Jerry Amernic — award winning journalist and author

Judith Arnold — Best- selling romance writer

Stephanie Blackman self-publishing expert

Charles Coe – award winning poet and writing coach

 Indira Ganesan – award winning novelist

Kristen Harnisch – novelist

Kate Klise — award winning author for children’s and YA books

Deb Kurilecz – writing coach and fiction writer

C.E. Lawrence – award-winning novelist and fantasy author

Steven Manchester  — best-selling eBook author & expert

Charles Salzberg – nonfiction and thriller author

Chantelle Aimee Osman – social media expert and editor

 Kevin Pilkington – award winning poet

Jan Worthington – Hollywood screenwriter


 Michael Carr — Veritas Literary Agency

April Eberhardt — April Eberhardt Literary

Rick Richter — Zachary Shuster Harmsworth

Amaryah Orenstein – Go Literary Agency

Sorche Fairbank – Fairbank Literary



Scott Blagden — author and teacher

James Kershner – editor, nonfiction author, writing coach

Gregory Hischak – poet and playwright

Twice a year, the Cape Cod Writers Center offers its members and other writers Saturday workshops in our Pathways to Publication program to help to boost their literary skills. Last Saturday, March 21 was the first Pathways to Publication program of 2015 and attracted over 30 participants at the Resort and Conference Center at Hyannis.



The day began at 9:00 a.m. with an editing workshop taught by Ray Cormier, a 30-year writer and editor from the New York Times.Ray Cornier

After an introduction about the editing process at that newspaper, Ray asked the participants to edit several passages shown on screen. After that he asked them to edit the work of a fellow participant and later, their own–an exercise that surprised and informed the participants about the self-editing process.

The workshop on memoir began at 1:00 p.m. and was taught by Phoebe Baker Hyde whose debut book The Beauty Experiment was named a 2014 ” Book of Style.” Her introduction on memoir types, what draws people to write them and which ones become successful was followed by illustrative handouts and comments and exercises which informed the participants about what it takes to write a memoir that delivers a message beyond the mere facts of the author’s life. The day ended at 4:00 p.m. followed by Phoebe’s book signing.


With appreciation to Ray Cormier and Phoebe Baker Hyde for our March 2015 Pathways to Publication!

While March 18, 2015 was a cold and windy night, twenty seven members of the Cape Cod Writers Center turned out for Writers Night Out at Uno’s Chicago Grille on Route 132 to hear Trish Leaver, the  newly-appointed vice president of the board of directors and a top eBook Amazon author,  speak about first lines and pages.

Trisha Leaver


Citing examples from well-known authors, including Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, Trish impressed the audience with the critical importance of writing openings in a compelling, way.  Equally valuable were Trisha’s practical suggestions about how writers can fashion their own book to make them page-turners.

 With thanks Trisha for your inspiring message!

Despite the torrential rains on Saturday, March 14, twenty four talented Cape Cod students grades 7-12 arrived early at the Sturgis Charter School in downtown Hyannis to learn how to improve their literary skills through the Cape Cod Writers Center’s Tomorrow’s Writers Today Program.


Funded in part by the Mid-Cape Cultural Council and the Falmouth Cultural Council, the Tomorrow’s Writers Today program is a day-long program offered on three Saturdays during the academic year.

The  author teachers for the March 14 session were journalist-author Candy Hammond and novelist Reade Scott Whinnem.








While there were many new faces, a number of students were returnees, who find the program a unique and invaluable way to improve their writing.

Below are  comments from the students’ exit surveys:  

  •  “How am I supposed to choose? All of it was so awesome!”
  • “They (the teachers) gave us lots of inspiration and different  ways to write.”
  • “I liked meeting published authors and seeing what they have accomplished…it’s a great way to learn new skills.”
  • “It was very helpful because it was very specific.”
  • “They provided insightful and interesting advice I hadn’t heard before.”
  • “You can meet young writers like yourself and receive instruction from real writers.”
  • “Each teacher gave a different perspective and ideas on writing.”
  • “It was wonderful. Very wonderful.”
  • “I liked how much freedom we had with the prompts.”
  • “They were very willing to give advice and talk about their personal experiences with writing.”
  • “Insights into different writing styles.”
  • “They helped me find new ways to explore my imagination, figure out how to get my point across and generally write better.”
  • “It was amazing and fun.”
  • “The instructors taught me how to use my imagination and creativity to write a meaningful story.”
  • “I enjoyed how everyone was thoughtful, and made paying attention easy.”


March Member News

by web editor on March 2, 2015

Here’s a roundup of our members’ writing news for March:

Chip Bishop has been elected to the Advisory Board of the national Theodore Roosevelt Association. The TRA is a historical and public service organization dedicated to perpetuating the memory and ideals of Theodore Roosevelt, our 26th president. Chip has written two Roosevelt-themed books and is working on a third.

On March 16th from 6-8pm at the Centerville Library, local Young Adult authors, K.R. Conway (Cruel Summer) and Trisha Leaver (Creed) will join four other authors for a discussion panel on strong heroines in fiction. This is a free event, though RSVPs are appreciated – 

Susan Donnelly recently published two short articles at PsychCentral. Read them here and here.

Devon Ellington & Ava Dunne’s collection of five mysterious, comic, romantic, fantasy pieces, Killer Quintet, has been released by Amber Quill Press and is available through Amazon.

Christie Lowrance was selected to receive the 2015 Marion Vuilleumier Creative Arts Award given by the Cape Cod branch of the National League of American Pen Women.

Diane McDonough’s poem, “A Prompting in Winter,” was selected as poem of the week and published on the National League of American Pen Women’s Blog on February 19, 2015. Another poem, “Revelations of a Distant Moon,” has been selected to appear in Poems of the Super Moon, an anthology soon to be published by the Pen Women Press.

Edson Press, John Oberteuffer’s indie imprint, has just published Impressionist George Oberteuffer: His Life and Work in France and America. It is a 112 page fine arts book with 100+ color plates of oil paintings, watercolors, and etchings with a critical, biographical essay by art historian Kathleen Kienholz ( As the producer, a contributor, and publisher, John offers this book as an homage to his grandfather, whom he never met.

Janet Purcell’s second novel, The Long Way Home (which follows Singer Lane) is set to launch March 30 by Sunpenny Publishing, United Kingdom. Both are set on the Cape, as is Rooster Street, awaiting publication.

Board member Dwight Ritter busily promotes his book, Growin’Up White. Book signing and author panel Feb 12, 13 in Sarasota, FL. March 30 he reads and signs at a Chatham book club. April 13, 14, 15 he will be in Indianapolis at a book signing/ luncheon and speech.

The Scargo Hill Poets is a newly formed critique group with openings for a few Cape Cod Writers Center members who are serious about publishing their poetry. They meet monthly in Dennis. For more information, email

Maxim D. Shrayer’s new fiction appears in Tablet Magazine ( and Cosmonauts Avenue ( Shrayer looks forward to working with new participants of the South Chatham Writers’ Workshop in the summer of 2015.

Barbara Eppich Struna has been spending her winter researching for her third historical novel, The Old Cape Inn. She will be welcoming the beginning of spring at The Year-Rounder’s Festival in Provincetown on March 14 from 11am to around 3:30pm. She’ll be selling and signing her two novels, The Old Cape House and The Old Cape Teapot.

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 April. To have your news included, please email a one or two sentence announcement to no later than Friday, March 27. 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.)