Saturday, May 21, 2016

Weekend Writing: Last Reading

What is the last thing you read? It could be a sign or a book or an assignment sheet. How will that reading affect your life? Or will it not?

Alternative: Imagine that the last thing that you read is going to change the direction of your life forever. Tell that story.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Teacher Feature - Kelsey Johnson

This week's featured teacher is Kelsey Johnson. Currently, Kelsey is teaching sophomore English at West Fargo High School and coaching speech at West Fargo Sheyenne. Before becoming a Packer/Mustang, she taught, coached, and directed at LaMoure High School for four years. She holds her B.A. in Theatre Arts from Washington State and her B.S. in English Education from NDSU. Additionally, she is currently serving as the Northeast Rep for the ND Council of Teachers of English and on the ND Roughrider District Committee for the National Speech and Debate Association. Kelsey became a Red River Valley Writing Project fellow in 2012.
Why do you read?
A lot of my reading is done for speech and/or theatre work, honestly. I rarely will read a fiction novel unless a cover or title really pops out at me (yep, I judge a book by its cover). I love reading titles out of the Barnes and Noble business and self-help aisles, especially those related to leadership and habit formation. Simon Sinek's Start With Why was a

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Weekend Writing: "Do Over"

If you had one "do over" for your life, what would it be? Explain.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Weekend Writing: To Exaggerate a Tale

Think about an incident that happened to you and exaggerate in the telling. Make it into a tall tale.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

AuTHor Thursday: Nancy Devine

Nancy Devine, a three time Pushcart Prize nominee, is a writer, whose poetry, short fiction and essays have appeared in a number of online and print literary magazines and journals, including Bellevue Literary ReviewMidwestern Gothic-A Literary JournalStirring-A Literary CollectionBerfoisReferential Magazine and Hermeneutic Chaos Literary Journal. She loves to cook, garden and figure things out. She teaches high school English in Grand Forks, North Dakota, where she lives with her husband and their rambunctious rescue collie.


Nancy Devine is not only a dedicated writer, but her involvement in the Red River Valley Writing Project has helped to encourage other teachers to write and to share their writing as well. Thus, we join with her in celebrating the forthcoming publication of her poetry chapbook, The Dreamed. A chapbook is a short collection of writings, which might be poems, prose or even a combination of both.

Pam Fisher provides a glimpse into Nancy's chapbook:
 "In this haunting and heart-rending series of interconnected poems, Nancy Devine’s readers accompany the narrator after her brother drowns himself. Tightly phrased evocative lyrics move each poem to explore the “questions unanswered” as together reader and narrator inhabit the family’s tragedies." 

Nancy's chapbook is being published by Finishing Line Press, and pre-orders can be purchased here. Advanced sales are April 18, 2016-June 17, 2016. The pre-orders affect the press run, so if you are intrigued by Nancy's poetry, consider pre-ordering a copy! The official release date is August 12, and pre-orders are slated to be shipped August 22, 2016. 

In celebration of her upcoming publication, Nancy graciously shared a glimpse into her writing world by answering a few questions for the blog. 

Why do you write?
Sometimes I write because some thought nudges me. Other times, especially if I'm reading around, I come across an idea or term that I want to consider, so I write about it. For me, playing around with language is pure delight. Quite often, the sheer pleasure of hanging out with words makes me write. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Wednesday Wisdom: Check out Pose, Wobble, Flow program on NWP Radio

I was introduced to the book Pose, Wobble, Flow as I learned about the College-Ready Writers Program. NWP radio has done a show with the authors of the book, Cindy O'Donnell Allen and Antero Garcia. If you are looking for a little "Wednesday Wisdom," check out this show at the following link: Pose, Wobble, Flow: A Culturally Proactive Approach to Literacy Instruction

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Weekend Writing: Influential Person

Write about the person who has had the most influence on the person you are today.

How could you thank them?

Monday, April 25, 2016

Monday Announcements

Tuesday, April 26th:          Grand Forks Book Club meets from 5:30-8pm

Wednesday, April 27th:     Minnesota Council for Teachers of English Conference in Glenwood, MN
                                           Flyer for MCTE Spring Conference
Friday, April 29:                Young Adult Book Club with Dan Dooher

Saturday, April 30:             Fargo Moorhead Writing Group, 9am Dunn Brothers Coffee
                                           Leadership Meeting 11am-1p, Location TBD

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Weekend Writing: If I Could Change...

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

(If you can't think of anything you would change, explain how you achieved perfection.)

Friday, April 22, 2016

AuTHor Thursday: Linda Sand

Linda Sand has graciously shared part of her writing world with the Red River Valley Writing Project blog.
Thus, without further adieu, welcome Linda to the blog!

An Introduction to her Writing World
Linda Lee Sand

I have always written, but it’s only been in the last few years that I’ve dared to call myself “a writer.” I have a political science degree from MSUM and a master’s in Communication from Marquette University. I was a Junior Great Books leader and drama coach for many years. I was thrilled to be a winner in the Writer’s Digest poetry awards, and I’m currently writing for children. I’ve published the tall-tale “Melodious” in Cricket magazine, and it’s featured in audio version on their campfire stories website. And I have a poem in this month’s issue (April 2016) of Babybug.

Why do you write?

I recently heard an author on the radio say that when you’re younger you strive to write something beautiful, but as you get older you write to get at the truth. I’m at the point where I’m trying to get at the truth. It’s grand, though, when the truth is beautiful!