Monday, January 31, 2011

Thank You Note: My Words Are My Shelter Project

Dear Readers,

I just got this note from Susan Neth, the Executive Director of Mental Health Services, Inc., the organization that oversees the Norma Herr Women's Center, the shelter where my mother spent her last few three of her life. Her note is in response to the outpouring of generosity from all of you during my My Words Are My Shelter campaign. Each woman received not only a journal, pen and pencil with which to write but also, the shelter received close to $500 in donations. Thank you all for your support and we will do this again next year at Christmas time! Please read below:

Dear Mira,

Please express my deep gratitude to your readers of Mira’s List. Their generous donations supported your gift of journals to over 100 homeless women in our shelter. These journals have been used to capture feelings, create poetry and for documenting to-do lists. Writing is safe. It is cathartic. And it can also break down barriers that otherwise might have remained intact. Mira, please pass on my ‘thank you’ to those who reached out to help others.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Letter from Mary Sherman, Director of TransCultural Exchange

To finish up with all this conference stuff today, the director of TransCultural Exchange was kind enough to respond to the comments I passed on to her from this blog.

Dear Mira's List Readers,

Please note that some of TransCultural Exchange's 2011 Conference on International Opportunities in the Arts will be available for free, as mandated by some of the sites donating their services. These are a very limited number of panels, however; and, they are primarily at the Boston Public Library. These events will not be posted on the Conference website; but instead in listings in publications like the Boston Globe.

The conference is a hugely expensive undertaking: 150 speakers coming to Boston to meet with artists, etc. Registration costs alone, do not even cover 1/3 the Conference's expenses. Hence, TransCultural Exchange must encourage people to register for the whole conference. As a courtesy to readers of Mira's List, knowing they are fans of Mira Bartok, TransCultural Exchange is pleased to let the fans know that the events at the BPL (where Mira will be reading) will be offered for free. (Conference badge members, however, will have some seats reserved for them to make sure they have a seat.) The other venues where the talks are free are at MIT, the CONCERT at Northeastern University, and the gallery receptions at the Harrison Avenue Galleries. All other events require a conference badge. Thank you for understanding.

Mary Sherman
Director, TransCultural Exchange
Conference on International Opportunities in the Arts, April 7-11, 2011, Boston Omni Parker House Hotel.

Why Good Conferences Cost Money and Why You Should Go to This One

In response to a comment below my posting about the Transcultural Exchange Conference for Opportunities in the Arts coming up in Boston...(the comment was about the conference being too expensive and also there not being single event/day options). Here’s my opinion and more info on all that:

1. This conference costs less than most I’ve attended in all my years of doing this.

2. If you register early for this conference, you always get a discount and they always offered scholarships—part and full—for those who contact them early in the registration process. Both these things I have posted about in the past, so that readers can take advantage of them. (Too late now though....should have done it before when I posted about it before. Sorry!)

3. TCE doesn’t make any money from this event. This conference doesn’t even pay for itself. TCE flies people in from all over the world and hosts them here so they can offer you their expertise. No one gets paid. But when you attend, you get an amazing array of opportunities. Artists often get invited to stay at residencies overseas, they get to show museum curators their work, and they get to meet the people who decide on enormous fellowships and grants in the arts. I would say: well worth the money!

4. There are many local grants that offer funding to attend conferences like this. One of my readers just told me she applied for a local arts grant to come and she got it.

5. This event is obviously a tax deduction if you are a working artist/writer, etc.

6. Re: the one-day registration/one event comment: if the reader had only gone to the site to find out more information, he/she would know that there are events that are free and open to the public. My event, for example, a panel on publishing your first book, is free and anyone can come. So are the readings a the Boston Public Library. So are some other things.

7. Lastly, the person who runs this organization: Mary Sherman, Director of TCE, basically has been putting these huge conferences and exhibitions and collaborations around the world for little or no money. She does this tirelessly, persistently and passionately, because she believes that art can save the world. The whole point of TCE is to create peace and cooperation by creating exhibitions and artistic collaborations world-wide.

If I sound snippy, it is only because I know the background of this organization; I know how hard everyone works for no money or very little, and I know first hand what a great opportunity it is to attend. So please—don’t jump to conclusions when you see a price tag for something like this. It may be the best money you have ever spent. And if you are creative enough and do things way in advance like I always recommend everyone to do—you can even get a scholarship or a grant to go.

Okay—I am off my soap box! Go forth and make art! And if you can get yourself to Boston in April, take advantage of this excellent chance to meet curators, grant foundation directors, Fulbright representatives, artist residency directors and artists of all kinds from all over the world.

Best Wishes,


Trans Artists Have New Website

Quick but important info: A kind reader sent me a note that TRANS ARTISTS have changed their website and they can now be found here:
They have one of the best sites for researching international residencies so if you have that site bookmarked, please make the change. Thanks!


Sign Up Now! Transcultural Exchange's 2011 Conference on International Opportunities in the Arts!

Greetings all! Thank you for your patience while my book tour is raging on....I hope to see some of you at one of the readings. The next one will be in Cleveland on Friday, Feb. 4th at the United Church of Christ, 2592 West 14th St. in the Tremont neighborhood. Details on my website: After that, I’ll read at The Odyssey Book Store on Feb. 10th in South Hadley, MA. Then off to California! I'll be doing readings in LA, Berkeley and San Francisco from Feb. 16th to the 22nd so if you live in those areas, please come. I’d love to meet some of you!

(A little book, THE MEMORY PALACE just made the New York Times Bestseller list! It’s currently at # 16. So please...all of out right now and buy it from your local indie bookstore so I can knock that Tiger Mother book out of my way OR click on my book on right side bar and buy it directly from this site. All right.....I’ve finished now. :-)) So on to this business of opportunities.

First, I want to remind you all about the most amazing conference in the world. A couple years ago I spoke at the TransCultural Exchange Conference for Opportunities in the Arts in Boston and am going to do a presentation again, as well as do a reading at the Boston Public Library (along with authors Reif Larsen and Jayne Anne Phillips). I’ll be moderating a panel on first books—from finding an agent to promoting your first book—with novelist Jedediah Berry and poet Marisa Crawford. I’ll be representing the memoir/creative nonfiction voice on the panel.

Below is info on the conference. It is open to ALL DISCIPLINES and this year there will be even more than ever before for writers, filmmakers and composers/sound artists. And as usual, if you are a visual artist, you will be overjoyed at what you will get out of the experience. I can’t say enough about this conference. And you should know that I do this for free, that’s how much I love it. You get to meet people who run artist residencies all over the world, as well as the movers and shakers in the grant and fellowship lexicon.
First, watch this video about the conference—it will give you a sense of what you will find there!: Click here: On to the info:

TransCultural Exchange announces the return of its namesake conference

April 7-10, 2011 • Boston’s Omni Parker House Hotel


Would you like to find ways to exhibit internationally? Would you like your work reviewed by major curators, critics and gallery owners? Are you an emerging writer interested in finding out what it takes to publish your first book? Are you a musician, sound artist or composer looking for an amazing residency? Have you always wanted to live overseas for a year and do research for a creative project but just didn't know how to fund your trip? Want to meet like-minded people? Shake up your world.

Come to TransCultural Exchange’s 2011 Conference on International Opportunities in the Arts: The Interconnected World.

Registration for all four days is $345; $425 after April 1.

Student discount registration is $$205; $295 after April 1.

New for 2011: Screening Program for Artists:

Artists who have registered by 5 pm EST, February 15, 2011 are eligible to submit no more than 2 images to be projected during the Conference. (Screening time and place will be announced in the Conference brochure.)

New for 2011: Reading Program for Writers:
This program is limited to 10 writers whose works will be chosen from those who have registered and submitted their writing sample by 5 pm EST, February 15, 2011.

For more info about the above, go here:
You MUST first register for the conference before you are eligible to sign up for these opportunities. These sessions are ONLY available to conference badge holders as well as all the events at the Omni, including the opening reception on Friday.

Come to Boston and meet Mirabee! I hope to see you there in April. If you register for the conference, please seek me out if you are a Mira’s List reader because I’d love to meet you!


Monday, January 17, 2011

Calling all Writers, Artists, Printmakers, Composers and Everyone Else!

Hi everyone,

Thanks for your patience lately. I'm going to be pretty busy and/or wiped out until my book tour is over, at the end of April. I'll do the best I can posting things here and there on weeks when I have fewer events. Speaking of events, if any of you are in the Boston area, I will be reading from my new book, The Memory Palace, tomorrow night, January 18th, at 7 pm at Harvard Book Store at 1256 Mass. Ave. in Cambridge. On Thursday, January 20th, I'll be reading and signing books at River Run Book Store in Portsmouth, New Hampshire (7 pm also). It would be nice to see some Mira's List peeps at one of my events! You can get my full tour schedule on my website right here:

Here are a couple things that just came in....and keep in mind that I post late-breaking news on the Mira's List community fan page on Face Book. You will not get this info by friending me on facebook but by going to that community page. I don't respond to facebook requests unless I know people or you are a friend of a friend. And since the Terry Gross interview on the radio, I am getting about fifty friend requests a day and frankly, it's a bit overwhelming to say the least! So check out the Mira's List page if you are on Facebook and follow Mira's List on twitter if you tweet. While I'm on the road I'll be posting grants, etc. on those sites more than on this one because it's easier.

(ARTISTS) Keyholder Residency ProgramLower East Side Printshop, New York, offers free year-long studio residencies for emerging artists. The application deadline is March 1, 2011 for residencies starting on April 1, 2010. The Keyholder Residency includes free 24/7 access to a large shared studio with printmaking facilities, $500 stipend, storage space and basic supplies, exhibition opportunities, educational programming, and support services. Artists from all disciplines are eligible: printmaking skills are recommended but not required, and basic instruction in printmaking is available at no cost. For more information about the residency, studio facilities, and application requirements, please visit Contact:[email protected]

(ALL) ART342 Residencies: now accepting artist-in-residence applications for Summer 2011. Residency dates: May 16 - August 19, 2011. On-line application: Deadline: February 14, 2011. ART342 offers 14-week residencies to emerging and established artists, writers and composers. Studios, a kiln and basic equipment are available for most visual artists, including ceramicists. Quiet spaces exist for creative or scholarly writers. The composer’s studio is outfitted with a Steinway B, computers and software for writing and recording.

Awards for accepted applicants include 24-hour access to free studios, living space and a modest stipend. Residents are responsible for personal expenses and travel to and from the site. Situated in a semi-rural area, ART342 is just 6 miles north of Historic Old Town in Fort Collins. Up to 7 studios and 5 living spaces are maintained as private places for creative work. Pets, children, visitors and partners are strongly discouraged. For more information regarding future application deadlines and residency details, visit:

this next one is from

Deadline February 29, 2011

smARTpower, will send fifteen U.S. artists abroad to work with local artists and young people around the world to create community-based art projects. Travel opportunities of up to 45 days will be awarded to selected artists to design and develop programs in cooperation with local arts organizations in host countries including China, Ecuador, Egypt, Ghana, India, Kosovo, Lebanon, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Turkey, and Venezuela. smARTpower will support the development and implementation of community-based art projects that engage youth and other local residents, including artists. The projects are strongly encouraged to create a tangible legacy of the work accomplished through smARTpower in a variety of visual arts media, including but not limited to painting, sculpture, drawing, video, installation, photo-based work, public art, and interdisciplinary projects. Participatory work is strongly recommended and encouraged. Artists will address a full range of relevant subjects including, but not limited to, women's empowerment, the environment, health, education, and civic engagement.

Emerging to established artists are encouraged to apply. Finalists will be identified through open competition and selected by a national advisory panel of artists and art professionals. Each recipient will be provided with an honorarium, travel funding, a budget for materials, resources for documentation (including photography, video, and web posting), and on-site logistical support. Proposals must be submitted ONLINE ONLY by midnight, February 28, 2011. Please read all of the information below carefully before applying, to ensure eligibility and proper formatting of your proposal. Mailed applications will NOT be accepted.

smART Power is made possible by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs, and administered by the Bronx Museum of the Arts.

• All applications and application materials must be received via the smARTpower website by midnight, February 28, 2011.
• Selected artists will be announced in Spring/Summer 2011, and the first round of projects will begin in Summer/Fall 2011.
• Apply online at

And you writers out there, do not forget the NEA coming up soon!:

(WRITERS) National Endowment for the Arts: Literature FellowshipsThe NEA Literature Fellowships program offers $25,000 grants in prose (fiction and creative nonfiction) and poetry to published creative writers that enable the recipients to set
aside time for writing, research, travel, and general career advancement. The NEA Literature Fellowships program operates on a two-year cycle with fellowships in prose and poetry available in alternating years. For FY 2012, which is covered by these guidelines, fellowships in prose are available. Fellowships in poetry will be offered in FY 2013 and guidelines
will be available in January 2012. Individuals may apply only once each year. Direct questions to the Literature staff at 202/682-5034 or e-mail [email protected]. For more info, go to:

Monday, January 10, 2011

Fresh Air Interview TOMORROW & more

Hi everyone,

So they rescheduled my interview with Terry Gross for tomorrow, Tuesday, Jan. 11th, on Fresh Air. But if you are able, please listen anyway to Terry talk with Washington Post investigator James Grimaldi discuss gun laws.

I will post about this when I get back from NY but just in case I forget: if any of you are in the Amherst, MA area this coming Friday, January 14th, come join me at Amherst Books at 8 Main St. in Amherst for a book launch party from 5 to 7 pm. It would be great to see some Mira’s List readers there. For more information about the event and other book events, just go to my website: and click on "events."

And don’t worry. I will get off this promotional horse when I return from NY because I have some cool things to tell you about that thankfully have nothing at all to do with me!


Fresh Air Interview with Mira Postponed

Hi everyone...just a quick note to say that due to the tragic shootings in Arizona, they are postponing my Fresh Air interview with Terry Gross until tomorrow, Tuesday the 11th or Wednesday, the 12th. I’m not sure about when it will be aired but I will try to keep you informed. You can also check the updated schedule on NPR. My sympathies go out to the families whose lives were shattered yesterday at that terrible event. I wonder how many tragedies have to occur before we change our gun laws here in the United States???

On another note, here is a review of my book from the Cleveland Plain Dealer that gets the art and heart of the book much more than the NYTimes (with all due respect!):
Best to you all....and many arts opportunities coming down the road when I come back from NY.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Memory Palace Book Launch!

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you all had a great holiday and that this new year brings you much success in all your creative endeavors. I apologize for being a bit out of touch. Things have gone a little wonky on the home front because of my book coming out all over the U.S., Canada and the U.K. this coming Tuesday, Jan. 11th. I am about to go on book tour starting Monday until late April. However, I will do my best to post opportunities during my down times. I promise!

So without further ado, please forgive my shameless self-promotion at the moment because I really need to rally all my readers and friends and tell them about my bookThe Memory Palace. Please, if you feel so inclined, spread the word about it, share my website (which has up-to-date info on my readings, reader’s guide and info for book clubs, resources, a blog and more ) and if you can afford it, buy a book!

Below are a couple things coming up. I am also sharing with you the book trailer I did with my husband, Doug Plavin, for the book. And please check my calendar on my website to see if I will be reading anywhere near you. It would be so great to meet some of you! I will definitely be reading in: LA, Pasadena, San Francisco and Berkeley, Chicago, Cleveland, Boston, and a bunch of Northeastern towns in the U.S.

Thanks for supporting me so much the last couple years and I hope to see you at one of my events. And don’t worry—I will keep on posting about grants, fellowships and residencies. Read on below....xox Mirabee

Tomorrow, Sunday, January 9th, New York Times Book Review: get the real thing or read it here:

Monday, January 10th, listen to me on NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross! Check their website for local times and also when you can stream it online:

Tuesday, January 11th, my book comes out in stores! And I’ll also be on the radio, live on WNYC, talking with Leonard Lopate on his show:

Check out the review of The Memory Palace in O Magazine:, listed as one of fifteen books to read in 2011. There are lots more reviews out there available and on the way: Elle, Bust, Bitch, Whole Living, Psychology Today, Washington Post, Cleveland Plain Dealer, More, and a bunch of others that frankly, I can’t recall where and when. Some have already been out there and some are coming soon. I’ll try to post links on my memory palace site when I can. It’s all been a bit overwhelming, to say the least!

Here’s the book trailer as promised, made thanks to my new venture called North of Radio, a multi-media collaborative I just started with my husband (the website is going up in a day or so so if it’s not up yet, please check back). Thanks and I will post again as soon as I can! Wish me luck!

Welcome to Mira's List

This blog provides information on upcoming grants, fellowships and residencies for artists, writers, composers, and media artists. It is for serious professionals only, from emerging to mid-career to established. I also publish information for graduate students from time to time. However, I do not publish information on exhibition or publishing opportunities, nor do I advertise artist retreats and workshops that charge money. At least that is my current policy. For more info on where to exhibit or publish, please see my links section which I try to periodically update. I sift through hundreds of search engines and websites to find opportunities for YOU dear artist. In return, I ask you to pass the information along to those who need it. Also, since this is a free blog, I don't always have the time to weed carefully through everything. If you find a grant or website or residency that is not up-to-date, is dodgy in some way, or is no longer in existence, please let me know! Also, if you stay somewhere at one of the residencies I suggest and have a good experience, I want that feedback too. Please check my FAQs at the top right side bar if you have questions before starting your search. Best wishes and happy hunting!