Whether during active combat or after returning home from a tour of duty, many of our nation’s veterans have had traumatic, stressful experiences that are difficult to discuss or share with others. For many who have served, having a safe and creative outlet to share their thoughts and experiences or explore their original ideas can be rewarding and enriching.
The Veterans Writing Workshop is designed to help veterans and their families develop writing and narrative skills that can empower them to tell their stories, whether they are true-life accounts or wholly original tales. Each of the four-hour sessions is free and conducted by professional writers and educators; they provide the same high level of instruction as a college or university writing course.
The workshop is a program of the Missouri Humanities Council (MHC), which coordinates sessions across the state with local community organizations. This marks the second year that the Library has partnered with MHC and The Writer’s Place on the Kansas City chapter of Veterans Writing Workshop. For 2017, The Moral Injury Association of America joins the program; the organization works to help past and present military personnel and their families recover from trauma suffered during service.
All Veterans Writing Workshop sessions run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Plaza Branch, 4801 Main St. Lunch is provided. The workshop is free and open to past or present military members and family members of veterans. Attendees must register for each session and are strongly encouraged to attend all five. For questions or to register for the series, visit the links below, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 816.701.3757.
2017 VETERANS WRITING WORKSHOP SESSIONS:
October 7: Session 1—Writers' Critique and Point of View
Registration deadline: October 1
October 14: Session 2—Begin with Memoir
Registration deadline: October 7
October 21: Session 3—The Power of Imagery
Registration deadline: October 14
October 28: Session 4—Polish the Details
Registration deadline: October 21
November 4: Session 5—Writers' Critique and Learning Session
Registration deadline: October 28
This year’s workshop coincides with the 2017 NEA Big Read, in which all the libraries in greater Kansas City are taking part in a community-wide reading and discussion of Tim O’Brien’s Vietnam War book The Things They Carried. The program features many ways for the public to explore the legacy of the Vietnam War, including speaker events, book discussions, and the opportunity for veterans to share their experiences in KCPT’s Vietnam Voices StoryBooth, which will be on-site at the Library’s Plaza and Central locations this fall. Learn more at kclibrary.org/bigread2017 or bigreadkc.org.