Sunday, December 2, 2012

Teen Writer Showcase Recap & Video

Reprinted from GoLocal MetroBoston...
The 1st Teen Writer Showcase presented by Write on the DOT featured six Dorchester teenagers reading from their original poetry and spoken word at the Fields Corner branch of the Boston Public Library on November 13th. Representing Codman Academy, Cristo Rey, and The Harbor School, the teens read poems about riding the T, overcoming violence, love poems and persona poems (one written from the point of view of a soldier returned from Iraq), an Ekphrastic poem (based on a painting by Brazilian artists Os GĂȘmeos), and poems written on-the-spot on iPhones. 

A walk-up audience of over 25 library patrons (many of them no older than the students themselves) listened, and occasionally participated, as the young writers also discussed their writing processes, the influence of Dorchester as a setting for their writing, and their reasons for writing. 

Prior to the event, writers and attendees enjoyed a delicious variety of pizzas donated by Tavolo Ristorante (located just down Dorchester Avenue near the Ashmont T Station). GoLocal MetroBoston assisted in the donation, and the librarians at the Fields Corner public library also contributed cookies and refreshments to put a sweet touch on the evening. 

It was inspiring to see so many neighbors drawn in by the words of the young writers (and the scent of sausage slices, to be sure, but they all stuck around for the poetry). Writing gives our world back to us, naming the struggles we face and the oft undetected truths that sustain us. Shawntell, Nia, Kameron, Tito, Shaheem, and Kortaysa delivered just that.
It was equally uplifting to find collaborative community with GoLocal MetroBoston, BPL, and Tavolo’s: partners who support education, youth development, and the arts.

Write on the DOT's next reading is Thursday, December 13th starting at 6:30pm downstairs at Savin Bar & Kitchen. We’re asking attendees to bring new or lightly used books to donate for a book drive in partnership with WriteBoston.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

End-of-Year Reading

Write on the DOT
End of the Year Reading & Celebration

Thursday, December 13th 

6:30PM -- Live music from Colin O'Day

7:00PM -- Readings by Krysten Hill, Joel Wool, Nazila Hafezi, & Karyn Polewaczyk

Plus the debut of Metaphoria! Dorchester's 1st Metaphor Improv Game 
(...sure to be a simile smackdown)

AND bring new or used books (in good condition) to donate for our holiday book drive in partnership with WriteBoston. More details coming soon.

Reader & Performer Bios:
Krysten Hill is a third year MFA student at UMASS Boston from Kansas City, Missouri. She received her BFA in Creative Writing from Stephens College.
Joel Wool is a community organizer, environmental advocate, friend of Haiti and alumnus of Emerson College. He currently serves on the board of the Dorchester Community Food Cooperative and lives in a cooperative house in Fields Corner.
Nazila Hafezi studies fiction in the MFA program at UMass Boston. She is originally from Iran. She got her B.Sc. in Software Engineering from Sharif University of Technology. Five years ago, she came to US to study for an M.Sc. degree in Biomedical Engineering in El Paso, TX. She has worked as an engineer since 2004. She has also published short stories and poems in Persian language and has been working on several translation projects during the last five years. 
Karyn Polewaczyk is a South-Boston based writer who, once upon a time, lived in Dorchester's Polish Triangle. Her work has been published in the Weekly Dig, Critical Flame, Jezebel, xoJane and ELLE Reads, among others, and she is slated to pen's "Let's Go Out" column.
Colin O'Day is a singer/songwriter and fiction writer who attends UMass Boston and lives in Dorchester. He has played more venues in the greater Boston area than he can remember as either the bass player of James the Viking or the frontman of sadbastardgoespop. He has also read fiction at Literary Firsts.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Teen writers - read with Write on the DOT!

Write on the DOT is looking for a few more awesome Dorchester high-school age writers to read at its November Teen Writer Showcase. Any teens are welcome to read their original poetry, short stories, or personal essays. The event is scheduled for Tuesday, November 13th, 6-8PM, at the Fields Corner branch of the Boston Public Library.

All readers will also have the opportunity to publish their work in the second volume of the Write on the DOT journal!

If you are interested or know anyone who might be, please email:

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Reading Recap + Insta-Poems

Thanks to all who came to the Savin Hill Yoga Studio last week and made our September Kickoff reading  a great night. We had one of our biggest turnouts -- over 50 attendees -- and heard some outstanding poems and stories read by local writers Charles Thiesen, Carol Dickerson, Shilpi Suneja, and Teresa McMahon.

Another highlight was the creation of "Insta-Poems" written on-the-spot as arriving guests responded to pre-printed questions and left their answers to simmer in the Poetry Cauldron. Audrey Mardavich of Clam Point ousted Kurt Klopmeier of Savin Hill for the audience vote, taking home the Insta-Poet Title Belt. You can read their poems below. (In Kurt's poem, the audience contributions are italicized. Kurt and Audrey shared many of the same slips taken from the Poetry Cauldron.)

I Controlled Time and Space
by Kurt Klopmeier

Defied physics, logic to live
a thousand lives. I married
Typhoid Mary, predisease.
We moved to Panama, strolled
among the mud hens and guava trees.
I rowed George Washington
across the Delaware and died
by Prussian gun, so I made
a mundane life, had a girl,
populated her room with dollhouses
and unicorns, mastered white jazz.
But I needed to see the future,
so I spent a life on the Mars
spaceship and drifted slowly
into the cosmos, dot dot dot.

Life on Mars
by Audrey Mardavich

Life on Mars is a lot like life on Earth
except there’s no good Mexican food,
my Mother’s not here, either
even though I paid like a MILLION dollars to get here.

I’m CEO of Mitch Manning’s Extreme Makeover,

you won’t be able to count the amount
of insufferable Harvard undergrads’ heads
I stomped on to get here.

Someone, send me a French Vanilla Iced Coffee!
The ground is very dry--full of rocks.

I miss waffle house.
I miss “diaper boy.”

No one told me Mars sucks and is extremely lonely.

I love you George Washington!
I love you yogurt!
I never thought I’d say this but
Earth rules.

Friday, August 24, 2012

September Kickoff

Thursday, September 6th
11 Pearl Street (off Dorchester Ave in Savin Hill)

6:30PM - Reception with drinks & live music from Dorchester singer-songwriter Brendan Little
7PM - Write on the DOT reading featuring: Charles Thiesen, Carol Dickerson, Shilpi Suneja, and Teresa McMahon.

Plus, the first ever *Insta-Poet Showdown*
And copies of Write on the DOT: Vol. 1 available for purchase ($3) 

Come toast to what's left of summer & kick off the new semester 
with an evening of poetry, stories, neighbors, and fun. All are welcome.

Directions: By MBTA, take the ASHMONT-bound Red Line train to SAVIN HILL station. Exit onto Savin Hill Avenue and walk west (downhill, away from the bridge) to Dorchester Avenue. Turn right on Dorchester Avenue and walk 3 blocks to Pearl Street (on your left). 11 Pearl Street is at the end of a long driveway on your right. Map for driving.

Reader Bios:

Charles Thiesen writes a lot: journalism (Yankee, Ranger Rick, Boston Globe, etc.), technical manuals (exciting bulleted lists!), novels (two so far, waiting to emerge), flash fiction (on line at 10 Flash Quarterly). He lives in a co-op house in Upham's Corner, Dorchester, with a garden, a cat, and six housemates, only one of whom is his sweetie. 

Teresa McMahon is a Dorchester native. She studied English/Creative Writing at Suffolk University. At the moment she is working on a book of translations from the French language and is taking Polish classes in Harvard Square. 

Shilpi Suneja was born in India and came to the United States at the age of 15. She holds a BS in Computer Science from NC State University, an MA in English from NYU and will be pursuing her MFA in fiction at UMass Boston.

Carol Dowd-Dickerson has been a word-weaver and storyteller since she was very young. An educator with Boston Public Schools she has introduced new people, places, and things to her students by teaching them to read, as well as teaching many of them how to perform the written word. Carol is a member of the Pentimenti Women's Writing Group in Codman Square. She is currently writing a novel and has the beginnings of a play taking form.

Friday, July 27, 2012

July Video Poem and September Reading

Kurt Klopmeier's "Fugue," our July video poem, is now up under the video poems tab of this site. We had a lot of anxious fun filming it in the midst of post-work rush hour crowds. Bravo to Kurt who showed no fear.

The next Write on the DOT reading date (early September) and lineup will soon be finalized and posted both here and on our Facebook page. We hope you'll join us and kick off the new academic year with good words and good times among neighbors and friends. We have some exciting new plans in store as we head into Write on the DOT's sophomore season.

Write on the DOT: Vol. 1 is now available at the UMass Boston Bookstore for only $3.60 -- that's cheaper than a VentiMochaLoca. Copies are also being distributed to Dorchester branches of the Boston Public Libraries and will be sold (for $3) at our September and future readings.

Lastly, mark your calendars for Dorchester Open Studios, Oct 20th and 21st, run by the Dorchester Arts Collaborative (a co-sponsor of the Write on the DOT journal). An encore of last year's reading is in the works and Write on the DOT will be a part of it. Learn more at:

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Video: May 6th WotD reading and journal launch

The launch of Write on the DOT: Vol. 1 was a huge success. All thanks go out to our incredible readers and to everyone who showed up to celebrate with us! It's been an incredible first year for our local reading series, and we're angling for it to be the first of many.

Check out these videos of all the fabulous readings at our May 6th event.

Welcome (Aaron Devine)

Special Veteran Readers Panel, part one (Anna Ross and Natty Forsythe)

Special Veteran Readers Panel, part two (Betsy Gomez/Fawzi Nicolas, Krysten Hill, and Virginia Magboo)

Eric Maxson

Willie Pleasants

Liam Day

Note: Due to technical difficulties, we lost our video of Alex Sladky's reading. You'll just have to check out this talented young fictioneer the next time she reads in town, or read her piece in Write on the DOT: Vol. 1!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Write on the DOT: Vol. 1 launches this Sunday

This Sunday, May 6th, Write on the DOT is launching our first collection of writing from Dorchester and UMass Boston. The journal - Write on the DOT: Vol. 1 - will be available for just $3 at the reading (which begins at 5:30PM with drink and appetizer specials at Savin Bar and Kitchen).

Vol. 1 features poetry, prose, and translation from U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo, Willie Pleasants, Karen Locascio, Natty Forsythe, Liam Day, Jon Papas, Sandra Kohler, Audrey Mardavich, Alexandra Sladky, Kurt Klopmeier, Aaron Devine, Mitch Manning, Andra Hibbert, Danielle Fontaine, Anna Ross, Molly McGuire, Rad Thie, and Zachary Bos.

Also with original artwork created by Dorchester teenagers under guidance from Dot Art.

Special thanks to our local sponsors whose generous support made this publication possible: Savin Bar & Kitchen, UMass Boston MFA program, Dorchester Arts Collaborative, Ashmont Cycles, Dot2Dot Cafe, Avenue Liquors, The Stitch House, and Dot Art.

Copies of the book will also be donated to Dorchester libraries and some public schools.

Join us for the reading this Sunday and get your copy of Write on the DOT: Vol. 1.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Special Reading Menu plus Reader Bios

Join us Sunday, May 6th at Savin Bar & Kitchen.

     Reception starts at 5:30PM with a special Write on the DOT menu:
          Author's Ales:           Narragansett (16oz cans)                                      $3
                                               Harpoon IPA                                                           $4
          Reader's Respite:      Twin Vines Vinho Verde                                      $5/glass
          "The Hemingway":   Bacardi Limon, Peach Shnapps, & lemonade   $6.50
          Plus $5 appetizer specials of Cajun Fried Dill Spears, Whiskey BBQ Pulled Pork Tostada, Buffalo Bleu Cheese Fries, & Margarita flatbread. (Thanks to Savin Bar & Kitchen for personalizing these specials for our attendees!)

     Reading starts at 6PM in the private downstairs space. 
          Featuring: Eric Maxson, Willie Pleasants, Alexandra Sladky, & Liam Day
          with Anna Ross, Krysten Hill, Sam Cha, Virginia Magboo, Natty Forsythe, & Fawzi Nicolas.

Come celebrate 1-year of Write on the DOT, the end of spring semester, 
and the (close enough) beginning of summer.

Reader Bios:

Eric Maxson works in the Creative Writing Program at UMass Boston. A former Savin Hill resident, he now lives in East Boston. His fiction has most recently appeared in the Black Warrior Review and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. The details of the first story he wrote are vaguely remembered, a young man named Eric with a sleepwalking problem, but the title is clear—“I Came Down to Get Some Underwear.”

Willie Pleasants is an author, poet, and the producer and host of her own cable show "Willie's Web" at Boston Neighborhood Network. Born a southerner, she has lived in Dorchester for over 30 years. Her main goal is to use her books and poetry to inspire and encourage reading among all ages.

Alexandra Sladky is from Augusta, GA. She holds a BA in Latin from Mount Holyoke College and is pursuing her MFA in Creative Writing at UMass Boston. If she could drink with a couple of famous writers she would drink with Ovid and Catullus, very expensive red wine, paid for by someone else. She lives in Brighton.

Liam Day is a graduate of Harvard College and the Bread Loaf School of English. He spent a year playing professional basketball in Ireland, before returning to the States to begin a career teaching. He is currently the Director of Youth Development and Health Promotion at the Boston Public Health Commission and Director of the Boston Area Health Education Center. His poems have appeared in Slow Trains, Apt, and U.M.P.h. Prose. His op-eds have appeared in the Boston Globe and Herald, among numerous other publications. And his essays have appeared in The Shoestring Traveler, Annalemma, Stymie, and the Good Men Project, to which he is a regular contributor. He lives in Dorchester, on Jones Hill to be precise, with his wife Nicole.


Friday, April 6, 2012

Next Write on the DOT reading Sunday, May 6th


The next Write on the DOT reading will take place Sunday, May 6th starting at 6PM in Savin Bar & Kitchen's private downstairs space (Red Line to Savin Hill T station). We'll feature Dorchester writers Willie Pleasants and Liam Day alongside UMass Boston writers Alex Sladky and Eric Maxson.

The reading will mark one-year of Write on the DOT, as well as the end of the spring semester (and start of summer!). Come hear poetry and fiction read aloud by, and in the company of, your neighbors. More details to follow.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Video: January 29th WotD reading at Savin Bar and Kitchen

We had great attendance at our January reading, and a great set of readers as well! Check out their videos below the cut.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Sunday, January 29th, 7 pm

at Savin Bar & Kitchen, across the street from the Savin Hill T stop

Johnny Diaz is a staff writer for The Boston Globe's Business section, where he writes about local TV news, radio, and advertising (and whatever stories his editors throw his way). He's also the author of four gay-themed novels: Boston Boys Club, Miami Manhunt, Beantown Cubans and the newly published, Take The Lead. On his downtime, the Dorchester resident enjoys hiking in the Blue Hills, reading People magazine and walking around downtown Providence (the setting for his fifth book).

Karen Locascio is a first-year MFA student in Poetry (that's right, capital P) at UMass Boston. She recently moved from Allston to Dorchester where she lives directly above a pizza place. She can tell you pretty much anything you'd ever want to know about government mortgage pass-thrus and has work in the current issue of Amethyst Arsenic. Karen loves Boston but will always be a Jersey Girl at heart.

Audrey Mardavich lives in Clam Point, Dorchester after having spent the past year in Austin, TX. She is a poet and sometimes-blogger on feminist art and literature, rock and roll and reproductive rights. She works at the Public Radio Exchange where she helps make public radio more public.

Jon Papas is a poet from Rochester, NY. Some work of his has appeared in Everyday Genius, PANK, Willow Springs, and OCHO.

Kathleen McKenna is a 2011 graduate of the MFA program at UMass-Boston, on the fiction side. She's now writing feature-length obituaries for the Boston Globe, and each person whose remarkable life she is privileged to chronicle deserves a full-length book.

New Reading THIS Sunday 7pm at Savin Bar & Kitchen

Come kick off the new year & semester with your friends & neighbors as we host our first reading of 2012 in the private downstairs room of Savin Bar & Kitchen.

Fiction and poetry readings by UMass Boston MFA students/alumni and by Dorchester-area writers. Featuring Johnny Diaz, Karen Locascio, Audrey Mardavich, Kathleen McKenna, and Jonathan Papas.

Plus, food & drink specials exclusive to Write on the DOT!

(No NFL games scheduled for Sunday since it is the week before the Super Bowl.)

Savin Bar & Kitchen is directly across the street from the Savin Hill T station. Take any Ashmont-bound Red Line train. On-street parking available.

Hope to see you Sunday at Write on the DOT.

Writers get to know your neighbors. Neighbors get to know your writers.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Video: December 11th WotD reading at the Blarney Stone

Write on the Dot's December reading was another huge success, and you can check out the videos of it below the cut. Thanks to the Blarney Stone for hosting, and to all our excellent readers. Stay tuned for the announcement of our rapidly approaching January reading!