Student Spotlight: Mike Crowley

Frequency is honored to feature the voices and writing of community members. Our Student Spotlights bring you the words of some of our inspired writers. If you would like to share your own thoughts, please email

The Writer

With writing I don’t really have a clue, no plan no theme nothing really.
When I write I usually I go someplace. In addition to my own backyard, I have the George B. Slater Memorial Grove just outside of Pawtuxet Village with a distant view of the Providence river, or I drive all the way to Beaver Tail Lighthouse or up to Lincoln Woods or to the Providence Athenaeum.

I have an 8’ x 11 Mead spiral notebook, a black Uniball, and I’ll sit at a desk, in my car or on the rocks and stare at my notebook until some words come.

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For example, I might start: “At my usual spot near the cove, Providence River low tide, a couple of swans, gulls, crows… Almost quiet. A distant plane. Doppler drizzle hits the metal roof.”  Writing like this goes on for a page or two. Then a day, week, or years later I’ll look through the notebook and find lines and connections that I type up as a poem. For me, form comes later, way after I’ve got the words.

A Place to Land
It’s good to have someplace to go,
someplace from which to come,
a color scheme, an action plan,
a girl next door,
the why and wherefore,
will and won’t,
do and whatever you do, don’t;
a never never and a place to land
a pause in the warp and weave,
all hands on deck, hearts on sleeve,
heads that roll, a lost and found
and hills with variegated hues
when the sun sets, then night looms.

The Community

Frequency workshops are a joy.  I always wind up reading a lot of new (to me) poets and filling a notebook. I’ve taken a lot of Frequency workshops over the past few years, dealing with reading and writing poetry.

I remember it was a little intimidating to walk in, the first time, to sit down with 10 people I’d never met and share my writing. But the atmosphere is always relaxed, without pressure to produce.

The age range seemed to go from collage age to Baby Boomers, and anybody in between. There were no levels of proficiency or writing experience needed. No style required. Some members may never have written anything and/or shared it with others before.

My first workshop was led by Darcie Dennigan; an inspired and inspiring teacher and poet. The group would read a few published poems and talk a little bit about them. Then Darcy would make some suggestions for writing; sometimes with a specific prompt, sometimes just free-writing for 5 or so minutes. Members of the group can share or not share what they produced.

There’s no need to be brilliant, no pressure to compete.

Over the past few years, workshops with Frequency have always gotten me to write more, both in the workshop as well as afterwards. In all of the number of workshops I’ve taken, I’ve left with extensive and thoughtful feedback from the group.


Scholarship Offerings

Frequency Writers is committed to keeping tuition costs within an affordable range, but as working artists & writers ourselves we know that sometimes that class or opportunity feels like a luxury rather than a necessity. We offer financial aid on every class we run, so please contact us if you are interested in financial aid for that one workshop you just need to be in!

Frequency Writers scholarships are open to anyone. No previous creative writing experience required.

Exhibit & Reading at AS220: Making Writing/ Writing Art

Join us for the gallery exhibit opening Frequency Writers: Making Writing/ Writing Art.

January 13 from 5-8pm, with a reading from 7-8pm, at AS220’s Resident Gallery at the Merc: 131 Washington St. Providence, RI.


26170906_10159773031305223_4303355666419270722_oThis is an extension of Victor Wildman’s  past Frequency workshop also entitled Making Writing/ Writing Art. Artist Alyssa Coffman, a student in Wildman’s class, is curating the exhibit.

After returning to Providence from out of town, Coffman stated,

“I bumped into a poster for a Frequency Writing course titled: Making Writing/Writing Art. I felt strongly I was supposed to take the class, and was blessed with a partial scholarship that made it possible.

It was an incredibly stimulating class that confirmed my eagerness to share my writing as an equal counterpart with my visual art.”

The class was aimed at creating pieces of writing that was analogous to how artists – in a different number of media – construct their art. Students were asked to incorporate their art making process into their own ways of writing. Coffman says:

“I’m very excited to see these two disciplines exist in the same space. Come and enjoy the artwork and writing of talented visual artists with powerful writing voices!”

Videos from Upcoming Instructors of our Playwriting & Young Adult Fiction Workshops

Meet some of our upcoming workshop leaders! Frequency is excited to offer two new classes on Playwriting and Young Adult Fiction, taught by fabulous instructors, Adara Meyers and Jeff Hirsch.

Check out the introductory videos below to learn more about the writing workshops. All winter/spring 2018 classes are open for registration. For dates, info, and registration, visit our Current Courses page.

POSTPONED: Writing Sounds Lounge with Laura Brown-Lavoie!




**December’s Writing Sounds Lounge has been postponed due to the snow. Please check back for a rescheduled date & time***

Sunday, December 10, 2017, 10:30AM, at Ada Books
717 Westminster Street, Providence
$5-$10 suggested donation

What is it?

Writing Sounds Lounge is a monthly drop-in program that invites attendees to write while listening. Guest musicians from the Providence community will perform while attendees are invited (but certainly not required) to write to specified prompts given by Frequency leaders.

Read more about Writing Sounds Lounge here.

Who’s making this month’s music?

Laura Brown-Lavoie is a poet and farmer in Providence. She is lately practicing the ways music can surround and buoy words in live and recorded performances of her own work, and is excited to spend a morning making music with her keyboard to surround and buoy yours. You can hear some of her past spoken poetry performances, such as a TEDx Providence in 2012.

You can also listen to Laura’s recent podcast episode on Endless Beautiful, a show that uses sound as inspiration and also recently featured Frequency Co-Director, Karen Haskel.

Share and RSVP on this month’s Writing Sounds Lounge facebook event page.


Writing Sounds Lounge is hosted and curated by S. Tourjee.

Past Performers:
Sakiko Mori, March 2017
Francesca Caruso, April 2017

Emily Dix Thomas, May 2017
Scott Reber, June 2017
Rachel Blumberg, July 2017
Kei Cobb, September 2017


Nurturing the Writer’s Voice: Support Frequency with a Donation Today

Dear Frequency Community,

It is that time of year when our thoughts are turning to gratitude and reflection and stock-taking as we celebrate Thanksgiving (or Friendsgiving), begin to prepare for the holidays, and steel ourselves to cope with the cold and dark.  We reflect on the year that has past and begin to plan how we’d like to change and grow in the coming New Year.

It is impossible not to also reflect on the contentious landscape of American politics and the coarsening of public discourse, especially so, I believe, if you care about language and its many applications.  Engaging in our moment meaningfully seems to demand a tireless voice more than ever before.

While reflecting on the nature of Frequency’s work, my first thought was that Frequency’s work centers on speaking out, finding our voices, and raising them up. In a time of polarized shouting and questionable rhetoric, the power of the whisper, of forcing the listener to lean in seems equally vital though.  Silence can also be used as an effective tool of protest and strikes me as a primary state for a writer to exist in.  Frequency Writers’ ultimate aim is to reach writers where they are at and honor all the stages of writing—the voice raised in praise or dissent, the considered whisper which urges the listener toward deeper attention, and the silent work of drafting and scribbling.

I believe these ways of being in and writing about our world and time have intrinsic value and deserve stewardship.  It feels like a vulnerable time to care about the craft of writing; a craft which we often fit in around those things we depend on for a living.  We know that as a member of the Frequency community you do care, which is why we are asking for your support now.  Your donations go to providing scholarships to everyone who asks, help us supplement sliding scale classes, provide travel stipends to instructors if needed, pay our support staff, produce our annual anthology, and generally keep Frequency afloat.  In making a gift today, you are helping your fellow writers’ voices to be nurtured, heard, and sustained.

Thank you,
Rosalynde Vas Dias
Artistic Director

Send us Your Writing! Open Call for Submissions

We look forward to hearing your individual and collective voice as we gather writing for the 2018 Frequency anthology. Last year’s anthology City & Sea and book release party explored urban and oceanic ecosystems.

This year’s work will examine the role of the writer in the community and the many possibilities:

Observer.  Recorder. Witness. Historian.  Storyteller.  Activist.  Prophet.

How do these roles manifest in our creative writing?  What pressures does responsibility to our communities enact on our work?  What is our purpose on the page, in the world?

We are looking for your stories and poems of social justice warriors, hermits, helpers, and troublemakers, work where protagonists engage with their community and succeed or fail to make a difference, to right a wrong, writing where things get messy and get fixed. Or don’t.

Be part of the movement! Frequency anthologies bring people together to share and listen to our words, their impact, and shared potential.

Submit your writing to by March 15th.
Prose submissions should not exceed 5 double spaced pages.
Poets may submit up to three poems.

Explore our previously published anthologies for more ideas.