Brick City Gets in the Wordfest Mix with Art and Demos

Catch the MSU shuttle bus Saturday, Sept. 28, on Park Central Square during Wordfest and head down Boonville Avenue to Brick City! (You can walk there, too.) Staff from Missouri State University’s College of Arts and Letters have a lineup of demos that take Wordfest to a whole new level.

Eric Pervukhin, MSU professor of art and design, will give a letterpress demonstration for all at 11 a.m. at Brick City, 305 W. Mill St. in downtown Springfield. 

Also at 11 a.m., it’s How to Create a Book with Judith Fowler, MSU professor of art and design and members of Ozarks Writing Project. This is a special event for youths in grades 3-8. 

She will repeat the session at 1 p.m.

And from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. in the Brick City Art Gallery, enjoy Image and Word, Drawings by artist Bobby Ross.

Thanks to MSU and the College of Arts & Letters for all your support of Wordfest, and for bringing Missouri Poet Laureate William Trowbridge to Wordfest at 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Coffee Ethic, 124 Park Central Square.


We just love this tidbit from author Kate Klise: “As wise woman Lori Benton once told me, you’re nobody if you’ve never been fired. It was only after I got fired from my job as a newspaper columnist that I got serious about doing what I really wanted to do, which was to write books. So remember that if you ever get fired.”

And her favorite song is “Wichita Lineman.” What’s there not to love about her?Image

Come see why everyone loves and reads Kate Klise when she visits Springfield for Wordfest. She’ll talk about her latest books at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Park Central Branch Library, 128 Park Central Square. She’ll also have books to sell and sign. She’ll be on a panel, “How to Get Published,” with other authors at 2:30 p.m. in the Park Central Office Building, 117 Park Central Square. And — she’ll be among five guest authors at the Wordfest final celebration form 7-9 p.m. Saturday in the old theater next to the History Museum on the Square.  

There’s Art (and Some Agony) in Songwriting

Jody Bilyeu, Inge Chiles, Dallas Jones and Michael “Supe” Granda will talk about something they know well  — “Rhythm and Rhyme: The Art and the Agony of Lyrics” — at 5:30 p.m.  Saturday, Sept. 28, at Patton Alley Pub, 313 S. Patton Ave. in downtown Springfield.

If you’re a budding songwriter, a poet or just curious about the magic and anxiety of writing lyrics, be sure to catch this Wordfest special event!

Before you go, listen to an interview with Jody, Dallas and “Supe” along with Wordfest organizers at 12:06 p.m. Friday on KSMU’s (91.1 FM) Studio Live show, and get a preview.


Take a look at these prize giveaways for An Edwardian Evening!

ImageThis is one of the prize giveaways that you might win at An Edwardian Evening with author Carol McD. Wallace at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 27, at the Veridian Event Center. It’s a basket filled with all kinds of English-style lovelies! ($140 value) It was donated by the Between Friends Gift Shops of the Library District. 

And that’s not all! Ozarks Public Television is providing these great items as prizes: 

Downton Abbey Canvas Tote Bags

Downton Abbey Page-A-Day Calendars

Downton Abbey-The Complete Scripts-Season One

And the Grand Prize: Limited Edition Downton Abbey Seasons 1, 2 & 3 DVD set with bonus one-hour documentary Secrets of Highclere Castle

Tickets are still available for An Edwardian Evening. They’re $20 for students and $25 for adults at the Library Center, Brentwood Branch Library and Park Central Branch libraries. Cash or check will do.


Edwardian Evening: Get a Load of This Scrumptious Menu!

The menu for An Edwardian Evening, 7 p.m. Sept. 27, at the Veridian, has been revealed! English sweets and savories? Just look! 

But first — yes — tickets are still available for a touch of “Downton Abbey” with author Carol McD. Wallace, who co-wrote “To Marry an English Lord” and helped inspired the popular PBS series. Tickets are $20 for students, $25 for adults, and are available at the Brentwood and Park Central branch libraries and the Library Center. The Veridian is at 309 South St. a few doors north of the Mudhouse. 

Now, the menu for “An Edwardian Evening” catered by Simply Delicious: Savory: cucumber canape and chicken salad in smoked gouda puff. Sweet: miniature cupcakes, cream puffs, mini fruit tarts and madeleines. Beverages: hot tea, coffee and water. And as you arrive, you will be served pumpkin soup shots (liquor-free).

See you there with an English appetite!Image

Wordfest Lifts Up Veterans Who Tell Their Stories

Some of the most celebrated military veteran writers will be in Springfield for Wordfest. At 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 28 at Mille’s Cafe, 313 S. Jefferson Ave., We’ll hear from veterans who will read their own poetry and prose, deepening our understanding of military life.

It’s called “Proud to Be at Wordfest: Prose and Poetry of American Veterans.” Admission to the program is free.

Join us for readings by veterans who participated in the 2012 Proud to Be Veterans Creative Writing Contest. Their work is included in the “Proud to Be” anthology published November 2012 by the Warriors Arts Alliance, the Missouri Humanities Council and the Southeast Missouri State University Press.  Authors reading examples of their work include:

            ■ Jay Harden,  a retired Department of Defense cartographer who flew 500 combat hours in Vietnam as a B-52 navigator. An essay about his aircraft won a gold medal at the VA National Creative Arts Festival in 2009 and another poem, “My Mother of All Letters,” was awarded a gold medal in this year’s VA National Creative Arts Festival.

            ■ Fred Rosenblum, a Vietnam war combat veteran who enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1967. His first book of poetry, “Hollow Tin Jingles,” based on his experiences in Vietnam, is due to be released in September 2013.

■ Gerardo “Tony” Mena, a decorated Iraqi Freedom veteran, spent six years in Spec Ops with the Reconnaissance Marines and was awarded a Navy Achievement Medal with a V for Valor for bravery under fire. Mena has won several national writing prizes and was named one of the best 50 emerging poets in 2011 for his war poetry.

■ Colin D. Halloran, an Afghanistan combat veteran, English teacher and poet, leads student and teacher workshops on understanding war through poetry. His book of poetry on his war experiences, “Shortly Thereafter,” won the 2012 Main Street Rag Poetry Book Award and was a finalist for the Massachusetts Book Award in 2013.

■ Lauren K. Johnson is an Afghanistan veteran and former military public affairs officer. Johnson has won regional and national Department of Defense journalism awards. She is pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in nonfiction writing at Emerson College in Boston, where she is completing a memoir about the experience of female soldiers during and after war. Her blog, “UNcamouflaged” (, is read by military personnel around the world.  She serves on the editorial board of the literary journal, “Redivider,” and is a Graduate Reading Series curator at Emerson College.

“Supe” Will Serve it Up at Wordfest



Ah, what memories we have of the years the Ozark Mountain Daredevils ruled the scene in the 70s… And they stayed great through the years. (How many vinyl albums are hiding in YOUR closet?) One of the originals, Michael “Supe” Granda, is a featured speaker and performer at Wordfest. He’ll be at Trolley’s Downtown Bar & Grill (formerly Ry Mac’s/formerly Trolley’s) at noon on Saturday, Sept. 28. Not only is Supe a busy songwriter and performer in Nashville today, but he’s an author. He’ll be talking about his 2008 book, “It Shined: The Saga of the Ozark Mountain Daredevils.” Pick up a copy while you’re there and have him sign it.  


Brian Katcher — We Want to Read Him

Can’t wait to hear author Brian Katcher talk about his inspirations and brand of young-adult genre writing at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Moxie Cinema, 431 S. Jefferson Ave.

Read ahead and be sure to ask about “Playing With Matches.” He describes it: “While trying to find a date, Leon befriends a lonely, disfigured girl.”

His book “Awake”is a compilation with three other authors and includes four LGBT short stories. All proceeds go to the Trevor Project, which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ teens and young adults.

“Almost Perfect” won the Stonewall Award and was listed as one of the American Library Association’s 2009 list of Best Books for Young Adults.

For background, Brian is a St. Louis native and attended the University of Missouri-Columbia  before dropping out of society and bumming around Mexico for three years. He’s worked as a fry cook, a market researcher, a welding machine operator, a telemarketer (only lasted one day), and a furniture mover.  He lived on an Israeli military base one summer, and once smuggled food into Cuba. When he’s not writing, he works as a school librarian. He lives in central Missouri with his wife and daughter.  And, he adds, he still hasn’t paid the parking ticket he got in West Virginia in 1997.

We look forward to reading and hearing him.

Catch his talk during Wordfest at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Moxie Cinema.

Catch his talk during Wordfest at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Moxie Cinema.

Love Quentin Tarantino? You’ll Love This Spelling Bee!

Wordfest kicks off with a — yes, it’s true — Quentin Tarantino Spelling Bee! It’s from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 27, at Mother’s Brewing Company, 215 S. Grant Ave. in downtown Springfield.  For age 21 and older.

If you love his movies, you have a shot at winning the contest! Consider all those characters and places and Tarantino turns of phrases. Brush up on your “Pulp Fiction” and “Reservoir Dogs,” then come out for possibly the most fun spelling bee since you beat out your fifth-grade nemesis for the top title!

Ticket sales begin Sept. 9 for “And Edwardian Evening”!

Don’t miss “An Edwardian Evening” at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 27, at The Veridian Event Center in downtown Springfield with author Carol McD. Wallace.

Tickets go on sale at 8:30 a.m. Monday, Sept. 9, at the Library Center, Brentwood Branch and Park Central Branch libraries. Cost is $20 for students, $25 for adults. Cash or check only, payable to the Springfield-Greene County Library District.

That night, sit back and enjoy English sweets and savories, refreshments, a cash bar and a talk by the co-author of “To Marry an English Lord.” The book helped inspire the smash-hit PBS series “Downton Abbey.”

Wallace will also sell and sign her book. And event co-sponsor Ozarks Public Television and Between Friends Gift Shops will provide some great gifts for prize drawings.