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A Brief History of the Hawai'i Literary Arts Council

THE HAWAI'I LITERARY ARTS COUNCIL was founded in 1974 to encourage and promote literature and literary activity of all sorts in Hawai'i. The primary activating force in its founding was the poet and reviewer Phyllis Thompson. Phyllis had been organizing readings and generally energizing the scene before then, and in 1974, with the help of her ambitious students and proteges, along with other colleagues and supporters, HLAC got underway.

Since then, almost every literary activity in Hawai'i--poetry and fiction readings, workshops, conferences, seminars--involving the full range of local writers and visiting writers, has been either sponsored, co-sponsored, or promoted by HLAC. The list of writers supported by HLAC is huge, including W. S. Merwin, Reuel Denney, and Nobel Prize-winner Czeslaw Milosz, to name three.

Most important, HLAC is open and fair. HLAC supports all the local literary reviews and magazines that contact --Hawai'i Review, Chaminade Literary Review, Manoa, Bamboo Ridge, Hawai'i Pacific Review, Rainbird, and many others over the years, including the feisty independent alternative magazine, Oahu Review, edited by Joe Balaz, and the very newest magazines shaking up the literary community, including 'Oiwi, Hybolics, and others.

HLAC is non-profit, supported by the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, the NEA, and, crucially, its membership and volunteers. If you are interested in literature as a reader or writer, consider joining HLAC.

As a member, you receive monthly flyers detailing all the literary action we know about in Hawai'i, and membership includes a copy of KAIMANA. Membership is a bargain, and HLAC does good and useful work. Join and participate, and help reading and writing in Hawai'i.





The Hawai'i Literary Arts Council Past Presidents Reading

Tony Quagliano, Joe Stanton, Sue Cowing and Libby Young