2014 Archives

Finding the Shape of the Story by Kristen den Hartog

From the Archives 

Kristen den Hartog

Kristen den Hartog

The Occupied Garden, co-written with my sister Tracy Kasaboski, tells the story of our grandparents during the Second World War in Holland. Opa was a market gardener, and grew vegetables on a huge property near the Hague — thank god, actually, because it meant that they had at least some food by the end, and that because of his “necessary” occupation he was less likely to be scooped for forced labour, at least during gardening months.

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Monday, December 29th, 2014

Wordless Wednesday photo: 90 … Merry Christmas!

 

©2013 Allyson Latta

©2013 Allyson Latta

 

Each week on Wordless Wednesday, bloggers around the world post a photo they’ve taken that tells a story. If my photo brings to mind a memory or inspires your creative writing, I hope you’ll share a comment below.

 

Scroll through more of my photos here.

And check out these “photos that make you go hmm” from my Canadian writer-photographer friends from coast to coast:

Allison Howard

Barbara Rose Lambert

Carin Makuz (Matilda Magtree)

Cheryl Andrews

Elizabeth Yeoman (Wunderkamera) will return soon.

 

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Recent posts on writing

Eric Gainer’s Memories of His Artisan Father Published in Facts & Arguments

Book Review: Signed, Sealed, Delivered, by Nina Sankovitch (review by Allison Howard)

“An Artful Arrangement of Truth: Interview with Author Lee Martin (Parts 1 and 2)

Will Come the Words: Kristen den Hartog’s creative space

Make the Judges Care: How to up your odds in a writing contest, guest post by Anne Mahon

Seven Treasures: On stuff that “digs in,” guest post by author Alice Kuipers

Wednesday, December 24th, 2014

Wordless Wednesday photo: 89

Dear Subscribers: Note that this is my first post with the service MailChimp. I hope you’ll receive the post properly. Please let me know if you don’t. You may have to change your settings to avoid posts being diverted into your spam filter.

 

©2014 Allyson Latta

©2014 Allyson Latta

 

We seem to have a summer theme happening today.

Each week on Wordless Wednesday, bloggers around the world post a photo they’ve taken that tells a story. If my photo brings to mind a memory or inspires your creative writing, I hope you’ll share a comment below.

Scroll through more of my photos here.

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Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

Eric Gainer’s Memories of His Artisan Father Published in Globe and Mail Facts & Arguments

Eric Gainer, a former student in my online writing course Memories into Story I, recently published a moving memoir about his relationship with his father in the Globe and Mail’s Facts & Arguments section: “Despite His Ailing Health, My Father Is Still a Meticulous Artisan.”

Looking down at my once-beautiful, Art Nouveau-style Tiffany floor lamp, I still held out hope that Dad could repair it. Seeing it nestled inside a cardboard box, I couldn’t tell the enormity or complexity of the task I was about to set in motion – nor how it would affect my father.

Several of the hexagonal panels would need replacing. Copper foil and lead solder had given way. Unsheathed, the cracked glass barely held its shape. My most cherished piece of art lay in shambles….” Read the full story here.

 

Says Eric: “My parents both passed away within six months of each other, almost four years ago. Now am I able to write about it — partial therapy, partial values I picked up along the way that I dare say are worth sharing. If they were here, they’d probably say, ‘We always knew you could tell a story.’

“I actually enjoy the editing process. I’m developing editing skills along the way. I love the storytelling aspects of memoir, the layering of details, looking back from an outsider’s standpoint, learning when enough is enough (or too little) to connect the dots. Finding just the right word is fun. The Globe and Mail editor made some tiny revisions for flow and changed the headline of the article. She asked a few questions, which I reworked into the story to meet the next day’s deadline. I could tell she too is a writer.

“I hope this inspires more newbie writers to put fingers to keyboard more often!”

 

ERIC GAINER lived and worked in Toronto for 15 years as a self-employed graphic designer. He now lives in Belleville, Ontario, where he works as a social media manager and freelance graphic designer, while honing his creative writing skills upon completion of Memories into Story: Life Writing I, through University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies.

 

 

 

MEMORIES INTO STORY: LIFE WRITING II

The next session of Memories into Story: Life Writing II, my advanced online memoir workshop, begins January 12, 2015. It runs for 4 weeks followed by a 2-week break, and then runs a second 4 weeks. Space is very limited, so if you’re interested, please register soon at University of Toronto, SCS.

Participants are required to have successfully completed Memories into Story: Life Writing I, or to obtain instructor approval based on a similar course or writing experience. They must have a draft of a 15-page (maximum) short memoir or chapter of a longer memoir ready as of the first week.

My guest for this session is Richard Gilbert, author of the memoir Shepherd and one of my favourite writers on the craft of memoir. Visit him at Draft No. 4.

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: 88

 

©2013 Allyson Latta

©2013 Allyson Latta

 

Each week on Wordless Wednesday, bloggers around the world post a photo they’ve taken that tells a story. If my photo brings to mind a memory or inspires your creative writing, I hope you’ll share a comment below.

Scroll through more of my photos here.

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Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: 87

 

©2014 Allyson Latta

©2014 Allyson Latta

 

Each week on Wordless Wednesday, bloggers around the world post a photo they’ve taken that tells a story. If my photo brings to mind a memory or inspires your creative writing, I hope you’ll share a comment below.

Scroll through more of my photos here.

Read the rest of this entry »

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014