NEW MSU INITIATIVE SUPPORTS LITERATURE AND CREATIVE WRITING ACROSS THE
EAST LANSING, Mich. - A new initiative that uses the Internet to
strengthen the already thriving community of Michigan writers is being
launched by Michigan State University.
Using the Internet's diverse spaces for interactive and collaborative
learning, the Michigan Writers' Network will act as a wide-ranging and
community-building resource for public educators and writers across the
A wide range of multimedia resources for writers and teachers of creative
writing and literature is currently being developed through the Michigan
Writers' Network. The network provides a space where people can share
ideas, discuss the craft of writing, and learn about the interests and
current work of other authors, with the primary goal of promoting
awareness of an interest in creative writing in Michigan schools.
The initiative is funded by a grant from the Michigan Council for Arts and
Cultural Affairs, and sponsored by MSU's MATRIX: The Center for Humane
Arts, Letters and Social Sciences Online.
"It is our overall goal that this is a truly communal venture, and that
the project is shaped by the Michigan writing community itself," said Mark
Kornbluh, director of MATRIX.
"The Michigan Writers' Network will be an invaluable resource for
students, teachers, writers, and anyone interested in knowing what's going
on with and in the Michigan community of writers," said Anita Skeen,
professor of English and academic consultant for the project. "Through the
magic of computer technology, you can click yourself into the middle of a
poetry reading, listen to a writer being interviewed, or look up a
challenging writing assignment."
The Michigan Writers Network site has a wide variety of interactive
features including listserv discussions that cover the genres of
playwrighting, screenplay writing, poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction,
journalism, and children's literature. The "featured writer" section of
the site highlights prominent Michigan authors, providing audiovisual
presentations of poetry readings and original interview footage.
Additional features in development include a comprehensive calendar of
events including activities such as readings, workshops, awards, and
competitions. The network also will be a resource page for writers of all
levels providing pedagogical tools such as prompts, writing exercises, and
suggestions for technique.
According to those involved in developing the project, the most important
goal of the initiative is to establish a concrete network that uses and
shapes the site. "We are currently working to publicize the features of
the network to the broader writing community," said Joy Palmer, project
coordinator. "Thomas Lynch graciously agreed to be the inaugural 'Featured
Writer' for the site, and now we have some excellent original material to
show writers and educators in the state."
For more information, visit www.michigan-writers.org
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