Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Foolish Words 2008 is upon us!

Hello, Bozeman-area writers,

It's that time of year again! Yes, cabin fever time, when the walls of winter close in, the only two colors are white and night, and you ask yourself over and over: Why, exactly, did I choose Montana over Maui? It's time to think of the cheery days of early spring - and why not think of the cheeriest day? April 1st is the day I'm talking about, the day Southwest Montana's scribes have their moment in the spotlight. Foolish Words Day.

I've known a few writers over the years, and one thing I've noticed is that writers seek to appear humble. That, of course, doesn't mean we are humble; we just prefer people to think of us that way. If they knew the truth of our gargantuan egos and our need for constant praise and validation... well, we'll just keep that to ourselves. Except on April 1st! This is the day we get to be on stage and show the world just how big a bunch of hams we really are.

For the unindoctrinated, I'm talking about Foolish Words, a story passed along from one Bozeman-area writer to the next. Started by a meager handful of writers in 2004, Foolish Words has become, if not an institution, then at least something that deserves to be institutionalized. Fifteen writers took part in last year's ridiculousness, ranging from those whose work has barely passed before the public's eye to jaded veterans of the written word: authors, journalists, playwrights. After our live reading at the Leaf & Bean, an edited version was once again published in installment form in the Tributary magazine.

You may have noticed that Bozeman has something of a disparate - or should I say desperate? - writing community. There's tons of writers of all different levels of establishment, but they almost never do anything with each other. Here, we can create something wonderful together. Or nonsensical. Or wonderfully nonsensical. For an idea of what I'm talking about, visit the Foolish Words Bozeman blog at http://foolishwordsbozeman.blogspot.com/

So, here's how it works: Everyone who's interested gets e-mailed the progressively growing oeuvre for three days, and in that time he or she needs to come up with no more than 400 words to add to the story. When all is said and done, we all band together on April 1 and read our parts at the Leaf and Bean. Can't show up? No worries, someone will read for you. Got a friend who may be interested? Pass the word along! The more fools the better, I always say.

Please let me know right away if you're interested in participating.

Ray Sikorski

Note: Our dear former leader, poet Sam Louden, is now in law school in Boston, on his way to becoming a judge (poetic justice?). So that leaves just me in charge for now... although I will be out of town for parts of March. Does anybody want to be my organizational collaborator?

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