Monthly Archives: December 2011

US Madison Continuing Studies News for Writers

UW Madison Continuing Studies is offering lots of events of interest to writers, including:

  • 23rd Annual Writers’ Institute, April 13-15, in Madison, which will have sessions for fiction and nonfiction writers, private pitch meetings, industry updates and opportunities to connect with professional writers and promises to have more agents than last year. Registration opens Jan. 11.
  • Write-by-the-Lake Writer’s Workshop & Retreat, June 18-22, in Madison. The retreat offers 12 sections, has limited enrollment, and the option of receiving grad credits. Sessions include fiction (including YA and children’s), nonfiction and poetry — which will include Wisconsin’s past poet laureate (and CWW board member) Marilyn Taylor. Registration opens Jan 6th.
  • A host of in-person and online writing courses.

More information is at


Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy Holidays!

Members of the Council for Wisconsin Writers wish the happiest of holidays and a happy, healthy 2012 to our fellow writers and supporters across Wisconsin and beyond.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

New CWW Board Faces

The Council for Wisconsin Writers has replaced four board members who resigned in recent months with new members. They are Christi Clancy, Coleman (one-name only), Douglas Armstrong and Richard Swanson. Here’s a little about each of them:

Christi Clancy’s work has appeared in The New York Times, Glimmer Train Stories, Hobart, Yalobusha, The Minnesota Review, Cream City Review, and elsewhere. She has been nominated twice for the Pushcart Prize, and was the 2007 winner of the CWW’s Sternig award for short fiction. She has a PhD in English from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and teaches at Beloit College.

Coleman is a Texas and Oklahoma native who came to Wisconsin by way of New York and Chicago. He had an adventurous career as a rebel, a nightclub manager, a chef, an international meetings industry poobah and a software programmer. He is the founder and (former) artistic director of Alley Stage in Mineral Point where he produced five seasons of original plays submitted by playwrights from around the world. He is recipient of two Wisconsin Arts Board artist-community fellowship grants, and winner of a Wisconsin Literary Artist Fellowship. He is a published playwright and is seeking a publisher for completed works of fiction and non-fiction. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America and Playwrights Ink of Madison. He lives in Mineral Point, where he operates a bed-and-fix-your-own-damn-breakfast, Maple Wood Lodge.

Madison resident and poet Richard Swanson has two full-length collections of poetry — Men in the Nude in Socks, which won the CWW 2006 Posner Award, and Not Quite Eden, published in 2010 (both by Fireweed Press). He serves as secretary of the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets and is a frequent reviewer of poetry books for Verse Wisconsin. He taught English at Madison Area Technical College during his working life and is an accomplished woodworker.

Douglas Armstrong is a former newspaper reporter, editorial writer, columnist and film critic. His short fiction has appeared in a variety of magazines from Ellery Queen to Boys’ Life. Originally from Kansas, he lives in Whitefish Bay. He is a member of the Mystery Writers of America, CWW and the Milwaukee Press Club. His debute novel, Even Sunflowers Cast Shadows was awarded the Anne Powers prize for best book-length fiction by the Council for Wisconsin Writers in 2010.

It is with much regret that the CWW board bids farewell to two faithful and committed members, Paul Salsini and Susan Elbe.

Paul, author of a trilogy based in Italy as well as travel articles about Italy that have appeared in the New York Times and other publications, served on the CWW board for many years, most recently as secretary. He previously was a writer, editor and writing coach at The Milwaukee Journal for many years and is a longtime journalism teacher at Marquette University. He left the board earlier this year to devote needed time and attention to personal issues and to reacquaint himself with his writing muses. 

Susan, an accomplished and oft-published poet — two poetry collections, Eden in the Rearview Mirror (Word Press) and Light Made from Nothing (Parallel Press). retired from her day job, to find her dance card fuller than ever. Rather than give in to the many requests, Susan, whose CWW’s board service including being web manager, was getting for her time and talents, she decided to spend more time on her poetry. Doing so requires time for thinking and reflecting that is so lacking in today’s hectic world.

Other board members who have left are past-president and attorney Ted Hertel, who has taken on other obligations, which made it necessary for him to leave board leadership in other hands, and his wife, Maggie Ley. Ted, an award-winning writer of mysteries and other fiction is an adjunct professor of law at  the University of Wisconsin Law School in Madison, Wisconsin, and has served as MWA Midwest Chapter president (2006-2007) and on its National Board. He was also local arrangements chair for Eyecon ’95 and co-chair of Bouchercon ’99, both in Milwaukee. Maggie Ley ably edited the CWW newsletter, “The Quill Driver,” for many years.

We will miss all four of these talented, accomplished people and their invaluable contributions to CWW and wish them all well.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Children’s Author Wins National Award

Accomplishments of Wisconsin’s many talented children’s writers are impressive — and almost too numerous to try to list on this blog, but I’m going to give it a try.

One of the most-often published authors is Janet Halfmann. She’s been writing for years and has well-more than 30 books published. Among the almost countless awards and recognitions she has received is her “Star of the Sea: A Day in the Life of a Starfish” being named The National Science Teachers Association’s (NSTA) 2012 Outstanding Science Trade Book for Students K-12. The award is given in collaboration with the Children’s Book Council.

An article about Janet and the award is featured in a Bayview Compass article at:

More about Janet and all of her books is at her website at:

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

CWW Winner Wins

Wisconsin writer Amy Lou Jenkins of Wauwatosa, whose book Every Natural Fact: Five Seasons of Open-Air Parenting received the Council for Wisconsin Writers Ellis/Henderson Outdoor Writing Award, has won a double honor from USA “BEST BOOKS” awards.  Jenkins’ Every Natural Fact (Paperback: $14.95, ISBN: 978-098-235451-3) placed first in the Non-fiction Environmental writing category and was a finalist in the Women’s Studies Category.  USA “Best Books 2011″ Award recognized Every Natural Fact for “the artistry and richness of a portrayal of rich landscapes and relationships as a mother and son explore natural settings and the questions each generation must ask anew.”
Kudos to Amy Lou for her wonderful accomplishments, which these awards affirm. 

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized