March 2016

New Memoir to Highlight March Meeting
Our March meeting promises to be a special gathering as WiVLA member Leah Lax shares the story of her widely acclaimed memoir, Uncovered.  An award-­‐winning author, Lax's book has already been recognized by Redbook Magazine and Good Housekeeping as one of the 2015 best books by women.
As a young teen, Leah Lax joined the Hasidim, the Jewish ultra-orthodox, and spent thirty years among them. Uncovered is her memoir of those years–as a closeted lesbian, wife, and mother of seven. Gloria Stenim has called the book "a story that millions can recognize told with spirit, courage and honesty."  Lax's published work includes award-winning fiction, nonfiction, and two major stage productions.
We will meet at the Printing Museum on March 15 at 5:45, as always. Remember that the parking lot across the street is no longer accessible.  We will start with light snacks and wine with the meeting beginning promptly at 6:15 pm. Please bring your friends!
President's Message
WHERE ARE ALL THE WOMEN ARTISTS AND WRITERS? WiVLA women will attest that this is a rhetorical question because:
On March 8 you will find us at the Opening Reception for the Library Show, “Inspired by Her Quote” at the Houston Public Library - Central Library, 500 McKinney.  And it is no coincidence that March 8 is International Women’s Day. The reception begins at 4 PM in the library lobby and at 6:30 our writers will read their entries from the chapbook produced by our Literary Co-Chairs Paige Moore and Mary Harlan for the event. Our Visual Co-Chairs Jo Zider and Peggy Sexton in addition to curating the visual exhibit have also produced a catalog for the show. Both the catalog and the chapbook will be available for participants at the show.

Between now and March 15 those who haven’t submitted their entries for the collaboration show, “Windows” will be filling out the Intent to Submit Form and mailing it with the check per collaboration of $50 to be postmarked no later than March 15. Because the work isn’t due for submission until July 2, those who haven’t made a commitment to collaborate still have time to find a partner and begin the exciting journey of collaborating with another creative woman.

On March 15 WiVLA member Leah Lax will speak about her book Uncovered at our meeting at the Printing Museum. This is an opportunity you won’t want to miss.

On March 19 WiVLA will host two workshops: “A to Z: Artful Zentangle or How I Found my Zen by Drawing Focused, Reflective, Abstract Marks” with artist and WiVLA member Judith Shamp in the morning; and “Using Objects and Memories as a Springboard into Writing and Art” with former WiVLA President and author Marian Szczepanski. Those who recently attended the workshop by Marie-Pierre Stien know that our workshops are always challenging, inspiring and lots of fun. (Find full descriptions under WiVLA News with the link to register)

Our March events will be an excellent time to introduce your friends and other creative women to WiVLA and give them the chance to meet us through our many creative voices. Please feel free to forward this newsletter and encourage them to join us. Admission is free – and awesomeness guaranteed.
  Jane Mulholland

WiVLA Library Show "Inspired by Her Quote"
WiVLA will present a very special show at the Houston Public Library - Central Library for the month of March, 2016. The theme is "Inspired by Her Quote." The Show opens March 8, International Women's Day with a reception beginning at 4 pm.

Because March is designated International Women's Month and our venue is the Houston Public Library - Central Library, the theme appropriately reflects women who have inspired us with their words of wisdom and wit.  WiVLA writers and visual artists have created original work based upon quotes from women in society:  humorous, vicious, provocative, or at least memorable.  Visual artists in the show include: Josena Arquieta, Rona Lesser, Janet Reynolds, Peggy Sexton, Jane Mulholland, Jo Zider, Zita Giraldo, Marcia Patrick, Lane Devereux, Lilibeth Andre, Cindy Rasche, and Roberta Sajda.  Writers sharing in the chapbook will be: Marie-Pierre Stien, Margo Davis, Jane Mulholland, Gladys Mae Bullock, Harriet Riley, Kay McStay, Patricia Flaherty Pagan, Sandi Stromberg, Roberta Sajda, Jere Pfister, Linda Stelljes, and Lilibeth André,

The reception in honor of International Women's Day on March 8, 2016,  will be open to the public from 4:00 to 7:00 pm.  Non-alcoholic refreshments will be served in the first floor exhibition space of the Houston Public Library - Central Library, 500 McKinney Street. Our writers will read their works beginning at 6:30 pm. Both the color show catalog and the chapbook will be available at the opening.

Windows Deadline Just Ahead
Note that the time to submit the "Intent to Collaborate" form has been extended. The Board has "opened the window" from February 8 to March 15 and during that time you may submit your intention to collaborate along with your submission fee. All submissions must be postmarked by March 15. Link to the prospectus here
Here are all the dates you need to know for the Windows Collaboration:
Feb 8 - Mar 15, 2016 -" Intent to submit" with entry fee due
           This is a newly extended timeline for submitting the form with your intention and partner.  See attached entry form.
Jul 2, 2016 - Deadline for image submission
Sep 10, 2016  - Deliver art & excerpt to Brazosport Art Center
Sep 17, 2016  - Windows Opening Reception Anthology & Reading
Oct 9, 2016  - Pick up art at Brazosport Art Center. 
This exciting opportunity to partner with a visual artist or writer is getting closer. Find your partner now! So far, the following collaborators have announced their intentions (through January 30):
Densie Bossarte (artist) and Pat Morgan (writer)
Mary Riggs Ramain (artist) and Jere Pfister (writer)
Carol Watson (artist) and Mary Harlan (writer)
Josena Arquieta (artist) with Jane Mullholland (writer)
Zita Giraldo (artist) with Jane Mullholland (writer) 
Peggy Sexton (artist) with Diana Weeks (writer)
Judith Shamps (artist) with Lilibeth André (writer)
Jo Zider (artist) with Mary Harlan (writer)
Jo Zider (artist) with Paige Moore (writer)
Anna Phillips (writer) and Marguerite Baldwin (artist)
Gladys Bullock (writer) and Lane Devereux (artist)
Rona Lesser (artist) and Linda Stelljes (writer)
Lillian Tharp (artist) and Kathleen Merritt (writer)
Still looking - Billie Duncan (writer) looking for artist

Last Sketchbook Meeting at Mendenhall Community Center!
Tuesday, March 29, from 6 to 8 pm
Mendenhall Community Center
1414 Wirt Road, Spring Branch
(NE corner of Wirt & Westview)

If you’ve always wanted to sketch, have always enjoyed sketching, or any place in between, come and join us for an evening of sketching at our favorite community center. We will go through some basics about sketching, share some books, practice on objects we’ve brought, and generally help each other become better sketchers. At this meeting, we will share details of how to join the Urban Sketchers/Texas group, which does sketch-ins at various places around the state.  Several weeks ago, there was one here in Houston at the downtown library.  We can also organize our own mini sketching dates at various places around the city. 
Supplies:  a sketchbook (decide if you want a spiral bound one or one that opens flat with only a seam down the middle, pencil(s), erasers, pen – if you want to sketch in ink, water colors – optional – an inexpensive small set (bring a covered jar of water), and 1 or 2 interesting objects to sketch

In the meantime, Cori Austin suggests investigating a couple of artists who are well known for their sketching and teaching of sketching:
I have learned so much from Danny Gregory.  He is encouraging, personable, and has such an non-threatening way of teaching sketching.  I especially love the way he encourages us to sketch things to which we are emotionally connected.  The sketch then grows into a personal response to an item or place, as he incorporates writing onto his page.  I took a 6 week online course called Sketchbook Skool which he coordinated.  It had 6 different instructors, which was fun because it showed differences between styles. Watch some of his Youtube videos: Also check out Koosje Koene:  

WiVLA Book Group Meeting Time Set
 The WiVLA Book Group will meet for the first time on April 23 (Shakespeare’s Birthday) from 12:30 - 2:30 pm at Trini Mendenhall Community Center, 1414 Wirt Road, at the corner of Wirt and Westview.

The first book will be In Montmartre, Picasso, Matisse and Modernism in Paris 1900-1910, by Sue Roe. Everyone is welcome to attend. Please come ready to discuss this book and with suggestions for other books to read.
A thrilling account, In Montmartre captures an extraordinary group on the cusp of fame and immortality., Through their stories, Roe brings to life one of the key moments in the history of art, according to Amazon.If you are interested in joining our book group, please email

2016 ECO Fund Applications Now Online
Applications are now being accepted for WiVLA's 2016 Educational and Cultural Opportunity awards. Two $1,000 awards will be given—one to an artist and one to a writer. All individuals who have been dues-paying members for two consecutive years are encouraged to apply. Previous winners are ineligible. Applications will be reviewed for consistency with WiVLA's mission and goals by a committee that includes previous ECO Fund award recipients. This year's lucky members will be drawn from the pool of qualified applicants at the April 19, 2016 meeting. The application form is available here.

Completed applications must be postmarked by APRIL 9, 2016. E-mail your application to, or mail the application (postmarked by April 9th) to: WiVLA ECO Fund Award,PO BOX 130406, Houston, TX 77219-0406

Previous winners have used the award to attend classes and workshops, purchase equipment, improve their work space, install community art, research books, travel, and more. The award has made a significant difference in the artistic lives of all the past winners. Don't miss the chance to participate in the 2016 ECO Fund awards. Contact for more information.

Digital Publishing is Hot Topic at February Meeting
"We are living in the age of the artist," declared our February speaker, writer and illustrator Marie-Pierre Stien. "We can self publish. We can sell our art on Etsy. The world has changed," said Stien. She encouraged WiVLA women to change their thinking about self-published and the digital world. Stien's very interesting talk gave both writers and visual artists inspiration.

Stien shared the story of how she self published her own picture book, Barely Behaving Daughters a few years ago. With top reviews on Amazon, her delightful illustrations and clever text make this book a real gem for adults and children alike.  Stien said the experience taught her a lot - "I learned the most from the mistakes." In her charming and humorous style, Stien outlined all her mistakes. She said that in the end, "It was all worth it. I am proud of the project." She urged fellow artists and writers to enjoy the process of creating and sharing their work.

Books2Eat on April Fools!
 Are you hungry for some delightful and delicious creative work?  You are invited to prepare and exhibit an edible work of art based on books and reading. Any edible book idea is eligible, a favorite title, character, or event or a pun involving a book. Join the Houston Book Arts Guild and WiVLA for an evening of eating our words!  This evening will be the local festival as part of the International Edible Book Festival, which occurs annually throughout the world. We encourage you to make an edible book. Prizes and lots of fun!  If you want to be on the committee to help with the festival, contact Jane Mulholland at
 When:  Friday, April 1, 2016, 7-9 pm
Where:  The Printing Museum, 1324 W. Clay, 77019
 Go to the website for more ideas. See you there!!

If you shop at Randall's, use the "Good Neighbor" code of 5341 and WiVLA will benefit every time you shop!
WiVLA Scoop by the Snoop: March 2016
Although the Snoop thinks she knows a lot, she can use your help. Let her know your scoop:

The Snoop has overhead two conversations she’d like to report. One of our members at dinner following the February meeting said she hoped people wouldn’t be scared off entering the ECO Fund Award (application here) because of the requirement for giving a presentation of how they used the money at the April 2017 WiVLA meeting. “You know,” she went on to say, “there are plenty of people who will help with the presentation and that should never deter a person from entering.” All board members, former board members and ECO Fund recipients will nod in agreement as they read this.
Then the Snoop heard this conversation at the workshop, “Taming the Digital Beast.” “I am taking both workshops on March 19 although Zentangle scares me to death. “ The woman she was talking with replied, “But why? You don’t have to take any of these.” “Of course, but if I don’t do things that scare me how can I stretch? And who knows, perhaps I will find my Zen.”

You too can join the WiVLA board - these ladies are brimming with creativity and fun! They made the masks pictured at left to represent the spirit of WiVLA at the recent board retreat.Learn more:


Literary and Visual Workshops
TWO WiVLA Workshops on the same day: March 19! Both workshops have been selected because they are designed appeal to writers and artists. The workshops will be held at the Trini Mendenhall Community Center, 1414 Wirt Road, 77055.

March 19, 2016: 9 -11:30, “A to Z: Artful Zentangle or How I Found my Zen by Drawing Focused, Reflective, Abstract marks” with artist and WiVLA member Judith Shamp.
This introduction to the practice of Zentangle can spark a creative fire in both writers and artists. Judith's work has been published in numerous books, has been juried into several exhibitions, and is in several collections, including as far away as Australia. She combines the mark making of tangles with three dimensional objects and always enjoys pushing boundaries...’well mostly, as far as my artistic expression is concerned."   
11:30 to 12:15 Lunch Break for those attending both sessions

12:15 – 2:45 pm,,  "Using Objects and Memories as a Springboard into Writing and Art," with novelist Marian Szczepanski.
Former WiVLA President and novelist Marian Szczepanski will show us how to use objects to enhance our work. We'll consider examples of memory- and object-related creative work and then practice our own with writing and/or collage exercises to generate fresh literary and visual inspiration. Participants are strongly encouraged to bring one or more objects (or photos) to the workshop. Objects may have special significance, but seemingly ordinary/mundane items can work equally well. Magazines will be available for those wishing to make collages; participants planning to work in this form are asked to bring scissors, a glue stick, and cardboard. Marian's debut novel Playing St. Barbara (High Hill Press, 2013) has been selected (so far) by 42 book clubs in eight states. She teaches writing workshops at Writespace (Houston), Gemini Ink (San Antonio), the Writers' League of Texas (Austin), and Village Writing School (Eureka Springs, AR).


Prospectus: Windows Collaboration
Click here to see the Prospectus for the September 2016 Windows Collaboration.

Please send in your news - art exhibits, works published by the 20th of each month to be included in the following month's newsletter. Please share your good news with WiVLA members by sending to
  • Mary Riggs Ramain had an article about her work published  on the blog All About Photo. The feature written by Ann Jastrab, director of Rayco Gallery in San Francisco was about her series "NOT MYSELF: A Path to Transcending Trauma”.
  • Billie Duncan’s collaborative group, The Balcony Poets, will be featured on March 19, 7:30pm, at the 11th Annual For the Community Festival at Eastdown Warehouse. This performance includes five poets, two musicians and one visual artist.
  • Denise Bossarte will have a solo photography exhibit of her “Found Worlds” at the SEAD Gallery, Bryan, TX from March 3- April 24 with the opening reception on March 3 from 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Tayyba Kanwal, together with Artistic Director, Dianne Webb, is thrilled to announce the first full play production by our new theater company, Next Iteration Theater , THE BABY, by Lisa Boss Omlie, a Houston and London-based playwright, will be at the MATCH performance venue from March 11 - 19.
  • Lilibeth Andre will share her artwork from the Mexico series with the Houston Chamber Choir for the Mexicantos choral treasures on March 5, 7:30pm, at St. Vincent the Divine, 2450 River Oaks Blvd, Houston.
  • Maria Brophy has started an informative blog for artists to help them master the business of art. Check it out.
  • donna e perkins has a photo in Pixels+Silver: Group Dynamics, Aker Imaging Gallery, FotoFest 2016. Opening Reception – March 5th, 2016. Exhibition runs March 5th- March 30th . Aker Imaging Gallery is a commercial gallery operating at 4710 Lillian, Houston.
  • Lane Devereux's quilt, "Ann's Rose Trellis," will be exhibited at the 2016 Tricounty Quilt Guild's Bi-Annual Judged Quilt Show, "If Quilts Could Talk," on March 4 and 5 at the Berry Center in Cypress. The Berry Center is at 8877 Barker Cypress. Show hours are 10-5 on Friday, March 4 and 10-4 on Saturday, March 5.
  • Editors Note: We know a lot of you are showing your work and getting articles and books published, but you MUST send the information to by the 20th of each month. We want to support you and come to your openings, but we have to know about it!!!

Spider Road Press, a Houston independent press promoting writing by
and/or about strong women, is having their second annual flash fiction contest. Spider Road Press is once again celebrating excellent, unpublished flash fiction featuring a female protagonist. Contest entries will be accepted from February 15 –May 15, 2016.

WriteSpace is offering several workshops in March including Worldbuilding with CASSANDRA ROSE CLARKE, The Art of Reading Your Work Aloud with JULIETTA PARRA DUCOTE, This is Not I: A Persona Poetry Workshop with PATRICK RYAN FRANK, and Fiction for Beginning Writers with CASSANDRA ROSE CLARKE.  Go to their website to get dates and prices and register NOW!

WiVLA member Elizabeth White-Olsen is teaching a class on Developing Stories for Children and Young Adults at Glasscock School of Continuing Studies course at Rice University beginning March 21. Click here for more information.

WiVLA member Denise Bossarte will be offering a Miksang Contemplative Photography Level I class, at JoMar Visions, Houston, TX Saturday March 5: 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM and Sun March 6: 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM.

WiVLA member Harriet Riley will once again be teaching her "Telling Our Stories" class through Spring Branch Community Education for four Mondays from 6 to 8 pm beginning March 21. Click here to register.

Art Houston, a new magazine dedicated to all types of art, is looking for articles. For general submission guidelines, contact the publisher here.

The Galveston Artist Residency is now accepting applications for the 2016 - 2017 Residency Year. They award three residency grants each year. Click here for more information. The deadline is March 12.

The Houston Writers Guild offers several Critique Circles at different times and locations. For more information, click here.

Need studio space? JoMar Visions is expanding to an amazing new location in Northwest Crossing in Houston! Location at 5247-5249 Langfield Rd, Houston, TX-77040. Be part of a vibrant art community.
for more information and a map of the studio spaces.
~ Fraction Magazine is an online venue dedicated to fine art, contemporary photography and brings together diverse bodies of work by established and emerging artists from around the globe. They accept submissions
from new and emerging photographers.
~ FreshArts, of which we are members, has many opportunities for artists listed on their website. Check it out!

Calls for Entry:  Visual Art
Inclusion in this list does not indicate endorsement by WiVLA. We recommend you research each contest, and contact the sponsor(s). 
~ Archway Gallery is reviewing portfolios of local artists. To apply, please read the information on the Archway Gallery Website,

~ The Visual Arts Alliance announces its 33rd Juried Open Exhibition June 6 - July 3, 2016 at BLUEorange Gallery. Deadline for submissions is May 1. Click here for more information.

~ WCA-CO announces its 2016 national juried show - State of Unions to be exhibited from May 26 to June 12 at the Core Annex, 900 Santa Fe Drive, Denver CO 80204. Go to

~ The "Call to Artists" for Pear Scape 2016.(Art Sculpture Trail 2016 in Pearland) opens March 1. Check out this interesting opportunity.

~ Juried Art Services has a digital jurying system. Click on the link above for more information.
~ CAFE' for Artists! is a website that lists calls for entries nation-wide.  Descriptions of type of art and theme are listed, as is a link for more information.  Deadlines are included.
Calls for Entry:  Literary Art
Inclusion in this list does not indicate endorsement by WiVLA. We recommend you research each contest, and contact the sponsor(s).
Narrative regularly publishes fiction, poetry, and nonfiction, including stories, novels, novel excerpts, novellas, personal essays, humor, sketches, memoirs, literary biographies, commentary, reportage, interviews, and features of interest to readers who take pleasure in storytelling and imaginative prose.
~  The Prairie Schooner Book Prize Series awards $3,000 and publication through the University of Nebraska Press to the winning writers of one short fiction and one poetry manuscript each year. Manuscripts will be accepted through March 15, 2016. Learn More.

The Aesthetica Creative Writing Award 2016 is now open for entries, presenting an opportunity for emerging and established writers and poets to showcase their work and further their involvement in the literary world. Short Fiction entries should be no more than 2,000 words. Poetry entries should be no more than 40 lines. Deadline for submissions is 31 August 2016.

~ Poets & Writers has a great database of conferences and residencies for writers. Check it out.

~ A Yahoo group has an ongoing and frequently updated list of creative writing opportunities. Writers can join and the notifications come directly to your email.     

~ Winning Writers is another great website for writing opportunities. Check it out by clicking here

Please forward WiVLA Voices to all your friends who might be interested in WiVLA. BRING A FRIEND TO OUR NEXT MEETING!

Upcoming Events

Tuesday, March 15 at 5:45 pm
Leah Lax, "Uncovered"

Unless otherwise noted, member meetings are at the Printing Museum at 1324 W. Clay Street.  We start with refreshments at 5:45 and the meeting at 6:15 pm. For a complete list of upcoming events, visit the WiVLA calendar online.

LIBRARY SHOW "INSPIRED BY HER QUOTE" OPENING RECEPTION MARCH 8: Houston Public Library - Central Library 4-7pm (see story)

Tuesday, April 19 at 5:45 pm
"How I Spent My Thousand Dollar Windfall"
2015 ECO Award winners Cori Austin and Sandi Stromberg

March 19, 2016
Workshop: A to Z: Artful Zentangle
or How I Found My Zen (Shamp)

March 19, 2016
Workshop: Using Objects and Memories
as a Springboard into Writing and Art (Szczepanski)

Tuesday, May 17 at 5:45 pm
"Gold Key Awards"
Recognizing outstanding high school visual artists and writiers

About Women in the Visual and Literary Arts

The mission of WiVLA is to provide an inspiring forum for women to explore and advance their creative development, to promote their work in the marketplace, and to infuse the community with their spirit of cooperation and invention.

Update Subscription Preferences 
View Email In Browser

WiVLA 2016 Board of Directors

President - Jane Mulholland 

Vice President - Cori Austin  

Secretary - Alicia Young           

Treasurer - Lane Devereux

Membership - Zita Giraldo and Kristine Rivers

Communications -  Mary Ramain

Programs - Lillian Tharp     

Newsletter - Harriet Riley  

Visual Arts - Peggy Sexton
and Jo Zider   


Literary Arts -Paige Moore
and Mary Harlan   


At-Large-  Josena Arquieta
and Cookie Wells

Historian - Rona Lesser 

Our mailing address is:
Women in the Visual and Literary Arts (WiVLA)
P. O. Box 130406
Houston, TX  77219-0406


Quick Links...



The Printing Museum

Glasstire Texas:  Visual Art News and Reviews

Fresh Arts Coalition Houston

Visual Arts Alliance

Houston Writers Guild

Lawndale Art Center


Gulf Coast Poets

Inprint Houston

Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts

Houston Press

Paper City Magazine

Arts Hound

ouston Culture Map

WriteSpace Houston

Copyright © 2015 Women in the Literary and Visual Arts. All rights reserved.