Pirate's Alley Faulkner SocietyWords & Music

Promoting Writers, Engaging Readers,

Creating Literacy Initiatives

The Pirate's Alley Faulkner Society, a nationally recognized non-profit arts organization, is a 501 (c) (3) literary and educational institution and, as such, grant donations, membership contributions, and contributions to our fundraisers are fully tax deductible. Important projects of the Faulkner Society are the Double Dealer literary journal; outreach programs for high school and college students; literacy projects for at-risk teenagers in cooperation with other organizations, including BIG READ projects funded in part by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts; continuing education programs for writers and readers; and a year-round calendar of free literary events such as My New Orleans and Meet the Author, which honor and assist writers and provide high quality literary entertainment for readers. Our most recent ticketed event was our annual fundraiser and overture to the summer social season. For more details, scroll down to Juleps in June. Our next ticketed events will be events of Words & Music, a Literary Feast in New Orleans, November 20 - November 24, 2014. Our next free public event will be Meet the Author at Faulkner House on January 26. We are happy to announce that our third on-line edition of our literary journal, The Double Dealer, 2013, went live on November 30, 2013. For details and links, scroll down to Double Dealer.

Faulkner Society Impact!

Projects of the Faulkner Society have a positive impact for some 6,500 persons annually. We urge you to support our programs by becoming a member. For a membership form, e-mail us at Faulkhouse@aol.com. The Society's most ambitious annual undertakings are:

  • The William Faulkner - William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition.
  • Words & Music, A Literary Feast in New Orleans.
  • Literacy Initiatives for Teenagers At-Risk for Illiteracy, such as BIG READ.
  • The Double Dealer literary journal and Student Intern Program.
  • Monthly Sessions of Meet the Author and My New Orleans events.
  • Joint Ventures with other Non-Profits to Embellish the City's Cultural Resources.


April 26, 2014
Free Books To Be Distributed by Bishop Perry Center
The Bishop Perry Center, located at 1941 Dauphine Street, has assembled a large assortment of
books of many genres, both fiction and non-fiction, secular and spiritual and books suitable for young adults through seniors. The books will be distributed Saturday from 10 a. m. to 1 p. m. at the Center. There is
no charge for any of the books. Come early and select as many as you like to take home with you.

April 27, 2014

An Afternoon With the Last Gentleman

On April 27, from 3pm to 6 pm, the St. Tammany Library Foundation is sponsoring a splendid event to honor the legacy of Walker Percy, St. Tammany’s eminent deceased writer, Walker Percy. 
“An Afternoon with the Last Gentleman” will be held at the home of John and Mary Jane Becker.  Their garden boasts of the setting of the National Champion Live Oak tree, the Seven Sisters Oak, the largest Southern Live Oak in the nation. Under its crown spread, guests will be able to enjoy a sumptuous repast from many St. Tammany donors, bid on a variety of silent auction items, and be treated to mimosas, wine, and other non-alcoholic drinks.  The Bob Ellis Trio, who plays often at the Royal Soonest Hotel in the French Quarter, will also entertain the guests.

Funding from the event will help complete the plans for a memorial patio dedicated to Walker Percy, called the Walker Percy Serenity Circle.  The basic patio is complete but needs benches, a plaque in his honor, garden planters, and funding for a statue in his honor. 

Percy was one of the most important authors of the late 20th century.  He won the National Book Award for his first novel ­The Movie Goer.  Five other novels followed and a three non-fiction collections of acclaimed essays. 

To attend this stellar event or for additional information, contact the Secretary of the St. Tammany Library Foundation, Ann Shaw, at shaw6017@bellsouth.net or Argiro Morgan, at argiro@bellsouth.net.  Tickets are $ 75.00 per person and can be mailed to P. O. Box 131, Mandeville, LA 70470.  All donations are eligible for tax deductible to the extent allowable by law.  The St. Tammany Library Foundation is an a505 C (3) organization.

May 1, 2014
Deadline for William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition (Extended)

May 8, 2014
Mozart Concert at Bishop Perry

pfrimmerA free public concert will be held Thursday, May 8, at 6:00 p. m. at the Bishop Perry Center, 1941 Dauphine Street. Performers will be graduating voice students from Tulane University School of Music under the direction of Amy Pfrimmer, Chair, Voice Department. For details call the Bishop Perry Center at (504) 227-3270. The young artists will be singing selections from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, one of the world's greatest composers.

If you attended the Bishop Perry Center's Lenten series of free concerts at St. Mary's Catholic Church, which the Faulkner Society and Words & Music supported as sponsors, you wil remember the talented and beautiful Pfrimmer as a featured soloist for Concert Four.

June 6, 2014
Juleps in June
Event information will be posted on the web site closer to the event.

July 15, 2014
Deadline for Submitting Papers to Be Presented at Words & Music, 2014

September 25, 2014
Happy Birthday, Mr. Faulkner!
Event information will be posted on the web site closer to the event.

Thursday, November 20, 2014
Special Lecture by Luis Alberto Urrea
Joint venture event of Words & Music with Loyola University. More details to be posted shortly.

Thursday, November 20, 2014
Words & Music, A Literary Feast in New Orleans opens at Hotel Monteleone.
Event information will be posted on this web site shortly.

Thursday, November 20, 2014
Annual Master Class for Students & Teachers Featuring Novelist Dinaw Mengestu,
Author of The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears.

Event information will be posted on the web site shortly.

The Faulkner Society kicked off its 2014 Meet the Author series with a reception honoring
poet Peter Cooley of New Orleans and non-fiction author Sean Strub of New York to celebrate the publication of their new books.. Peter is director of the Creative Writing Program at Tulane University, winner of the Society's 2012 Gold Medal for Best Poem, and a regular member of the faculty for the Faulkner Society's Words & Music festival.

Peter Cooley's new poetry collection is Night Train to the After Life.  Author of eight previous books of poetry, Peter's new book is garnering high praise from such distinguished poets as Yusef Komunyakaa: "Peter Cooley’s poetry endures, with wrought lyricism and robust imagination. This new collection brilliantly underscores the spiritual dimension of his vision, buoyed by an imagistic certainty; the poems turn on grace notes that are musical and natural, tinged by the Crescent City. There’s a whole treasure of lived reflection that carries us through an urban psychological voyage in Night Bus to the Afterlife. For more on Peter and his new book, Click Here!

Sean Strub, who is a leading activist in the war on AIDS, the first HIV positive person to run for Congress, and the founder of POZ Magazine, the leading independent global source of information about HIV. His new book, Body Counts: a Memoir of Politcs, Sex, AIDS, and Survival, has received wide-spread critical acclaim for its clear-eyed look at the Plague Years. For more information on Sean Strub and his book, Click Here! If your were unable to attend the event but would like a signed copy of their books, contact Faulkner House Books, (504) 524-2940.

2013 Competition Winner Scores

The winner of the 2013 novel category of the William Faulkner - William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition has sold her winning manuscript, The Ambassador's Wife, to Double Day. The winner,
Jennifer Steil of La Paz, Bolivia is a diplomat's wife herself as well as a journalist and author of the critically acclaimed non-fiction book, The Woman Who Fell From the Sky. She writes with authority and lyrical prose to tell an immediately engaging story.  Set in a fictional Middle Eastern country,
The Ambassador’s Wife follows the story of kidnapped American artist Miranda and her husband Finn, the British ambassador, mingling diplomatic intrigue with terrorism and the emotional complexities of parenthood. Miranda has been secretly teaching art—including figure drawing—to a group of Muslim women. Finn harbors a secret about the years he spent in Afghanistan. While in captivity, Miranda is handed a starving infant, whose life she helps save. When she finally escapes and is rescued by her former students, she takes the baby home with her. The novel explores the fallout when a child is removed from her tribe and a woman from her family; the fraught negotiations leading to diplomatic rescue efforts; the subterranean strength of women in Arab and western societies; and how art ultimately helps Miranda find her way home. Well, art, a handful of Arab women, and a conveniently placed bomb. The judge of the novel competition, famed literary agent Deborah Grosvenor, had this to say about the novel:

This topical novel tells the story of a kidnapping of an American woman, wife of the British Ambassador, in a fictional Middle Eastern country. The author clearly knows her setting and characters well, skillfully interweaving the story of her protagonist’s captivity with the story of her marriage, at the same time illuminating the shadowy world of terrorism. The Ambassador’s Wife succeeds in combining a character-driven, richly textured story with the elements of a thriller, a rare feat indeed.  

Just what it takes to sell a novel.

2013 ALIHOT Award Winners


In 1996, the Faulkner Society, created a special award to be given to men and women for excellence in literature,  journalism, music, art, and community service, or philanthropy. The award is given to men and women who qualify as legends in their own time. Rosemary James, Co-Founder of the Faulkner Society, took the name from one of her former journalistic colleagues, Jack Dempsey, a legendary police reporter for the old New Orleans afternoon newspaper, The States-Item. Dempsey sent his police report columns from police headquarters by teletype.  He always signed his dispatches:
           A Legend In His Own Time.
The awards are given annually in honor of Jack Dempsey, other memorable guys and dolls of reporting, and the great 20th Century heyday of journalism.There is no specified number of awardees each year, although at least one award for Literature always is given.  The first ALIHOT Award for Literature was presented to Mississippi author Eudora Welty for her impressive body of fiction and non-fiction. That same year, ALIHOT Awards were presented to Adelaide Wisdom Benjamin for Philanthropy in the Arts and to artist Wade Welch for cartoon satire. And awards have been made every year since, with a total of 84 ALIHOTS awarded since 1996. This year, we were priviledged to increase that number to 90 with the 2013 Awards to authors Rodger Kamenetz, for Poetry and Non-fiction; Horacio Castellanos Moya, for Courage in Journalism and Fiction; and Ron Rash, for Fiction. All are truly literary legends in their own time.


2013 Winners and Runners-up were presented at Faulkner for All!, the Faulkner Society's gala black-tie annual meeting on December 7, during Words & Music, 2013. To review these winners and finalists, Click Here!

The 2014 William Faulkner - William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition opened January 1, 2014. Special Note: the final deadline is earlier this year, April 15, 2014.

For an entry form, Click Here!
For 2014 Guidelines, Click Here!


Novella and Short Story by a High School Student Judges for 2014
The judge for novella entries will be Moira Crone, winner of the Robert Penn Warren award for her impressive body of fiction. Among the creators of and former director of the MFA program at Louisiana State Uniersity,
Mis. Crone twice won the Faulkner Society's gold medal, once for short story and once for novella.
Her winning novella, The Ice Garden, has been expanded to novel length and will be published in
October, 2014. Her novel, The Not Yet, a foray into the future was published in 2012 to critical acclaim. This year's judge for the Short Story by a High School Student category will be George Bishop, author of the critically acclaimed debut novel Letter to My Daughter, which at its core is a story of the collateral damage of war, with the book's Vietnam episodes giving the book its moral center. His new novel, The Night of the Comet, like his first book, centers on a family and the relationships between family members. Bishop holds an MFA  from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. The short fiction of both authors appears regularly in noteworthy
nat ional journals.

                            Novel-in-Progress, Short Story, Essay, and Poetry Judges for 2014

Authors who have agreed to judge various categories include M. O. Walsh, left, who
won the Novel-in- Progress award two years ago for a novel-in-progress named Whiteflies, selected by literary agent Jeff Kleinman of Folo Literary Management, who judged the category. He since has completed and sold this novel (now called My Sunshine Away) to Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam. Foreign rights already have been sold tto UK, Brazil, Israel, Italy, and the Netherlands! The book is due out in Spring 2015. Currently, M. O. is running the UNO Writers Workshop (MFA) program at the University of New Orleans. Acclaimed biographer,, scholar, and Professor of English. who teaches the short story at Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia, the Rev.Patrick Samway, S. J. Father Samway, who delivered the keynote address at Words & Music in 2013, will judge the short story category. Jane Satterfield, non-fiction author, poet, and Professor at Loyola University Maryland, who is a previous winner of the Faulkner Society's gold medal for essay, will judge the essay category. Her most recent book of poetry is Her Familiars, published in 2013 by Elixir Press. She is the author of two previous books of poems: Assignation at Vanishing Point, and Shepherdess with an Automatic, as well as Daughters of Empire:  A Memoir of a Year in Britain and Beyond. The poetry category will be judged by Marjory Wentworth, Poet Laureate of South Carolina, has been nominated for The Pushcart Prize for poetry five times. Her books of poetry include Noticing Eden, Despite Gravity, and The Endless Repetition of an Ordinary MiracleHer forthcoming  New and Selected Poemswill be published by the University of South Carolina Press in March 2014. Marjory teaches poetry in The Engaging Creative Minds Program of the Charleston County school system and she is on the faculty of the Art Institute of Charleston, SC.

Words & Music, a Literary Feast in New Orleans, is five days of enlightenment and entertainment for writers and readers. Each year New Orleanians and out of town visitors are introduced to the festival's stunning array of headliners, including several Pulitzer Prize winners and winners of many other important literary honors, as well as New York Times bestselling fiction and non-fiction authors.

Confirmed dates for Words & Music, 2014 are November 20 through November 24 and the deadline for writers to submit manuscripts for critique by editors and agents is October 1. Writers seeking manuscript critiques must register prior to submission of manuscripts. Writers who register prior to July 1 will receive a $50 deduction on the posted Writers Tuition Package.

The Hotel Monteleone at 200 Royal Street will once again be the primary venue for Words & Music in 2014. Hotel Monteleone, a literary treasure, is in its second decade as the only hotel in New Orleans (and one of only a handful nationwide) designated as a National Literary Landmark.

For more on this beautiful and historic literary landmark hotel, visit: www.HotelMonteleone.com.

The Faulkner Society has a special rate for registered guests of
Words & Music, 2014. When registering, please ask for "Words & Music/Faulkner Society Bloc." To take advantage of this rate, please register by October 1.

Watch for regular postings on here and on our BLOG PAGE between now and November, 2014. For 2014 pricing, Click Here! For a Registration Form, Click Here!  For 2014 guidelines for submissions for manuscript critiques and one-on-one consultations, along with guidelines for this year's Limited Registration Workshops, Click Here!  For writers seeking manuscript critiques, submissions must be in our hands by October 1.

Scroll down to Words & Music Quick Links for various aspects of the festival.  For our tentative schedule Click Here!

The theme for Words & Music, 2014 is:

The Art of Improvisation in Words, Music, and Life.

2014 headliners will examine the role of improvisation in various aspects of the arts and humanities, including contemporary literature and literature of the past, as well as improvisation in our lives. The keynote talk will be given by Randy Fertel, Ph.d., author of the new non-fiction book, A Taste for Chaos: The Hidden Order in the Art of Improvisation, to be released fall, 2014 by Spring Journal Books.

Call for Papers

Scholars and writers are invited to submit papers for Words & Music, 2014 on this year's theme. Examples of appropriate topics are submissions related to Mr. Percy and his work, Flannery O'Connor and her work, Andre Dubus and his work, Hillary Mantel and her novels centering on William Cromwell and the Tudors, for instance. In the non-fiction realm, papers on the work of Reza Aslan, would be favorably considered. For guidelines, contact, Faulkhouse@aol.com. Deadline for submisison of proposals for papers to be presented at Words & Music is May 1. Deadline for submission of final papers is July 15. Papers will be published in the 2014 edition of The Double Dealer. For complete information Click Here!

Pan American Connections

In addition to theme discussions, authors will weigh in on other traditional components of the festival series, including Pan American Connections, a showcase for important authors of Latin American and Spanish heritage. Authors to be invited this year include the critically-acclaimed Mexican-born author, Luis Alberto Urrea. Urrea's most recent novel, Into the Beautiful North, imagines a small town in Mexico where all the men have immigrated to the U.S.  A group of young women, after seeing the film The Magnificent Seven, decide to follow the men North and persuade them to return to their beloved village. A  national best-seller, Into the Beautiful North, earned a citation of excellence from the American Library Association Rainbow's Project. The critically acclaimed and best-selling author of 13 books, Urrea has won numerous awards for his poetry, fiction and essays. The Devil's Highway, his 2004 non-fiction account of a group of Mexican immigrants lost in the Arizona desert, won the Lannan Literary Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the Pacific Rim Kiriyama Prize. An historical novel, The Hummingbird's Daughter tells the story of Teresa Urrea, sometimes known as the Saint of Cabora and the Mexican Joan of Arc. Urrea, who has taught at various colleges and universities, including Harvard and the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, currently lives with his family in the Chicago area and is a professor of creative writing at the University of Illinois-Chicago.

For writers seeking manuscript critiques, critique submissions must be in our hands not later than October 1. For submission guidelines, Click Here!

Words & Music Quick Links       





The third edition of The Double Dealer is live online now. It was published November 30, 2013. And, like the second edition, published on October 15, it is a whopper of an edition, more than 400 pages of literary content, including the work of 2012 and 2013 winners of the William Faulkner - William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition and work by such critically acclaimed authors as Ron Rash, Rodger Kamenetz, Horacio Castellanos Moya, Patrick Samway, S. J., John Biguenet, Reza Aslan, Leslie Lehr, George Bishop, Beth Ann Fennelly, Tom Franklin, and many others. It's free and it has digital features such as page turning, zoom, and search. So, we invite you to read and enjoy it. By the time you finish reading this edition, we hope to have our fourth edition live on-line. Target date for the 2014 edition is William Faulkner's birthday, September 25th.

We are actively soliciting advertising for the journal. Contact us at Faulkhouse@aol.com for advertising specifications and rates.

The Double Dealer, 2012 is 330 pages of material from winners of the William Faulkner - William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition for the years 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2011, along with other proceedings of the Society, including our BIG READ projects for 2008, 2009, and 2012, winners of the Society's ALIHOT (A Legend In His/Her Own Time) Awards, and other material of interest to readers and writers, including social commentary, essays, interviews, poetry, and recommended reading.

It has been a long time coming, getting on track with our journal. Our last hard copy of the journal was released in 2007. A  combination of Katrina aftermath, increasing costs for printing, and lack of revenue kept The Double Dealer on the back burner until last year when we began getting up to speed on the technology of on-line journals. Then there was the matter of coming to grips coping with the sheer volume of excellent material from the winners and runners-up since 2007, most assuredly a challenge. But the journal is back, hopefully to stay, and we sincerely hope you will enjoy it. To read the 2012 Edition of The Double Dealer, Click Here!

We started with a 2011 edition, which includes not only the work of Faulkner - Wisdom Competition winners for 2010 but also papers presented at Words & Music, 2010, which we had an obligation to publish. Because of the volume of excellent papers presented that year, we could only handle winners from one year in that edition.

Hereafter, the work of competition winners will be published in the year they are selected. For history of
The Double Dealer, Click Here!


An Overture to the Summer Season...New Orleans Style

Juleps in June is the Pirate's Alley Faulkner Society's annual overture to the summer social season and fundraiser. Each year the event takes place early in June and features mint juleps served in traditional silver julep cups. Patrons are presented with julep cups engraved with Juleps in June and the year as a special souvenir. Many Society members and friends have collections which include cups from each year since founding in 2002. And, each year, the Society selects a residence with a lovely garden and an interesting history for the event. The Honorary Chairs each year are socialites and volunteer activists in the cultural arena of Louisiana. We cordially invite you to join us for Juleps in June, 2014.

To become a member of the patron committee for Juleps in June, 2014, scheduled for Friday, June 6th, e-mail Faulkhouse@aol.com.

Old Metairie Residence of Greer and David Monteleone, Honorary Chairs, Juleps in June, 2013

Members of the Monteleone Family at Juleps in June, 2013 are from left, Ann Monteleone Burr, sister of the host; Denise Monteleone, sister-in-law of the host; Greer and David Monteleone, Honorary Chairs of the fundraiser, and David's mother, Ruth Monteleone.

Photos above and below by Margarita Bergen

Veteran Members of the Juleps in June Party Committee
Jennifer Adams, left, Michael Harold, Angie Bowlin, and Chris Fransen

Juleps in June, 2013

Juleps in June, 2013 took place on Friday, June 7, at the residence of Greer and David Monteleone in Old Metairie, a home as beautifully designed for entertaining as it is engaging the eye, with its marvelous collection of antique and contemporary furnishings and art. For more on this year's smashingly successful party, Click Here!  To review memories of Juleps in June, 2011 and 2012, Click Here!  To review memories of Juleps in June, 2008, 2009, and 2010, Click Here!

Joint Ventures

The Faulkner Society sponsors a year round calendar of free events, as well as ticketed events such as our fundraiser, Juleps in June, and our literary festival in November. The free events include two series, Meet the Author and My New Orleans. Many of these events are co-sponsored by the Louisiana State Museum and take place at the museum's historic venues, including the Cabildo and the Presybytere. For e-mail news of events, send us your e-mail address. And make sure to subscribe to our Blog! We regularly publish news about authors and other arts organizations on our blog.

The historic Presbytere, one of two centers of government in Colonial Louisiana, faces Jackson Square. Today, the Presbytere is the headquarters of the Louisiana State Museum and its important Katrina & Beyond exhibit. (Photograph by Jay Rosenblatt, courtesey of the museum.) Some Words & Music programs will take place in the Presbytere's twin sister building, located on the other side of St. Louis Cathedral, the Cabildo, where the Louisiana Purchase was signed. These two important buildings and the Cathdral facing Jackson's Square's lovely park, along with the
Pontalba buildings on either side of the park, form one of the most architecturally important and beautiful urban squares in the world.

Faulkner Society events are made possible in part by important support from The Arts Council of New Orleans, the City of New Orleans, and the Decentralized Arts Funding Program of The Louisiana Division of the Arts; the J. J. and Dr. Donald Dooley Fund and administrator, Samuel L. Steele, III; Bertie Deming Smith and the Deming Foundation; the Hearst Corporation and Debra Shriver, Vice President; the Law Firm of Deutsch, Kerrigan & Stiles;Dorignac's & Butch Steadman; the English Speaking Union; Rosemary James, Joseph DeSalvo and Faulkner House, Inc; Randy Fertel and The Ruth U. Fertel Foundation; Arthur & Mary Davis, Quint Davis, and Pam Friedler; Alexa Georges; the Louisiana State Museum; Elizabeth McKinley; Hotel Monteleone; Mr. & Mrs. Hartwig Moss, III; Theodosia M. Nolan, Tia and James Roddy, and Peter Tattersall; Parkside Foundation; Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre; Anne and Ron Pincus; Other Press, a Division of Random House; Coffee House Press; Farrar, Straus Giroux; Harper Collins; History Press; E. Quinn Peeper and Michael Harold; Spring: A Journal of Archetype and Culture: Nancy Cater, Editor; the State Library of Louisiana; Judith "Jude" Swenson in memory of her late husband, James W. Swenson, and The Mary Freeman Wisdom Foundation.


Pirate’s Alley Faulkner Society
624 Pirate’s Alley, New Orleans, LA 70116
phone: (504) 586-1609 or (504) 525-5615
fax: (504) 522-9725
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