Community News & Updates July 2014

ALUMNI

Cal Armistead‘s (Fiction, W’07) debut young adult novel Being Henry David is a winner of the 2014 Paterson Prize for Books for Young People and was named to the Bank Street College “Best Children’s Books of the Year 2014 Edition.” It was also chosen as an “all-school summer read” for Seekonk High School, Seekonk, MA!

Michael Beeman (Fiction, S’09) was happy to see his craft essay “From Inspiration to Print” appear on the Sewanee Review‘s website. The story discussed, written during his first semester at Stonecoast, is available online through Project Muse.

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) is thrilled to announce the publication of three short stories: “What the Dollhouse Said” in Devilfish Review‘s June 28 issue, “The Red Red Rose” in Rose Red Review on July 1, and “What We’ve Lost, Sometimes” in Crossed Genres #19 (July).

Debbie Smith Daughetee (Popular Fiction, S’08) has co-founded Kymera Press, which is dedicated to expanding the role of women in comics: “Our mission is to give women creators and artists of comic books an outlet where they can create women-friendly comics. Our secondary mission is to encourage more women to read and enjoy comics.”

flapperhousesummercovernovaPaula Treick DeBoard (Fiction, S’10) recently signed a two-book deal for her third and fourth novels, to be published in 2015 and 2016. More here. She recently attended Book Expo America ’14 to promote The Fragile World, which is released in October. More information can be found on her website or on Facebook.

Julie Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) story “Faerie Medicine” is now available in the online magazine Flapperhouse.

17805396A History of Stone and Steel, the debut novel by Christopher Fisher (Fiction, W’08), was honored last month with a Gold Medal in the 2014 Independent Publisher Book Awards (IPPYs). The IPPY Gold Medal is a coveted honor among independent publishers, with this year’s competition receiving over 5,000 entries from the U.S., Canada, and eight countries overseas. Fisher’s award was for first place in the category of “Best Adult Fiction E-book.” A History of Stone and Steel also won a  Gold Medal in the Foreword Reviews “IndieFab” competition in the category of Literary Fiction. The novel, which began as Chris’s creative thesis at Stonecoast, was also honored in three other competitions this spring, receiving a Silver Medal in the 2014 Benjamin Franklin Book Awards, hosted by the Independent Book Publishers Association, as well as “Finalist” status in the Eric Hoffer Book Awards (General Fiction) and the National Indie Excellence Book Awards (Literary Fiction and Book Cover Design—Fiction).

Blind_Moon_AlleyJohn Florio (Fiction/Popular Fiction, S’07) has another novel due out August 19th. Blind Moon Alley (Prometheus/Seventh Street Books) is the second in a series of crime novels featuring Jersey Leo, an albino bartender working in an underground speakeasy during Prohibition. The book has already garnered excellent reviews, including a starred review from Publishers Weekly. Find out more at John’s website.

Kristin LaTour‘s (Poetry, S’07) first full-length poetry manuscript, What Will Keep Me Alive, has been accepted for publication by Sundress Publications, forthcoming in October 2015.

Sandra McDonald‘s (Popular Fiction, W’05) story “End of the World Community College” is currently on bookstands in the July/August issue of Fantasy and Science Fiction magazine. Her story about Hollywood and magic scriptwriting, “Story of Our Lives,” recently appeared in Asimov’s magazine, and her YA story “Selfie” appeared in Lightspeed.

Michaela Roessner (Popular Fiction, S’08) was one of several writers invited to provide an ekphrastic piece to accompany images by photomontage artist Viktor Koen for his “Bestiary” series, inspired by classical mythical creatures and deities. The texts will accompany the prints in exhibits around the world. Roessner’s assigned entity was the spirit Mormo, a companion of the goddess Hecate.

Catherine Schmitt (Creative Nonfiction, W’12), managing editor for The Catch: Writings from Downeast Maine, is pleased to announce the release of Volume II, featuring the work of Stonecoast alumna Anne Witty. Stonecoast alumna Linda Buckmaster is also on the Editorial Board for the journal.

Linda K. Sienkiewicz (Fiction, S’09) has signed a contract with BuddhaPuss Ink LLC for the publication of her novelIn the Context of Love (aka The Real Story) for 2014. Details here.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) story “They Come In Through the Walls” was translated into French for the horror anthology Ténèbres, which is available now for ordering. Her story “The Stink of Horses” is available for free reading on the Hobart webpage. Her story “Scars” was released as a sneak preview of the Flapperhouse summer issue, also featuring fellow Stonecoaster Julie Day and out now in PDF format. Her story “Hero” appears today on Daily Science Fiction.

Christopher Watkins‘ (Poetry, W’08) work on 4488: A Ridge Blog is a finalist in three categories for this year’s annual Wine Blog Awards, including “Blog Post of the Year” for his post “Beauty Is a Rare Thing: Building the 2012 Monte Bello.”

STUDENTS

Cristina Perachio (Fiction) is heading out with mentor Rick Bass for a road trip from Missoula to Madison for his book project Eating My Heroes. Petrachio and Bass will travel to Tom McGuane’s ranch in Livingston and Lorrie Moore’s home in Madison to cook a “fine meal to say thank you” to Bass’ literary heroes. Perachio will be writing from the road about her experience on her blog, Thank You Gravy.

Bass cooking grilled duck (a trial run for future "thank you meals") in his home in Yaak, MT

Bass cooking grilled duck (a trial run for future “thank you meals”) in his home in Yaak, MT

FACULTY

cover of Beautiful WheelTed Deppe‘s (Poetry, Coordinator of Stonecoast in Ireland) poem “Shouting at the Windows of the Night,” from his new book Beautiful Wheel, has been “highly commended” by the judges of this year’s Forward Prizes for Poetry and will appear this autumn in The Forward Book of Poetry 2015, a collection of the best poems from the UK and Ireland—this is the equivalent of a Pushcart Prize in the U.S. He and his wife Annie Deppe will be reading and teaching at the Strandhill Summerfest in County Sligo this July, and he will give a reading at the Clifden Arts Festival in County Galway on September 25 (where Suzanne Strempek Shea will also be reading). Next spring, Ted and Annie will be at Bay Path College in Massachusetts from 7-15 February, at Trinity Preparatory School in Winter Park, FL, on 5-6 March, and at Randolph College in Lynchburg, VA, from 16 March until 11 April, before they return home to Connemara.

“Just a Juggler,” the first chapter of Boman Desai‘s (Fiction) novel The Elephant Graveyard, placed first in a contest of first chapters and will be posted here until August 1. It is his third win in a welcome hat-trick following his novel The Lesbian Man, which was a finalist for the Dana Award in April, and “The Boy from Chicago,” which placed first in a flash-fiction contest in May and will be posted here until July 1. He is happy to be leaving Stonecoast on a high, but sorry to be leaving at all. He will be glad to hear from you, and should you find yourselves in Chicago he knows a place that serves a biryani to match any in Mumbai. Just ask Mike Langworthy.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) short story “New Neighbor” is in the anthology Law and Disorder.

Elizabeth Hand (Fiction, Popular Fiction) was visiting lecturer for the Odyssey Writing Workshop June 22-23. She’ll be Master Artist in Residence at the “your word” Teen Creative Writing Residency at the Atlantic Center for the Arts in New Smyrna Beach, FL, July 19-August 3. Forthcoming Washington Post reviews include Chris Bohjalian’s Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands and Deborah Harkness’s The Book of Life. Her award-winning noir novel Generation Loss has been optioned by the husband & wife producer/director team of Todd Luiso and Sara Koskoff for development as a TV miniseries.

Alexandra Oliver (Poetry) has been awarded the Pat Lowther Memorial Award for her book Meeting the Tormentors in Safeway. The Lowther is given annual to a book of poetry by a Canadian woman and carries a $1,000 prize. Previous winners include Karen Solie and Dionne Brand. One of Alexandra’s newer poems, “Watching the Cop Show in Bed,” can be found in the July/August issue of The Walrus Magazine.

Alexandra Oliver with  winners and nominees at the League of Canadian Poets Awards Gala, Toronto, June 7th, 2014.

Alexandra Oliver with winners and nominees at the League of Canadian Poets Awards Gala, Toronto, June 7th, 2014.

Elizabeth Searle judged the New Rivers Press 2014 Book Prize in June, selecting from the finalists a manuscript by Tracy Robert. Elizabeth has an essay, “Reality Fiction,” forthcoming in the New Rivers Press anthology Paper Camera. She also just had a personal essay accepted for a forthcoming anthology from Algonquin Books, edited by Elizabeth Benedict.

Suzanne Strempek Shea will read from her new book This Is Paradise at 7:00 p.m. on July 31 at Porter Square Books in Cambridge, MA. She also will be leading a fiction workshop at Iota: The Conference of Short Prose August 14-17 on Campobello Island. Other faculty members include Barabara Hurd (essay) and Charles Coe (poetry). For full information and to register, please visit the website.

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2014 Summer Residency – Readings Open to the Public

University of Southern Maine

STONECOAST MFA in CREATIVE WRITING

SCHEDULE FOR SUMMER 2014 RESIDENCY

*This schedule is subject to change depending on residency needs.*

 

FRIDAY, JULY 11

 

7:30 p.m. Welcome Remarks and Faculty Introductions

Justin Tussing, Interim Director

The Brunswick Hotel and Tavern – Robinson Room

 

7:45 p.m. Flash Faculty Readings

Faculty Flash Readings I: Faculty members will share three minutes of their work.

Rick Bass, Sarah Braunstien, Martin Espada, Aaron Hamburger, Elizabeth Hand, Nancy Holder, Elizabeth Searle

The Inn at Brunswick Station – Robinson Room

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Community News & Updates June 2014

ALUMNI NEWS

Sheila Boneham (Creative Nonfiction / Cross Genre, S’13) has signed a contract for two more novels in her Animals in Focus series from Midnight Ink. The first book, Drop Dead on Recall (2012), was named Best Fiction Book of the year by the Dog Writers Association of America. Book two, The Money Bird, came out last fall, and the third, Catwalk, will be released this coming October. Also, Sheila has had a poem accepted for publication in Written River: A Journal of Eco-Poetics; “Spin” will appear in the July issue.

FloridaRWA_-_finalMichael L. Joy‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) story of geriatric adventure and intrigue, “Portrait Conspiracy,”  will appear in an anthology from Melange Press called From Florida with Love, which comes out as an ebook on June 5th and in print at a later date (and will be available on Amazon). All proceeds support the South West Florida Romance Writers.

Paul Kirsch (Popular Fiction, W’11) is under contract with Obsidian Entertainment to write the Collector’s Edition book for their much-anticipated game Pillars of Eternity. You can read more about it here.

Andrea Lani (Fiction, W’14) had two essays published in May: “The Mother as She Writes” in Literary Mama and “Memento Mori: On Collecting Baby Teeth” in Mutha Magazine.

17247288Will Ludwigsen‘s (Popular Fiction, W’11) collection In Search Of and Others has been nominated for a Shirley Jackson Award for “outstanding achievement in the literature of psychological suspense, horror, and the dark fantastic.”

Jeanette Lynes (Poetry/Fiction, ’05) presented a talk on poetic responses to the poet John Clare at the “John Clare in Space” conference held at Oxford-Brookes University in England on May 30th. Jeanette’s poetry collection, School of Flowers: The John Clare Poems, will be published by Wolsak and Wynn in 2016.

Lightspeed_49_June_2014J.M. McDermott‘s (Popular Fiction, S’11) much anticipated final Dogsland novel, We Leave Together, comes out in June from WordHorde.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) essay “Stepping through a Portal” is out in Lightspeed: Women Destroy Science Fiction! today. Her story “Sleepers” is in the most recent issue of Interzone.

FACULTY NEWS

Jeanne Marie Beaumont (Poetry) has two poems in the new issue of Gulf Coast, one of which, “Lotto,” is also posted on their website.

Boman Desais (Fiction) flash fiction, “The Boy from Chicago,” won first prize in the Writer’s Billboard competition for the month of April and will be posted at this link until July 1st.

David Anthony Durham (Fiction, Popular Fiction) has a couple of events before the July residency. At the Squam Arts Workshops (June 4th-8th) he’ll be leading a series of workshops called “Story in a Day,” and he’ll be teaching at Mary Robinette Kowal’s Writing the Other Workshop and Retreat (June 9th-15th).

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) essay “A ‘Shortcut to Europe’ in D.C.? Not Quite” appeared in The Washington Post.

Elizabeth Hand‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) reviews of Emma Donoghue’s Frog Music, Stacey D’Erasmo’s Wonderland, and Lauren Owen’s The Quick all recently appeared in The Los Angeles Times. In June, Hand will be writer-in-residence at the Norton Island Residency, and later that month she’ll be a guest instructor at the Odyssey Writing Workshop.

Debra Marquart (Creative Nonfiction, Poetry) co-edited a special “Sense of Place” issue of On Second Thought for the North Dakota Humanities Council. Marquart’s essay “Carte Blanche,” with some of her thoughts on the oil boom, was included in the issue.

Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) sends many thanks to all of the Portland-area Stonecoasters and staff who attended her reading at Harmon’s and Barton’s in the city May 22. The event was set up by the also-much-appreciated Barbara Kelly of “Kelly’s Books to Go,” which that night sold copies of Suzanne’s new book, This Is Paradise: An Irish Mother’s Grief, an African Village’s Plight an the Medical Clinic that Brought Fresh Hope to Both. Suzanne will continue on the book promotion trail this month, at events including

  • June 5 - 7:oo p.m. – Workshop 13 Cultural Arts & Learning Center, 13 Church Street, Ware, MA.
  • June 8 – 2:00 p.m. – Bay Path College, 588 Longmeadow Street, Longmeadow, MA
  • June 11 – 6:30 p.m. – East Longmeadow Public Library, 60 Center Square, East Longmeadow, MA
  • June 14 – 4:00 p.m. – Poetry Center, Wright HallSmith College, Northampton, MA
  • June 16 – 7:00 p.m. – Fiske Free Library, 108 Broad Street, Claremont, NH
  • June 21 – 2:00 p.m. – Booklovers’ Gourmet, 55 East Main Street, Webster, MA
  • June 22 – 1:00 p.m. – Write Your Mind, 21 Westminster Terrace, Cape Elizabeth, ME (with Helen Peppe and Richard Hoffman)
  • June 28 – 12:00 p.m. – Hampden Public Library, 625 Main Street, Hampden, MA

Suzanne sends no thanks to the Montreal Canadiens, who recently dashed the Boston Bruins’ Stanley Cup hopes. She does thank Elizabeth Searle and Celebrities in Disgrace for posting an essay by Suzanne on her childhood fixation with the Bruins and a certain defenseman. Finally, she thanks all who’ve registered for Iota: The Conference of Short Prose, which will run August 14-17 on Campobello Island, New Brunswick. Suzanne will lead a fiction workshop while Barbara Hurd works with nonfiction writers and Charles Coe with poets. For full information, including how to register for any of the workshops, visit the website.

10435988_10152768137620166_5532781654350973656_n

Stonecoast grads and current students chat (and display their souvenir Suzanne’s mother’s bookmarks) after Suzanne’s recent reading in Portland. From left: Amanda Pleau, Teal Gardella, Melanie Brooks, and Emily Young.

WORKSHOPS

Suzanne Van Dam (Fiction, S’09) is offering a weekend writing retreat July 19-20 in Copper Harbor, MI. The theme this year is “The Wandering Word.” Suzanne will be leading a prose workshop on “Travel & Life Writing” and will be teaming up with poet Laura Smyth (MFA Columbia University), who will be leading a workshop on “Poetry & Transformation.” The retreat provides additional activities designed to support the writer and the writing life—meditation, yoga, songwriting, and nature activities. Join us for two days of creative writing on the beautiful Keweenaw Penninsula. Check us out!

 

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Community News & Updates May 2014

ALUMNI NEWS

Karen Bovenmyer‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) poem “NeverNever Holes” was published April 10 on ZingaraPoet.

Bunny Goodjohn (Poetry, W’07) has creative nonfiction in the latest issue of Pithead Chapel. She has also wrangled a place on the Jessie duPont three-week summer-seminar series entitled “Constructing Childhood: Words and Pictures.”

Carolina Crimes coverSandra McDonald (Popular Fiction, W’05) sold the story “End of the World Community College,” a tongue-in-cheek story of apocalypse and hope, to The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction for publication later this year. Visit her at www.sandramcdonald.com.

Carolina Crimes: 19 Tales of Lust, Love, and Longing, published by Wildside Press, features stories by Sisters in Crime mystery writers from the Carolinas. A book trailer can be seen here. Karen Pullen (Popular Fiction, S’08) edited the stories, which includes her own “The Fourth Girl” about a recently fired teacher who inherits her aunt’s estate and finds that it comes with an unusual small business.

WhatMightNot--3x5x72In April, Steve Rhodes‘ (Poetry, W’11) second poetry collection was published by Wind. Of What Might Not Be Steve says, “This collection is a sequel to The Time I Didn’t Know What to Do Next. I’m trying to ponder those moments and places where the possible rubs up against the unlikely, where the boundary between ‘is’ and ‘might or might not be’ becomes blurred. I very much appreciate what Ted Deppe says about this collection: ‘These poems wonder at our being here at all.’”

Michaela Roessner-Herman (Popular Fiction, S’08) has been asked to contribute to an upcoming Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America Cookbook—the third that SFWA has produced, this time as part of SFWA’s 50th anniversary celebration in 2015. Michaela has previously provided recipes for two other genre-related cookbooks, both of which where fundraisers for the Tiptree Award: Her Smoke Rose Up from Supper and The Bakery Men Don’t See.

Lisa Romeo‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) flash essay “Coffee Regular,” an excerpt from her memoir-in-essays manuscript, appeared in the March issue of Gravel Magazine. Lisa was interviewed recently for The Writer’s Hot Seat section of the Barnstorm Journal blog. She would like to remind all in the Stonecoast community that she extends an open invitation to feature your guest post at her blog to help support your book or other creative project.

Lisa C. Taylor (Poetry, ’04) will be presenting a workshop on “Going into Dark Places: Taboos in Writing” at the Massachusetts Poetry Festival in Salem on May 3, 2014, at the Hawthorne Hotel. A recent interview with Lisa is in the online edition of The Worcester Review; her poem “Cathedral of Shadows” was published there in March. Also, she has new fiction appearing in Bartleby Snopes online and Mulberry Fork Review online.

Adrienne S. Wallner (Poetry, W’09) has accepted a position as a Wilderness Instructor with New Vision Wilderness, a wilderness immersion therapy and education program in northern Wisconsin. Some writing-specific work she will be doing with clients includes therapeutic journaling, poetry, ekphrasis, and nature writing. She is very excited to start her new position in September. (Those of you who spoke with her at AWP—yes, this is the job she was talking about!).

Tamra Wilson (Fiction, S’11) is thrilled to see her story “The Cozy Corner” in volume three of The New Guard. The story, excerpted from her Stonecoast creative thesis, was a finalist for the Machigonne Fiction Contest.

FACULTY NEWS

Boman Desai‘s (Fiction) novel The Lesbian Man was shortlisted for the Dana Award for novels. The first chapter of the same novel won first place in a competition of first chapters late last year.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) short story “Honeymoon for One” (which he read at the last residency) is in the new issue of Subtropics.

Elizabeth Hand‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) essay “Saved by Obamacare,” about her experience with the Affordable Care Act, appeared in Salon.

Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction) has a story in Dead But Not Forgotten: Stories from the World of Sookie Stackhouse. The Anthology will be released first by Audible on May 13, with hardcover and e-book releases in November. She is also an Author Guest of Honor at the World Horror Convention May 8-11 in Portland, OR.

BEST SFF 8Three new appearances in print this month for Jim Kelly (Popular Fiction): “The Pope of the Chimps” in The Book of Silverberg, edited by Gardner Dozois and William Schafer published on May 1; “Bernardo’s House,” a stand-alone e-book in English and Italian from Roman publisher Future Fiction; and “The Promise of Space” in The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Eight, edited by Jonathan Strahan, due on May 18. His super-hero story “The Biggest,” originally commissioned by Stonecoast alumna Mur Lafferty, has been recorded for the podcast Starship Sofa Episode 334. Jim has adapted “The Promise of Space” for the stage and it will appear this fall in the anthology Geek Theater: 12 Plays by Science Fiction and Fantasy Masters, edited by Jen Gunnels and Stonecoast alumna Erin Underwood.

Mike Kimball‘s (Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) monologues “Nightmare Girl” and “Career Day” took first prize in the Maine Playwrights Festival’s Monologathon. His full-length play Duck and Cover was voted Audience Favorite in Dezart Performs Play Reading Series (Palm Springs, CA), and the play will be fully staged in January 2015. The Players’ Ring (Portsmouth, NH) has announced that Mike’s Edgar-nominated play “Ghosts of Ocean House” will run for three weeks in October 2014.

dezart announcement

prprairie-gold-coverDebra Marquart‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Poetry) essay “Not All There” appeared in Prairie Gold: An Anthology of the American Heartland. Her poem “Kablooey Is the Sound You’ll Hear” was published in The Normal School: A Literary Magazine. Also, Debra traveled inside the North Dakota oil boom under a grant from the North Dakota Humanities Council during November of 2013. She taught writing workshops in thirteen communities impacted by the oil boom for a research project. Read about her first impressions of this fast-moving environmental story inside the Bakken oil boom here.

A Month Inside the Oil Boom: the North Dakota highway leading into the Badlands.

A Month Inside the Oil Boom: the North Dakota highway leading into the Badlands (photo provided by Debra Marquart).

Alexandra Oliver‘s (Poetry, ’12) book Meeting the Tormentors in Safeway has been shortlisted for the Pat Lowther Memorial Award, given for the best book of poetry by a Canadian woman published during the previous year. The winner of this award will be announced in June. An interview with Rob McLennan on the subject of this nomination can be found here. In addition to this, Alexandra is this month’s Guest Contributor for the BANG section of The New Guard Review.

Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) has a new short story, “The Quiet Car,” just published in Solstice literary magazine. For fellow fans of train-writing: this story takes place on an Amtrak “Quiet Car.”

this-is-paradise-coverSuzanne Strempek Shea‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) Portland, ME, reading from her newly released book This Is Paradise has been rescheduled to Thursday, May 22. She thanks those who first marked their calendars for May 8, then May 9. She promises this will be the last date change. The reading will be held at 6:00 p.m. at The Gallery at Harmon’s and Barton’s, 584 Congress Street. This Is Paradise is the story of the Irish woman Mags Riordan and the medical clinic she founded in the remote Malawian village where her son died while on holiday. A TV interview with Mags Riordan and Suzanne is here. A story on the book, from The Republican of Springfield, MA, is here. Suzanne will also be reading May 31 at 11:00 a.m. at Toadstool Books in Peterborough, NH, and on the same at the Toadstool store in Keene, NH, at 2:00 p.m. The books was launched April 23 at Broadside Bookshop in Northampton, MA, and Suzanne thanks all the Stonecoasters who attended. Two days later, Suzanne served as emcee for Bay Path College’s 19th annual Women’s Leadership Conference in Springfield, MA. Bearing the theme “Own Your Story,” the event featured television legend Barbara Walters, New York Times columnist Bruce Feiler and Syria Deeply founder Lara Setrakian, and was attended by a crowd of more than 2,000.

Author's-eye view of Broadside Bookshop launch of 'This Is Paradise.' Stonecoaster scan starts with Lisa Taylor in front row and former faculty member Leslea Newman in second row.

Author’s-eye view of Broadside Bookshop launch of This Is Paradise. Stonecoaster scan starts with Lisa Taylor in front row and former faculty member Lesléa Newman in second row.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

Call for Submissions for an Anthology Celebrating the Life and Work of Bill Morrissey
This book will be edited by Bill friends and New England writers Bruce Pratt and Suzanne Strempek Shea.

Singer, songwriter, novelist, outdoorsman, raconteur, family member, friend—Bill Morrissey was many things to the many, many, many people he touched in his life. We’d like to know just who he was to you. Submit your essay to be considered for a proposed anthology that will illustrate the innumerable sides of a man who left us far too soon, and left us with so much. Whether you know him from high school, or the high stool, whether you are a friend who shared a stage with him or a fan who shared his love of small towns on the river, tell us your Bill story.

Nonfiction submissions (essays, stories, lyrics, poems, appreciations) of up to 5,000 words should be sent in Word format by August 1 to bp.manuscripts (at) gmaildot.com. Include a cover letter with full contact information and a brief description of your connection to Bill. Contract will follow acceptance.

Suzanne Strempek Shea is the author of five novels and five works of nonfiction, including the newly released This Is Paradise: An Irish Mother’s Grief, an African Vllage’s Plight and the Medical Clinic that Brought Fresh Hope to Both. Her friendship with Bill sprang from their shared Polish heritage and their love of small towns on the river. Suzanne has been featured on NBC’s Today, National Public Radio and Voice of America, and in USA Today and The Washington Post. Her freelance work has appeared in The Boston Globe, The Philadelphia Inquirer, ESPN the Magazine, Yankee and Bark. Suzanne teaches at the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program and is director of the creative writing program and writer in residence at Bay Path College in Longmeadow, MA.

Bruce Pratt is the author of the novel The Serpents of Blissfull from Mountain State Press and the poetry collection Boreal from Antrim House Books. He has won prizes and awards for his drama, short fiction, poetry, and songwriting, and his work has been published in dozens of journal and reviews in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. For twenty years he plied his trade as a singer/songwriter and for fifteen of those years traveled extensively with Ramblin’ Jack Elliott. He was a long time friend and admirer of Bill, with whom he performed on many occasions. Pratt is the editor of the Annual American Fiction Anthology from New Rivers Press. Retired from performing, Pratt teaches Creative Writing and Literature at the University of Maine and to private students.

 

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Community News & Updates April 2014

ALUMNI NEWS

Katie Bickham‘s (Poetry, S’13) first book of poems, The Belle Mar, won the Lena-Miles Wever Todd Competition and will be coming out in April 2015 through Pleiades and LSU Press. The prize also includes $2000.

Sheila Boneham (Creative Nonfiction/Cross Genre, S’13) was writing on trains before it was cool and had two related narrative nonfiction pieces published in March to prove it: both are excerpted from her book-in-progress about riding long-distance trains. “The ‘I’ States” appears in The Museum of Americana: A Literary Review (free online here), and “Nocturne: Nebraska” appears in The Wayfarer: A Journal of Contemplative Literature, a print and online literary magazine (free online here).

71BmzDkykAL._SL1500_Jennifer Marie Brissett (Popular Fiction, S’11) will be presenting her paper “The Eleusinian Mysteries of Octavia E. Butler” to the Buffy to Batgirl: Women and Gender in Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Comics Conference to be held May 2-3, 2014, at Rutgers University.

Julie Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) story “Dried Skins Unshed” was published in the March 2014 issue of Stupefying Stories.

Christopher Fisher‘s (Fiction, W’08) novel, A History of Stone and Steel, has been selected as a finalist in Foreword Reviews‘ Book of the Year Award.

ZomburbiaAdam Kretuz Gallardo (Popular Fiction, S’12) is pleased to announce that his debut novel, Zomburbia, now has a cover image and a release date of August 26. More information, as well as a variety of links to various booksellers (should you find yourself in the mood to pre-order the book) are available at his publisher’s website. Adam would like to thank Jim Kelly and Nancy Holder, both of whom supplied very nice quotes for the cover.

Tamie Marie Harkins (Creative Nonfiction, S’12) has won a month-long residency at the Island Institute in Sitka, Alaska, as did current Stonecoast student Carol Green. Along with the intensive writing of the residency, they will be giving readings and a radio interview in Sitka. They’ll also be doing service in the community: Tamie will be leading local at-risk high schoolers in conversation on the subject of grief.

Lexa Hillyer (Poetry, S’10) has just launched Paper Lantern Lit’s The Studio: a boutique digital imprint committed to publishing a highly selective list of exciting ebooks ranging form YA to adult. Please check it out, buy some books, and submit!

Lissa Kiernan (Poetry, S’11), director of The Rooster Moans Poetry Cooperative, announces a special online workshop for National Poetry Month. “Gilding the Lily: The Roots that Clutch” will make April a little less cruel by offering an unlimited number of writers the chance to audit this workshop for free! You’ll get to read all the lessons, prompts, and poems, but, alas, you will not be able to post your own poems or comments. However, if you’ve been on the fence about what online workshops are all about, this is a great opportunity for discovering just how rewarding they can be. Learn more and sign up here.

Mike Langworthy (Creative Nonfiction, W’11) is proud to announce that “The Day Crew,” season 2 of the hit original web series The 4-to-9ers (over 45 million unique viewings in season 1) created by Jamie Widdoes and Tim O’Donnell, premiered on March 25 on Hulu Plus. Mike is a Consulting Producer on the series and co-wrote two episodes with executive producer O’Donnell.

UntitledMihku Paul (Fiction, S’10) and Kathleen Sullivan (Poetry, ’06) will be reading with several other poets in the series “Local Writers at The Local Buzz,” co-hosted by Marcia Brown, Portland’s newest Poet Laureate, and Penelope Anne Schwartz (both Stonecoast graduates). The event will be dedicated to Port City Poems, an anthology edited by Brown and which includes Mihku’s poem “A Song for Machigonne.” The reading will take place Saturday, April 26th, from 4:00-5:00 p.m. at The Local Buzz in Cape Elizabeth. On Thursday, May 1st, Mihku will be the featured poet and read from her book 20th Century PowWow Playland at the 20th anniversary of the Atlantic Studies Conference at the University of New Brunswick, Canada. The UNB archives hold a special collection of her great grandfather, Peter Paul.

Michaela Roessner-Herman (Popular Fiction, S’08) is one of the judges for this year’s Philip K. Dick Award, an annual science-fiction literary award.

Catherine Schmitt (Creative Nonfiction, W’12) has signed a book contract with Down East Books (an imprint of Rowman & Littlefield) for The President’s Salmon, scheduled for release in 2015. The manuscript was the basis of her Stonecoast thesis, and she thanks her Stonecoast mentors for contributing to this success.

Gina Troisi‘s (Creative Nonfiction, W’09) essay “Where the Ocean and Sky Divide” will appear in the next issue of Fugue.

Tamra Wilson (Fiction, S’11) is leading a workshop on blogging and column writing at the Carolinas Writers Conference in Wadesboro, NC, on April 5.

STUDENT NEWS

Cristina Perachio (Fiction) was named as a finalist in Narrative magazine’s 30 Below Story & Poetry Contest, and her short story “Nightstands” ran as Narrative‘s “Story of the Week” on March 24th.

FACULTY NEWS

Tony Barnstone‘s (Poetry, Translation) selected poems, Buddha in Flames (Buda en Llamas: Antologia Poetica 1999-2014), have just been published bilingually (translated by Mariano Zaro) with Ediciones el Tucan de Virginia (Mexico City).

Jaed Coffin (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Writing for Social Change) has recently accepted a full-time position at the University of New Hampshire, where he’ll be teaching undergraduate courses in fiction and nonfiction and MFA courses in memoir and literary journalism. He’ll continue to teach at Stonecoast as well.

cover of Beautiful WheelTed Deppe‘s (Poetry, Coordinator of Stonecoast in Ireland) new collection of poems, Beautiful Wheel, will be published in April 2014 by Arlen House in Ireland and will be distributed in the U.S. by Syracuse University Press. The book can be ordered now from Kenny’s Bookstore in Ireland (free international shipping and discounts on the price). Ted and Annie Deppe will be reading in the Riverwood Poetry Series in Hartford, CT, on April 10 at 6:30 p.m. in the Asylum Hill Congregational Church. They will teach in an intensive three-day writing workshop in beautiful Strandhill, County Sligo, Ireland, that will take place from 4-6 July 2014. Contact Ted at theodore.deppe@maine.edu for more information.

David Anthony Durham (Fiction, Popular Fiction) recently accepted an invitation to be a keynote speaker at the upcoming Write Angles Conference, to be held at Mount Holyoke College on October 18. Past Keynoters include Valerie Martin, Richard Russo, Julia Glass, Dennis Lehane, Patricia Smith, Andre Dubus, and Ann Hood.

Aaron Hamburger (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) served as the judge for the PEN New England Fiction Award this year, given to Jennifer Haigh’s News from Heaven. He’ll be in Boston for the ceremony on April 6.

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Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction) will be appearing a three Southern California events in April. First, she will be signing books at the YA Spring Fling Event on April 11 at 7:00 p.m. at Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore in San Diego with Shannon Messenger, Debra Driz, and others. She will also appear at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, held on the campus of the University of Southern California, on Sunday, April 13, at 3:00 p.m. discussing “Things that Go Bump in the Night” with Les Klinger, Lisa Morton, and others. A signing will follow. And at WonderCon, held at the Anaheim Convention Center on Saturday, April 19th, at 4:30 p.m. in room 213, Nancy will be discussing “Kid Lit SF: With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility” with Frank Beddor (The Looking Glass Wars) and others. A signing will follow.

dwr3On April 19, at 7:30 p.m. in the Pearl McManus Theater in Palm Springs, CA, Dezart Performs Theatre Company will present a staged reading of Mike Kimball‘s (Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) full-length play Duck and Cover, which has also been nominated for “Best Original Script” in the annual Spotlight Awards of Portsmouth and seacoast New Hampshire. The April edition of Portland Magazine will feature Mike’s 10-minute play The Perils of Long-Term Care (an elderly married couple perfect the art of disagreement). On April 23 at 7:00 p.m., two of Mike’s short monologues (“Nightmare Girl” and “Clean Break”) will be featured in The Monologathon at St. Lawrence Center for the Arts in Portland, ME. His 10-minute play “Houston” is part of comedy troupe Darwin’s Waiting Room’s new show Comicality, running through April 13 at The Players’ Ring in Portsmouth. Also, Mike’s new 10-minute play Disagreement at Dead Boot Saloon (gun control in the wild, wild west) will be part of the Maine Playwrights Festival’s “Alpha Show,” a program of short plays. Showtimes are April 24 and 25 at 7:30 p.m. and April 26 at 4:00 and 7:00 p.m. St. Lawrence Center for the Arts in Portland, ME.

dead boot flyerElizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) will be a featured author along with fellow Stonecoast faculty Martin Espada at the annual WriteBoston gala fundraiser. The gala raises money for a program begun by Mayor Tom Menino to provide support for students and teachers and to promote writing skills in MA public schools. Other writers featured at the Pros and Conversation event are Ben Bradlee, Jr., Boston Globe columnist Derrick Z. Jackson, and Edith Pearlman. To buy tickets, make a donation, or learn more about WriteBoston, visit the website.

TIP VERY FINAL ThisIsParadiseFrontCoverSuzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) will launch her tenth book and fifth nonfiction title, This Is Paradise: An Irish Mother’s Grief, an African Village’s Plight and the Medical Clinic that Brought Fresh Hope to Both, on April 23 at 7:00 p.m. at Broadside Bookshop (247 Main Street, Northampton, MA). She’ll be sharing hte night with poet Kathleen Aguero, who’ll be reading from her collection After That. Though this is the April newsletter, Suzanne asks Portland-area folks to think May, which she’ll be heading north to read from This Is Paradise at 7:00 p.m. on May 8 at Harmon’s and Barton’s (584 Congress Street, Portland, ME). Books will be sold that night by the inimitable Barbara Kelly of Kelly’s Books to Go. On April 25, Suzanne will emcee Bay Path College’s annual Women’s Leadership Conference, to be held at the MassMutual Center, Springfield, MA, where she’ll be introducing speakers including broadcasting pioneer Barbara Walters, Bruce Feiler of The New York Times, and News Deeply founder and editor Lara Setrakian. The theme of the day will be “Own Your Story.” The conference seats approximately 2,200 and sells out annually. For registration details, please visit the website.

 

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Community News & Updates March 2014

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IllinoisReadsThe young adult novel Being Henry David by Cal Armistead (Fiction, W’07) has been chosen as one of the books for the annual “Illinois Reads” program. Under the auspices of the Illinois Reading Council, this project was created to promote reading for all Illinois citizens, from birth to adult. Thirty-six titles were chosen (Being Henry David is among six for young adults) and will be introduced into classrooms, public health facilities, public and school libraries, and bookstores. Cal has been invited to the program’s formal launch ceremony at the Old State Capitol in Springfield, IL, on March 12, along with a host of state and local officials. (Needless to say, Cal is over-the-moon excited!)

Sheila Boneham (Creative Nonfiction/Cross Genre, S’13) has won the Maxwell Award for Fiction from the Dog Writers Association of America for Drop Dead on Recall (Midnight Ink, 2012), the first book in her Animals in Focus series. The second book came out last fall, and the third is in press. DWAA is the primary professional organization for dog writers. This is Sheila’s fourth Maxwell award, her first for fiction. Sheila’s essay “The ‘I’ States” appears in the Winter “Midwest” issue of The Museum of Americana: A Literary Review, which is available online.

81PvhklXIfL._SL1500_Julie Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) story “Unmaking” was reprinted in Outpouring: Yolanda Relief Anthology. All proceeds from the anthology go to the Philippines Red Cross to assist with typhoon relief. Copies may be bought at Amazon and Kobo. In a Stonecoast one-two punch, Julie’s flash piece “Drinking Grandma’s Tea” won second place in the Boskone Flash Fiction Slam. Details and fabulous photos can be found on the Boskone blog.

Bunny Goodjohn (Poetry, W’07) has a poem in issue 6 of Southern Women’s Review.

It’s a big month for Penny Guisinger (Creative Nonfiction, S’13)! Her piece “I Have This Part Right” appears in the current issue of River Teeth: A Journal of Narrative Nonfiction. Additionally, the current issue of Exit 7: A Journal of Literature and Art contains a suite of seven of her micro-prose pieces. These pieces are from a book-length work in progress called Postcards from Here.

Mistress by Magick JPEG LNavarre coverThe third book in Laura Navarre‘s (Popular Fiction, W’11) award-winning Tudor fallen-angel romance trilogy, Mistress by Magick, is out from Harlequin/Carina. He’s a daredevil Spanish pirate. She’s a Boleyn who spies for England. On the high seas, she’ll risk everything. Even her heart.

Cabildo Quarterly Online is featuring writing and mixed media by Rooze (Poetry, S’13).

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam (Popular Fiction, S’13) and her annual Art & Words Show was featured in Poets & Writers News and Trends section. Her story “Mrs. Stiltskin” appears in Lakeside Circus. Her essay “Stepping Through a Portal” appeared online as part of the recent Lightspeed Magazine: Women Destroy Science Fiction Kickstarter and will be included as part of the special issue.

In February, Robert E. Stutts (Popular Fiction, S’10) was granted tenure and promoted to Associate Professor of English at Presbyterian College, where he serves as director of the Creative Writing program.

Marco Wilkinson‘s (Poetry, S’13) poem “Succession” was just published by Seneca Review in their “Beyond Category” issue.

Tammy Wilson 2Tamra Wilson (Fiction, S’11) presented a talk, “What Makes a Southern Story Southern,” on February 26 as part of her service as a Road Scholar with the NC Humanities Council. Her talk at Pomegranate Books in Wilmington, NC, was sponsored by the local affiliate of the NC Writers Network and arranged by Sheila Boneham (Creative Nonfiction/Cross Genre, S’13).

STUDENTS

Olive L. Sullivan (Fiction) will be presenting a workshop at the Transformative Language Arts Network’s annual conference, The Power of Words, held in Kansas City in September. For more information, visit the conference website. Here is a brief description of the workshop: When Liz Spencer, photographer and student, met Olive Sullivan, poet and teacher, they soon recognized they had embarked on parallel journeys of transformation. In this presentation, they’ll share their poems, stories, and artwork, weaving their two separate narratives into a seamless message of how service to one’s community can become service to one’s self. Embracing the process of your self-portrait includes recognizing the need to keep developing even in the face of back-sliding, failing, and moving forward again. Participants will develop a personal mission statement and write toward right livelihood that embodies their gifts and stories.

FACULTY

David Anthony Durham‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) story “All the Girls Love Michael Stein,” published in the anthology Unfettered, edited by Shawn Speakman, has been produced in an audio version. A sample of the story is available for listening here, and the entire anthology is available as an audiobook via Audible.com.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) essay on Susan Conley’s memoir The Foremost Good Fortune appeared on Matador Network.

header_0Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction) will be appearing at the Tucson Festival of Books on March 16th and 17th. She will also be appearing at ConDor Con in San Diego on a special panel with Frank Beddor (The Looking Glass Wars), Peter S. Beagle (The Last Unicorn), and others.

A staged reading of Mike Kimball‘s (Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) Edgar-nominated stage play Ghosts of Ocean House will be performed at The Actors Studio of Newburyport on Saturday, March 8, at 10:00 a.m. Suggested $7 donation at the door, cash and check only.

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last-incantations-poems-david-mura-paperback-cover-artDavid Mura (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Poetry) will be giving a publication reading of his new book of poetry, The Last Incantations, at The Loft in Minneapolis on Friday, March 28, 7:00 p.m. He recently started a blog and his first essay, “Black (and Other) History Month,” is posted at http://blog.davidmura.com. In addition to commentary, he will be doing blog posts on creative writing in the future. He is also—yikes—now on Twitter @muradavid. He recently tweeted under the #signsyourdissertationisplottingtokillyou: 1. Does it have footnotes? 2. Does it wake you up at night? 3. Does is wake you up in the morning? 4. Are you finished?

Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) is featured with her longtime writing group in the Winter 2014 Brown Alumni Magazine. Elizabeth’s one-act opera, Tonya & Nancy: The Opera, with music by Abigail Al-Doory Cross, had an additional performance added in St. Paul, MN, where it opened on February 20, produced by the operetta group Mixed Precipitation, which describes itself as “a performance company exploring text, space and form with festive theatrical events that inspire social engagement.” Previews for Tonya & Nancy: The Opera were performed outdoors at the Minnesota Art Shanty Festival, on ice.

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Community News & Updates February 2014

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Libby Cudmore (Popular Fiction, S’10) is thrilled to announce that she has accepted an offer of reprsentation from Jim McCarthy of Dystel & Goderich Literary Management.

Anthony D’Aries (Creative Nonfiction, W’09) was recently interviewed by Mason’s Road, Fairfield MFA’s literary journal. He was also invited to present at Embry-Riddle University’s President’s Speaker Series on February 26th at 7:00 p.m. The event will be broadcasted on Marc Bernier’s radio show. Additional information about the event can be found here.

Melody FullerMelody Fuller (Creative Nonfiction, S’12) has accepted an invitation to attend The Symposium for Professional Wine Writers at Meadowood Napa (February 2014). This is a high honor and a testament to her assiduous work. This Symposium holds hard-to-get space for only the top writers of food and wine in the world. It is very difficult to earn a chair.

Lissa Kiernan (Poetry, S’11) announces “Praise the Poetry Barn,” a new initiative for her nonprofit organization, The Rooster Moans Poetry Cooperative, a provider of online poetry workshops. The Indiegogo campaign envisions building an energy-efficient, cooperatively run timber barn to hold poetry workshops, readings, and retreats in the Catskill Mountains of New York state. Have your name and a line of your poetry inscribed on a barn board, or claim another poetic perk of your choice, from bestselling, award-winning books to enrollment in one of our online workshops. All donations are tax-deductible to the extent provided by law.

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NIGHTLIFE worm 4AMatthew Quinn Martin (Popular Fiction, S’10) is excited to be able to share the cover for the second novel in his Nightlife series, Nightlife: As the Worm Turns (Pocket Star/Simon & Schuster), which is set to be released in early October 2014 … just in time for Halloween.

The post-apocalyptic, transgender story “Fleet” by Sandra McDonald (Popular Fiction, W’05) was selected to appear in The Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy. It originally appeared in the collection We See a Different Frontier. Sandra also attended the January launch of the TDRS space satellite at Kennedy Space Center as a social media expert.

Lisa Romeo nov 2013 - CTwo of Lisa Romeo‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) narrative essays found homes recently. “Eyes, Hands, Hotel, Hospital” appears on Halfway Down the Stairs, and “Down at the Diner” is in the January 2014 print and digital issue of Under the Gum Tree. Both are excerpts from her memoir manuscript. An essay about finally getting a new professional photo taken (after delaying it for seven years), and mulling the meaning of a writer’s headshot, appeared on SheWrites. Lisa’s blog was included in the Best 100 Websites for Writers in 2014 at The Write Life.

Catherine Schmitt‘s (Creative Nonfiction, W’12) article based on her Stonecoast thesis, “How the Presidents Ate Their Salmon,” appears in the winter issue of Gastronomica. A PDF can be found on her website.

Bonnie Stufflebeam (Popular Fiction, S’13) has a lot of story news she’s been holding onto: Her short story “The Land of Phantom Limbs” appeared in the January issue of Flash Fiction Online. Her story “The Damaged” appears in the current issue of Interzone. Her story “The Mammoth” appeared in the December 2013 issue of Ideomancer. The flash fiction “Spiders” appeared in the December issue of The Drabblecast, a podcast zine. “Old Boys” appears in the Winter issue of The Colored Lens. All of these stories, she is happy to say, were written during her time at Stonecoast.

Gina Troisi‘s (Creative Nonfiction, W’09) memoir, Shadows on the Sidewalk, was a Short List Finalist for the 2013 William Faulkner-William Wisdom Competition for Narrative Nonfiction. She is still looking for a home for the book. Her essay “Until the Morning Comes” was recently published in Flyway: Journal of Writing and the Environment. Her essay “Our Shadows on the Sidewalks” (from which the title of the book originated) was accepted for publication in Under the Sun, due to be released in May 2014.

Karrie Waarala‘s (Poetry, S’11) heroic crown of sonnets, “Pierce & Brand: A Sideshow Diptych,” appears in the latest issue of Mezzo Cammin (along with a spare sonnet and a villanelle for good measure).

Adrienne S. Wallner‘s (Poetry, W’09) poem “The Parable of the Butchers: Taiji Cove vs. Factory Farming” is featured on the January 22, 2014, edition of New Verse News. To see what else she has been up to, please visit her website.

STUDENTS

Genevieve Williams (Popular Fiction) has a short story in the March 2014 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine, titled “The Redemption of Kip Banjeree.”

FACULTY

Beast in the ApartmentTony Barnstone (Poetry, Translation) just published his new book of poems, Beast in the Apartment (Sheep Meadow Press, 2014). It’s available from various distributors, directly from UPNE, Amazon, and so on. More importantly, his son, Blake William Barnstone, was born on January 14th, healthy and happy, 7 pounds, 10 ounces!

An excerpt from David Anthony Durham‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) story “Those About to Die…” is currently being featured on George R.R. Martin’s official website. It’s there to promote the forthcoming Wild Cards novel, Lowball, and includes the cover illustration of David’s character. David also contributed to the forthcoming craft book Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror: Speculative Genre Exercises from Today’s Best Writers and Teachers, edited by Laurie Lamson and published by Archer.

A staged reading of Mike Kimball‘s (Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) Edgar-nominated stage play Ghosts of Ocean House will be performed at Mad Horse Theater, 24 Mosher Street, South Portland, ME, on Friday, February 7, at 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, February 9, at 2:00 p.m. Pay-what-you-can tickets (a suggested $10 donation) are available at the door, cash and check only.

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In 2013, Debra Marquart (Creative Nonfiction, Poetry) received the following awards/honors: 2013 Wachtmeister Award for Poetry from the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (award includes an honorarium and a one-month residency at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Amherst, VA); The Paumanok Poetry Award from the Visiting Writers Program at Farmingdale State College, New York; the 2013 Normal Prize for Poetry for “Kablooey Is the Sound You Hear”; short-listed for the 2013 Manchester Poetry Prize, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK. Also, her poem “Door-to-Door” was selected by Narrative Magazine as one of the “Top Five Poems” published by Narrative in 2013.

meeting-the-tormentors-in-safewayThe National Post recently named Alexandra Oliver‘s (Poetry, ’12) Meeting the Tormentors in Safeway one of the top four books of Canadian poetry for 2013. Kerry Clare of The 49th Shelf discusses Tormentors in this review.

Elizabeth Searle‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) opera and rock opera about “Tonya & Nancy” are both being produced in February. In L.A., a second show has been added to the Rock Concert performance of Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera at the King King Club in Hollywood, February 4-5, libretto by Elizabeth and music by Michael Teoli, produced by The Los Angeles Rock Opera Company and Harborside Films, both shows benefitting L.A.’s iconic Celebration Theater. A full run for the rock opera in L.A. is in the works. L.A. Stonecoasters please join Elizabeth and Nancy Holder at rink-side February 4th. Media coverage for the 2014 L.A. production of the Rock Opera has included featured articles on NewsOXY (ranked a “Most Popular” article), BroadwayWorld/LA, MSN, deathandtaxes.com, and an hour on Los Angeles Talk Radio: The Sheena Mateal Experience Show. Meanwhile in Minneapolis/St. Paul, the operatta group Mixed Precipitation is performing Tonya & Nancy: The Opera, Elizabeth’s one-act chamber opera with music by Abigail Al-Doory Cross on February 20 at Amsterdam Hall, the night of the Women’s Figure-Skating finals in Sochi. For updates, please visit Elizabeth’s website.

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ADDITIONAL PERFORMANCE ADDED DUE TO HIGH TICKET DEMAND
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 5th @ 8:00 PM

On February 15, Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) will be emceeing the ninth Writers’ Day at Bay Path College in Longmeadow, MA, an event that will include a talk by Stonecoast grad Helen Peppe on the sometimes-sticky business of writing the family. That night, she’ll introduce Liz Peavey (who’ll be speaking during the day on memoir and truth) as she presents her acclaimed one-woman show, “My Mother’s Clothes Are Not My Mother,” about mourning, sorting, and saying goodbye.

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