George Saunders at Madison High School

George Saunders at Madison High School

by Mel Wells Award-winning author George Saunders had an immediate rapport with students at Madison High School when he visited their library on a rainy Thursday morning. About 95 students came prepared with questions and listened intently to Saunders’ entertaining stories and advice.  After a great introduction by Madison student Carson Flores, Saunders began by…

Francis Ford Coppola Visits Grant High School

Francis Ford Coppola Visits Grant High School

  by Joanna Rose, WITS Program Specialist On the afternoon of October 2, 2017, legendary director Francis Ford Coppola visited Grant High School, an author visit facilitated by Youth Programs at Literary Arts.  Coppola sat at ease in front of 86 Grant High School students, and started right out telling them that high schools and…

Gresham High School WITS Reading at Origins Coffee, Tea & Desserts

Gresham High School WITS Reading at Origins Coffee, Tea & Desserts

By Kate Jayroe, WITS PSU MFA Intern On Thursday May 25, 2017, WITS was happy to host Gresham High School’s end of residency reading at Origin’s Coffee, Tea & Desserts. Ten students read moving pieces of poetry, bold works of short fiction, earnest personal essays, and short memoirs to an audience of forty people. The…

P.C. Cast visits Madison High School

P.C. Cast visits Madison High School

by Mel Wells We brought New York Times bestselling author P.C. Cast to Madison High School to visit with Brooke Bettencourt’s Language Arts class this week in the library, and everyone had a great time together. Cast has sold over 20 million copies of her books in over 40 countries. She had no shortage of life experience…

Franklin WITS Reading at the BiPartisan Cafe

Franklin WITS Reading at the BiPartisan Cafe

by Kate Jayroe, WITS PSU MFA Intern At our WITS student reading on Thursday May 11, 2017, students from Franklin High School read their work at the Bipartisan Café. The students filed into the café all at once, with proud parents, grandparents, and friends in tow. Students of teachers Anne Meadows, Kim Wagner, and Dana…

Roosevelt WITS student reading at Cathedral Coffee

Roosevelt WITS student reading at Cathedral Coffee

by Mel Wells Cathedral Coffee was standing-room-only during our WITS student reading for Roosevelt High School! Thirteen students shared their work, which varied widely in tone and subject matter, and between fiction, poetry, and nonfiction. Students from Shawn Swanson and Deanna Delgado’s freshman classes worked with WITS writer Joanna Rose, and students in Tory Rodgers and Clair…

Lincoln Students WITS Reading @LiteraryArts

Lincoln Students WITS Reading @LiteraryArts

by Mel Wells The Literary Arts studio was full for the WITS end-of-residency reading by Lincoln High School students. Twelve students shared their work with an audience of almost fifty parents, friends, teachers, and peers. It was easy to tell which writer each student had worked with, as their pieces were all distinctly different genres.  Students…

Grant High School WITS reading at Broadway Books

Grant High School WITS reading at Broadway Books

by Mel Wells Broadway Books once again warmly hosted Grant High School WITS students for their end-of-residency reading. Owner Kim Bissell welcomed folks and reminded all that the bookstore’s 25th birthday is coming up on May 20th (and that there will be cake!) There were cheers all around. Students, teachers, and the writers they worked…

2017 Verselandia Winners at Wieden + Kennedy

2017 Verselandia Winners at Wieden + Kennedy

by Mel Wells Every spring we’re thrilled to bring the Verselandia winners to Wieden + Kennedy for a performance, lunch with Dan Wieden, and tour of the agency. Here are some photos from this year’s visit! 

Verselandia 2017 at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall

Verselandia 2017 at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall

by Tessa Livingstone, Portland State University MFA student This year Verselandia! was especially exciting because it’s the first time it was held at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. This exquisite historic theater is the last of its kind on Broadway: a street once lined with numerous theater houses. Built in 1927, the Schnitz’s ornate interior…