Rafter Groups

Join us for these regular events on Zoom, accessible to all Rafters!

Poetry Pick-Me-Up (Thursdays, 12-1PM Central)

Hop on the Zoom at this link. This is a casual poetry-sharing and discussion group. Bring a published poem that has recently struck you to read to the group. Or, just come to listen to the poems offered by other Rafters and to participate in informal but wholehearted conversation about them. Can’t make it? Watch for the video replay each week in either Events & News or Rafter Digest.

Creatives’ Coffee (every other Wednesday, 4-5:00PM Central)

Hop on the Creatives’ Coffee Zoom at this link. This is a casual conversation group for Rafters who like to “make stuff,” whether for fun or as a profession. Need companionship and support? Creative inspiration? Cross-fertilization of ideas? You’ll find oodles of all this and more at the Coffee. Can’t make it? Watch for the video replay in either Events & News or Rafter Digest.

Rafters Writing Fiction

Led by Ferwa Jaffery from London, England. A writer of novels and plays, she's "particularly drawn to the borderlands where art and creativity meet spirituality." See a five-minute video introduction to Ferwa here.

Ferwa Jaffery
  • Members meet on Zoom every other Tuesday at 1PM Central.

  • Members take turns informally hosting sessions.

  • Members provide a safe and soulful space where they share and use their writing as a springboard to deeper shared reflections and discussions.

  • Members are currently exploring “flash fiction”: the host brings a writing prompt from which they then write, in silence, for a designated amount of time; then they share what they have produced. The focus is not on traditional critique or feedback or producing a “perfect” piece of prose, but on exploration of what has emerged. The sessions will continue to evolve as members experiment with different ways of creating.

Interested in joining the Fiction Writers? Have questions?

Email Ferwa by clicking the button. (Watch your spam in case her reply to you gets routed there.)

Email Ferwa

Poets on The Raft

  • When: Meeting every other Wednesday, 7-8:30PM Central (8-9:30PM Eastern, 6-7:30PM Mountain, 5-6:30PM Pacific)

  • Where: Zoom

  • Format: A safe, receptive space in which you’ll be able to . . .

    • bring one of your original poems at any point in its development

    • request the kind of group feedback that will best support your creative process (for example: encouragement only, or careful critique)

  • Hosts: Annette Grunseth and Gloria Heffernan (see photos and bios below)

  • Circle size: limited to twelve so that everyone can fully participate. Seats filled on first-come, first-served basis, with a waiting list.

  • Membership eligibility: Beginning poets, dabblers, old hands . . .

  • Gatherings are not recorded

Interested in joining this group? Have questions?

Email Annette Grunseth by clicking the button. (Watch your spam in case her reply to you gets routed there.) If for some reason the button doesn’t work for you, contact Phyllis at phyllis@phylliscoledai.com.

Email Annette

Annette Grunseth and Gloria Heffernan

Meet the hosts of Poets on the Raft!

Annette Langlois Grunseth, Green Bay, WI, has participated in poetry groups for more than 25 years. She is widely published in journals and anthologies such as Wisconsin People & Ideas, Bramble, and Poetry of Presence II. She received the 2022 Hal Gruetzmacher Prize for Poetry and earned a 2022 Gold Medal from the Military Writers Society of America for her book Combat and Campus: Writing Through War. She earned a Pushcart Prize nomination with her poetry book Becoming Trans-Parent. Her work has been recognized by the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets and the Wisconsin Academy. Learn more at www.annettegrunseth.com.

Gloria Heffernan’s Exploring Poetry of Presence (Back Porch Productions) won the 2021 CNY Book Award for Nonfiction. She received the 2022 Naugatuck River Review Narrative Poetry Prize. She is the author of the collections Peregrinatio: Poems for Antarctica (Kelsay Books), and What the Gratitude List Said to the Bucket List (New York Quarterly Books). Her forthcoming chapbook, Animal Grace, was selected for the Keystone Chapbook Series prize. Her work appears in over 100 publications, including Poetry of Presence II.