True Grit seeks writers and artists

(STILLWATER, OKLA. / Feb. 17, 2015) –– “One Book, One Community: Stillwater Reads True Grit” begins Monday, March 2, at the Stillwater Public Library. The series lasts through April 17. Registration for the series begins at the Kick-off event, but some of the programs are open for registration now.

“Two of our programs are being offered to help community members grow in their creative endeavors,” said Lynda Reynolds, Stillwater Public Library director. “Both programs require pre-registration, so we hope the public will take the opportunity to engage artistically with the True Grit series.”

The “Western Writers’ Colloquium” will be held on Saturday, March 28, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The all day workshop features four of Oklahoma’s top Western and history experts who will discuss everything you need to write, research, and publishing Western literature.

Michael Wallis will start things off with “Untangling the Myth: Writing Western Biography.” Wallis is an award-winning author of 18 books, including “Billy the Kid: The Endless Ride” and (co-author) “Mankiller: A Chief and Her People,” the autobiography of the late Wilma Mankiller.

Dr. Patricia Loughlin will cover writing about women in “HerStories: Women of the West.” Loughlin is Professor of History at the University of Central Oklahoma. Her history specialties include Women’s, American Indian, and the American West. Her books include “Hidden Treasures of the American West: Muriel H. Wright, Angie Debo, and Alice Marriott.” Loughlin is currently working on a children’s biography of Angie Debo.

Next, Dr. Bob Blackburn presents “Searching for Stories of Oklahoma History: Opportunities and Trends.” Blackburn is Executive Director of the Oklahoma Historical Society which maintains 32 museums, historic sites and affiliates throughout Oklahoma. He has authored or co-authored 18 books including “You Know We Belong to the Land: The Centennial History of Oklahoma.”

Writer and historian Dr. Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz will finish the workshop with her discussion on “Western History: Indigenous Voices.” Dunbar-Ortiz is Professor Emerita of Ethnic Studies at California State University, Haywood. Her memoir, “Red Dirt: Growing Up Okie” documents her early years in Oklahoma. A lifelong social justice advocate, her latest book is “An Indigenous People’s History of the United States.”

The workshop requires registration and a $10 payment for lunch by March 20. To register and make payment, go to the library’s “True Grit” site at Registration by mail or in person will also be accepted.

The “Western Heritage Art Exhibition” will be on display at the OSU Student Union Basement from late March through April 20. Applications for artwork submission are currently being accepted.

The juried art exhibition is open to OSU students and Stillwater residents who are 18 years old or older. Art work is limited to two dimensional pieces with a “Western Heritage” theme.

Applications are due by March 13 at 5 p.m. and selected artists will be notified by March 18. A reception honoring winning artists will be held Friday, March 27at 6 p.m. in the Student Union Basement. The reception is open to the public.

For more information about submitting an application, please visit or contact Brandon Mitts, Manager, OSU Allied Arts and Special Events at

For more information about the “True Grit” series, contact the library at or 405-372-3633 x106, or visit the library website at  

“One Book, One Community: Stillwater Reads True Grit” is sponsored by Stillwater Public Library, Oklahoma State University Library and Sheerar Museum of Stillwater History. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Stillwater Public Library is located at 1107 S. Duck St. (the corner of Duck and 12th Ave.).