Oceanside Literary Festival scheduled for next month; open writing competition

Oceanside’s annual literary festival, known as Write On, Oceanside!, is scheduled for August 13 and entries are being sought for the event’s writing competition.

The free book festival began 12 years ago to celebrate local authors and inspire aspiring writers of all ages, from teens to 100s, and has since become one of the county’s most anticipated literary events North.

The event includes a showcase of local authors and a book fair and offers community members a place to meet local authors.

Participating authors can bring copies of their books, promote them, sign them and sell them to the public at the event. Authors from Oceanside get priority access and there is usually room for authors from other communities in the region.

The festival organized by the Oceanside Public Library and the Oceanside Cultural Arts Foundation will once again take place in person at the Civic Center Library in downtown Oceanside.

The theme for this year’s writing contest is “Crossing to the Other Side…to Oceanside!” Contestants can write 500 words of prose or poetry and tell their story of “how they do.” Stories can be humorous or serious or something in between.

In preparation for the writing contest, Write On, Oceanside! will have two writing workshops from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on July 9 and July 16.

The first workshop helps participants define their ideas and organize the details of the poetry, fiction or non-fiction they plan to write for the competition. During the second workshop, participants will share writing drafts with the group and get feedback in the form of helpful suggestions on what works and what might need improvement.

Both workshops will be led by Leslie Clark, a published author, retired creative writing teacher and leader of a group of library writers. Clark is the author of two collections of poetry, short stories, and short nonfiction pieces that have appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies over several decades.

The workshops will be held in the Oceanside Cultural Arts Foundation room of the Civic Center Library, 330 N. Coast Highway. Register at (760) 435-5600.

The writing contest is open to adults 18 and older and teens 13-17. Submissions of up to 500 words will be accepted until August 1. The author’s name, email address and age must be included. Email submissions to [email protected] with the subject line “Getting Through”. One entry per person. Winners will be announced at the Write On, Oceanside! festival.

For more information, visit oceansidepubliclibrary.org or ocaf.info.

Scott R. Banks