Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Whiskey in the Garden of Eden reviewed in The Montserrat Review

Sarah Browning's poetry collection, Whiskey in the Garden of Eden, was reviewed recently in The Montserrat Review. Read the review at

Whiskey in the Garden of Eden was published by The Word Works under its Hilary Tham Capital Collection series earlier this year. You can purchase copies at

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

2006 Washington Prize Winner Receives Verse Drama Prize from The Poetry Foundation

The Poetry Foundation has announced that John Surowiecki is the inaugural recipient of the Verse Drama Prize of $10,000, honoring a living poet who has written a previously unpublished, outstanding original verse drama in English. In addition to the cash prize, the winning manuscript will be presented as a staged reading in New York and Chicago in 2008. The Verse Drama Prize brings renewed attention to an under-recognized area of poetry and encourages poets to work in a new genre, thereby bringing fresh life to the art.

Surowiecki is the author of two poetry collections, Watching Cartoons before Attending a Funeral (White Pine Press, 2003) and The Hat City after Men Stopped Wearing Hats (The Word Works, 2006 Washington Prize), and five chapbooks. My Nose and Me: (A TragedyLite or TragiDelight in 33 Scenes) is his first piece written for the stage.

In 2005, Surowiecki was awarded a poetry fellowship from the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism, Office of the Arts. He is a freelance writer and teaches poetry courses at Manchester Community College. His poems have recently appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, Common Ground Review, Connecticut Review, Margie, Nimrod, and Poetry.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

The Word Works Publishes Christopher Conlon's Mary Falls: Requiem for Mrs. Surratt

The Word Works is pleased to announce the publication of Mary Falls: Requiem for Mrs. Surratt, a collection of poetry by Christopher Conlon.

“Here she is: Mary Elizabeth Surratt, who was hanged as co-conspirator in the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, has taken passionate possession of Christopher Conlon and now lives as ghost in his evocative sequence,” says William Heyen, author of Shoah Train. Conlon melds history with poetry to evocative effect as he imagines the emotional turmoil of a woman infatuated with the man who would become a legend: John Wilkes Booth. The collection includes a Reading Group Guide.

Conlon is a poet, fiction writer, and editor whose books include Gilbert and Garbo in Love: A Romance in Poems (The Word Works, 2003), Thunder­showers at Dusk: Gothic Stories (Rock Village Publishing, 2006) and Poe’s Lighthouse (Cemetery Dance, 2006). His work has been published in Poets & Writers, America, Filmfax, Tennessee Williams Annual Review, and many other periodicals. He lives in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Mary Falls: Requiem for Mrs. Surratt can be ordered online at or at


Wednesday, August 15
7:30 p.m.
The Frederick Coffee Company
100 N. East Street, Frederick, MD
Ph. 301-698-0039

Thursday, November 8
Time TBA
Nora School Poetry Series
955 Sligo Avenue, Silver Spring, MD
Ph. 301-495-NORA

Wednesday, November 28
Kensington Row Bookshop
3786 Howard Avenue, Kensington, MD
Ph. 301-949-9416

Sunday, January 13, 2008
IOTA Poetry Series
Iota Bar & Restaurant
2832 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA
Ph. 703-522-8340 or 703-256-9275

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Finale at Miller Cabin

This season at Joaquin Miller's Cabin was exceptionally stellar—7 out of 8 programs were in the park (meaning we weren't rained out), audience attendance was consistently good (20 to 40 people per program), readers as was always the tradition over the 30 plus years were memorable if not standouts, and our co-directors Kathi Morrison-Taylor, Doug Wilkinson, and Rosemary Winslow as well as our Jacklyn Potter Young Poets Director Perry Epes provided the kind of engaged and hospitable support that makes people want to come back.

I believe we have a winning team in Kathi, Doug, and Rosemary.

Many thanks to everyone who contributed to the 2007 Miller Cabin Poetry Series. A special thanks to Mrs. Paul Grayson for catering the reception on June 19 and to all of you who made contributions in Jacklyn Potter's name.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Prartho Sereno Wins Word Works 2007 Washington Prize

The Word Works is pleased to announce that Prartho Sereno, of San Anselmo, CA, won the 2007 Washington Prize for her full-length poetry manuscript, Call from Paris. The prize includes publication and a cash award of $1,500.

Ms. Sereno is a California Poet in the Schools and a watercolor artist whose work appears on book and CD covers. She is the author of a chapbook of poems, Garden Sutra (Finishing Line Press, 2005), and a book of essays, Everyday Miracles (Kensington, N.Y., 1998). Her illustrated book of poems, Causing a Stir: The Secret Lives and Loves of Kitchen Utensils, will be issued by Mansarovar Press in October 2007. She won a Marin Arts Council Individual Artist Grant in 2003. Her individual poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Atlanta Review, Chautauqua Review, Comstock Review, Rattle, Runes, California Quarterly, and other journals.

Call from Paris was chosen the winner from 257 manuscripts submitted by American poets. Two additional manuscripts were named honorable mentions: Balloon Animals, by Donald Illich, Rockville, MD, and The Fat Sheep Everyone Wants, by Bern Mulvey, Ekuserento Beru, Japan.

Final judges in this year’s contest were Karren L. Alenier, J.H. Beall, Bernadette Geyer, Miles David Moore, and Steven B. Rogers. First readers were Cliff Bernier, Doris Brody, Angelyn Donahue, W. Perry Epes, Michael Gushue, Erich Hintze, Tod Ibrahim, Sydney March, Mike McDermott, Ann Rayburn, Martha Sanchez-Lowery, Jill Tunick, and Doug Wilkinson. Second readers were Mark Dawson, Brandon D. Johnson, and Judith McCombs.

The Word Works has awarded the Washington Prize since 1981. In 2008, the Word Works again will offer publication and a $1,500 prize to a volume of original poetry. Submissions will be accepted from Jan. 15 to March 1, 2008, and the entry fee will be $25. All entrants receive a copy of the winning book. For further information and guidelines (available December 2007), send a stamped, self-addressed envelope to the Word Works, P.O. Box 42164, Washington DC 20015, or visit the Word Works Web site at

Call from Paris is available by advance order for $10 plus $3.50 shipping and handling from the mailing address above.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Miller Cabin Readings

When Kathi Morrison-Taylor says, "Let us join together to welcome," I am transported into the history of all the evenings lit with fireflies, candles, flashlights, and the poetry of illuminated artists who have traveled to this cathedral of trees towering over the modest log cabin originally built by Joaquin Miller.

This year we celebrate and remember poets intimately connected with the Miller Cabin: Jacklyn Potter, Robert Sargent, and Hilary Tham.
Cabin cake
baked by
Lois McBride

Miles Moore holds up The Tao of Mrs. Wei by Hilary Tham when he paid to tribute to her at the July 19, 2007 program which included
Heather Blain

and Shep Ranbom.

This year has been especially wonderful with sizeable audiences filling the picnic tables around the cabin. During the 4th of July holiday week over 30 people appeared to hear
Kay Lindsey and
Susan Bucci Mockler. To make the programs more festive, Michael Hauptschein occassionally hangs his unicorn banners.

Only three more programs left. Next week we hear Temple Cone and Barbara Lefcowitz. Joe Goldberg will read a poem by Hilary Tham. Don't miss the pleasure of the Miller Cabin Poetry Series this summer.

To quote Jacklyn Potter, "Tourjours le mot!"

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The Word Works Publishes First Poetry Collection by Rosemary Winslow

The Word Works, through its Hilary Tham Capital Collection, has published Green Bodies, the first collection of poetry by Rosemary Winslow.

Winslow is on the faculty of the Catholic University of America, where she teaches writing and literature, and where she has directed writing programs for 19 years. Based on her work, which has appeared in numerous literary magazines and anthologies, she has received a residency grant at the Vermont Studio Center as well as a writer’s grant and three Larry Neal Awards for Poetry from the DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities.

Green Bodies can be ordered online at


Sunday, July 22, 4pm
Wonalancet Chapel
Rt.113A, Wonalancet, NH

Tuesday, July 24
Bayswater Book Co.
6 Main Street, Center Harbor, NH

Thursday, November 8, 7:30pm
Nora School Poetry Reading
955 Sligo Avenue, Silver Spring, MD

Sunday, December 9, 6 pm
Iota Bar and Restaurant
2832 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA
703-522-8340 or 703-256-9275

Jacklyn Potter Remembered

Last evening June 25 under the trees at Joaquin Miller's cabin, we celebrated Jacklyn Potter, who for over 20 years was the impresario nonpareil of the Miller Cabin Poetry Series. The program began with readings by winners of the Jacklyn Potter Young Poets Competition—Helen Sitar who won in 2006 and Elizabeth McLean who won in 2007. Elizabeth, who drove up from Charlottesville, Virginia, with her parent, had a memorable poem about a swim meet. Helen, who has been coming to programs at Miller Cabin since she was eleven, read a very moving poem about being by her grandmother's side as she died.

Anne Becker presented the next part of the program which was a reading of poems by Jacklyn. Anne, who knew Jacklyn in the early 1970s and was house mates with her, selected a poignant mix of work that gave us Jacklyn, the activist working with migrant workers; Jacklyn, the daugher who as a little girl had to mother her mother; Jacklyn, the philosopher writing about immortality. Anne, who was by Jacklyn's bedside when she breathed her last breath, was very moved by Helen Sitar's poem about her grandmother. Also Anne brought photos of Jacklyn and the group of people they lived with in Washington, DC. There was our Jacklyn with long blond hair at the Embassy of Atlantis, the name of the group house nestled in a neighborhood of many embassies including the embassiy of Belgium.

Also many kudos to Perry Epes, Director of the Jacklyn Potter Young Poets Competition (he introduced the young poets last evening), Kathi Morrison-Taylor, Co-Director of the Miller Cabin Series (she has a warm and welcoming style that Jacklyn would love and last evening she gave us a vignette of Miller at 17 years old cooking for gold miners in California!), Doug Wilkinson, Co-Director of the Miller Cabin Series (he is handling the open mic portion of the program and last week he went solo with a engaging program headlined by Heather Blaine & Shep Ranbom) and audience (including the regular attendees) who braved the heat and humidity to share in the evening.

The Word Works Publishes First Poetry Collection by Sarah Browning

The Word Works, through its Hilary Tham Capital Collection, has published Sarah Browning's first book of poems, Whiskey in the Garden of Eden.

Sarah has arranged a release party/reading on Sunday, July 15, 6 pm at Busboys & Poets. If you can't make the 15th, she'll be reading a number of other times this summer and fall (see following schedule).

Whiskey in the Garden of Eden is available at Busboys & Poets Books or from The Word Works.

Release Party/Reading
Whiskey in the Garden of Eden by Sarah Browning
Sunday, July 15, 6-8 pm
Langston Room, Busboys & Poets
14th & V Streets, NW
Washington, DC
U Street/Cardozo on the Metro green line, 202-387-POET


Additional readings:

Wednesday, July 18, 7:30 PM
Honfleur Gallery
1241 Good Hope Rd. SE
Washington , D.C.
Refreshments provided. Suggested donation is $2

Tuesday, July 24, 7:30 pm
Miller Cabin Series
Joaquin Miller Cabin
Rock Creek Park , Picnic Area #6, Beach Drive at Military Road Overpass
For more information and rain location, call Julie Enszer at 301-537-6570

Saturday, July 28, 2 PM
Karibu Books, Pentagon City Mall
1100 South Hayes Street, Arlington , VA

Thursday, August 23
Northampton, MA
Location and time TBA
Friday, September 14, 6:30 pm
NW Washington, DC house party reading
For details, contact:

Wednesday, September 26, 7 pm
Kensington Row Bookshop
3786 Howard Avenue, Kensington MD
301 949 9416

Monday, November 5, 7:30 pm
Cafe Muse at the Friendship Heights Village Center
4433 South Park Avenue, Chevy Chase, MD
301 656-2797

Sunday, December 9, 6 pm
Iota Bar and Restaurant
2832 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA
703-522-8340 or 703-256-9275

Monday, June 25, 2007

Welcome to The Word Works' New Blog!

We are bursting at the seams with news, so stay tuned for our updates! Our Board will also post regularly on topics relevant to the literary community.