Two Sylvias Press 2022 Summer Newsletter
October Online Poetry Retreat and New Chapbook Publication!
Hello Friends of Two Sylvias,
Whether you are just beginning a new academic year or enjoying another week or two of vacation, thank you for taking the time to browse the Summer Edition of our Two Sylvias Newsletter!
We are gearing up for a busy autumn here at the press, and we are excited to share with you what’s new in our corner of the Pacific Northwest. Our July and August Online Poetry Retreats were filled with participants, and we still have another session coming up in October. We’re releasing last year’s chapbook winner—Saúl Hernández's amazing collection, At Night My Body Waits, and our popular Wilder Prize will be accepting submissions from September through December.
We are delighted at the summer success of our weekly paid subscription—Two Sylvias’ Weekly Muse. Each issue is overflowing with poetry prompts and exercises, places to submit your work, interviews with poets, Q&A’s with the editors, journal questions, and more!
We hope that your summer has been filled with creativity and all good things, and we are wishing you an inspired autumnal season!
Don't you love…the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address. ~Nora Ephron
Our Fall Online Poetry Retreat in October is open for sign-ups! There are still a few spaces left: https://twosylviaspress.com/online-poetry-retreat.html
Sign up and participate in our online poetry retreat! Have one of your poems critiqued by the editors of Two Sylvias Press.
We send you poetry prompts, example poems, creativity suggestions, and reflection questions to inspire your writing—ALL VIA EMAIL. Please note that the material for the October Retreat is the same as the material for the retreats in July and August.
October 3rd - October 30th
Space is limited! Please visit our website to register: https://twosylviaspress.com/online-poetry-retreat.html
Available in September from Two Sylvias Press: At Night My Body Waits by Saúl Hernández, Winner of the 2021 Two Sylvias Press Chapbook Prize!
“Saúl Hernández's stunning book, At Night My Body Waits, contains multitudes. Hernández explores numerous themes such as grief, immigration, borders, the queer body, sexual abuse, politics, and much more. Put simply, the writing in this book is gorgeous: ‘Dreams run in my family. In mine I/nail water to the wall, it runs down//my hands and splashes at my feet...’ or ‘I take sleeping pills sometimes,//I become heavy enough to not dream.’ These poems rely on language to create tension, to express the difficult road of self-acceptance and freedom. This is a coming of age story, of heartbreak, of struggle, of identity, of border, and ultimately of empowerment.”
— Victoria Chang, Chapbook Contest Judge and author of The Trees Witness Everything and Obit
Saúl Hernández is a queer writer from San Antonio, TX who was raised by undocumented parents. Saúl has an MFA in Creative Writing from The University of Texas at El Paso. He's a finalist for Palette Poetry 2020 Spotlight Award. Also, a finalist for the 2019 Submerging Writer Fellowship, Fear No Lit; a semi-finalist for the 2018 Francine Ringold Award for New Writers, Nimrod Literary Journal. Saúl’s poems have been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and Best of The Net. His work is forthcoming/featured in Frontier Poetry, Fourteen Hills, Blue Mesa Review, Foglifter Journal, Oyster River Pages, Poet Lore, Cherry Tree, Atlanta Review, Quarterly West, PANK Magazine, Pidgeonholes, The Acentos Review, Cosmonauts Avenue, Borderlands:Texas Poetry Review, The Normal School, Rio Grande Review, and Adelaid Literary Magazine. He has received support for his writing from Macondo Writers’ Workshop and Tin House.
For more information on purchasing At Night My Body Waits please visit our website: https://twosylviaspress.com/at-night-my-body-waits.html
JOIN THE TWO SYLVIAS’ WEEKLY MUSE!
The Weekly Muse is a paid subscription that you will receive each Sunday, and we’ve loaded it with information and content to assist you in your poetry journey from inspiration to publication. Our community is growing! We are now at 100+ subscribers!
Become a Paid Subscriber and each Sunday you will receive:
*Poetry Exercises / Prompts
*Ask the Editors Column and Exclusive Interviews with Poets
*A Creativity Reflection Question for Journaling
*Where to Submit Your Work—a list of current journals and book/chapbook prizes
*Giveaways and News
*Inspiration and Helpful Tips on Living Life as a Creative Person and Improving Your Writing
*Insider Info on Navigating the Publishing World
*An Optional Facebook Group
Please visit our subscription website (Substack) to learn more. The link below will take you to our subscription archive page. Our most recent issue of the Weekly Muse is available for free for a limited time—August 21, 2022: Issue 17.
Scroll down to the end of the archive list to read a post that explains what the Weekly Muse is about, titled “What is Two Sylvias Weekly Muse?”
Visit the Weekly Muse archive here: https://twosylviaspress.substack.com/archive
The Weekly Muse is a way to invest in your own writing by helping you write more poems, learn tips on how to have your manuscript selected for publication, find new places to publish your work, and more! It’s like a poetry class that lasts the whole year and having your own creativity coach!
I only subscribed for the weekly poetry prompts and exercises, but the Weekly Muse has fast become one of the most valuable tools for me as a poet. I've learned so much and I've had poems accepted for publication from Weekly Muse recommendations! The editors of Two Sylvias Press really care about poets and the amount of time and energy put into the Weekly Muse is apparent! Also, I appreciate how they sometimes jump into the private Facebook page to respond to poems and answer poets' questions. I have become a huge fan of Two Sylvias AND the Weekly Muse. ~ John D., Weekly Muse Subscriber
TWO SYLVIAS PRESS WILDER POETRY BOOK PRIZE
We are open for submissions on Thursday, September 1st!
Enter the Two Sylvias Press WILDER PRIZE: a poetry book contest for women over 50.
The Wilder Series Book Prize is open to women poets over 50 (established or emerging poets) and includes a $1000 prize, publication by Two Sylvias Press, and a vintage, art nouveau pendant.
Women submitting manuscripts may be poets with one or more previously published chapbooks/books or poets without any prior chapbook/book publications.
Previous winners of the Wilder Prize: Carmen Gillespie, Adrian Blevins, Dana Roeser, Erica Bodwell, Gail Martin, Michelle Bitting, and Gail Griffin.
Submission Dates: Sept. 1, 2022 – Dec. 31, 2022
Please view the complete guidelines here: https://twosylviaspress.com/wilder-series-poetry-book-prize.html
We look forward to reading your manuscript!
In honor of the stunning James Webb Space Telescope, whose images were first released to the public on July 12th, we have found this prompt from one of our past prompt offerings. Happy writing! (Below is an image from the James Webb Telescope of the Cartwheel Galaxy, which is about 500 million light-years from Earth. Next to it are several smaller galaxies.)
Across the Universe:
Use one of the following as the first line of your poem: “Because the Earth is tilted on its axis by 23 ½ degrees…” or “Because the Sun will fade to invisibility in a billion years…” or “Because only 59% of the moon’s surface is visible from Earth…” Allow your poem to be cosmic and galactic but include a few of these ordinary household items: toaster, broom, bookshelf, lamp, sofa, staircase, dryer, mirror, garage, bathtub, carpet, knick-knack, closet.
*A new addition to the prompt: You can also choose this as an opening line, “Because the Cartwheel Galaxy is 500 million light-years from Earth…”
Since you are writing about space, consider making your lines very long—stretch them clear across the page to give your readers a sense of interstellar distance and breadth.
Thank you so much for your support of our small press!
Please visit our Two Sylvias website: https://twosylviaspress.com/index.html
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Keep On Writing!
Kelli & Annette
Kelli Russell Agodon & Annette Spaulding-Convy
Cofounders & Coeditors of Two Sylvias Press