Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Writers at Soapstone: Barbara LaMorticella

Barbara LaMorticella wrote at Soapstone for two weeks during the summer of 2004.

She wrote to us afterwards: “It was a new and wonderful experience for me to be in an atmosphere which so completely valued and supported writing. I came away with a new dedication to the craft, with the beginning of a new book, and with pages of information about resources for writers gleaned from various publications on the shelves.”

“Praise and thanks. The whole world has seemingly been hijacked by militarism and psychopathic thuggery. A writing retreat specifically for women, sustained by a women’s writing community, has never been more evidently necessary than now—a sheltered space wherein the seeds of new vision and new life might germinate, sprout and flower.”

Barbara LaMorticella has a new manuscript circulating, The Great Dance: Poems 1969 – 2009. Her two poetry chapbooks are Even the Hills Move in Waves (Leaping Mountain Press, 1986) and Rain on Waterless Mountain (26 Books, 1996), which was a finalist for the Oregon Book Award.

In 2000 she received the first
Oregon Literary Fellowship for women writers, and in 2005 she was awarded the Stewart H. Holbrook Literary Legacy Award for outstanding contribution to Oregon's literary community. Her work is featured in many anthologies, most recently To Topos Poetry International: Poverty and Poetry (Oregon State University, 2008), Not a Muse (Haven Books, 2009), and Eating the Pure Light (The Backwaters Press, 2009). In 2009 she established a desktop publishing company, The Present Press. She has hosted a regular poetry program, The Talking Earth, on radio station KBOO in Portland since the late 1980s.