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Work Samples

WILHELM Sample NONFICTION

Introduction and sample chapter from "Broken Covenant of Salt," a first project in the creative nonfiction genre. It explores my participation as an untrained farmhand and rural interloper during the last year of a small family farm (my wife's family) in northwestern Minnesota. Since my first visit to "The Sheep Ranch," I sensed an intense “salt of the covenant”—a phrase conjured up from a past life in seminary; the agreement between farmer and land, land and nature, weather and farmer—that my impending father-in-law and so many others like him felt for this place, the bitterness that often ensues, the cruelty it inflicts, the daily vicissitudes countered or exacerbated by jerry-rigged decisions, the confidence of experience, the satisfaction of plans going accordingly, the relief brought with every healthy newborn, the anticipation with each pound a calf gains, thankfulness for the sun, elation when an engine simply fucking turns over. And maybe it was just the trigger I needed, in Richard Hugo’s sense of the term, to better know my peculiar place called Baltimore.
PDF icon WILHELM Sample NONFICTION

WILHELM Sample SHORT STORY

Short story"Memory Foam," one of thirteen stories in the collection "Salt Box, Foam House." Six stories are set in adolescence (Salt Box) that explore overt physical violence and six are set in adulthood (Foam House) that explore subtle emotional violence, with a middle transitional story that acts as a fulcrum or tipping point from adolescence to adulthood. All stories are set in the late 1990s during the watershed burgeoning Internet years that began to mutate real communal relationships into the false sense of community cultivated in online isolation.
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WILHELM Sample POETRY

The poem “Each Terminus a Beginning” was crafted for an RFP issued by the Maryland Transit Administration to 14 finalists as part of an art installation project for the 21-station Purple Line light rail planned to run across the Maryland suburbs of Washington, D.C. Each of the poem’s 21 quatrains reflects upon the history, people, or environment of that particular station’s place. Although the MTA scrapped the art project, the poem stands as a representative mosaic of a rapidly growing and diversely populated swath of land with both a rich history and checkered past.
PDF icon WILHELM Sample POETRY

WILHELM Sample NOVEL

Sample chapter from the novel "Backbeat the Waves." Set in a time between glam rock and filthy punk, “Backbeat the Waves” washes over the summer of 1977 that changed Mercury Widdershins’s life. Merck’s life completely spazzes when his one-armed cousin arrives from Appalachia—as alien as a Wookie—bringing with her a weird look, strange words, a radical attitude, and ultimate questions. Together, they discover their own liberating music, their unique sexual identities, and their separate solutions to what the future holds. “Backbeat the Waves” explores liminal moments when people exist between things: city and country, adolescence and adulthood, male and female, perseverance and mortality. For a summer that witnessed the death of a universal “king” and the interstellar launch of human culture, the most dramatic events happened at home.
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About Gregg

Baltimore City - Highlandtown A&E District

Gregg Wilhelm is founder and director emeritus of CityLit Project, a nonprofit literary arts organization that has served readers and writers in the Baltimore metropolitan area since 2004, and he continues to serve as publisher of its CityLit Press imprint. As an independent publisher and arts administrator, he has shepherded to print more than 175 titles across all genres, curated nearly 1000 literary arts programs, championed the work of scores of authors, and advised countless writers at various... more

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Caricature of Gregg Wilhelm by Frederick-based artist Goodloe Byron.

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    Gregg Wilhelm caricature by Goodloe Byron
    Caricature of Gregg Wilhelm by Frederick-based artist Goodloe Byron.

Book Covers

This image depicts a selection of titles that Gregg Wilhelm has shepherded to publication as an editor, designer, production manager, marketer, and/or publisher; these are some of more than 175 book projects he has been honored to be involved with during his career in independent publishing.

  • WILHELM Select Covers BOOKS PUBLISHED

    This image depicts a selection of titles that Gregg Wilhelm has shepherded to publication as an editor, designer, production manager, marketer, and/or publisher
    This image depicts a selection of titles that Gregg Wilhelm has shepherded to publication as an editor, designer, production manager, marketer, and/or publisher; these are some of more than 175 book projects he has been honored to be involved with during his career in independent publishing.

Clash By Night POETRY ANTHOLOGY

Co-edited by Gerry LaFemina and Gregg Wilhelm, Clash By Night inspired by The Clash's seminal London Calling album was the first title in CityLit Press's Lo-fi Poetry series where "poets cover your record collection." Forty poets from across the United States contributed to the anthology, which found its way into the hands of the three surviving band members and other musicians, such as Alejandro Escovedo.

For a long time, lyric poetry and song lyrics have lived parallel lives, but so many poets love music and rock-and-roll. Clash by Night attempts to enter the space between those parallel lines, and engage a dialogue between other poems and the songs of London Calling. It is an artistically anachronistic book: it asked poets to “cover” songs, which led to a variety of questions (What does it mean to cover a song vis-à-vis a poem? What do these songs say today? What does the process of writing the poems discover?) that could only be answered through the making of the poems themselves.

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    Clash By Night Cover (Design by Gregg Wilhelm)
    Clash By Night Cover (Left: back cover / Spine / Right: front cover) mimics the album sleeve to The Clash's LONDON CALLING. Contributing poets list on back cover. Design by Gregg Wilhelm. Publisher: CityLit Press.
  • ZENITH from Clash By Night

    Poem by Gregg Wilhelm
    Poem by Gregg Wilhelm in the Lo-fi Poetry series anthology CLASH BY NIGHT.
  • Do You Remember? (Smith Center, 1984)

    Poem by Gregg Wilhelm in the Lo-fi Poetry series anthology CLASH BY NIGHT.
    Poem by Gregg Wilhelm in the Lo-fi Poetry series anthology CLASH BY NIGHT.

Wilhelm at Writers Reading @ AACC

Gregg Wilhelm was a featured author at Anne Arundel Community College's Writers Reading @ AACC series.

CityLit Festival Highlights

Gregg Wilhelm's work as a literary arts administrator includes developing the popular annual CityLit Festival. This video represents some of the free events highlights over the years.

CityLit Project Youth Programs

Highlights of CityLit's outreach to youth through creative writing and project management strategies.

Geo-Poe: A Literary Geo-Caching Adventure

“Geo-Poe” was a city-wide literary geo-caching adventure dreamed up and coordinated by Gregg Wilhelm in the Fall 2014. Fifteen writers (from established authors to emerging voices) penned short short stories surrounding the mysterious death of Edgar Allan Poe or stories written in a Poe-esque style. These stories were hidden around Baltimore in spots relevant to the narrative, and readers-seekers used mobile devices to find-and-read the story caches. Clues to each stashed cache were posted via social media. The project took on extra life as a reading was staged at Westminster Hall, Eight Stone Press published a chapbook, and a culminating event celebrating the publication of the chapbook took place at Atomic Books. Participants stated that the experience was a highlight of their year, and stories produced by the writers were uniformly excellent.

WBAL-TV Compilation

Compilation of Gregg Wilhelm's appearances on WBAL-TV promoting books and literary events.

  • WBAL-TV Compilation

    Gregg Wilhelm's appearances on WBAL-TV promoting books and literary events.

Connect with Gregg

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Gregg's Curated Collection

View Gregg's favorite works from other Baker Artists