Guild provides creative outlet for aspiring writers

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According to renowned novelist Edward Bulwer-Lytton, the pen is mightier than the sword.

Without literally testing this theory, the Writers’ Guild is looking for members wishing to sharpen their skills in reading, creative penning and photography as part of their scholarly army.

AT WORK: Rita Okoro reads her short story during the May 3 meeting. PHOTO BY JAMES STRIPLIN

This practice is sacred, and all work is confidential.

No criticism is involved and only positive feedback is accepted.

The stories are assumed fiction, unless requested by the writer as an a utobiography as mentioned in the five essential practices for Amherst Writers.

“It’s fiction unless we say otherwise,” said Mary Blackford, English instructor and workshop advisor.

Those interested in the workshop can find a tranquil area free of distractions.

This zone focuses on creative writing until the club’s 12:30 p.m. meeting.

The meetings are far more rowdy than the workshops, feeling similar to a gathering.

During meetings members review the Artifact, the crown jewel of Writers’ Guild.

It is a magazine produced with the artistic work from members of the Guild. It also holds pieces created by outside contributors.

According to self-proclaimed Shakespeare fanatic and club advisor Paula Sheil, Artifact is one of the few remaining art magazines produced locally.

“Most people have gone online because costs are so high,” said Sheil.

One day, the Writers’ Guild hopes that art publications will begin to sprout and they can compete with other schools for titles of mastery.

During the May 3 meeting, members discussed the grand Scrabble tournament and cheered because of its financial success.

“I find it humorous to how people say ‘Wow, its just like the phone game,’” said Sheil, referring to the tabletop Scrabble tournament.

Thanks to the support of Hip Hop Congress and others, the Writers’ Guild raised enough money to print their last Artifact magazine for the spring semester.

Going into the summer this association of authors will find itself filling in five open officer positions. The group anticipates relocating to a new room in the fall as well.

For more information on the Writers’ Guild visit their Facebook page. They also can be contacted via email at artifactsjdc@gmail.com.