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LITerari.us magazine features the writing of the students of Laura Lentz’s LITerati.academy.

 

This Issue: The Universe & You

Writing Into the Wild Workshop

Writing Into the Wild, inviting earth into memoir

Some things are worth repeating


About six weeks ago, I put together a writing workshop to begin connect our personal stories and our memories with the glorious natural world around us  I knew it was time we wrote our stories and included earth in them. The writing that is being birthed by inviting in the natural world into story might be the most beautiful writing I have read in my ten years of teaching and reading.

The writing my students are creating is reminiscent of Walt Whitman, Rachel Carson Toni Morrison and Thoreau.  We know earth matters, the trees and the butterflies and wild horses and the bears, the sun and the galaxy we witness nightly above us.  When we include earth in our stories, we become more deeply connected to our own stories and the earth – to mysticism and mythology.  We learned from the tree we fell out of, the ocean rip tides that took us too far from shore and the storm that ripped off the roof of our home. We learned by holding our beloved dying pet in our arms.

Earth taught us joy, how to  grow and how to grieve.

You are on a Hero’s Journey, and so is Earth


We are all on a Hero’s journey, but so is earth. We may be living out one of the scariest human dramas of our lives right now, but we cannot begin to heal the earth or ourselves until we honor and invite the all of earth back into our lives.  Writers are showing up for this time, and this class series has been an honor to teach.  When I think of these challenging days, I think of a quote by author Diane Ackerman –

“Don’t think of night as the absence of day; think of it as a kind of freedom.

Turned away from our sun, we see the dawning of far flung galaxies.

We are no longer blinded to the star coated universe we inhabit.”

 

Through storytelling –  the captain whose boat honors the Kwakiutl Wild Woman of the Woods or the fisherman who sacrifices his catch to save two whales – the writer becomes witness, inviting us all to fall again into harmony with place and each other; story turns the sacred into the real.

This is the time for us to be writing about earth. Even the prime ministers of New Zealand is stopping her life long enough to write about our beloved earth. Read her heart-shattering poem

 

My next 6-week writing workshop, beginning July thru mid August


In my next 6-week writing workshop, we will continue to explore the natural world and all its mysteries and pull them into our life stories – learning to tell our stories with nature as a backdrop, as metaphor, teacher and sage —  an essential element in all our life stories.

“I am never not thinking about nature,

because I don’t understand a way we can be honest

about who we are

without understanding that we are nature.”

– Camille Dungy

 

Your Story or Poem may appear in an November Anthology – The Grace of the World 


Students from this current Writing into the Wild Series and the previous 6-week Grace of the World Series are invited to submit to an anthology published by Literati Academy publishing November 2020.  Students will be receiving information on how to submit to the series at the close of each six week series.

During our last class series, the stories surpassed even my most cherished writers I brought to the class for literary inspiration. The quality, heart and intensity of this work will be turned into a Literary Anthology that will also invite the reader to invite earth into their own personal stories.  This anthology is only open to student submissions.

Not every student will be published, but every student has the opportunity to submit up to three personal stories or poems for consideration.  Pam Houston, Walt Whitman, Claire Dungy and Lucille Clifton – and so many others… invited us to write our stories, and now we invited other to do the same through this anthology, to reconnect with earth.

In this way, we will begin a Story Movement to heal ourselves and the planet. In the earth we find healing, forgiveness and grace.

Not only are we allowed to love the world,

loving her is now necessary for our survival.

 

Calling all Earth Lovers & Memoir Writers


In this groundbreaking course, designed for the times, we will craft our life stories with and through the natural world we inhabit.

Topics covered in this series may be moon mysteries, seeding & growth, the natural Way of the world, the mystery of song (birds and our own heart songs). All topics will be explored as experiences we have had with earth as a character and also explored as metaphor against our own lives, including a closing H’oponopono prayer for Earth.

I’m convinced including earth in our stories and publishing those stories will begin to heal the planet.

Earth-Writers – Inspiration for this Course:

My Amazon box came a few days ago like Christmas. I thought I was going to cry when I opened the box and saw this book – Nature Writing by Black Authors, compiled by Camille Dungy. I had waited seven weeks to receive this book, and the wait was worth it for the introduction alone.  The book stalled out in a distribution center in Florida.  God bless UPS workers and all our medical workers and writers and poets and connectors who kept us all threaded together during this challenging time.  I bow to all of you for your bravery and love.

Rachel Carson, Mary Oliver, Haunani-Kay Trask, Terrence Hayes, Louise Gluck, Annie Dillard, David Whyte and M.S. Merwin, will be brought into this class as inspiration, while we explore our stories through the lens of the natural world.

Excerpt from The Old One And the Wind by Clarice Short:

 

She loves the wind.

There on the edge of the known world, at ninety,

In her tall house, any wildness in the elements

Is as welcome as an old friend.

When the surgically patched elms and sycamores

Crack off their heavy limbs int he freak snow storm

Of October, she rejoices; the mess hail

That drives craters into her groomed lawn

Stirs her sluggish heart to a riot of beating.

 

 


Included in classes are the following:

 

Craft exercises before the longer write: metaphor, making lists, using questions to create a compelling story.

Thirteen-minute live writing & group sharing

Belong to a private Facebook group of all writers taking class

Feedback from writing peers during class and throughout the week on FB

Topics in this 6-week Course:

 

The Moon’s Mystery

Fire, Volcanoes & Rage

Beyond Earth, the Universe

Planting & Harvesting

Earth’s Song

Writing Teacher: Laura Lentz


Author Laura Lentz has taught creative writing workshops online and on the north shore of Kauai for ten years. Her workbook, STORYquest, helps writers turn their story into a Hero’s Journey through 12-weeks of writing prompts and examples out of best selling books. Laura is also a developmental editor and helps writers expand their body of work through unique methods – offering challenging and thought provoking writing prompts inspired by poetry, mythology and segments from literature. Her exploratory writing workshops include Love, Skin and Eros, The Poetry Room, and STORYquest, Make Your Story a Hero’s Journey. Her 6-week workshops are online and on the north shore of Kauai.  Workshop students have the unique opportunity to appear in an annual spoken word shows and in Literati Academy’s online magazine exclusively written by Literati Academy’s writing community in LITerari.us, Laura serves on the faculty of The Kauai Writers Conference and is conducting a Master Class for writers who want to write in sacred places on Kauai and allow Kauai’s beauty to influence their work.

Share Your Writing  in a Private Facebook Page


Throughout the course, you will have access to up to thirty writers in a private Facebook page who are also taking this course – writing to the same course material.  You will share in a private Facebook group, and receive positive feedback from your peers.

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SUNDAY – SOLD OUT

June 14th – July 19th

Nine writers creating together

10:30 a.m. — 1:30 p.m.

[Pacific Time]

$220

MONDAY  – SOLD OUT

June 15th – July 20st

Nine writers creating together

4:00 p.m. — 6:00 p.m.

[Pacific Time]

$220

TUESDAY  – SOLD OUT

June 16th – July 21st

Nine writers creating together

4:00 p.m. — 6:00 p.m.

[Pacific Time]

$220

WEDNESDAY Evening – SOLD OUT

June 17th -July 22nd

Nine writers creating together

8:30 — 10:30 pm PST    5:30—7:30 Hawaii

$220

THURSDAY – SOLD OUT

June 11th – July 16th

Nine writers creating together

4:00 p.m. — 6:00 p.m.

[Pacific Time]

$220

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