ASFA-CW’s Ashley Jones Waxes Celebratory re the Alabama Writers’ Forum’s 25 Years of Literary Arts Advocacy

You’re invited to join us on September 22 at 2 p.m., as we gather at the DJD Theater in downtown Birmingham to recognize the Alabama Writers’ Forum‘s extraordinary contribution to the advancement of the literary arts in Alabama. 2019 Harper Lee Award winning author Daniel Wallace is our featured guest. Click here to purchase tickets via Eventbrite!

ASFA-CW 2019 Senior Advice: Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow

It’s going to be okay.
You’re never the best writer in the room.
Turn it in. Even if it’s not perfect.
Submit your work!
Let your work rest and don’t give up on it.
No really: submit your work!
Savor the moment.
Go to college wherever you want to go to college.
Focus on writing and making memories.
Write what you want to write.
Make emotional connections.
Yes, inspiration happens but the best writing is refined and polished over time.

(Couldn’t have said it better ourselves.)

Children’s Author Linda Sue Park Visits Birmingham + ASFA-CW Students Hear Her Writerly Wisdom

Thanks to a gracious invitation from the UAB Creative Writing faculty (headed by the inimitable Kerry Madden), a group of ASFA-CW students ventured over to Southside to hear children’s author Linda Sue Park read and answer audience questions this week. She had lots of great, practical writing advice, such as: when in doubt, start a draft in third person POV because it’s more flexible, especially with genres that require a lot of exposition (fantasy, historical, sci-fi…). You can always go back in another draft and shift POV to see if that does something interesting to the narrative. Also: the Pomodoro Technique! Thanks to Linda Sue, Kerry, and UAB for availing us of the opportunity…

This Is America: @asfaCW + Princeton Elementary Students Write Poems Together

In conjunction with the Princeton students’ Black History Program later in the day, ASFA-CW students spend their most recent Princeton workshop session sharing some Langston Hughes poems — “I, Too” and “Theme for English B” — and talking a little bit about the Harlem Renaissance. We then wrote poems modeled after Hughes’s poems, which made reference to popular culture and music of his day while commenting on the political and cultural climate surrounding him. Continue reading

Busy Day Ahead for @asfaCW! Student-led workshops at Princeton Elementary in the AM; @LindaSuePark at UAB in the PM! #DayInTheASFALife

Around this time every year, things get kinda hectic at ASFA-CW. Readings, applications, interviews, outreach visits, senior theses, college acceptances, classes (of course)…and more! It’s a special place to be, where opportunities and challenges abound, and we wouldn’t have it any other way! In keeping with that attitude, here’s Linda Sue Park’s TED talk, “Can a Children’s Book Change the World?” Her answer? [SPOILER ALERT!] No — but the kids who read them can. (Can a CW department change the world? No — but the students who navigate its steady stream of opportunities and challenges certainly can!)