All events listed here are free, unless otherwise noted. (See the Events archive here.)


Dec 8, Soap Lake School, Soap Lake, WA, 2p

Dec 8, Ephrata Library, Ephrata, WA, 7 p

Dec 10, Puget Sound Poetry Connection Workshop,  THE FEAST BUILDING 1402 s 11th, Tacoma, 10 am

Dec 14-15, school visits, Chewelah schools

Dec 14, Reading at Chewelah library, 5:30p

Dec 19, Tacoma Creative Colloquy

Older Events:

Feb 9:  Reading for Washington State Legislature, Olympia, 10 a.

Feb 9: Passing the Laurel: Washington State Poet Laureate Tod Marshall, Elizabeth Austen and Friends, Hugo House, Seattle. 7:30 p.Outgoing Washington State Poet Laureate Elizabeth Austen “passes the laurel” to 2016-18 Washington State Poet Laureate Tod Marshall. The celebration includes brief readings by Marshall and Austen, and Pacific Northwest poets Rick Barot, Karen Finneyfrock, Jourdan Keith, Jane Wong and a surprise guest or two. Join us starting at 6:30 for an informal reception in the Cabaret.

Feb 18:  Guest on KYRS Art Hour, 88.1/92.3 FM, 3p

Feb 18:  “Laureate Reading” at Aunties Bookstore with Laura Read (Spokane Poet Laureate), Thom Caraway (former Spokane Laureate), and special guests, Spokane,  7 p.

Feb 24:  Reading at Spokane Falls Community College with Laura Read Bldg 24, room 110, Spokane, 11:30 a.

Mar 2:  Reading at Spokane Community College, Spokane, TBA

Mar 5:  Poetry Out Loud State Final, Judge, Tacoma, 1 p.

Theatre on the Square in the Broadway Center for the Performing Arts, located at 901 Broadway, Tacoma, WA.  Event is free and open to the public.  Will get to listen to wonderful high school students recite poems!

Mar 10:  Team Child Poetry Reading Fundraiser at St. John’s Church with Laura Read, Thom Caraway, and others, 5:30-7p.  Open to the public.

Please join me with Thom and Laura and talented young poets as we try to help raise money and awareness for a good cause.

Mar 13:  Workshop and Reading in Metaline Falls, Cutter Theater, 302 Park Street, 2 to 4p with workshop, reading and live music by Donivan Johnson

March 18:  Pioneer School visit, Spokane, WA, 10:30a

Mar 30-Apr 3:  Associated Writing Programs Conference, Los Angeles, various events

Apr 8:  Crossing the Border!  Reading @ Public Library, Coeur d’Alene, ID,  with other poets, doors open at 6 pm!

Apr 9Poetry Prowl, all day festival in Ellensburg, details TBA

Apr 10:   African American Writers’ Alliance, Columbia City Library, 2p

Apr 12:  Periodic Table Reading, GETLIT, Spark Center, 1214 W Summit Pkwy, Spokane, 6:30p 

Apr 13:  Class visits at North Central High School, Spokane, 8a

Apr 14: “Readers Are Leaders,” Olympia, 7-9a, Keynote speaker

Apr 14:  Class visits at Olympia High School, 9:30-noon

Apr 14:  “Olympia People’s Mic,” Ben Moore’s, 112 4th Ave. W, 6:30p

Apr 16:  Ritzville Public Library, reading and workshop, 10a to noon

Apr 16:  Reading and workshop, GETLIT, Spokane Convention Center, 3:30-5p

Apr 17:  Lost Horse Press Poetry Reading, emcee,  featured readers include former poet laureate Kathleen Flenniken, and Washington Poets Katrina Roberts, Rob Carney, and others, Davenport Hotel Peacock Room, 12-2p

Apr 18:  Class visits at University High School, Spokane, 9a

Apr 21:  Gig Harbor Poetry Series, Gig Harbor Library, 7:30p

Apr 22:  Whidbey Island Center for the Arts , guest of Elizabeth Austen, Whidbey Island Center for the Arts 565 Camano Ave, Langley, WA, 7:30-9:30p.

Apr 24:  Book Launch for Noisy Water anthology!   Going to listen to the poets read and check out the art.  Special Exhibit and Reading in celebration of National Poetry Month.  At the Firehouse Café, Firehouse Performing Arts Center, Bellingham, WA, 6:30p

Apr 25:  Poetry Night, Mount Baker Theater’s Encore Room, 104 North Commercial Street, Bellingham, WA, 8p

Apr 26:  Gonzaga Guild Speaker, Herak Club, Gonzaga University, noon

Apr 27:  Poetry Month celebration!  Barnes and Noble Bookstore, Richland, with Urban Poets Society founder Jordan Chaney, young poets, and others, 6 to 8p

Apr 28:  Chuckanut Radio Hour, Whatcom Community College, Bellingham, 6:30p

Apr 29:  Downtown Seattle Public Library writing workshop, 12-2.

Apr 29:  Reading at Folio, Seattle, with Heather McHugh and Lucia Perillo, 7:30p

Apr 30:  Workshop at Pacific Bonsai Museum, 2-4 p

Apr 30:  Louder Than a Bomb, Tacoma Community College Auditorium, 3:30p (I’ll get there by 4:30)

May 2:  Taproot Lecture, SPARK, Spokane, WA, 7p

May 11:  Clark College English Department Awards, Speaker, Vancouver, WA, 5:30p

May 12:  Free workshop with Christopher Luna, Angst Gallery 3-5p

May 12:  Ghost Town Open Mic, Angst Gallery, 1015 Main, Vancouver, WA, 7 p

May 16:  Class Visits, Rogers High School, Spokane, WA, 9a-noon

May 16:  Verde Que Te Quiero Verde: Poems after Federico Garcia Lorca, SPARK, Spokane, 7p

May 18:  Curtis Senior High School, Tacoma, class visits, 9a to noon

May 18:  Talk on Poetry, Creativity, and Careers in the Arts, University of Washington, Tacoma, MDS 202, 1-2:30p

May 18:  Reading and Conversation at Rainier Arts Center with Oliver de la Paz and Claudia Castro Luna, Rainier Arts Center, 3515 S Alaska St, Seattle, 7:30p

May 19-22:  Skagit River Poetry Festival, La Conner, WA, May 19-22 (ticket information on SRPF website)

May 26:  Liberty Bell High School, class visits during the day; in the evening, a public reading at The Merc with Dennis Held and students, Winthrop, WA, 6p

May 27:  Willow Springs Books Fundraiser.  Spokane, Bartlett, 6 p.

June 2:  Mercer Island Arts Council Events:

Morning:  school visits on Mercer Island.

1-2:30PM – Poetry workshop. Mercer Island Community and Events Center.

3-4:30PM – Question and Answer session with poetry groups.  Island Books.

7PM – Public reading at Mercer Island Community and Events Center

Sept 8, Olympia Senior Center, 222 Columbia Street NW, Olympia, 2-4p.

Sept 9KYRS Member Drive, Paulsen Building Penthouse, 421 W. Riverside, $25 per person. $25 suggested donation to KYRS.  Appetizers & cash bar, 6-9p.

Sept 14-17, Twisp, Winthrop, Omak, and other locations.

Sept 19, Royal City Public Library, Royal City, WA, public reading and discussion, 5:30p.

Sept 21, Poetry Corner Workshop, Brookdale Foundation House, 32290 1st Ave S, Federal Way, WA, 10:30 to noon.

Sept 21, Words West Reading Series, C & P Coffee Co, 5612 California Avenue, SW, with wonderful writers:  Kathleen Flenniken, Claudia Castro Luna, Lena Khalif Tuffaha, and Lyanda Hynn Haupt, 7p.

Sept 22, Open Books Re-launch, Wallingford, WA,

Sept 23, Benton City Juvenile Correctional Facility, Benton City, WA, w/Jordan Chaney

Sept 23, Reading with Lenora Rain-Lee Good at Barnes and Noble, 1321 N. Columbia Center Blvd, Kennewick, WA, 7p.

 Sept 24,  Litfuse, Tieton, WA

Sept 28-30:  Events in Bellingham at Western Washington University

Sept 28, WWU, Fraser Hall 201: a poetry writing workshop entitled “Writing Poems That Speak of Home: Washington 129,” 4:00p

Sept 29, WWU, Communications 110, a public reading, 6:30p.

Sept 30, Public Reading, Edmonds Library, 5-5:45p

Sept 30-Oct 2, Write on the Sound Conference, Edmonds, WA

Oct 1, Poetry Camp in Bellingham

Oct 3, North Spokane Library, “A Terrible Beauty:  William Butler Yeats and Paula Meehan,” 6:30p

Oct 6, Lake Chelan Library

Oct 7, Bedtime Stories, Seattle

Oct 8, Fall Family Weekend, Gonzaga University, Spokane

Oct 9, Sammamish Arts Festival, Public Library, Sammamish, WA, 2:45-4p

Oct 12, Otis Orchards Library, “Does it Explode:  Langston Hughes and Countee Cullen,” 6:30p

Oct 12, Arts NW, Keynote, Davenport Hotel, Martin Woldson Theater at the Fox, Spokane, WA, 1-2p

Oct 13, Gunnar’s Bistro–Poetry Pole Reading and Celebration, Cle Elum, WA, 4p.

Oct 19, Skagit Valley Poetry Festival Dinner

Oct 20, Onalaska School District, class visits

Oct 20, Centralia College, Centralia (Washington Hall, #103), 600 Centralia College Blvd, Kirk Library, 6:30 reception, 7:30p reading.  Presented by Our Literacy Council of Lewis County and Centralia College

Oct 21, Eatonville High School class visits

Oct 22, Poetry Talk, Timberland Library, Salkum Branch, 2480 US-12, Salkum, WA, 2p.

Oct 22, Mineral School presents an evening with poet laureate Tod Marshall, 114 Mineral Rd. South, Mineral, WA 98355, ( Snacks and mingling, wine by donation.  6:30pm Diane Mapes plays original music inspired by Mineral.  7:00pm Tod Marshall reads, and a Q&A with poet Nicole Hardy and audience follows.

Oct 24, Newport School Visits

Oct 26, Broken Mic, Spokane, 6p.

Oct 27, Newport School Visits and Create Place, Newport, WA, 7p

Oct 28, Bedtime Stories, Spokane

Oct 29, Workshop and reading at the Ritzville Library, Ritzville, WA, 10a.

Nov 1, “Great Poems That Tell Tales,” South Hill Library, Spokane, 3324 S. Perry Street, 6p.

Nov 2, Duvall Reading Series, Duvall Library Meeting Room, 15508 Main Street NE, 7p.

Nov 3, Tulalip Reading Series, Tulip Tribes Hibulb Cultural Center, 6p

Nov 7,Great Poems That Tell Tales” Shadle Library, Spokane, 2111 W. Wellesley, 6p.

Nov 9, YCC Pizza Poetry Party, Yakima, 11:30a

Nov 9, Hosting Yakima Coffeehouse Poets Open Mic Night,  The Seasons, 101 N. Naches Ave., 7p.

Nov 10, Workshop and Reading at The Seasons, 101 N. Naches Ave. in Yakima. The hourlong workshop will be followed by a poetry reading. It’s sponsored by Yakima Coffeehouse PoetsYakima, Workshop and Reading, The Seasons, 6p

Nov 15, Governor’s Arts and Heritage Awards

Nov 16, PoetsWest @ The Creekside Reading Series, 18200 Woodinville-Snohomish Rd NE, Woodinville, 7p.

Nov 17, Lake City Rotary Club, Lake City, WA

Nov 18, RASP reading, Redmond, WA

Nov 21, Moran Prairie Library, Spokane,  “My Life Had Stood:  Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman,” 6:30p

Nov 28, Spokane Valley Library, “The Book of Myths:  Adrienne Rich and June Jordan,” 6:30p

Nov 30, Republic School Visits

Nov 30, Republic Library workshop, 4 p

Dec 1, Curlew School Visits

Dec 1, Curlew Public Library, Reception 5p, Reading 6p

Dec 5, Lacey 50th Anniversary Celebration, The HUB at Woodland Square, 676 Woodland Square Loop S.E. 5p

Dec 7, Pulitzer’s in Person, Seattle


14 thoughts on “Events

  1. Pingback: Just getting started | Washington State Poet Laureate

  2. Vicky Smith

    Hello Elizabeth-
    At St. Joseph Residence, a home in West Seattle for retired Catholic sisters, we have been enjoying a Poet’s Corner every month. We select a poet and carve out some time one afternoon to read her/his poetry and discuss it. Imagine our joy to have selected Washington’s Poet Laureate for yesterday’s Poet’s Corner! We are all captivated by your work. We especially loved On Punctuation, and also This Morning. The sisters are wondering if you would consider coming to St. Joseph Residence and/or Providence Mount St. Vincent, which is right next door? We’d love to host a real, live poet, especially one whose work just lit up our discussion! We look forward to hearing from you. Thank you.
    -Vicky Smith, Recreation Therapist, 206-937-4600.

  3. Vicky Smith

    Hi Elizabeth-

    The sisters were so excited when I read your reply! (And so was I) Thank you for your very prompt response!

    Typically we meet at 3pm, and usually on a Thursday whenever possible. I’m wondering about a Thursday in January? Second choice would be Tuesday, the 27th, and after that, perhaps a Friday other than the 9th.

    I am also wondering what sort of format you might have in mind?

    We look forward to hearing again from you.


  4. Eddie Reed

    I am the assistant principal of a seattle innercity high school. Many budding poets at our school in need of outlet and encouragement, yet i noticed that no poetry workshops via the poet laureate office, for the Central district or Rainer Valley or South Park neighborhoods of Seattle. These are our poorest communities, yet even the desert welcomes a flower.

  5. Pingback: Late February/early March readings and workshops | Washington State Poet Laureate

  6. Pingback: WA Poet Laureate Year Two | Elizabeth Austen

  7. Pingback: Thirty-seven, thirty-eight, thirty-nine | Washington State Poet Laureate

  8. Margaret Doran

    11-09-15 Richland, WA

    An Afternoon with Elizabeth Austen

    The time passed much too fast
    hours became only minutes
    and though sated, I wanted more
    needed more: more forgiveness, more
    kindness, more absolution

    You were all these things,
    opening up misplaced treasures
    understaning, banishing old guilt

  9. Pingback: Time to Say Thank You and Farewell | Washington State Poet Laureate

    1. Elizabeth Austen

      Clark, thanks for the reminder to update this page. I hadn’t realized how dusty it was. I’ve ramped down my readings/events in order to refocus on writing new poems, but will be doing a couple of readings in November.

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