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A Writers' Wonderland!

I’ve lived in West Jordan for twenty years, my family and I love it here. It’s been fun to watch it grow, spread out, and “grow up.” I am thrilled to see the city embracing the arts and beyond grateful that I get to be a part of it.

The Cultural Arts Society of West Jordan is here to help all our citizens explore their creative interests—including the literary arts, which is my jam!

The Literary Arts Society has six main branches to help you discover your interests and develop your talents:

Teen Writers: Kayla Payne, a senior at West Jordan High School, represents teen writers in our area. In association with the West Jordan Library, Kayla’s organized a teen writers group to meet the first and third Mondays of the month at 3:00 at the library. Of course, that’s on hold until we are free to congregate once more. I’ll mentor the group, but we’ll have authors come to talk to you about a whole variety of topics to help you become the best you can be. Kayla’s also planning a summer program for teen writers, so stay tuned for that!

Fiction: That’s my territory! I’ll be providing workshops to help writers at all levels, from

absolute beginner to expert. My specialty is young adult fiction, and my co-chair,

author/illustrator Mikey Brooks specializes in younger audiences. Also, we’ll be bringing in

guest authors to teach a variety of topics as well.

Nonfiction & Poetry: We’re lucky (and grateful!) to have author Jef Huntsman on our team. Jef will provide programming for the poets out there, as well as nonfiction (including memoirs), and will be working with me to bring you classes on writing adult fiction.

Storytelling: Master storyteller, James Luter, is passionate about storytelling and is excited to

help you learn more about this popular art form.

Scriptwriting/Playwriting: Chelsea Dong was the first person I thought of to head up this sub-

committee. She’s passionate about drama and film and is excited to help develop the new script and play writers in our community. Join Chelsea on the second Saturday of every month at 11:00 a.m. in Conference Room 331 in City Hall for The Screenwriters Room. This club for aspiring writers will dissect pre-selected/watched movies to learn the ins and outs of storytelling for the theatric arts. Of course, it is on hold for the time being.

We’ve already hosted a class for beginning screenwriters and ran a pitch contest where the

winner won a free pass to the Screenwriters Workshop at the LDS Film Festival. It was a great


As a committee, we plan to bring you more opportunities to learn and chances to submit your work for chances to win amazing prizes!

While so much is on hold, we’ve decided to go ahead and do as much as we can online. If you’re interested in learning to write a book, join us next Saturday at 2:00 for my workshop “Start Your Story.” We’ll discuss how to find and develop story ideas, and the basics of how to take it from your head to the page.

We may also hold our Screenwriters Room virtually too, so stay tuned for that.

I hope you’re as excited as I am for all we have planned for you! If you are, I invite you to like

and follow our page on Facebook . If you want to make sure you never miss an upcoming class, competition, or special events for our local authors, consider joining our FB group. Facebook values group participation more than pages, so you’re more likely to be notified of events you’re interested in if you belong to the group.

We are truly here to serve you, so please don’t hesitate to reach out to us, either here or on

Facebook, with any questions you have—or requests for programming. Every person on this

team loves writing and storytelling, and we want to share that love with you!

As West Jordan continues to grow, I can’t wait to see how the cultural arts will become an

integral part of that growth. And I can’t wait to meet all of you fellow wordsmiths at one of our Literary Arts Society events!

Happy writing!

Ali Cross

USA Today Bestselling author of Young Adult fiction

& Chair of the Literary Arts Society of West Jordan


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