December 19, 2017
Dear Friend of the Literary Arts,
It’s that time again . . . Now come the all-consuming holiday preparations as we count the days ‘til we can open gifts and, of course, give gifts. May your celebrations be particularly bright this year!
‘Tis also the season of the “annual year-end appeal”—a time to look back and take stock. Thanks to our many friends, we are managing to survive the Dickensian financial drought that many nonprofits are experiencing. Yet, while philanthropy is expected to grow during the coming year by an average of approximately three percent, uncertainty regarding the proposed new tax-related legislation suggests that nonprofits—including literary nonprofits—could suffer dramatic income reductions:
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act changes personal exemptions and the standard deduction in a way that effectively denies 95 percent of taxpayers any tax incentive for giving back to their communities. …Economists at the Tax Policy Center at the Urban Institute report that the tax change would reduce giving by $13 billion to $20 billion every year. The same group estimates that changes in the estate tax will reduce giving to charitable purposes by another $4 billion.
—Tom Delaney, president and CEO of the National Council of Nonprofits
You already know the importance and the economic impact of the literary arts in our community. Your participation in local literary activities and your recognition of their value are among the reasons Saint Louis consistently ranks among the Top Ten Most Literate Cities in the U.S., and here at the Saint Louis Literary Consortium, we hope that we’ve added to that value.
This past spring our Remembering to Celebrate event honored four Saint Louis literary legends: Mona Van Dyne, Maya Angelou, Marianne Moore, and Sara Teasdale. Local poets Bridget McDonald, Glendal Wallace, Lorin Cuoco, and Lizzy Petersen read from the works of our honorees—a reflection of our literary riches, past and present.
This fall we conferred the fourth annual Tradition of Literary Excellence Award, so deservedly, to poet, educator, and arts advocate Michael Castro, who had just wrapped up his tenure as the first St. Louis Poet Laureate. Michael was joined at the event by the 2017 St. Louis Youth Poet Laureate, Zach Lesmeister, and the Consortium awarded certificates of appreciation to the University City Public Library and Subterranean Books.
During 2017, we’ve enjoyed seeing many of you at fundraisers in Maplewood—the Sutton Avenue Dine Out—and in Webster, the Dine to Donate at Llywelyn’s. Thank you for coming out in support of those efforts, but as the year closes, we continue to need and to rely upon your support as we seek to determine how the Saint Louis Literary Consortium can best serve the greater literary community. Toward the goal of becoming the one-stop hub for “all things literary” in the greater metropolitan area, the Consortium looks to develop a comprehensive literary calendar and a state-of-the-art literary newszine—achievements that will only be possible with your continued support.
Please help us to be your literary resource center by sending your donation today to the Saint Louis Literary Consortium, 6900 Delmar Blvd., Saint Louis, Missouri, 63130, or use the donate button on our website: www.literarystl.com.
The Saint Louis Literary Consortium