Friday, September 21, 2007

True North/Nord Vrai

B l u e B e g o n i a P r e s s , I n c .

Jody Aliesan's True North/Nord Vrai has just been released from Blue Begonia Press.

Jody's story, and the story of the book are compelling in many of the ways that the book is compelling.

Blue Begonia Press stretches out believing in the larger story Jody carries. Here's part of the story.

Jody Aliesan left the US three years ago. We expect that her longtime readers in the Pacific Northwest and farther afield will be interested in knowing what she's doing now, both personally and in her writing. A library service in New York ordered copies of True North/Nord Vrai immediately after we registered it with the Library of Congress. University Book Store in Seattle posted the book online two months ago and is collecting orders. Last week we received a request from a professor of political science in Tennessee who heard of the book word of mouth. Canadians have become aware of Aliesan's presence in their midst; without our approaching them, the Vancouver public library and the city's independent and chain bookstores already offer her most recent books. Aliesan has said she will not be crossing the border south again and that True North/Nord Vrai is such an exposure that personal appearances would be excessive. We will market her reticence and principle to pique curiosity and to focus readers on the book itself.

It can be ordered directly from the press, at

Jim Bodeen, President

(509) 452-9748

Jody Aliesan: True North/Nord Vrai

186pp, 7"x 9" trade softcover

ISBN: 0-911287-58-2

$18.00 USD

Excerpts at

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

LitFuse Scholarships

LitFuse 2007: A Poet's Workshop

Tieton Arts & Humanities announces LitFuse 2007:  A Poet's Workshop.  This 2-day workshop to be held November 3-4 in Tieton, WA (15 minutes west of Yakima), features hands-on letterpress printing opportunities, Susan Rich (winner of the PEN/USA Poetry Award and Peace Corps Writers' Award, among others), Kathleen Flenniken (winner of the Prairie Schooner Book award), poetry rooted in place by Dan Peters, a special narrated screening of Voices in Wartime, Cody Walker & Paul Nelson's astonishing teaching, and a murder of your fellow poets itching to channel the MUSE.  All in a hilltop rural setting guaranteed to inspire.  Check it out at to register, or email for more information.


Here's my summary:


  • Mighty Tieton, an arts organization, is an incredible group of people.
  • I'm teaching (Dan Peters) two workshops at this conference—one on poetry of place, including some outside work around the town of Tieton;  another on poetry and art using the Mighty Tieton collection, which is incredible. 
  • The headliner, Susan Rich, as you can see from her bio, is a well known and respected poet and teacher.  We're fortunate to have her come to this workshop.
  • There's an interesting option of learning the art of "letterpress" work—that is publishing using handset type and fine papers.  I think the idea is that you'd come away with a broadside of your own. 
  • The two day workshop is pricey, ($200 if you register before October) but I think it's worth it.  The people at Mighty Tieton are legit and hoping to make it a place for collaboration among all the arts.  They've got a huge start on the visual arts, and are dipping their toes in the water on the literary arts with this weekend. 
  • Finally, part of my negotiation with the board of Mighty Tieton was that I be able to offer some scholarships to local writers.  So, I've got four $50 dollar scholarships available.  First come first serve.  I'll set a deadline of September 28th.
    • If I only get two people interested, it will be a $100 dollar scholarship. 
    • If only one person is interested, it's a full ride. 
    • I realize this varied amount might make a big difference to your level of interest, so for starters, drop me an email if you're interested in any level of help with going to the workshops and after the 28th, I'll email back those who expressed interest and we'll try to figure out how much you need and how much has been claimed. 


Featured Artist: Susan Rich, winner of the PEN USA Poetry Award & the Peace Corps Writers Poetry Award for The Cartographer's Tongue: Poems of the World (White Pine Press, 2000). Susan has worked as a staff person for Amnesty International, an electoral supervisor in Bosnia, and a human rights trainer in Gaza. She lived in the Republic of Niger, West Africa as a Peace Corps Volunteer, later moving to South Africa to teach at the University of Cape Town on a Fulbright Fellowship. Educated at the University of Massachusetts, Harvard University, and the University of Oregon, Susan lives in Seattle and teaches at Highline Community College and the Antioch University MFA Program in LA. She is an alum of Cottages at Hedgebrook, and an editor at Floating Bridge Press.