Archive | November, 2012

Welcome Back!

26 Nov

Hello & Welcome Back LHS Students!

I hope everyone had a wonderful and restful week off. Your LHS Writing Center is open & ready for appointments:

The Writing Center is open from Mon-Fri 2:30-4:30pm. You can sign up in the Library – main counter – or email me a day/time at

Writing an Introduction: The Hook, Part 2

16 Nov

Just a Few Avenues to Explore…

There are any number of ways to write a hook & if you keep pushing yourself with the questions from this post, you’ll undoubtedly find your way. But just in case you’re still struggling…

— Remember: your hook MUST be related to your topic, regardless of which method you use.

* Interesting Anecdote/Story
Ray Bradbury’s nightmare isn’t full of robots but rather of men who play a dangerous game with their toys.

* Thought-Provoking Quotation
“I don’t think the robots are taking over. I think the men who play with toys have taken over. And if we don’t take the toys out of their hands, we’re fools.”

* Startling Statistic/Interesting Fact
“69 percent of children aged 2-5 can use a computer mouse, but only 11 percent can tie their own shoelaces.” Or better yet, put the statistic into your own words. More young children today can use a computer than dress themselves.

* Descriptive Image
Small, glowing lights flicker in the faces of the dazed children, their heads bowed down at the same angle. Barely audible clicks reverberate off the dusty books. It’s just another day in the library where more attention is paid to phones than to books.

* Succint, Powerful Statement
Kill your television.

* Leading Question
How is the pathway to happiness and equality paved by burning books? This leading question would work for an essay that analyzes Beatty’s motivations. NOTE: If using a question  make sure it is NOT one that can be answered with a simple yes or no response.

The Writing Center is open from Mon-Fri 2:30-4:30pm. You can sign up in the Library – main counter – or email me a day/time at

Call for Submissions: Inspiration Art Project

14 Nov
What inspires you to get or stay healthy could become part of a permanent art installation at Oregon’s newest hospital. 

This fall, Kaiser Permanente is inviting anyone who lives in its Oregon or Southwest Washington service area to share what inspired a switch to a healthier lifestyle. Entries should be accompanied by a digital photo of something representing that inspiration.

The most inspiring entries will be sent to Oregon painters. Kaiser Permanente is commissioning the artists to transform the winning photos into dozens of art panels that will form a large wall mosaic inside Kaiser Permanente Westside Medical Center. Located in the Tanasbourne area of Hillsboro, Oregon, the new 126-bed hospital and specialty medical clinic will open in August 2013. 

To participate, send a photo of your inspiration, along with a written essay fewer than 300 words or a three-minute or shorter video — in English or Spanish — telling how you’ve been inspired to get or stay healthy. The deadline is Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. For details, go to

Entrants whose essays and photos are selected will be invited to an unveiling of the finished art project in spring 2013 where they’ll get to meet artists who worked on the project.

Call for Submissions: Honoring Our Rivers

6 Nov

Honoring Our Rivers accepting entries for 2013 edition

All students, K-College are eligible to submit.  We welcome written works (no more than 500 words per entry please) that are typed or clearly printed, and original art and photography. Digital entries are encouraged. Please see our submissions page for detailed instructions. Artwork and photographs MUST be black and white. (Most color entries are very difficult to translate to a black & white publication). One entry per student. A written entry may be accompanied by original artwork.

Please post and spread the word to your networks! Call for Submissions

Conjunction Junction, What’s Your Function?

5 Nov

Okay, I know LHS students are way too young to get that reference but I’m sure your parents are familiar with it.

For a more detailed (though certainly not as silly) guide to conjunctions, check out this great article. If you’ve ever wondered how to use FANBOYS, these are great introductions.

November 2012 – Upcoming Literary Events

2 Nov

Looking for something fun AND literary to do this month? Check out these events:

November 1 – December 16 – A Poet’s Letters: The Correspondence of William Stafford @ Central Library (free)

Poet William Stafford (1914-1993), National Book Award winner and United States Poet Laureate, was one of the last of the generation of writers who greatly valued the preservation of correspondence. This exhibition draws from some 30,000 original letters housed at the William Stafford Archives at Lewis & Clark College, where Stafford taught for 30 years. The letters illustrate the many facets of a successful and productive writing life.

Correspondence on exhibit includes exchanges with editors, trade and fine press publishers, illustrators, academic colleagues, writers of all ages seeking advice, and fellow poets (among them, Marvin Bell, Robert Bly, Gerard Burns, James Dickey, Donald Hall, Lawson Inada, John Haines, Richard Hugo, Ted Kooser, Philip Levine, W.S. Merwin, Naomi Shihab Nye and James Wright).

For more information, contact John Wilson Special Collections Librarian Jim Carmin at 503.988.6287.

November 4th, 4:30pm – Sci-Fi Authorfest 6 @ Powell’s Cedar Hills (free)

A starfleet of science-fiction and fantasy authors descends for one galactic booksigning event. Attending authors include:

      Alma Alexander * Kevin James Breaux * Alyx Dellamonica * Ru Emerson * Mark Ferrari * Barb & J C Hendee * M K Hobson * Louise Marley * Michael Martin * Todd McCaffrey * Devon Monk * Peter Orullian * Shannon Page * J A Pitts * Phyllis Irene Radford * Deborah Ross * Ken Scholes * Mike Shepherd/Moscoe * Dave Smeds * Brent Weeks * Daniel Wilson * Matt Youngmark

November 5th, 7:30pm – Deb Perelman of The Smitten Kitchen @ Powell’s Burnside (free)

Food-blogging phenom Deb Perelman — home cook, mom, photographer, and celebrated author of — presents The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook(Knopf). With the same warmth, candor, and can-do spirit her blog is known for, Perelman offers more than 100 recipes, all gorgeously illustrated with hundreds of her beautiful color photographs.

Preorder a signed edition of The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook .

November 7th, 7:30pm – Whitney Otto @ Powell’s Burnside (free)

Bestselling author Whitney Otto offers a finely woven, textured inquiry into the intersecting lives of eight famous female photographers. Crisscrossing the world and a century,Eight Girls Taking Pictures (Scribner) is Otto’s most ambitious book: a bold, immersive, and unforgettable narrative that shows how the art, loves, and lives of the past influence our present.

Preorder a signed edition of Eight Girls Taking Pictures .

November 7-11 – The Nature of Words Annual Literary Festival (free – $110)

The Nature of Words annual literary festival, Central Oregon’s premier literary event, takes place each November in Bend, Oregon. Now in its eighth year, The Nature of Words brings nationally acclaimed authors to Bend for five days of readings, workshops, lectures, and a gala author dinner. The Nature of Words has featured more than sixty acclaimed authors since its inception.

Tickets to the 2012 festival are available online by clicking here. For questions, call 541-647-2233.

November 8th, 7:30-9:30pm – Smalldoggies Reading Series @ Literary Arts (free)

Smalldoggies Magazine and Reading Series will host Brian S. Ellis, Lidia Yuknaavitch and Rick Klaras @LiteraryArts.

November 9th, 7pm – Jennifer Worick @ Powell’s Cedar Hills (free)

A humor book inspired by the blog of the same name,Things I Want to Punch in the Face (Prospect Park Books) by bestselling author Jennifer Worick offers: 1) a humorous way to convey annoyance or frustration over those little things in life that bug, 2) petty peeves warranting a tongue-in-cheek lashing but involving no physical retribution, and 3) an expression made wildly popular by the blog.

Preorder a signed edition of Things I Want to Punch in the Face .

November 13th, 6:40pm – Escape to Gold Mountain: A Graphic History of the Chinese in North America @ PSU School of Business Room 190 (free)

David Wong, a prominent architect in Vancouver, Canada and the author of the upcoming graphic novel Escape to Gold Mountain: A Graphic History of the Chinese in North America, will talk about his new book and the history of Chinese immigration to and settlement in North America.

The schedule includes a book talk as well as pre-lecture book sales & signing event.

November 14th, 5:30-7pm – Women of Color Zine Workshop @ PSU Women’s Resource Center (free)

The Women of Color Zine Workshops are an opportunity for local women of color to become involved in writing, self-publishing, and activism. Come out and join us as we start a new year of workshops! Open to all! For more information, contact Tonya Jones at

November 16th, 10:30-12:30pm – Using the Oregonian Historical Archives @ Central Library (free)

Part of a series – sign up at the Multnomah County Library web site

November 20th, 7pm – Fred Armisen & Carrie Brownstein @ Bagdad Theater ($16.99 includes admission & a copy of Portlandia: A Guide for Visitors)

Fred Armisen is an actor, comedian, and musician best known as a cast member of Saturday Night LiveCarrie Brownstein is an actor, comedian, and musician best known as the guitar player and vocalist for the legendary indie-rock band Sleater-Kinney. Together, they are the co-creators and stars of the Peabody Award-winning sketch-comedy series Portlandia, which is now filming its third season… and releasing its first book, Portlandia: A Guide for Visitors (Grand Central Publishing). Please Note: Tickets for this special event, $16.99, include admission and a copy of Portlandia: A Guide for Visitors, and are available at the box offices of the Bagdad Theater and Crystal Ballroom, online at, or by phone at 855-227-8499. Books will be distributed at the event.


Have a literary event you’d like to publish here? Do you know of a fun event that’s missing from this list? Please comment on this post & I’ll update for our readers.

An Essay Writing Tool

1 Nov

I’ve been posting a lot lately about the various elements of an essay starting at the pre-writing stage to writing and revising the rough draft. I’m also in the middle of breaking down the two hardest paragraphs of an essay – the introduction and the conclusion. For the introduction, you’ve got the hook and the map. The conclusion posts will come next week.

In my research for the above posts, I came across a handy-dandy online tool – the Essay Map. It’s a plug-and-play model and not one that you’ll want to count as spitting out a final draft but in terms of organizing your ideas and argument, it looks pretty good.

Has anyone used this tool before? Or do you have a recommendation for something better? Let us know in the comments.

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