Let the waves be open!
Let the light shine in!
Let us embrace parts of us
Where we have never been!
~From the poem, “Acceptance,” by Rachel Pretlow~
Dear Writing Woman,
April is a month of special months in which we honor the Earth, poetry, and autism. The Earth and poetry get a fair amount of attention all year. Not so much for autism, except for persons directly affected. Autism Acceptance Month is an advocacy movement led by people on the autism spectrum.
You might be surprised at the connections between nature, writing and autism. Well-known persons on the autism spectrum include global environmental activist Greta Thunberg and writer Temple Grandin whose well-known quote, “Animals make us human,” conveys her empathy with animals, as she advocates for humane treatment. Autistic writer Patrick Jasper Lee believes famous authors like Virginia Woolf and Hans Christian Anderson showed signs of autism. Virginia Woolf, for example, “took longer than the average child to learn how to speak. She suffered with anorexia, couldn’t look people in the eye, was intensely shy and felt isolated as a teenager. She enjoyed socializing but hated being peered at. She was also obsessed with her pens.”
Writer Claire Smith says, “Autistic people already know that one of the enduring myths about us is that we don’t do empathy. That we don’t get how others are feeling. That we don’t even get how we’re feeling . . . But loads of us can. In fact, many of us have no filter for emotions, so we’re hit regularly by tsunamis of feelings.” Read more of her essay.
Reading more deeply about autism from the points-of-view of persons on the spectrum has enlightened this writer. A visit the Art of Autism website will do the same for you!
SHARE YOUR WRITING WITH A WWW MEMBER “BUDDY”
SIGN UP TODAY!
Pairing with a writing buddy enables you to receive a deeper critique of a longer manuscript (20 pages or less, double-spaced). Between our April and May meetings, the two of you will exchange written work and discuss recommendations.
Please submit your name for a match-up by April 13 at Noon. Pam will announce matches at our April 13 meeting. If you cannot be at the meeting, we will connect you with your “buddy.”
JOIN US ON ZOOM, TUESDAY APRIL 13 BEGINNING 6:30 PM
The meeting link was included in this month’s newsletter, or please email for the meeting link.
Submit writing for peer commentary—As usual, we need volunteers to share up to five pieces of prose and/or poetry (4 pages double-spaced for prose and up to 3 poems). Please forward your manuscript to by Monday at 9 PM. Alisa will screen-share your work so you can read it aloud while the group members follow.
We will comment on each piece’s strengths and opportunities with five questions in mind—
- How would you describe the writer’s voice?
- Does the writing flow smoothly?
- Is there an arc to the story or poem?
- What is the point of the story?
- What can the writer do to finish the piece?
Write for our blog— Submit short fiction, nonfiction, and poetry for our blog (less than 1,200 words of prose). Send us something about your writing life, or life in general. Please pitch a blog idea or paste your writing in an e-mail to Help us provide content and encouragement to writers.
Enter the WOW—women on writing— contest for essays—WOW has four writing contests a year. Coming up is an essay contest. Must be less than 1,000 words; deadline is April 30. Cash prizes for 1st second and third place essays ($12 fee for entry). Enter today!
Enter the Carnegie Center contest— Lexington’s Carnegie Center invites writers to enter its Next Great Writers Contest. Accepted are fiction or nonfiction manuscripts of up to 2,000 words or up to five poems. First place winners will receive $150; second place winners will receive $100. A virtual public reading (date TBA) will also honor the winners. $10 entry fee; deadline April 30.
Consider submitting to the following online literary venues that specialize in women’s writing—
Discover journals, anthologies, and contests for fiction, nonfiction, or poetry on newpages.com
WE ARE PLANNING A SUMMER RETREAT AT HOPSCOTCH HOUSE
We’re working with the Kentucky Foundation for Women to schedule a retreat day and overnight in August or September. This is our opportunity to be together and commit uninterrupted time to our writing life. Conversations about writing and life enrich us!
HERE ARE WAYS YOU CAN SUPPORT OUR WRITING COMMUNITY.
Become a member (or re-member)—As a community, WWW strives to nurture your writing life. We hope you choose to join or renew as a member and participate in our monthly meetings, author talks, retreats, and workshops. Please share your ideas for future programming! You can attend two meetings as a non-member, before joining for $50. Students 18 and older enrolled in school can become members for $25.
Like our Facebook Page—@womenwhowriteky. Like our Facebook page (and linger awhile to take advantage of the posted content).
Join the leadership team—We need a social network coordinator for Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, etc. If you have questions specific to these positions, please email us from this website.
Be safe. Be strong. Be peace.
Love your writing life!
The leadership team— Kimberly, Pam, Melony & Alisa