July 2015

Amherst Writers & Artists


July 2015

Amherst Writers & Artists Newsletter
Summer Sojournfacebooktwitter

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July Newsletter Photo by Maureen Buchanan Jones
Image Credit: Maureen Buchanan Jones

Dear AWA Friends,

Ever feel like you’re an ant crawling across your own blank page? Summer is right for that kind of trek. Stretch your antennae and absorb the sensory muses around you. The page may be daunting, but it’s your page. You can crawl across it at any angle, holding still at moments to sink into what touches you. We may prefer to write in workshops with the companionship of others to give us courage, but the moment we form the first letter, we are on our own adventure. We have the gift of recognizing the exquisiteness of the world by naming it. Be an ant. Caress the white expanse with your words.

July finds AWA fully occupied with planning for 2016, following through on promises for 2015, and developing the services our membership requires. Here’s what we’re up to:

We will complete two more Training Programs in 2015. The first is in Chicago in early September with only two spots remaining. The second is outside New Orleans in November, with several spots open. We are putting the Training schedule for 2016 in place, returning to Malibu, CA in March; Loranger, PA in May, and Chicago, IL in September. We are working to add two more programs as well.

The 5th Annual Pat Schneider Poetry Contest deadline has passed. We have had a record number of submissions. Thank you everyone for sending in your poems and using your voice to sustain AWA’s journal Peregrine. Copies of Peregrine XXVII & XXVIII are available on Amazon’s CreateSpace.

Pat Schneider has also been busy, offering collaborative workshops with Sue Reynolds and Kate Hymes, the first exploring Soul Collage, the second exploring writing as a spiritual practice. Please visit her website for more news about how you can write with her.

On July 11th, the west coast Affiliates provided a glorious day of writing at the Pacific School of Religion. Pat Schneider Skyped her way there to give the opening remarks, followed by Jen Cross, Mary Tuchscherer, Chikondi Lunguzi, Peggy Simmons and Cary Tennis in a forum entitled There Is Another Way.

AWA is blooming this summer! After writing with fifteen high school girls in July, I too am astonished by summer’s riches. Fifteen ants finding their way across the page, each one with an extravagance of brilliance. Your page is before you.

With respect and gratitude,
Maureen Buchanan Jones
Executive Director


Training Updates: Ontario, Chicago Next

Our training in Ontario, Canada is happening right now, after which we'll be in Chicago, IL and Loranger, LA. We've put together a couple of flyers (linked below) to help you share information about the last two trainings of the year. It is our hope that you will pass them along to your writing communities and people you think would be excellent workshop leaders.

Chicago FlyerLouisiana Flyer

If you yourself would like to join us in 2015, please begin the application process online by visiting the Training Schedule. Or, to apply offline, download and print the 2015 Application and send it with the $300 deposit to:

Amherst Writers & Artists
PO Box 1076
Amherst, MA 01004

If you have questions, contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . We look forward to hearing from you!

AWA Workshop Group Leadership Trainings in 2015

2015 Training in Ontario, CanadaJuly 22 - 26

Ecology Retreat Centre Mono, ON, Canada

September 9 - 132015 Training in Chicago, IL

Cenacle Retreat
Chicago, IL

2015 Training in Loranger, LA November 15 - 19

Solomon Episcopal
Loranger, LA


Founder's News


Pat leading a one-day retreat assisted by Kate Hymes of Walkill Valley Writers

Pat has been busy this summer! The past few months have seen her devoting attention to her own writing, leading workshops with Sue Reynolds and Kate Hymes, and speaking at the Festival of Writing which took place earlier this month.

Thank you to the Pacific School of Religion and AWA West for sponsoring the latter event, and thanks as well as to all who participated.

The keynote panel, Another Way to Enter an Apple: The Transformative Potential of the Amherst Writers & Artists Method, was titled after There Is Another Way, a poem by Pat Schneider.

If you would like the opportunity to join Pat at her next event, visit the calendar on her website to learn more.


Affiliate Classifieds


After being inspired by the AWA conference in May, Kay Bosgraaf decided to start a group & did just that by offering a Summer Writing Workshop as a writing center offering at Montgomery College, Germantown Campus. The workshop is so popular that she will offer two sections in fall semester.


"Writing as an art form belongs to all people, regardless of economic class or educational level. . . . A writer is someone who writes."
-Pat Schneider


A Gift of Inspiration

Who is your favorite AWA writer? Someone in your workshop? Someone whose voice stays with you? Show appreciation to your favorite writer by donating $20 to AWA in her or his name. They will receive a card informing them of your donation and the knowledge that AWA continues its mission around the world.

To date, dozens of AWA writers have received this note of praise for their work. Choose your writer and let them know that they inspire you!



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