Back to All Events

FLOW Hosts Workshop Series During Soulful Chicago Book Fair

Free Writing/Literary Workshop Series

During the Soulful Chicago Book Fair

505 E. 61st Street

July 16, 2017,

Noon to 6:15 pm

For More Information:


Call- 773-387-7588

Workshop Agenda follows:


Workshop Schedule

12:00 noon-1:15p


Memory’s Memoir. Has your family’s superstitions or beliefs shaped your life in a dramatic way?  Is your inner voice screaming to fill the blank pages of your journal?  Does your storytelling captivate others?  Have you often been encouraged to write your story?  If you have pondered any of these questions, then let’s get you on the right path. This workshop was designed to get you focused and inspired to write your memoir.

Bettina Marie Walker is a Pre-Med graduate with a minor in Writing and Communications, Media Arts and Theatre from Chicago State University. She recently completed her Master’s in Executive Leadership, and is currently working her Master’s in Molecular Biology.  Bettina has studied abroad in France and Ghana, and performed has at the Panafest in Accra, Ghana.  She is interested in translating contemporary poetry from Africa and France and will be attending a low-residency MFA creative writing program for poetry and screenwriting in the near future.


Making a Character Bible - Keeping Maurice from Morphing into Melvin or Vice Versa.  We've all done it; on page 10 you introduce Marvin with the brown eyes but by page 80 he unintentionally becomes Maurice with a steely gray eyed stare. Editors will be befuddled and you'll be embarrassed. What's an author to do? Make a Character Bible! In this workshop, you will learn about character profiles, how to choose visual aids and how organize them in a companion book to your novel.

Lydia Barnes writes under the pen name L. D. Barnes. You can find her on Facebook that way. Her poem ‘Recipe’ is published in the Gwendolyn Brooks 100 Birthday Anthology entitled Revise the Psalm: Work Celebrating the Writing of Gwendolyn Brooks, which was released on January 9, 2017. Her poem ‘Heels’ is posted at TheSkinnyPoetryJournal. Her short stories are published in The Tallgrass Anthology entitled Home, Popmatters E-Zine, and The Beverly Arts Center’s BacStreet Journal. She won second place in the Flash Fiction competition of the Mystery Writers of America at Printer’s Row in 2015. She has blogged about Jazz for Rick O’Dell, on http://chicagosmooth.typepad. com.  She is currently working on police procedural mysteries and historical fictions.  


The Print-on-Demand Self-Publishing Process from Soup to Nuts. Mark Boone will outline the steps involved in print-on-demand publishing from manuscript to bound book and will have on display several books he has assisted first-time writers in self-publishing.

Mark Boone is a semi-retired freelance writer, editor, and self-publishing consultant for Mark My Words through which he shepherds first-time authors through the self-publication process. He has more than 30 years experience in the publishing industry and is the author of two published novels: Reunion: A Novel of the New South, and The Demise of Luleta Jones, for which he won the 2009 Eric Hoffer Book Award for excellence in independent publishing.



Building the Bones: Starting a Series of Poems. In this workshop, we will write 1-2 poems based on model poems, but we will look at how those poems can be building blocks to write even more with sensory details, building a timeline, and brainstorming possible perspectives for other poems, so you have ideas to continue beyond one poem written on one day. 

Tara Betts is the author of Break the Habit (Trio House Press, 2016) and Arc & Hue (Willow Books, 2009). Tara is a co-editor of The Beiging of America: Personal Narratives About Being Mixed Race in the 21st Century (2Leaf Press, 2017). She teaches at University of Illinois-Chicago.   


Flashes of Inspiration: The Art of Writing Flash Fiction. Flash fiction is a short form of storytelling where the challenge is to tell a complete story in as few as 6 words and no more than 1,000. In this workshop, you will study and discuss examples of short-short fiction, discuss the best way to approach this type of writing, and complete exercises that will inspire you to write your own. 

Janice Tuck Lively is a fiction writer whose work has appeared in Jet Fuel ReviewPerspectives on African American Literature, Valley Voices: A Literary Review, and Obsidian III: Literature in the African Diaspora; and in the anthologies The Thing About Love Is..., and Hair Trigger:16.  Her flash fiction story “Dust Tracks” was a 2016 Pushcart Nominee. Tuck Lively teaches creative writing and literature at Elmhurst College.



Sex, Race, and War on Mars: A Guide in Dreaming a New Black Universe. Want to start a revolution? Try putting Blacks on Mars while merging fantasy, futuristic science, and reality. Attend this workshop if you want to write science fiction with a cultural flair.

Aurelius Raines II writes and lives in Chicago. He is the author of chapbooks, I’ve Got A Hole In My Lip... and Love Songs To The Revolution. His short stories and essays have been included in the upcoming anthologies Dead Inside: Poetry and Essays about Zombies, Black Power: A Superhero Anthology,  Luminescent Threads: Connections to Octavia Butler, and the online journal Black Nerd Problems.


Writer's Rights: A Legal Clinic. Representatives from Lawyers for the Creative Arts will answer questions about copyright, defamation, rights and other legal issues. Presented by Lawyers for the Creative Arts (LCA).


The Winner’s Edge: Submitting to Writing Awards and Residencies. Learn practical tips and strategies for submitting to and winning writing awards, fellowships, and artists residencies. 

Sandra Jackson-Opoku is an award-winning novelist. Her work has earned such awards as the National Endowment for the Arts Fiction Fellowship and several grants from the Illinois Arts Council and Chicago Office of Fine Arts. Jackson-Opoku has been resident at Ragdale, Hambidge Center, the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, the Swatch Art Peace Hotel Residency in Shanghai, China, among others.