Writing the Spiritual Journey (UDLLI on the U of Dayton Campus)
Excited to be able to offer this workshop to the University of Dayton’s Lifelong Learning Institute on the River Campus. 6 Weeks and registration information link is below.
How do you describe the indescribable without sounding preachy or crazy? What if you’ve had bad experiences with faith? Speak it honestly anyway. We need all voices to chart the faith journey. Open to all faiths and believers and seekers, this workshop will use readings and memoir writing exercises in both in-class and take-home assignments. Readings feature Annie Dillard, Langston Hughes, Anne Lamott, Kathleen Norris, Mark Doty, John Updike, Elie Wiesel and others. You will give fellow writers feedback in class and will become better equipped to edit your own writing by the end of the workshop.
6 Mondays, January 12 – February 23 (No seminar on January 19)
9:30–11:30 a.m. at River Campus
Seminar Limit: 16
Recommended text: A number of readings in PDF format will be available before the first seminar meeting. These will also be printed out and available as a packet.
Jerome Stueart earned his Ph.D. in creative writing from Texas Tech University and has been teaching writing workshops for more than 20 years. He is a 1996 recipient of the Milton Fellowship (now sponsored by the journal Image), designed to foster excellence in writing for Christians. His writing has been published in Geist, Geez Magazine, Joyland and many other journals, anthologies, newspapers and magazines. He is the co-editor of Tesseracts 18: Wrestling with Gods, an anthology of faith-inspired science fiction and fantasy. His first book about religion in an altered-history America, One Nation Under Gods, is forthcoming from ChiZine Publications (November 2015); his collection of short stories follows in 2016.
For information on how to register for this course, please follow this link.
I would love to start teaching an afterschool program for teens to write science fiction and fantasy. I have often taught this at a local school library–with snacks–once a week for high school students. If you know of a way to contact or approach Dayton/Vandalia area high schools, or program coordinators at high schools, let me know. I’d love to be able to offer these classes again.
Rocketfuel ignites imaginations
Happy Bodhi Day! Tesseracts 18 has a COVER! I’m very excited to show you the new cover for Tesseracts 18: Wrestling With Gods, the new anthology of science fiction and fantasy from Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing, latest in the long running, award-winning Tesseracts anthology series.
The Tesseracts Eighteen anthology is filled with speculative offerings that give readers a chance to see faith from both the believer and the skeptic point-of-view in worlds where what you believe is a matter of life, death, and afterlife.
The work is now available as an e-book download for Amazon Kindle, exclusively, until it’s available in print in March (Canada) and April (USA) and in other e-book formats. Keep watching for more on Tesseracts 18 in the coming weeks! Order your Amazon Kindle e-book today–just in time for some holiday reading.
On a personal note, I’m incredibly proud of this anthology! I have enjoyed multiple readings of the stories and poems included and I would say these represent the best of Canadian science fiction and fantasy–stories that also happen to speak on faith and religion in some way. I think you’ll be surprised how easily science fiction and fantasy speaks on these topics–and remember classic stories and novels that have always spoken about faith.
Click on the cover to take you to Amazon’s Tess 18 site where you can purchase an Amazon Kindle download. Again, print versions come out in the spring, as well as other ebook editions.
Featuring works by: Derwin Mak, Robert J. Sawyer, Tony Pi, S. L. Nickerson, Janet K. Nicolson, John Park, Mary-Jean Harris, David Clink, Mary Pletsch, Jennifer Rahn, Alyxandra Harvey, Halli Lilburn, John Bell, David Jón Fuller, Carla Richards, Matthew Hughes, J. M. Frey, Steve Stanton, Erling Friis-Baastad, James Bambury, Savithri Machiraju, Jen Laface and Andrew Czarnietzki, David Fraser, Suzanne M. McNabb, and Megan Fennell.
About the Editors for Tesseracts Eighteen:
Liana Kerzner is an award-winning TV producer & writer who was also in front of the camera as co-host of the late night show Ed & Red’s Night Party, and is currently the host/writer of Liana K’s Geek Download, heard weekly on the internationally syndicated radio program Canada’s Top 20.
Jerome Stueart has taught creative writing for 20 years, teaches a workshop called Writing Faith and has been published in Fantasy,
Geist, Joyland, Geez, Strange Horizons, Ice-Floe, Redivider, OnSpec, Tesseracts Nine, Tesseracts Eleven, Tesseracts Fourteen,
and Evolve: Vampire Stories of the New Undead. His novel,One Nation Under Gods, will be published in Nov 2015 from ChiZine.
For more on Bodhi Day–the Day Buddhists commemorate the Enlightenment of Buddha– see this link.
This is my plea for adding Letter from Birmingham Jail by Martin Luther King Jr to the Bible. I know, we’re not usually in the business of adding things to the Bible, but given the cultural unrest and civil strife regarding race relations, Christians need to read this letter. Putting it in the Bible gives it weight, importance, urgency, authority. Follow the link to read my plea. Thank you.
Originally posted on Talking Dog:
I would like to see Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” (1963) added to all new Bibles.
I don’t propose this lightly. Three times in the Bible, in three different places, listeners (and they wouldn’t have been readers) are exhorted not to add to, or take away, from specific books. One is about Revelation, one is specifically to the Israelites in Deuteronomy to listen to the law, and the other is in Proverbs: “Every word of God is true….do not add to his words, lest you be proved a liar.” I think it’s safe to say that I won’t propose adding any new words of God to the Bible. I’m advocating something less radical. If we can have letters from Paul, we can have letters from Martin.
When it comes to relevant living with each other, and honoring God, we have read and read Paul’s letters, noting…
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In April, I decided to take a Greyhound bus to see my birthmother in Indiana, go to a writing conference in Michigan, and pitch an idea to some wonderful publishers in Toronto. I was out of work, and had been for many months. The only affordable way to do this that I could see was to go by Greyhound Bus. It would take almost three weeks. I knew I would be on the bus for awhile. But I had this idea, that I would sketch the people and the places I saw outside my window on my journey. Just for fun. I would tweet them as “Sketches from the Road”. On one hand, I wanted to get my drawing hand back into practice. I used to be a cartoonist a long time ago, and a portrait artist, but I just hadn’t done a lot of that in many years.
So I did these sketches as I went and it kept me busy and made me really look and see the new places around me. They weren’t people and buildings passing by–I had to know their brickwork and their coats. And that makes a difference in the experience you have while traveling. At least it did for me.
Greyhound liked the whole thing so much that they decided to feature me on their blog, The Hound, and I’m really happy about that. Geist magazine saw the sketches, via my friend Lily Gontard, and wanted to publish the sketches to tell a story of my journey. I’m really thrilled about that too.
Here’s the Greyhound Link to their interview with me on The Hound.
I will put up more of these sketches soon, as soon as I know what Geist needs. I have more wonderful news to share from Toronto soon, and when Geist’s article comes out in the fall, I’ll link you there as well. Look for more sketches soon.
Until then, enjoy your travels!
photo by Leo Seta, Flickr, Creative Commons
For the first time, available now by itself: “Lemmings in the Third Year” for your Kindle, iPad, e-reader device.
Arctic researchers stuck in a land of talking animals, comedy, runner up to the Fountain Award. The idea started with Iron John: a Book About Men and ended up being about Women in Science instead. How did that happen?
It was the summer of 1992 when I moved to Missouri to sit outside the gates of the University of Missouri-Columbia and hope that I got in to their Masters program. It was foolish. I can’t believe the belief I had, the sheer power of conviction that they would pick me if I waited right there. To wait the year–in order to get in-state tuition too—I worked at Taco Bell, next-door, and I was just barely getting by. I lived in a house with four roommates, but the rent was about 400 a month for a bedroom. In the fall, I saw an ad in the Maneater (the student newspaper) for a cartoonist. It paid 12 dollars a cartoon. You had to produce 2 cartoons a week, but you had an open subject, any style, whatever you wanted to do.
I was not a student at the time, but maybe they made an exception for me. I could draw. I had imagination. I could do this. But what would I write about? I remember that I was reading Iron John: A book about Men, and was very confused by it. There was a lot I loved, and I lot I argued with. Robert Bly brings that out in people–and that’s okay. I had also picked up a book about polar bears from a discount shelf inside an old Hastings store. By mashing Robert Bly and polar bears I created Captain Bly and submitted six cartoons for consideration. I got in! It meant that I had nearly 100 extra dollars a month! I was thrilled.
I kept that cartoon strip going for four years. After the year waiting outside, I did finally get into Mizzou, but I kept the Taco Bell job too. The strip started out being about men, and about bears (I didn’t have a clue that I was a gay man who loved “bears” but drawing them made me happy). But soon it got into science, and I created three biologists who journey north and are stuck in a north where all the animals talk to them.
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Please join us in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the weekend before the Festival of Faith and Writing (at Calvin College), for Writing the LGBT Spiritual Journey Workshop, APRIL 5, SATURDAY, 9am–5pm.
For the LGBT person of faith, the journey has not been easy. Many of us are refugees from mainline denominations that offer faith but only to some, or only with clauses attached. Some of us have escaped into better, more accepting faiths or denominations–but that journey may not have been easy. Charting our spiritual journey, though, can help bring focus and fulfillment to our lives as part of the LGBT community. Writing our spiritual journeys also completes the missing parts of society’s spiritual journey. In this Workshop we will read LGBT writers of faith, as well as writers of faith in general, to pick up tips and techniques that will help you write about your journey. If you like discussing spirituality in the context of the LGBT community, with others like yourself, and exploring through writing what your journey has discovered, come join us. Using writing exercises, games, techniques of professional writers, and your own lives, you will create writing that struggles, overcomes, even heals, as it maps the spiritual journey of your life. All faiths are welcome. All struggles are welcome. Even if your spirituality doesn’t fall neatly in a box, join us. Boxes aren’t the best places for spirituality anyway.
This class needs a minimum of five people to run. Some reading will be sent to you via email before the workshop begins. Cost is $80 per person. Sign up early so we can be sure that the workshop runs, and that you receive readings for the workshop. Bring a journal, a pen, and the heart of an explorer.
For more information, and to sign up, please contact Fountain Street Church.
Saturday, April 5, 9am-5pm
Fountain Street Church
To sign up for this class, please follow this link to EventBrite: