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598 Brookside Drive, Eugene, OR 97405
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Young Writers Association - Lane County

Hear Ye, Hear Ye


Requests and literary news

~YWA Literary Arts à la carte ~ contact YWA

• YWA takes requests for special projects. It's as if YWA is a kitchen and folks can request their favorite dish, or ask for a dish with certain ingredients for a tasty special-- YWA literary kitchens! 

Request in school residencies, YEA!Days, WILCS, Triads, Flight, ArtsParties, TAGLab Intensives or Stories From Here

 • Request after school, non-school days and special projects. Your community group, parent group, library or community businesses partner, may want to sponsor writing workshops, after school writing groups or one of our integrated literary arts explorations.

~ Share information on local literary arts opportunities for youth~ contact YWA

• YWA wants information to post about what others are doing-- their literary arts opportunities for youth. We want to get that information out in as many ways as we can. Families so want to know.

• Please send us your information on Lane County, Oregon literary arts opportunities for youth and we will share it on our website & Facebook page.

• Like us on Facebook to receive our postings-- go to Facebook,  Young Writers Association (Lane County, Oregon) or click on the Facebook icon on our home page and "like us".

~ Links: what others are doing

-- Tsunami Books has TWO open mic opportunities for all ages. Call them to find out when the next ones will be held: 541-345-8986. Find Tsunami at 2585 Willamette Street, Eugene.

1. All-Ages Open Mic Poetry  and Jazz ($5-10, includes admission to the slam)

2. This is followed by The Eugene All-Ages Poetry Tslam. Performance poets get 3 minutes 11 seconds limit per poem, original work only. ($5-10 admission)

--  Lane Library League has contact information for public and volunteer libraries in Lane County

-- Oregon Poetry Association has an annual contest for youth.

-- Honoring Our Rivers, accepts river-related submissions from youth. Application

-- Skipping Stones Multicultural Magazine publishes youth. Here are the submission guidelines.

-- Setting Forth-- on a Literary Itinerary would like to include writing by children in the magazine. Find out more at http://settingForth.org 

-- UO Youth Enrichment/TAG has partnered with Young Writers Association for many years. YE/TAG offers enrichment in all subject areas to eager, able learners.

-- Wordcrafters in Eugene is a new literary arts non profit focusing on fiction and craft. They include both adult and young writers in their programming. Wordcrafters offers an annual creative writing contest for youth, and for 2015, team up with Lane Arts Council to offer writing and visual arts labs on no school days.

-- Oregon Humane Society's 67th Annual Be Kind to Animals Poster & Story Contest deadline for Oregon and Clark County Washington for grades 1-8 is December 18, 2015.

-- School-aged writers are invited to sign-up to read their original writing at The Poetry Stage @ The Festival Of Eugene in late August (festivalofeugene.com ). The Reading is featured in Festival of Eugene advertising as a Sunday afternoon student reading or open mic for their friends and family to enjoy. To sign-up or get more information contact C. Steven Blue by email: cstevenblue@wordsongs.com Steven Schreiner (Pen name: C. Steven Blue) is Publisher/Managing Editor of Arrowcloud Press, a poet, as well as a producer and host of annual poetry events here in Eugene (website: website: www.wordsongs.com). He produces and hosts The Poetry Stage @ The Festival Of Eugene. 

-- Lane Literary Guild  has a helpful list of literary arts links on their webpage.

-- Mid-Valley Willamette Writers is the largest writers' organization in Oregon.  Lindy Cady shares some tips for young writers on developing characters in Lamp World, on YouTube. The video was shot in the office of Willamette Writers.

-- Sallie Vandagrift taught after school workshops for Young Writers Association for a number of years and has started a literary arts organization for youth: salmonhousewriters.com.

-- Ophelia's Place is a supportive community for girls, located at 1577 Pearl St. #100, in Eugene. They sometimes offer creative writing classes on site after school, and during their annual Girls Rule Event at Lane Community College: http://www.opheliasplace.net

-- Upstart Crow Studios sometimes offers a class on script writing in their Studios on 855 W. 1st Avenue in Eugene.  


Enjoy Roller Coaster by YWA's 4th & 5th grade Wild Imagination Group

Roller Coaster

Up and down like a humming bird hovering,

The ear-splitting shriek of the metal rails.

Light wind the color of lilacs,

The speed of a storm,

The death of all worries.

Sitting in a casket of screams and laughter,

Racing with the cobra

Feeling as small as a finch.

by Santina Donnelly, Wilson Garland, Dhruthi Mandavilli, Meghan McMahan, Adrianna Ripley, Ashley Schmittle, Aiden Turpin, Kate Vu, Esther Yang, Nathan Yeh



See Details

Young People Writing and Wordplay- YWA Special Requests

YWA~Young People Writing and Wordplay Around Town


Community members asked for the following YWA Special Projects -- you can too.


  YWA Special Request led by Jon Labrouse and Dave Prince  writing + art + super heroes, a lab for teens:

  Teen Epic Poetry Poster Production Workshop

Most people don't make the leap to Action/Adventure when they think about art and poetry.  Fortunately, artist, David Prince, and poet, Jon Labrousse, are not 'most people.'  Beauty in nature is a wonder to contemplate, without a doubt, but it's a lot more exciting when the squirrels are clad in all black, and armed with nunchakus and ninjato.  Existential angst is a lot more thrilling when the humdrum woes of the world can be solved with super powers and flaming battle axes. Develop compelling characters, in words and images, and put them through heroic trials.  Compose truly Epic verse, celebrating their story.  Best of all, put it all together in a poster complete with artwork and illustrations that you can take home and hang on your wall as a totem against the doldrums, and as an inspiration to action!



• Science Fiction writing for middle school and high school writers YWA Special Request led by teaching writer, Nina Kiriki Hoffman:

 Invent a story using dice! Come to this workshop ready to write.  We'll roll dice to choose characters, companions, future devices, and more!  Let's see how much you can discover and write about!




• Writing Mentor YWA Special  Request: a young writer works one-on-one with a teaching writer weekly to test writing tips, explore writing remedies and indulge in the pleasure of words.


Exercise Your Wild Imagination writing group YWA Special Request:

Give your creative brain a workout while discovering writers your own age. Try different writing ideas prompted by stories, drama games, art, or by odd and familiar objects. Write and illustrate. Play with language and surprise in your original stories and poems.  Each packed meeting, experiment with writing tips, and “workshop” your writing in small groups through positive constructive feedback. Find out about potential publishing opportunities and how to submit your work. For our 8th meeting, invite friends and family to hear original writing from our term together. Louisa Lindsay-Sprouse leads this after school group.


• Boys' Writing Club after school YWA Special Request: A writing adventure for inventive boys to explore through writing,  “…places not down in any map; true places never are.”  Herman Melville


• Storyteller! YWA Special Request:  Louisa Lindsay-Sprouse tells to mixed-age gatherings from school-wide celebrations and festivals to classrooms and libraries.

Louisa’s words come to life with a power and honesty that engages every cell. Her work is fresh, alive, joyful. She is a mesmerizing performer. Margo Van Ummersen, parent and choreographer

You lit up the Dock Street Theatre and the faces of your most appreciative audience. Carol Furtwangler, Coordinator, Sundown Festival, Spoletto USA

Louisa captivated our students, staff, and parents with her ability to make a story come to life.  She kept the audience spellbound throughout the story. ...  If you have a chance to see one of Louisa Lindsay-Sprouse’s story telling performances, you will see an artist who conveys her love of story and its message through all she says and does.  Kathi Dew, Principal, Thurston Elementary


• Poetry-writing YWA Special Request for middle school and high school writers:

LOST AND FOUND: a poetry workshop with Kelly Terwilliger In this workshop we will write our way into and through the realm of Lost and Found to see what we uncover... 1. the room (or table, or box) where misplaced things are gathered, 2. what happens when something lost is recovered, 3. what happens when what is lost stays at least somewhat lost; when something new is discovered...




 • Take Flight is an in-school program from the Science Factory and Young Writers Association. We present a day of creative exploration in science, creative writing and visual arts. See the details here.



 • Mess With Words-Inventing Wild Family Tales YWA Special Request for mixed-aged Family Time: 

Inspired by a folktale, exercise creativity in action packed wordplay. Tell, illustrate, act and imagine both solo and in family teams. Led by Louisa Lindsay-Sprouse.




• Poetry-writing YWA Special Request for middle school and high school writers:

Out of the Ordinary, the Voices of Poetry: a poetry workshop with Carter McKenzie   To shut our eyes is Travel. Emily Dickinson Where do poems hide? What feeds them so that they emerge, making their presence known through the immediacy of the senses of sound, sight, smell, taste, texture? Through unexpected associations and recognition of kindred spirits conjured by all of these elements? During this hour, we explore how your own poems might take place out of the ordinary world, and beyond assumptions, through engaging writing exercises, and through the inspiration of poetry by a range of writers including Naomi Shihab Nye, William Stafford, Gary Soto, W.S. Merwin, and Emily Dickinson.



Writers! Unfurl Fine Writing! Join a Writing Lab Intensive. Each packed morning, meet with writers your age to work with a different published author, talk with a representative for potential publishing opportunities, and “workshop” your writing in small groups through positive constructive feedback. Facilitated by Young Writers Association founder, Louisa Lindsay-Sprouse.



 Do you have a Special Request for YWA? Would you like to see a writing club at your school, or a writing residency or classroom visit? Let's look at possibilities-- contact YWA.


See Details

Take 2 Poems...poetry collection

Take Two Poems to Tea- visits with the unpredictable, edited and with an introduction by Louisa Lindsay

Take Two Poems to Tea- visits with the unpredictable, a collection of poems designed to stir up original writing from the reader, is a multigenerational exploration. And the poems are living entities eager to talk back from within their world. This collection is a gathering up of over fifty word constellations: adult poems, the young writers' poems they inspired, and questions the poems invited. As Robert Bly says in his poem, Turkish Pears:

Sometimes a poem has her own husband

And children, her nooks and gardens and kitchens.

To order: Please pay through the Paypal button on the Young Writers Association  home page. The cost is $18, plus $3 shipping with-in the United States.


See Details

Publishings & Readings

Publishing youth is a community project! Thank you for helping YWA publish Lane county kids and teens for 20 years! 



YWA's free creative writing journal UPSTARTS

•  Buy a CD of kids and teens reading for radio! YWA's MIXED VOICES on KLCC/NPR, 89.7

• YWA writers are on panels for the City of Eugene’s STEP INTO STORIES parking garage project.  Visit the Epark Facebook Page here.

• ywa literature illuminated, digital storytelling project, here


CONTESTS: YWA will no longer host these contests. We encourage you to hold your own school-wide or community group contests and celebration of winners.

The fall YWA SCARY WRITING contest, deadline on the 4th Friday in September. Winners are published on the YWA website.

YWA GLITTERARY Contest: winter-spring creative writing contest , deadline on the 1st of February, with changing theme. Winners are published on the YWA website.



Businesses, museums, galleries and libraries step up to host student reading receptions. Volunteers coordinate these celebratory events. We’ll keep you updated on facebook.



YWA WRITE AN ADVENTURE workshop is no longer active, but enjoy the blog

YWA Writers in Lane County Schools, Crow High School blog

YWA Writers in Lane County Schools, Gateway High School blog

YWA Writers in Lane County Schools, Kalapuya High blogs:  Group 1Group 2


Donations keep these opportunities alive for our young people



Skipping Stones Magazine submission guidelines

Honoring Our Rivers student anthology Application

Oregon Poetry Association has an annual contest for youth.

Wordcrafters of Eugene has a fiction-writing contest for young writers. 

Setting Forth--on a Literary Itinerary would like to include writing by children in the magazine. Find out more at http://settingForth.org  

Oregon Humane Society Poster & Story Contest for grades 1-8


See Details

ywa literature illuminated web-publishing

ywa literature illuminated


A digital storytelling project, ywa literature illuminated showcases original illustrated writing by youth. Listen to recorded stories and poems while letting your eyes linger on visual components.  This project was made possible by Mary Duke, a practicum student in the Arts and Administration Program at the University of Oregon.



Click here to enjoy the ywa literature illuminated publishing project.

See Details

YWA Drawn to the Word, UpStarts Anthology II

Drawn to the Word, UpStarts Anthology II

Image by Kathleen Caprario, Untitled  

Untitled by Flora Winters, age 18

She keeps everything in.

In her room

Books in rows

Clothes in the closet

Feelings in her heart.

Only the river can Wash away her good intentions.

I’m going out to sea, he calls.

He drags leaves and branches

Melts stones round

Whistling all the while.

She lets it carry her tears out with it.

Nature cannot be held in.


Drawn to the Word, UpStarts Anthology II, $15   Click to contact YWA.

Order your copy by mail with a check. 

YWA has been publishing youth for twenty years and this is our second anthology. We  designed a collection showcasing ten years of imaginative, lively writing by Lane County young people. Drawing us into the different words of the writers, local artists donated illustrations and abstract art created in response to the poems and stories that particularly stirred them. With words and image, we have a one-of-a-kind publication to savor and to return to again and again. 

Paulann Petersen, Oregon Poet Laureate writes in her introduction to Drawn to the Word: "In one of the poems included in this collection, seventeen-year-old James Emery states that 'No price can be given/ To something that can’t be touched/ But can touch you…,' and the creative writing showcased in Drawn to the Word is, indeed, both priceless and touching."

And Greg Kirby, fourth-year undergraduate at the University of Oregon, who helped sift through thirty issues of UpStarts, writes: "From the comforts of family, to fears of darkness and vampires, and from humorous stories of dragons and sloth to writing inspired by Oregon and its rain—these writings are inspirational and a joy to read."


YWA writers published in Drawn to the Word

Evan Arkin, Jaime Armstrong, Sara Balsom, Cooper Barnes, Emily Beckstrand, Mary Biwersi, Martha Brasted-Maki, Savannah Coen, Cameron Cota, Kaleb Crouch, Melina Deinum-Buck, Brian Dougherty, Samantha Elkins, James Emery, Charlotte Erfurth, Hannah Eshelman, Rachael Ferguson, Lida Ford, Aaron Glennon, Sophia Gossard, Lindsey Graham, Andréa Griffin, Ronan Hall, Hannah Harris, Alison Heizer, Aaron Honn, Mira Howard, Katrina Inselman, Vincent Kelley, Hano Kim, Jenny Koh, Amos Lachman, Renee Lee , Seanar LeTaw, Sarah Libby, Gabriel Lovinger, Emily Mangan, Harry Miller, Zachary Miller, Jacob Moch, Hayden Moore, Morgan Montgomery, Sierra Morisson, Natalie Mosman, Kayla Newland, Rachelle O’Bryant, Cameron O’Hair, Ashlie Ortiz, Jaime Ping, Jordan Prasniewski, Sahalie Pittman, Millie Prenevost, Jamie Rowlett, Cassie Ruud, Larissa Satterwhite , Madisyn Schultz, Phoebe Sheldon Young, Claire Shepard, Stephanie Silver, Jemila Spain, Sierra Sussman, Maisie Titterington, Audrey Thomas, Dylan Troyer, Kiara Varga, Rayna Viles, Arielle Ward, Elle Wayt, Brynne Webb, Katherine Westermann, Kavin Wijesekara, Flora Winters, Lizzie Wolfram, Natalie Wong

The artists who responded to the poems and stories: Susan Applegate, Kathleen Caprario, Paula Goodbar, Annie Fulkerson, Annie Heron, Peter Herley, Judith Hankin, Robert Hill Long, Lily Nelson, Jerry Ross, Sandy Tillcock and Judy Volem 


See Details


Copyright © 2012 Young Writers Association (YWA)
598 Brookside Drive, Eugene, OR 97405
541/485-2259 - Email Us
stirring up literary play in youth & in the community
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