Schedule Summary


Here is the 2014 conference schedule, which gives you a good idea of the kind of offerings and events that will be central to the 2015 conference.

The conference begins with check-in 4-6 p.m. on Friday Sept. 19 and ends with lunch from 12:30-1:30 p.m. on Sunday Sept. 21. Pre-conference events begin with 6 p.m. dinner on Thursday, Sept. 18 and end at 5:30 p.m., Friday Sept. 19. All events take place at Lake Doniphan Conference & Retreat Center, 12856 Doniphan Lake Rd, Excelsior Springs, MO. Please register through the TLA Network at our Eventbrite secure site.


4-6 p.m. Arrival and Check-in (for pre-conference events)

6-7 p.m. Dinner

7-9 p.m. Transcending the Border Wars: Poetry Reading with Missouri and Kansas State Poets Laureate Denise Low, William Trowbridge, Wyatt Townley, Walter Bargen and Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

FRIDAY, September 19:

7:30-8:30 p.m. Breakfast

9:30 -11:30 p.m.  Pre-Conference Workshops:

P1. Poetry, Change, and Homecoming: A Panel Discussion of Five Poets Laureate With Break-Out Writing Workshops – Wyatt Townley, William Trowbridge, Denise Low, Walter Bargen and Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

P2. Make Story the Seed of Your Marketing Creativity – Doug Lipman

12-1  p.m. Lunch

1:15-3:15 p.m. Pre-Conference Workshops

P3. Fearless, Stress-Free Singing and Songwriting – Kelley Hunt

P4. Creative Maladjustment: Using Film to Make the Invisible Visible – Kevin Willmott

3:30-5 p.m. TLA Network Council Annual Meeting

3:30-5:30 p.m. Pre-Conference Workshops

P5. Been Brave Since When – Caits Messner

P6. Does It Work Like a Poem, or Just Look Like a Poem? with Scott Cairns

5-6 p.m. Discover Goddard reception: Learn about Goddard’s Transformative Language Arts and other programs, with Ruth Farmer, director of the Goddard Graduate Institute; Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, coordinator of TLA at Goddard; current students and alumni

4-6 p.m. Arrival and check-in for conference

5:45-6:45 p.m. Dinner

7-9:30 p.m. Conference Opening: Introductions, Performances from singer-songwriter Kelley Hunt, and storyteller Doug Lipman, and artist-in-residence introductions of Jose Faus and Stephen Locke

9:30-10:30 p.m. Jam session

9:30 p.m Star Walk with Ken Lassman

SATURDAY, Sept. 20:

7:00-8:30  Native Prairie Plant Walk with Ken Lassman

8:00-9:00  Breakfast

9:00-9:45  Talking circles

10:00-11:30 Workshop Series #1

1B. Snap!: A Story of Healing Through the Arts – Regi Carpenter

1C-1. Healing the News Cycle with Narrative – Sarah Smarsh (45 minutes)

1C-2. The Language of (Dis)Ability: Person First and Empowerment – Jo’el Roth (45 minutes)

1D. The Art of Gathering Stories That Matter – Jo Radner

1E. Rising to Tell You: Writing First Person Poems of New Beginnings – Kelly DuMar, M.Ed.

11:45-12:30 Keynote Reading – Scott Cairns: For many years (spanning many poetry collections) Scott Cairns has engaged poetry and theology as complementary endeavors, positing that both poetry and theology, duly pursued, become ways of knowing rather than ways of expressing what is known. That is to say, the poet (or the theologian) who wants truly to pursue his or her vocation must appreciate that one writes such texts in order to discover rather than to pronounce what has been discovered. Scott Cairns will read from new and recent poetry collections, including his most recent Compass of Affection and Idiot Psalms. 

12:30-1:30  Lunch

12:30-1:30 TLA Online Class Information Lunch: Join Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg and Regi Carpenter to learn about upcoming and exciting classes

1:45-3:15  Workshop Series #2

2A. Trauma, Silence, and the Recovery of Voice – Katherine Orr

2B. “My Tree Called Life”: Writing and Living Through Serious Illness – Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, John Willison, Lou Eisenbrandt, Kathy Cagg, Anne Haehl, Brian Bachoroski, and Teri Mahoney

2C. Questions for the Second Half of Life – Mary Brandenburg

2D. InterPlay and Vocal Improv: Paths to Creative Potential – Stan Stewart and Jadyn McCune

2E-1. Every Day is Basil Houpis Day – Robin Bady (45 minutes)

2E-2. Journey Through Body and Soul: A Radio Play About Art and Transformation – Hagith Sivan (45 minutes)

3:30-5:00  Workshop Series #3 

3A. Improving Life – Callid Keefe-Perry and Keegan Olton

3B. Laughter and Orature – Lyn Ford

3C. Problems or Possibilities?: Using Co-Created Community Theatre to Inspire Social Change – Jadyn McCune

3D. Portraits of Success: Developing a Path to Right Livelihood – Olive L. Sullivan and Liz Spencer

3E. Melody of Language – Martin Swinger

5-6 p.m. Free time, TLA Network Council Interest meeting

6:00-7:00  Dinner

7-7:15 Improvalooza

7:15-8  Keynote Talk – Kevin Willmott: Kevin Willmott will speak about his work in film and how he uses history and storytelling to inform us of our challenges today.  Examining his films, Destination: Planet Negro!,  CSA: Confederate States of America and Jayhawkers he will explain his approach to using film to educate, open minds and inspire us to move forward in the world. He says of his work, “My movies are intended to challenge you – to make you feel a little uncomfortable and to expose our ‘Living History.’ It’s about the way spacerhistory makes us feel, not the history that we know.”

8:00-10:30  Coffeehouse of Wonder Open Mic

SUNDAY, Sept. 21:

8:00-9:00  Breakfastdownsize-15

9:00-9:45  Talking circles

10:00-11:30  Workshop Series #4

4A. Write Whole, Healers: Self-Care for Transformative Language Artists – Jen Cross

4B. Sisters of Survival: Writing in Prison – Iris Wilkinson and Sharon Sullivan

4C. Transformation at the Threshold: A Process of Release–Beth Honeycutt

4D. Wholeness Through SongShaping – Holly Phares

4E-1.Writing Into the Big Questions of Our Lives – Heather Severson and Sandy LaCava (45 minutes)

4E-2. Story Games – Priscilla Howe (45 minutes)

11:45-12:30  Closing Circle

12:30-1:30  Lunch

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