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Willamette Writers January 7th Meeting with Jill Kelly

On Tuesday, January 7th, at the Old Church in downtown Portland, Willamette Writers welcomes local author Jill Kelly, who will share with the membership her long-lasting experience with a community of writers.

Jill is a writer, visual artist, creativity coach, and freelance editor. A long-time college professor of literature, she has been writing and publishing since 2002. Her memoir,

Sober Truths: The Making of an Honest Woman, was a finalist for the Oregon Book Award. In 2013, she self-published two books: her first novel, The Color of Longing, and a non-fiction book on creativity for those in 12-Step programs called Sober Play: Using Creativity for a More Joyful Recovery. Her second novel, a thriller titled Fog of Dead Souls, is due out from Skyhorse Publishing (New York) in March 2014.

Jill has been leading writers in community for 13 years, an experience she credits for much of her productivity, even though her first critique group was very discouraging. It took a writer’s retreat on Whidbey Island to get her going again and she was determined to recreate the power of that communal experience in Portland.

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  • Martta K.

    I was particularly interested in hearing Jill Kelly at this time because I am thinking of starting a writers group at this time. I belong to one that is highly supportive (after 3 years together, we are very closely bonded) but slow-moving in terms of critiques, and another that is useful but often overly critical, as well as too large, with many new members as well as "old-timers." I have been wishing for something in between, and which would focus more on developmental critiques by writers of similar or higher levels, rather than beginners who still need a lot of work in terms of grammar, etc.. Some of Jill's ideas were very helpful for me as I give thought to starting another group. I also appreciated her ideas about writers retreats and building community in general.

    January 8, 2014

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