Aspiring writers can utilize another resource to improve their writing skills. Marylee MacDonald, who has taught fiction, creative nonfiction and literary editing for Arizona State University’s Piper Center for Creative Writing and for River Oak Arts in Oak Park Illinois, is utilizing the Mesa Public Library as part of the Writers in Residence Program.
“The Writer in Residence program is a fantastic opportunity to increase the visibility of local authors and spark interest in their work,” Mesa Library Director Heather Wolf said. “Anything that increases community involvement in reading and writing is a win for the library and our community.”
Macdonald will offer free writing workshops at all three Mesa Libraries in June, July and August. Among the nine workshops she is hosting in June are:
Is It Better to Show or Tell?
June 1, 6-7:30 p.m., Dobson Ranch Branch, 2425 S. Dobson Road
Writers are often advised to “show, don’t tell,” but what does that mean? MacDonald will use excerpts from writers who tell more than they show and from writers who tell, rather than show.
The Hero’s (Heroine’s) Journey
June 8, 6-7:30pm, Red Mountain Branch, 635 N. Power Road
From “The Odyssey” to “Lord of the Rings,” the plots of many beloved stories have a common mythic element. Learn how to give your heroes and heroines the tools they need to bring back the magic elixir. Work with MacDonald to learn about storyboarding, a technique used to help visualize your novel.
For a complete list of workshops, visit: www.mesalibrary.org/writerinresidence.
Macdonald will also be hosting two weekly writing sessions at the Main Library, 64 E. First St., on Wednesdays from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. and Thursdays from 12:30 to 3 p.m. She will also be hosting office hours for one-on-one meetings with aspiring writers. Check online at www.mesalibrary.org/writerinresidence for MacDonald’s office hours or call 480-644-3100 for questions.
MacDonald is a former carpenter, literary magazine editor and journalist. Her short story collection, “Bonds of Love & Blood,” was a finalist for Foreword Reviews’ INDIEFAB Awards and her novel “Montpelier Tomorrow,” won a gold medal for drama from the Readers’ Choice International Book Awards. She was the recipient of two Illinois Arts Council Fellowships for Fiction and the winner of the Barry Hannah Prize, the American Literary Review Fiction Prize, the Ron Rash Award and many others.
The Writers in Residence Program is supported by the Arizona State Library, a division of the Secretary of State, with federal funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.