University of Vermont

Asian Studies Outreach Program

Write About It: National Day on Writing III

October 20, 2011 in the John Dewey Lounge, UVM

Lisa Italiano at a young writer's workshop

“Images” is the theme of third annual National Day on Writing at the University of Vermont, and the focus of the three workshops that will be taking place Thursday, October 20th 2011 in the John Dewey Lounge. The old adage says that a picture worth a thousand words, and this past year Vermonters have seen more than their fair share of powerful images.

“From the flooding in spring, the hurricane at the end of summer, images of our state have been flooding the media,” explains Lisa H. Italiano, director of the National Writing Project in Vermont. “Taking these images as promps to discuss how a person feels, or how they are inspired from the picture, can create some powerful writing.”

The day will begin with an 11:30am workshop with Caroline Eisner, author and educator, who will lead a workshop on “Images and Writing”. This will be followed by the 1:00pm workshop with James Kochalka, the 2011 Vermont Cartoonist Laureate, who will lead a workshop on drawing and writing. At 2:30pm Frank Gonzalez, global artist, will engage participants in a hands-on storytelling and puppetry workshop.

“The day is about bringing groups across campus together to show how people in every walk of life, in every kind of work, and at every age write more than ever before for personal, professional, and civic purposes.” Lisa said. One of the contributing campus organizations, the Asian Studies Outreach Program, has taken an active role in NDWIII because it allows them to showcase writing across languages, and activities that bring together Asian Culture and writing.

“Writing is communication, and communication is a global thing,” explains Jacqueline Drouin, a staff member at the Asian Studies Outreach Program. “The ability to share the writings of Asian authors, providing demonstrations on how to write in a different language, and use images of Chinese or Japanese art as prompts in writing exercises is a great way for students to learn about a different culture and develop writing skills”.

The National Day on Writing, organized by the National Council of Teachers of English, draws attention to the remarkable variety of writing produced by writers in all walks of life, and celebrates the importance of writing in personal, professional and civic lives.

The events will conclude with at Writers' Marathon at Brennan's, in UVM's Davis Center. This non-stop, presentation of original work will offer all writers and songwriters five minutes at the microphone to present original writing or song. Both participants and audience members are welcome.

For questions about the day, contact Lisa H. Italiano at

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