Nina Schafer & Joanne Leva
Nina writes poetry, short stories and memoir vignettes. She has read her poetry locally at The Painted Bride, Barnes and Noble, Borders, and here at Robin's. She also represented Robin's Bookstore at the First Annual Philadelphia Poetry Festival held last year at the Philadelphia Free Library.
She spends part of every summer as a member of a gathering of poets in New Hampshire at the old Robert Frost farm where she has had the opportunity to study with Grace Paley, Galway Kinnell, Thomas Lux and Hayden Carruth.
Her first publication will be in the forthcoming anthology Breath II, by Cavan Kerry Press, for which work was chosen by Sydney Lea.
Joanne Leva is an active member of the literary community in Montgomery County, and in the surrounding Philadelphia area, as well. She promotes and supports poets and writers by creating venues for them to read and to be heard, and workshops for those writers that are up-and-coming. These programs are produced throughout the area.
In 1998, Joanne created the Montgomery County Poet Laureate Program, which she has produced for the past five years. The competition, its related readings, and poetry event (featuring a celebrity poet with a national reputation), comes to it’s successful fruition in April, National Poetry Month.
Her poetry series, Poetry Forus, at Barnes and Noble in Jenkintown and Montgomeryville, has met monthly since 1994, spotlighting a featured poet from the region and concluding with an open reading for newer poets.
As an active poet herself, Joanne has been writing and performing her original poetry since 1991. She has also organized poetry readings at Headhouse Square for Earth Day, the Seven Arts Fest on South Street, the Theater of Living Arts (TLA), and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Joanne performed in the Philadelphia Fringe Festival in the Fall of 1999, highlighting cuts from her CD “A Journal of True Confessions”. Her poem, “The Makeover”, appeared in the American Poetry Review – Philly Edition, 1999.
In 1984 Joanne received her BFA in Marketing/Graphic Design from Arcadia University (formerly Beaver College).