by Carolyn Martin, President, Board of Directors
Nearly a year has passed since we held our first brainstorming session to determine VoiceCatcher’s future – and, more importantly, if we had a future. And what a year it’s been! Not only are we still here, but we have re-invented our nonprofit community in ways we couldn’t have imagined last January.
First of all, we remain committed to women writers and artists in greater Portland, OR/Vancouver, WA. Rather than expand regionally or nationally, we know there are still many unheard voices in our locale that deserve an audience. We want to provide that audience as we build our local community.
Secondly, we also remain committed to emerging writers and artists who seek our encouragement, inspiration and support. Read what Lisa Maier, Tina Tran, Naomi Fast, and Bonnie Minden Ward had to say about being published for the first time in a VoiceCatcher anthology.Take a look at Denise Hrouda’s electrifying artwork on the cover of VoiceCatcher6 and in VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions, Fall 2012.
They are among the many women who have benefited from the care and respect VoiceCatcher has always given its contributors.
This year we have also reached out to “young voices”: women under the age of 18 who deserve to have their work read by a larger audience. With the help of Joanna Rose, our Youth Editor, we’ve added a section devoted to these talented young women to our journal.
Two publications capture women’s voices and visions
One of the most exciting changes is the creation of not one, but two vehicles to publish women’s work. Our website has become a lively venue for how-to articles, essays, interviews, community news and events. Columnists such as Lyssa Tall Anolik, April Bullard, Trista Cornelius, and Pat Phillips West have provided us with informative and inspirational articles each month. And soon we will welcome S.H. Aeschliman and Rita Ramstad to our expanding list of columnists.
Our second publication, the new online literary and art journal, now does what our print anthologies used to do: Publishes high-quality poetry, prose and art work. The difference is we can do that several times a year in a venue that reaches a wider audience. To date our Fall 2012 issue has attracted over 2,300 readers.
Deb Scott, Ginger Duncan and Heidi McGreal administer our website and keep it a lively, visually-engaging platform. Deb and Ginger are also the design and technological forces behind our new journal. They spent last summer and early fall refining a template that is both stunning and easy to navigate. Without the hard work of these women, we would not have been able to launch this new venture so quickly and smoothly.
Readings and art exhibits for 2013
VoiceCatcher also remains committed to celebrating the work of our authors and artists by organizing pubic readings and art exhibits. For an initial list of events, read this announcement. Stay tuned as we expand this list and announce additional readers, exhibits and artists.
Who’s new at VoiceCatcher
We’re proud to introduce four new volunteers to our VoiceCatcher team.
S.H. Aeschliman: Website columnist
S. H. Aeschliman is a native Oregonian living in Portland with her dog, Milton. By day she’s a freelance writer, editor, educator and learning assessment consultant. By night she’s a writer, reader, learner and dreamer. She blogs about culture, travel, food and lifestyle and writes poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction and cross-genre work. Her prose piece “On Voice” appeared in the Fall 2012 issue of VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions. Learn more about her work on her website.
Marlene Kate Dalziel: Website Assistant Editor
Marlene Kate Dalziel is a voracious reader and researcher with a life-long penchant for discovery and learning. Her education has followed an empirical path, allowing her the freedom to slue from one fascination to another. Writing, however, has always been the prime passion in her life. After decades in the full-time, button-down business world, she now works three days a week in a low-stress job, which allows her time to build her business as a freelance editor. Find more at her blog.
Heidi McGreal: Website Assistant Administrator, Proofreader
After earning a B.S. in psychology with a minor in English at Weber State University, Heidi McGreal finally realized her life-long dream of living in Oregon in 2003. Delving into numerous professional careers throughout her life, she has settled in Portland working as a content editor for the past nine years. She hopes one day to pursue an MFA degree in creative writing.
Rita Ramstad: Website columnist
Rita Ott Ramstad writes about second chances on her blog This (sorta) Old Life. In a previous writing life, she was a poet. Her collection The Play of Dark and Light received the Stafford/Hall Oregon Book Award for Poetry in 2003. In December 2011, Rita re-created VoiceCatcher’s website to promote VoiceCatcher6 and inspired us to transform it into the extensive publication it has become.
Want to join this team of talented women? Even if you only have one hour a week to contribute, we want you! Contact us and we’ll be happy to share our wish-list of opportunities with you.
We thought 2012 was exciting. We can’t wait to see what 2013 brings.