From the Oklahoma Department of Libraries, Reading Oklahoma Blog, news about how to get your poetry work submitted and read at the Woody Guthrie Festival in Okemah!
The month of January will be open-submission for anyone interested in being one of the 15 Woodyfest Readers to read at the Woody Guthrie Festival in Okemah this year. The size of the group is smaller this year, but everyone is submitting anew, so there are more open slots. If you are interested in being part of this event (second Saturday in July, 2009), start thinking now what you might like to submit. Two poems may be e-mailed to Carol Hamilton (email@example.com) during the month of January.
The submissions will be numbered and sent for blind judging by co-chair, George Wallace, in New York. The judges look for variety and do not necessarily need work on Woody Guthrie … for good work on any subject, have used music, humor, social protest, performance poetry, literary poetry… and just interesting work… but often the works do seem to apply to the singer’s times, concerns, life, or just the land. Hopefully this will spread the word to many, so pass this information to your faculty, students, friends, anyone you think might be interested. Readers from other states are welcome, though we have no funds to bring anyone, but the festival is great fun and worth a trip! Though it is usually HOT!
I would add very very HOT!
The latest book news was Oprah being duped by another memoir. I just wish people would write fiction and then there is much less to worry about. Apparently the love story between Herman Rosenblat and his wife Roma has been embellished. They are still Holocaust survivors and very much in love, but the sweet but non-existent story of her throwing apples to him while he was in the concentration camp, just didn’t happen.
I really don’t know what to think about all this memoir fact checking. I’m sure most auto-biographies are embellished to some degree. Oklahomans have their own fictionalized autobiography of our folk hero, Woody Guthrie. Does it diminish the book Bound for Glory, or Woody? I know that sometimes we call it autobiographical rather than autobiography but who are we kidding, go to any library in Oklahoma and it’s shelved as biography and considered nonfiction.
While I think authors who write biographies of others should check their facts, and provide accurate accounts of the lives of the people they write about, I don’t think we can expect the same adherence to facts when people relay their own stories. They become storytellers rather than historians, and perhaps the reader should either accept or reject improbabilities and judge for themselves the validity of the story.