Shake Rag Alley Hosts Award-Winning Authors

The 2019-20 Winter Writers-in-Residence Series features award-winning Wisconsin writers and poets reading from their work and answering questions on select Wednesday evenings at the Lind Pavilion, 411 Commerce St., Mineral Point.

Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts announces the 2019-20 Winter Writers-in-Residence Series featuring award- winning Wisconsin writers and poets reading from their work and answering questions on select Wednesday evenings at the Lind Pavilion, 411 Commerce St.
Since 2011 Shake Rag Alley, has partnered with the Council for Wisconsin Writers, the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters, Wisconsin People & Ideas magazine, and the Wisconsin Poet Laureate Commission to offer week-long residencies to their annual writing contest winners. From December through March, contest-winning writers and poets are provided with a week of uninterrupted time in Shake Rag Alley’s inspiring lodging facilities surrounded by the nurturing environment of historic Mineral Point’s artist community.
Save the date to enjoy the chance to meet and hear from the following award-winning authors during the upcoming free Winter Writers Reading Series:
7 p.m. Dec. 18, 2019: Robert Russell, 2019 Wisconsin People & Ideas Poetry Contest Winner. Russell is a recovering economist living in Madison. For over 10 years he was co-producer of the “Radio Literature” program on WORT-FM, and was coordinator for the CheapAtAnyPrice poetry series. Russell led the Madison National Poetry Slam teams from 1992 to 1994, and has taught poetry in high schools and colleges here and abroad. His short fiction and poetry have been published in various literary magazines and anthologies and his chapbook, “Witness.” 
7 p.m. Jan. 8, 2020: Christina Clancy, Council for Wisconsin Writers Kay W. Levin Award for Short Nonfiction. Clancy lives with her very tall husband, John, in Madison in a 104-year-old Prairie Style home. Her debut novel, “The Second Home,” will be published in June 2020 by St. Martin’s Press. The novel reflects her obsession with old houses, family, Cape Cod and summer vacation. She holds a PhD in creative writing from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with a specialty in eco-criticism and suburban literature, and taught creative writing at Beloit College.
7 p.m. Jan. 15, 2020: Marilyn Annucci, Council for Wisconsin Writers Edna Meudt Poetry Book Award. Annucci’s writing has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies and her collection of poems, “The Arrows That Choose Us,” won the 2018 Press 53 Poetry Award and the Council of Wisconsin Writers’ Edna Meudt Poetry Book Award. She is also the author of “Luck,” a chapbook of poems from Parallel Press, and “Waiting Room,” winner of the 2012 Sunken Garden Poetry Prize. Originally from Massachusetts, she worked for 10 years as a writer and editor before earning an MFA from the University of Pittsburgh. She is a professor in the Department of Languages and Literatures at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.
7 p.m. Jan. 22, 2020: Laura Jean Baker, Council for Wisconsin Writers Norbert Blei/August Derleth Nonfiction Book Award. Raised by therapists and married to a defense attorney, Baker writes where mental health, crime and family intersect. She earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of Michigan, where she was a Colby Fellow. Her essays have been published widely, her work has been twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and her essay “Year of the Tiger” was a Notable Essay in “Best American Essays 2013.” Her memoir, “The Motherhood Affidavits,” was released by The Experiment in April 2018. and she is at work on her second book.
7 p.m. Jan. 29, 2020: Steve Fox, 2019 Wisconsin People & Ideas Fiction Contest Winner. Fox’s writing has appeared in or has been recognized by Creative Wisconsin, The Iowa Review, The Midwest Review, Midwestern Gothic, The Masters Review and the Wisconsin Writers Association. Fox lives with his wife, three boys and one dog in Hudson and studies creative writing at The Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis.
7 p.m. Feb. 26, 2020: Margaret Rozga, 2019-20 Wisconsin Poet Laureate. Rozga, a lifelong Wisconsin resident, lives in Milwaukee. She earned her BA at Alverno College and an MA and PhD in English at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. An emeritus professor of English at the UW-Waukesha, she continues to teach a poetry workshop for Continuing Education at what is now the UWM–Waukesha campus. Rozga’s poems draw on her experiences and interests as an educator, avid reader and researcher, parent and advocate for social and racial justice. Her first book, “200 Nights and One Day” (Benu Press 2009), was awarded a bronze medal in poetry in the 2009 Independent Publishers Book Awards and named an outstanding achievement in poetry for 2009 by the Wisconsin Library Association. She has published three additional collections and her work was nominated for inclusion in the 2005 “Best New Poets” anthology and for a Pushcart Prize.
7 p.m. March 4, 2020: Kathryn Gahl, Council for Wisconsin Writers Lorine Niedecker Poetry Award. Gahl earned a B.S. in English at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and a B.S. in Nursing at Syracuse University. After 25 years in nursing and nursing management, she became a full-time writer. Her poems and stories are widely published in small journals and she’s been a finalist for numerous awards. Her readings have been described as “lively and pulsating. Even if you don’t like poetry, you will get goosebumps when you hear Kathryn.”
7 p.m. March 18, 2020: Liam Callanan, Council for Wisconsin Writers Edna Ferber Fiction Book Award. (Note: Liam’s reading will be held at the Mineral Point Public Library, 137 High St.) Callanan was born in Washington, D.C., and grew up in Los Angeles, but now calls Wisconsin home. He is the author of two previous novels — “The Cloud Atlas,” an Edgar Award finalist set in World War II Alaska, and “All Saints,” set in a beachfront high school in California, as well as a short story collection, “Listen and Other Stories.” He teaches in the English department of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
7 p.m. March 25, 2020: William Stobb, Council for Wisconsin Writers Zona Gale Short Fiction Award. William Stobb is a poet and fiction writer, professor, editor and audio art enthusiast. He holds a PhD in rhetoric and works as associate professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. He is also part of the editorial team at Conduit magazine and its book-publishing arm, Conduit Books & Ephemera.