Petaluma native Bill Vartnaw, a lifelong writer and one-time San Francisco cab driver, is finishing his two-year term as Sonoma County's seventh poet laureate.

The time has come to pick a successor, and nominations are open now.

The job description is simple enough: Promote poetry in general and local poets in particular. Each poet laureate sets his or her own specific agenda.

Deadline for nominations is Oct. 31, and the new Poet Laureate will be announced in December.

Download the submission requirements and application form from the Center for the Arts' website at <a href="" target="_blank"></a> or email

For questions, please contact Linda Galletta at or call the Sebastopol Center for the Arts at 829-4797.

Meanwhile, the bi-annual selection of the next Healdsburg Literary Laureate will culminate with a "read-off" by candidates at 7 p.m. Oct. 26 at the Bean Affair coffeehouse, 1270 Healdsburg Ave., Healdsburg.

This year's candidates are Ken Dalton, Gabriel Fraire, Russ Messing and Michelle Wing.

For more information, see, or 431-0365.

Sign Glen Ghilotti's obituary guest book here.