Community News & Updates May 2018

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Thank you to all who supported the One Month, One Voice campaign to benefit Stonecoast’s new Writing for Social Justice Scholarship. Together, we raised over $20,000! If you missed the campaign but would still like to be part of the movement, you can email stonecoastcommunity@maine.edu for information on donating or hosting an event. Thank you for being part of Stonecoast’s commitment to social justice.

Acclaimed Irish Fiction Writer Claire Keegan will be presenting a four-day Fiction Workshop in Winter Harbor, Maine, September 13-16, 2018!  Please contact Kathryn Balteff (current Fiction student) at info@FeatheredInk.org or Kathryn.balteff@maine.edu for details and registration information. Registration must be completed by June 1st. There are a limited number of spots available for this wonderful opportunity—don’t wait!

ALUM NEWS

Elisabeth Tova Bailey’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’15) natural history memoir, The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating (Algonquin Books, 2010), has been adapted for stage in Switzerland. Produced by the theater company FRADS Fruhstuck auf der Szene Buchholzstrasse, the performance involves one actor and one dancer. A video trailer for the production can be viewed here. Performances dates are April 25th, 27th, and 28th at the Theater Tuchlaube in Aarau, Switzerland, and May 26th at the Kelelrteater in Bremgarten, Switzerland. More information is available here.

Set photo: The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating

Michael Beeman (Fiction, S’09) published his short story “The Witnesses” in the spring 2018 issue of The Superstition Review. His short story “The Dream” has been accepted for an upcoming issue of EPOCH magazine.

Peter Adrian Behravesh (Popular Fiction, W’18) has accepted a position as the audio producer for PodCastle, a weekly podcast that publishes fantastical short fiction.

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) is chuffed her 200-word flash “Cadaver Feet” will be reprinted in The Binge Watching Cure II: Horror anthology. This short was written for alumna Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam’s Art & Words show and art created for it can be viewed here. Karen is super excited that she will be participating in this year’s Art & Words show and artwork will be created for her Rhysling award-nominated poem “Syncing Minefields.” She’s honored her novel Swift For The Sun won a silver medal in the LGBT category of the IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award. Her article about what to consider while selling your fiction to podcast markets, “One Story, Told Well,” is available for reading on Writespace. Karen will be presenting on panels at Writespace Houston, May 4-5: “The Good, the Bad, and the Slushy: How to Save Your Story from the Slush Pile Neverland,” “Submission Tools for New Writers,” “The Future of LGBTQ Publishing: New Stories, New Voices,” and “Metal and Speculative Fiction.” At the end of the month, May 25-27, Karen will be presenting on two panels at Comicpalooza Houston—“Speculative Poetry Deathmatch” and “Finding Writing Inspiration”—as well as participating in “Poetry of the Imagination: A Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Reading” at Kaboom Books. She was interviewed on KHOI radio’s community bookshelf (April 17) about her work and the effects of divorce and dating on her writing. Her short story about divorce, “From Now Until Infinity” published in Factor Four Magazine, has been receiving a lot of buzz and was reviewed by Maria Haskins in “10 extra excellent stories I read in March.” Karen can be heard narrating work by Llewellyn, Schow, Cushing, Barker, and Gifune on Cemetery Pod. Stonecoast continues to be the single most influential experience on Karen’s career and she is grateful for it every day!

On May 13 the collaborative sound art project Soundtrack becomes available for download. This is a work presented by the Queens Museum as part of the Mel Chin: All Over the Place exhibit with project curator Jace Clayton (aka DJ /rupture), which will include Jennifer Marie Brissett (Popular Fiction, S’11 ) reading from her novel Elysium.

KT Bryski (Popular Fiction, W’16) has a play premiering soon! A Canticle of Light will run May 30th-June 2nd in Toronto, produced by indie theatre company Missed Metaphor Productions.

Linda Buckmaster (Creative Nonfiction, S’11) now has her first-ever writer’s website lindabuckmaster.com. It includes her live blog “Field Notes,” her current “Audio Essays,” and all kinds of other great stuff. She’s also nailed the date for the launch of her hybrid memoir, Space Heart: A Memoir in Stages, for November 4 at Waterfall Arts in Belfast, Maine. If you’re in the neighborhood, stop by.

John Florio (Fiction/Popular Fiction, S’07) has written about the intersection of race, politics, and sports for The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and The New York Times. His latest piece, “When Martin Luther King Died, Major League Baseball Struck Out,” was an April feature story for ESPN’s The Undefeated. His YA book, War in the Ring: Joe Louis, Max Schmeling, and the Fight Between Hitler and America, will be released by Macmillan’s Children’s Group in Spring 2019.

Hank Garfield‘s (Fiction, S’04) short-short story “The Pickup Artist” appears in the May issue of Portland Magazine. Hank also has a nonfiction piece, “An Old Boat Gets a New Waterline,” in the May issue of Points East, a boating magazine covering the entire New England coast.

Alan King (Poetry, W’13) was the featured guest on WPFW 89.3 FM’s On The Margin with E. Ethelbert Miller. He discussed his latest book, Point Blank, talked fatherhood, and more. Listen to the recording here.

Paul Kirsch (Popular Fiction, W’11)—Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire will be released on May 8th for PC/Mac/Linux! The game is fully voiced and features the cast of Critical Role, a popular D&D podcast where talented gaming industry voice actors play a tabletop adventure together. All of the actors play prominent roles in Deadfire. Enjoy the trailer below for some of the action, and enjoy the writing on May 8th!

Will Ludwigsen‘s (Popular Fiction, W’11) latest collection Acres of Perhaps, featuring his work from Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine and Nightmare Magazine plus several new stories, is now available from Amazon or your favorite online independent bookseller. If you enjoy alternate history crime, cursed toys, sky-gazing psychopaths, or creepy 60s TV shows, it may be just what you need for your nightstand.

Jeanette Lynes’ (Poetry/Fiction, ‘05) second novel, The Small Things That End The World, will appear in May 2018, published by Coteau Books, Regina, Canada. Jeanette is currently a Visiting Fellow at the University of Edinburgh’s Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (IASH).

Both of Alison McMahan‘s (Popular Fiction, W’10) short mysteries, “The New Score” (Fish Out of Water Anthology, Wildside Press 4/17) and “The Drive By” (Busted! Arresting Stories from the Beat Anthology, LevelBest Books 4/17), have been nominated for Derringer Awards by the members of the Short Mystery Fiction Society. Winners will be announced on May 15th. Her short horror story “Kamikaze Iguanas” will appear in the MWA anthology for middle-grade readers entitled Scream and Scream Again (HarperCollins, 2018), edited by R. L. Stine, which is now available for pre-order.

John Christopher Nelson‘s (Fiction, S’15) flash piece “Chrysalis” is featured in Melanie Faith’s In a Flash! Writing & Publishing Dynamic Flash Prose, available now through Vine Leaves Press. Nelson’s work appears alongside other Stonecoast alumni in this collection.

“Unseen Canyon,” Jenny O’Connell‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’17) essay about rafting the Grand Canyon with blind students, will appear in the summer edition of Camas, released this month. A second essay based on Finding Petronella, Jenny’s book project tracing her solo trek across Finland in the footsteps of Lappish legend Petronella van der Moer, is forthcoming from Slice Magazine in September.

American Dangerous, Renée Olander‘s (Poetry, W’05) first full-length collection of poems, will be published by Backlash Press in September 2018. She also has poetry and prose forthcoming in the anthology Feminine Rising, edited by Andrea Fekete and Lara Lillibridge, due in early 2019.

Anne Britting Oleson‘s (Poetry, W’05) third poetry chapbook, Alley of Dreams, has been published by Clare Songbirds Publishing of Auburn, NY.

Suri Parmar‘s (Popular Fiction, W’17) short film The Bakebook was selected by Female Eye Film Festival to screen in a curated exhibition at De Montfort University on April 13, 2018, in association with the Cinema and Television History (CATH) centre. Her short story “Forty Whacks” has also been published in Vague Visages.

Steve Rhodes (Poetry, W’11) has two ekphrastic poems that recently appeared in The Ekphrastic Review (April 10, based on a painting by Oldilon Redon; April 17, based on a painting by George Bellows). His poem “Aubade” will appear in Tahoma Literary Review in August.

Lisa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) proudly announces the May 1 publication of Starting with Goodbye: A Daughter’s Memoir of Love after Loss (University of Nevada Press). She’d like to express her gratitude and appreciation to all of her Stonecoast faculty and mentors, workshop leaders, and fellow students/alumni for the help and support!

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) story “Angry Kings” appeared in the recent issue of Beneath Ceaseless Skies. 

Melanie Viets (Creative Nonfiction, W’17) has an essay in About Place Journal: “A Humbling Place” appears in the new ‘Rewilding’ issue.

Tamra Wilson (Fiction, S’11) is co-editing a teen-idols anthology with Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) to be released June 15th from McFarland Publishers. Idol Talk will include work by Ann Hood, B. A. Shapiro, Susan Straight, Jill McCorkle, Lesléa Newman, Stephanie Powell Watts, and a host of others. The collection showcases a variety of female authors who share—most for the very first time—their teenage crush and the impact the experience had on their lives. Idol Talk will be the first book of teen-idol essays ever written entirely by female writers. Its focus is a topic that’s rarely discussed and seldom studied: the coming-of-age bridge in which girls intensely project themselves into a world beyond themselves. Both co-editors will be at Stonecoast in July to share excerpts and discuss writing about pop culture along with Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction).

STUDENT NEWS

Lindsey Barlow (Popular Fiction) has been offered a three book deal by California Coldblood Books, an imprint of Rare Bird Books, for a trilogy she has been working on for the past five years. She is over the moon for this wonderful opportunity, and she is so happy to be part of the CCB family.

FACULTY NEWS

Tom Coash’s (Playwriting) short play Quit Stalling will be produced in May as part of the 1:One Festival in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Shortly thereafter, the short film The R Word (for which he wrote the screenplay) will premiere at the White River Indie Festival, June 3, in White River Junction, VT.

Ted Deppe (Poetry) and Annie Deppe will be reading at the Linen Hall Library in Belfast, Northern Ireland, at 1:00 p.m. on 18 May. Ted will give a poetry masterclass/workshop from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon before the reading. As of this writing, there are still a few spots left for the workshop.

Jim Kelly’s (Popular Fiction) 2005 Nebula-winning novella, Burn, has just had its first ebook edition. Particle Books, a new electronic imprint from Tachyon Publications, launched Burn on April 24; it includes a new afterword by Jim. He talks about the writing of the book as well as his forthcoming short-story collection The Promise of Space in an interview with Paul Semel. In other reprint news, Jim is the only author from the U.S. included in the just-published anthology Future Fiction: New Dimensions in International Science Fiction, edited by Bill Campbell and Francesco Verso, from Rosarium Publishing. Also represented in the table of contents are India, Greece, Zimbabwe, China, Italy, the Canada, the U.K., Russia, Mexico, Nigeria, and Cuba. Jim’s novelette “Bernardo’s House” was first published in 2003.

 

 

 

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Community News & Updates April 2018

ANNOUNCEMENTS

On April 13th from 6:00-8:00 p.m., Quiet City Books in Lewiston, Maine, will host “Between Fear and Hope: Readings from Local Writers.” Among the readers are Stonecoast alum Josh Gauthier (Popular Fiction, S’17), and graduating students Meredith MacEachern (Popular Fiction) and Anthony Marvullo (Creative Nonfiction). The event is free and open to the public. See the Facebook event here.

Stonecoast MFA has created a new scholarship aimed at supporting writers who use their work to effect positive social change. This April, Stonecoast launches One Month, One Voice: a call to action for our community to get creative, make your voice heard, and help fund the Writing for Social Justice Scholarship. We need your help! Join the movement by hosting an event, donating to the cause, or helping us spread the word. Visit our fundraising page for more information.

RECENT CONFERENCE ROUND-UPS

Check out reports and photos from the recent AWP and ICFA conferences!

ALUMS

Peter Adrian Behravesh (Popular Fiction, W’18) received the Walter James Miller Memorial Award for Student Scholarship in the International Fantastic at the 39th International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts for his essay, “The Vault of Heaven: Science Fiction’s Perso-Arabic Origins.” He originally wrote this essay for his third semester project at Stonecoast, under the mentorship of Theodora Goss, and he will present a condensed version of it at Worldcon 76.

Peter Adrian Behravesh and Theodora Goss. Photo taken taken by AJ Bauers (Popular Fiction, W’17)

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) is happy her poem “Fire Lover” is now available for reading in February’s Heroic Fantasy Quarterly (Karen’s audio narration is also available at that link). In March, she presented on panels at Stokercon (Writing Fiction vs Writing Games, Shirley Jackson, Call of Cthulhu RPG, Dark Poetry, Horror Gaming, and Edit Your Way Past the Slush Pile which she also moderated) and had a blast hanging out with other Stonecoasters. She will very soon be narrating books for the Stoker-winning Independent Legions Publishing. Her book Swift for the Sun is both an Eric Hoffer da Vinci award (best cover) finalist and an Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA) Benjamin Frankin Award for best LGBT title gold or silver metal finalist. Her scifi flash fiction about divorce, “From Now Until Infinity,” appeared in the first issue of Factor Four Magazine, the only story that’s a free read for that issue. She is extremely proud of being March’s guest editor on Pseudopod and hopes you check out the five awesome dark scifi and fantasy stories she selected. Two of her 2017 poems, “Syncing Minefields” (Strange Horizons) and “Save Our Souls” (Silver Blade Magazine), have been nominated for the Rhysling award by members of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association. Last, but not least, she can be heard narrating an extremely inappropriate story titled “A Little Song, A Little Dance, A Little Apocalypse Down Your Pants” by Robert Jeschonek on StarShipSofa. It is the first time she’s ever narrated for orgasmic soup. Thanks for all your support!

Ryan Brod (Creative Nonfiction, S’17) has two features out in outdoor magazines this season. His first-person account of fly fishing smallmouth on the Androscoggin can be found in the spring issue of The Drake magazine, and the current issue of Gray’s Sporting Journal features Ryan’s article “Ten-Year Tarpon,” which was part of his thesis at Stonecoast.

Linda Buckmaster‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’11) essay “Security Clearance,” which first appeared in Burrow Literary Review, is included in an anthology from University of Florida Press, In Season. Stories of Discovery, Loss, Home, and Places In Between.

Anthony D’Aries (Creative Nonfiction, W’09) will lead a memoir workshop for the Cape Cod Writers Center on April 14th. More info can be found here.

Kristin LaTour (Poetry, S’07) is again doing her Poem-a-Thon fundraiser during April, National Poetry Month. Sponsors get a newly written draft poem every day in April. This year she’s raising money for Welcoming America, a non-profit that works within US communities to partner immigrants and refugees with people who are already established in those areas. More information is available about the fundraiser and Welcoming America on her fundraising page.

Joe M. McDermott (Popular Fiction, S’11) sold an excerpt of an unpublished novel to Analog Science Fiction And Fact, called “Full Metal Mother.”

Suri Parmar‘s (Popular Fiction, W’17) MFA thesis story “Anmol, Pasha, and the Ghost” has been published in Issue 21 of New Haven Review. You can read it here.

Shannon Ratliff’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’16) essay “Waller Creek” appears in the Spring ’18 issue of Hotel Amerika, currently out.

Erin Roberts (Popular Fiction, W ’18) bayou horror story “Snake Season,” which she read from in her graduate reading, is in the April issue of The Dark and available for free online here, with story notes here. If you’d like to check out her next reading, she’ll be joining fellow Stonecoaster Golden Baker for the kick-off of a new Harlem Speculative Fiction Reading Series on the evening of April 9th at local venue Silvana—more info here.

Michaela Roessner (Popular Fiction, S’08) will be a keynote speaker and presenter at the 2018 Writing the Rockies conference at Western State Colorado University in Gunnison, CO, July 18 – 22. And her short story “It’s a Wonderful Life” will be included in the upcoming reprint anthology Making History: Classic Alternate History Stories, published by New Word City Publishers, Inc.

Lisa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction, S ’08), will lead a day-long memoir workshop as part of Writing in the Pines at Stockton University in Galloway, NJ on April 14. She will be presenting on Sunday, April 15, at Bay Path University’s Writers’ Day (Longmeadow, MA) on “Publishing: the Long and Short of It.” Her micro essay, “Hope is a Voice,” will appear in the spring print issue of Tiferet Journal, and a longer essay, “Getting Something to Grow Somewhere” will show up in the next print issue of GreenPrints Magazine. Lisa was recently interviewed by Proximity, and by Cleaver Magazine (in which she quotes two of her Stonecoast mentors).

R. M. Romero‘s (Popular Fiction, S’15) debut novel, The Dollmaker of Kraków, has been awarded the Silver Medal for Older Children’s Literature in the Florida Book Awards and has been named a 2018 Sydney Taylor Notable Book.

Mary Katherine Spain‘s (Fiction, S’16) play Just Saying was selected as a Semi-Finalist in the Maine Playwrights Festival. A dramatic reading of all of the semi-finalists’ plays will be held on April 22nd at 7:00 p.m. at the Mechanics Hall in Portland. For more info, click this link.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) story “Sleeping Beauty’s Daughter” appeared in the online edition of Fairy Tale Review.

Melanie Viets (Creative Nonfiction, W’17) has an essay featured in the UK’s The Clearing—A Journal of Nature, Landscape and Place. “Shepherd’s Watch” will appear in early April.

Christopher Watkins (Poetry, W’08) has a new poem published by Typishly. “Aromatics” has additionally been selected as an Editor’s Choice Poem. The piece can be read here.

FACULTY

Tom Coash’s (Scriptwriting) award-winning play Veils is being published by Original Works Publishing.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Fiction, Creative Nonfiction) essay “Sweetness Mattered,” which he read an excerpt from at the last residency, is out in the new issue of Tin House.

Jim Kelly’s (Popular Fiction) 2016 novel, Mother Go, an audiobook narrated by January LaVoy and published by Audible, is a finalist for the Audie Award in the Best Original Work category. The Audies will be awarded by the Audio Publishers Association in May. Jim’s 2002 prehistoric fantasy “Luck” has published in Italian as “La storia di Pollice” by Delos Digital, and his 2003 cyberpunk novelette “Bernardo’s House” has been reprinted in an international science fiction showcase Future Fiction, edited by Bill Campbell and Francesco Verso.

Elizabeth Searle’s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) and Tamra Wilson’s (Fiction, S’11) anthology Idol Talk now has a pub date of June 15 (from McFarland Books) and a cover! It features, among the 44 authors writing about their ‘teen idols,’ an all-star roster of Stonecoasters, including both current and former students and faculty. Co-editor Tammy is an alum herself and author of a story collection, Dining with Robert Redford. She will be returning to Stonecoast in July. The all-star Stonecoast-connected contributors to Idol Talk: Women Writers on the Teenage Infatuations that Changed Their Lives: Breena Clarke (Fiction faculty), Emlyn Dornemann, Ann Rosenquist Fee (Fiction, S’08), Lee J. Kahrs, Kate Kastelein, Susan Lilley (Poetry, ’08), Shara McCallum, Lesléa Newman, Morgan Callan Rogers, Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction faculty), Linda Sienkiewicz (Fiction, S’09), Michelle Soucy (Fiction, S’10), Nancy Swan (Fiction, W’11), Darlene Taylor (W’16), and Dolen Perkins-Valdez (Fiction faculty). Check Elizabeth’s website for updates and readings: www.elizabethsearle.net

Meet and hear from Mags Riordan, founder of the Billy Riordan Memorial Clinic in Malawi and subject of Suzanne Strempek Shea’s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) book This Is Paradise as she returns to New England to update supporters on big changes including a new clinic for her region’s AIDS/HIV population. Suzanne will do a brief reading from This Is Paradise at each event, and copies of the book, and crafts from Chembe Village, be sold to benefit the clinic. Each date is open to the public free of charge, and free-will offerings gratefully will be accepted.  Dates and locations are:

Suzanne also will be speaking at Bay Path University’s 17th Writers’ Day, Sunday, April 15, at the university’s Ryan Center, 1 Denslow Road, East Longmeadow, Mass. Talks begin at 12:30 p.m., with “Immersion Starts with ‘I,'” in which Jonathan Green (Sex Money Murder: A Story of Crack, Blood and Betrayal) and Suzanne will talk about immersion journalism, their related writing, great books done via that method, and more. The other speakers on the roster are three members of Bay Path’s MFA faculty: Stonecoast alum Lisa Romeo, plus Sophfronia Scott and Karol Jackowski. Registration and fee required. For full information: https://www.baypath.edu/events-calendar/community-events/writers-day/

Among many fond memories from last month, Suzanne is pasting into her scrapbook two photos from a visit to Florida: Stonecoast alum Melanie Brooks’ AWP in Tampa panel “Writing the Pain: Memoirists on Tackling Stories of Trauma,” which included Suzanne, Andre Dubus III, moderator Melanie, Kyoko Mori, and Richard Blanco. Melanie’s four speakers were among the 18 authors she interviewed for her acclaimed 2017 book Writing Hard Stories: Celebrated Memoirists Who Shaped Art from Trauma.

And a photo of Susan Lilley, Stonecoast alumna and Orlando’s first poet laureate, in her element, a.k.a. her inspiring creative writing classroom at Trinity Preparatory School in Winter Park, where Suzanne and husband Tommy Shea spoke to students during the day and gave a public reading at night.

 

 

 

 

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AWP 2018

Written by Suzanne Strempek Shea

Stonecoast was a boulder of a presence at the recent annual conference of the Association of Writers and Writing Programs. Held at the Tampa Convention Center March 8 to 11, the event was attended by 12,000, and featured 2,000 presenters, and 550 readings, panels and lecture. The largest literary conference in North America saw Stonecoasters shining at the podiums and on panels, plus in the enthusiastic audiences, and there would have been more from our community there had a blizzard not swept through the North and tangled travel plans. A reception in the lobby of a nearby hotel included administration, faculty, students, alums, and at least one soon-to-be firstie. The photos below show just some of the familiar faces there. Want to be in on the next? Make plans to meet at AWP 2019, in Portland, Oregon, March 27-30!

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ICFA 2018

Written by Peter Adrian Behravesh

Stonecoast had a large presence at this year’s International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts.

Theodora Goss (Popular Fiction faculty) hosted a roundtable about The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter, read from European Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman, and spoke on a panel discussing the Frankenstein meme.

James Patrick Kelly (Popular Fiction faculty) moderated a panel on how adaptation transforms narratives.

Lynette James (Popular Fiction, S’12) spoke on a panel about decolonizing fantastic storytelling.

J.R. Dawson‘s (Popular Fiction, S’16) 10-minute play was performed at the third annual ICFA Flash Play Festival. James Patrick Kelly performed in one of the other plays.

Many students and alumni presented academic papers, including Carina Bissett (Popular Fiction, S’18), Jess Flarity (Popular Fiction, S’18), Kaitlin Branch (Popular Fiction, W’18), Peter Adrian Behravesh (Popular Fiction, W’18), Lew Andrada (Popular Fiction, W’17), Alex Sherman (Popular Fiction, W’17), Kelsey Olesen (Popular Fiction, W’17), Lauren Liebowitz (Popular Fiction, S’16), and Lynette James (Popular Fiction, S’12).

Other Stonecoasters spotted at the conference include Jasmine Skye (Popular Fiction, W’20), Sarah Mack (Popular Fiction, S’19), AJ Bauers (Popular Fiction, W’17), Sean Robinson (Popular Fiction, W’14), Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13), and Will Ludwigsen (Popular Fiction, W’11).

 

 

 

 

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Community News & Updates March 2018

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Stonecoast administrators, alums, faculty, and students will be attending the upcoming Association of Writers & Writing Programs (AWP) Annual Conference & Bookfair in Tampa, FL, which takes place March 7-10, 2018. For more information about the AWP conference, please visit their website, and to view the list of panels, readings, signing, and gatherings that feature a Stonecoast community member, please check out this post.

On Saturday, April 7th, at 7:30 p.m., a Stonecoast alumni reading will be held at the Lilypad in Cambridge, MA. Two of our featured readers will be Richard Cambridge (fiction) and Michelle Soucy (fiction and poetry.) The Lilypad is at 1353 Cambridge Street right in Inman Square (no admission fee and the venue has a café/bar). We’ll have a Q & A after the reading. All are welcome!

ALUMS

Lew Andrada (Popular Fiction. W’17) has started teaching World Literature online for the University of the People. He’s grateful to have such an enthusiastic group of students for his first class. On March 16th, Lew will be presenting his paper “The Lingering Effects of Colonialism on Modern Philippine Speculative Fiction” at the 39th International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts. He’s looking forward to seeing a bunch of fellow Stonecoasters at the conference!

Julie C. Days (Popular Fiction, S’12) short story “Schrödinger’s” can be found in the March/April issue of Interzone. Among other things “Schrödinger’s” involves a quantum strip club, a women’s collective, female friendships, and the possible end of the world. Julie has also been contracted by Evil Hat Productions to write a new role-playing game for their Fate series entitled Divided Lights. She’s excited to see what others will do with her story-world and expecting to learn much about the gaming community. The project itself feels like a huge adventure.

Barbara Greenbaum’s (Fiction, S’05) poetry has recently been published or is forthcoming in American Writers Review, SLAB, and Cape Rock. She has also accepted a position as Adjunct Professor in creative writing at Eastern Connecticut State University.

Lesley Heiser (Fiction, S’11) has a feature story in the January issue of Taproot Magazine. “Farming, a Love Story; Or, The Inestimably High Arc of John Yanga’s Life” explores the life, loves, contributions, and longings of John Yanga, a former refugee from southern Sudan, who is now one of Maine’s most experienced immigrant farmers.

Paul Kirsch (Popular Fiction, W’11) has spent the last couple of years writing for Obsidian Entertainment’s latest game, Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire—an RPG swashbuckling adventure about chasing a massive stone god across a bustling archipelago. The game will be available to PC / Mac / Linux players in the near future and to PS4 / Xbox One / Nintendo Switch players later in the year. Among other characters Paul wrote the gunhawk navy sniper Maia Rua and the watershaping were-shark Tekēhu, companions with story arcs and relationships of their own who can accompany the player on their journey. Coinciding with the release of the game, Paul wrote Volume Two of the Guidebook for the Pillars of Eternity setting, which is available for pre-order from Dark Horse Comics. This book offers readers additional lore about the setting and deeper historical context for many of the in-game conflicts.

Bonnie Naradzay (Poetry, W’08) will have poems in the upcoming issues of The Tampa ReviewNew Letters, and The Anglican Theological Review.

Alexandra Oliver (Poetry, W’12/Past Faculty) is currently in the second year of her Ph.D. in English and Cultural Studies at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. In May, Walrus Magazine will be publishing her poem “The Lipstick Effect.” A limited edition chapbook entitled On the Furnace Sits a Maiden is also forthcoming from Frog Hollow Press.

Suri Parmar‘s (Popular Fiction, W’17) short animated film The Bakebook has been selected by the National Screen Institute of Canada’s online film showcase for Canadian talent, after a yearlong tour on the festival circuit.

Lisa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) will be signing and giving away ARC’s of her forthcoming book, Starting with Goodbye: A Daughter’s Memoir of Love after Loss, during the AWP Conference bookfair at Sweet (table 1408, Thursday, March 8th, 3:00-4:00 p.m.), Under the Gum Tree (table T1732, Friday, March 9th, 3:30-5:00 p.m.), and Tiferet Journal (table T1939, Saturday, March 10th, 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.). She’d love it if some Stonecoast folks stopped by!  Later in March, Lisa is teaching a master class, “Writing from Memory,” as part of the Montcliar (NJ) Literary Festival, March 18th.

Patricia Smith (Poetry, S’08/Past Faculty) won the $100,000 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award from Claremont Graduate University for her book Incendiary Arts: Poems (Northwestern University Press). The prize is the largest in the world for a single book of poetry. The book has also been named a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.

Tamie (Harkins) Parker Song (Creative Nonfiction, S’12) has had a couple essays and poems published in recent issues of The Selkie Zine, and will have another published this month!

FACULTY

David Anthony Durham (Fiction, Popular Fiction) will be attending Norwescon (March 29 to April 1st) in Seattle. He’s got a nice slate of panels, including moderating What is Epic About Epic Fantasy? with Fonda Lee and Ken Liu. He’s pleased about that. Should be a good time. West-Coasters come on out!

Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) was happy to see fellow Stonecoasters Tom Coash and alums Dan Ball and Richard Squires at her Tonya & Nancy concert event, which was performed to a packed house on February 13th at 54Below in New York City, produced by Paul Boghosian/HarborsideFilms. A live-concert CD of the event—Broadway Stars Sing Songs from Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera— is being produced by Broadway Records and will be released later in 2018. The national site Broadway.com wrote in its coverage: “Before there was the new Tonya Harding biopic I, Tonya, there was Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera, an uproarious musical.” Meanwhile, Elizabeth’s chamber opera—Tonya & Nancy: The Opera; music by Abigail Al-Doory Cross—was performed by the opera group Mixed Precipitation in Minneapolis on February 21st with an additional show added on February 24th; the show was named a “Best of Classical” pick by the Minneapolis Star Tribune. The February 21st performance of the opera benefited the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women. For photos, clips, and more, see the MultiMedia page at www.tonyaandnancytherockopera.com.

Dan Ball, Richard Squires, Elizabeth Searle, and Tom Coash at 54Below

Ashley Spencer as “Tonya”

Composer Michael Teoli, Elizabeth Searle, stars Ashley Spencer and Lauren Worsham, and producer Paul Boghosian

Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) is looking forward to encountering many from the Stonecoast community next week at AWP in Tampa, where she’ll be part of a reading and a panel. On Friday, March 9th, 10:30 a.m.-11:45 a.m., “A Reading from Flash Nonfiction Funny” will focus on the new collection Flash Funny (non) Fiction, edited by Tom Hazuka and Dinty W. Moore, and will include an essay from Suzanne’s epic experience working at the Tampax factory down the street from her childhood home. Tom, plus Wendy Brenner, Michael Martone, Sandra Gail Lambert, and Suzanne will read their pieces—and others—from the collection celebrating the short form and humor. And on Saturday, March 10th, from 1:30-2:45 p.m., Suzanne will join alum Melanie Brooks, Richard Blanco, Andre Dubus III, and Kyoko Mori on the panel “Writing the Pain: Memoirists on Tackling Stories of Trauma.” Richard, Andre, Kyoko and Suzanne are among the 18 authors Melanie interviewed for her essential Writing Hard Stories: Celebrated Memoirists Who Shaped Art from Trauma, which got its formal start as Melanie’s third-semester project.

Orlando’s first-ever poet laureate, Stonecoast alum Susan Lilley (Poetry, ’08), will be at AWP daily, and Suzanne looks forward to also seeing her the following week, when Suzanne and husband Tommy Shea make their third return to Trinity Preparatory School in Winter Park, where Susan is a beloved and impactful advanced placement literature and composition teacher. Suzanne and Tommy (co-author of Dingers: The 101 Most Memorable Home Runs in Baseball History) will speak to Trinity classes and will give a reading open to the public March 13th at 7:00 p.m. at Freitag & Falk Theater on campus. The reading is open to the public, and any Stonecoasters in the area of course will be most welcome.

 

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AWP 2018

If anyone has corrections or amendments, please contact Meredith MacEachern.

 

Panels & Readings

Thursday, March 8th, 9:00 AM – 10:15 AM
Room 5 & 6, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
The Body’s Story: On Writing Narratives of Illness—Porochista Khakpour

Thursday, March 8th, 1:30 PM – 2:45 PM
Florida Salon 4, Marriott Waterside, Second Floor
Second Blooming: Resources for Older Women Writers—Breena Clarke, Ellen Meeropol, and Robin Talbot

Thursday, March 8th, 4:30 PM – 5:45 PM
Florida Salon 1, 2, & 3, Marriott Waterside, Second Floor
Early Formations: Guiding Authentic Young Voices in a Digital Age—Cate Marvin

Thursday, March 8th, 6:30 PM – 7:45 PM
Meeting Room 13, Marriott Waterside
A Reading from Flash Nonfiction Funny—Lisa Romeo 

Friday, March 9th, 10:30 – 11:45
Room 12, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
A Reading from Flash Nonfiction Funny—Suzanne Strempek Shea

Friday, March 9th, 12:00 PM – 1:15 PM
Room 18 & 19, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
Political Pivoting: Literary Publishing at the Pace of Politics—Amanda Johnston

Friday, March 9th, 12:00 PM – 1:15 PM
Room 14, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
New England Review 40th Anniversary Reading—Cate Marvin

Saturday, March 10th, 9:00 AM – 10:15 AM
Florida Salon 6, Marriott Waterside, Second Floor
Tearing Down Walls: The International Experience in Low-Residency MFA Programs—Robin Talbot

Saturday, March 10th, 9:00 AM – 10:15 AM
Grand Salon B, Marriott Waterside, Second Floor
The Thing Builders: Building Literary Communities That Matter—Amanda Johnston

Saturday, March 10th, 12:00 PM – 1:15 PM
Room 5 & 6, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
This Is Scary and Here We Go: Fear in the Driver’s Seat—Porochista Khakpour

Saturday, March 10th, 1:30 – 2:45 PM
Ballroom A, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
Writing the Pain: Memoirists on Tackling Stories of Trauma—Melanie Brooks and Suzanne Strempek Shea

Saturday, March 10th, 1:30 – 2:45
Ballroom D, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
Monster Cultures—Theodora Goss

Book Signings

 Lisa Romeo will be signing and giving away ARC’s of her forthcoming book, Starting with Goodbye: A Daughter’s Memoir of Love after Loss, during the AWP bookfair at: Sweet (table 1109, Thurs 3/8, 3:00-4:00); Under the Gum Tree (table T1732,Fri 3/9, 3:30 – 5); Tiferet Journal (table T1939, Sat 3/10, 11:00 – noon).

Community Events

 There will be an informal gathering of all interested Stonecoast students, faculty, admins, and alumni in the lobby of the hotel. (Time TBA).

 

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Community News & Updates February 2018

ANNOUNCEMENT

This year, a number of Stonecoast’s Popular Fiction students, alumni, and faculty are program participants at Boskone, New England’s longest running science fiction convention, which takes place February 16-18, 2018, at the Westin Waterfront Hotel in Boston, MA. For more information about Boskone, please visit www.boskone.org, and to view the list of program items that feature a Stonecoast community member, please check out this post. We will also have a large contingent of people attending who aren’t on the program this year. Closing the convention, we have a Stonecoast Reading to highlight our community members who are attending Boskone. If you are available to join the fun, we’d love to see you there!

ALUMS

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) is happy her new anime-inspired nightmare microfiction, “The Things Between Us,” is now available in the beautifully illustrated Quick Shivers from the Midwest anthology.

Katie Bryski (Popular Fiction, W’16) announces that her audio drama “Six Stories, Told at Night” has won a Parsec Award for Excellence in Speculative Fiction Podcasting (Best Story – Novella). A stage adaptation of “Six Stories” will premiere at the Toronto Fringe Festival in July 2018.

Linda Buckmaster (Creative Nonfiction, S’11) has been broadcasting a series of five-minute audio essays on the Maine community radio station WERU. You can access these flash pieces from her blog. Her longer essay “Security Clearance,” which first appeared in Burrow Press’ “Fantastic Floridas,” is included in the upcoming anthology from University of Florida Press, In Season: Stories of Discovery, Loss, Home and Places In Between. The essay is also in her hybrid memoir Space Heart: A Memoir in Stages, coming out in Fall 2018 from Burrow Press.

Julie C. Days (Popular Fiction, S’12) short story “Re-stitched”, which ran in the January issue of Split Lip Magazine, was Longform Fiction‘s pick of the week. Stealing Longform‘s story description, you can expect two sisters and a grotesque religious ritual. Umm yes, it is creepy. Julie’s Fightin’ Words interview can be found on the Split Lip blog. In other news, you can listen to a reprint of Julie’s story “The Rocket Farmer” at Podcastle 507. It was originally printed in 2017 issue of Interzone. If you’ve any interest in angry teenage girls, the history of rockets, and secret Florida farms, this story is for you.

Paula Treick DeBoard’s (Fiction, S’10) fourth novel, Here We Lie, was published on January 30th by Park Row Books, a division of Harlequin/Harper Collins. Publisher’s Weekly says Here We Lie “portrays the lies that people tell to find acceptance and the terrible acts that powerful people casually commit.” Booklist says the story “particularly resonates now, in the throes of the #metoo movement.” Paula is a lecturer of writing at the University of California, Merced. More information can be found on her website.

John Florio (Fiction/Popular Fiction, S’07) is a frequent contributor to The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The New York Times, and VICE Sports, and just delivered a crime feature to Vanity Fair. You can read his latest piece (for VICE Sportshere. His most recent book, One Nation Under Baseball: How the 1960s Collided with the National Pastime, was published by University of Nebraska Press in April. His next release, a nonfiction YA book about the historic Joe Louis-Max Schmeling fight of 1938, will be released by Macmillan Children’s Group later this year.

Becky Kightlinger’s (Fiction, W’14) debut novel, Megge of Bury Down: Book One of the Bury Down Chronicles, will be released by Zumaya Publications on February 1, 2018. Here’s a short summary:

In thirteenth-century Cornwall, on a sheep farm in the shadow of Bury Down, known for a thousand years as the land of the second sight, a healer has vowed to face flames rather than fail in her one task in this life: to bring her young daughter to vow to protect The Book of Seasons, an ancient grimoire whose power sustains the spirits of all their ancestors.

On the night of her vow-taking, wanting only to become a woman of Bury Down, and drawn by an inexplicable yearning to possess the book, Megge reaches for it. But when she touches its cover, it burns her fingers and she hears it whisper, “Murderer.” Fearing that the book will make her hurt those she loves, she rejects it and renounces her birthright.

To what lengths will her mother and the other women of Bury Down go to help Megge find the courage to take that vow? And how far will Megge go to elude a terrifying destiny?

Susan Lilley (Poetry, S’08) has been appointed the inaugural Poet Laureate of Orlando, Florida.

Anne Britting Oleson‘s (Poetry, W’05) second novel, Dovecote (B Ink, 2017), was reviewed in the Maine Sunday Telegram, January 21, 2018.  Anne’s third poetry chapbook, Alley of Dreams, will be published by Clare Songbirds Publishing House in March 2018.

Erin Roberts‘ (Popular Fiction, W ’18) short story “Sour Milk Girls” has gone from her thesis to the big time—it was published in the January issue of Clarkesworld and is available in print and in audio. Bonus story notes can be found on her website (as can her panel schedule for Boskone, which she’s hoping turns into a mini-Stonecoast reunion!).

Sean Robinson (Popular Fiction, W’14) has probably gone a little overboard, but is very excited for how 2018 is shaping up. In March, he will be presenting his essay “Out and Super” at ICFA. In April, he will be participating in a writing retreat at the Whiteley Center on San Juan Island, Washington. In May, he will be presenting an essay, “She Has Always Been Here,” at Dartmouth College, and in July will be participating in NUI-Galway’s Summer School for Teaching in Ireland. On the writing side, his story, “The Snow Queen’s Daughter” was selected as one of Metaphorosis Magazine‘s Best Stories of 2017.

Lisa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction ’08) published a nonfiction work with Longreads, “What to Do With a Man Who Has a Story, and a Gun.”

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam (Popular Fiction, S’13) will be teaching a class in worldbuilding for the Dallas organization the Writer’s Garret on April 14. She will also take part in the University of North Texas’ Honors College benefit, Great Conversations on March 1st, where she will lead a table in a discussion of using one’s fears as inspiration.

Lisa C. Taylor’s (Poetry, S’04) short story “Even a Monkey” will appear in the March issue of Crannog. Her new collection of short fiction, Impossibly Small Spaces, will be released by Alren House in July in Ireland and in the U.S. in September.

 

FACULTY

Aaron Hamburger (Fiction, Creative Nonfiction) will be teaching How to Be Your Own Best Line-Editor at Politics & Prose Bookstore in Washington, DC, beginning February 6th. The goal of this four-session class is to turn you into a master of word-smithing!

Elizabeth Hand (Popular Fiction, Fiction) has sold two novels to Mulholland Books, Little Brown’s literary crime imprint: Curious Toys, set in 1915 Chicago and inspired by both a true crime and the life of outsider artist Henry Darger; and The Book of Lamps and Banners, the fourth Cass Neary novel. In early February, she will be guest of honor at Vinter, a literary convention in Uppsala, Sweden.

A round-up of news from Debra Marquart (Creative Nonfiction, Poetry):

  • Debra’s essay “Things Not Seen in the Rear View Mirror” was selected for inclusion in Camas: Nature of the West.  25 Years 1992 – 2017, published in the Winter of  2017.
  • Her poem “Kablooey is the Sound You’ll Hear” was anthologized in Bullets into Bells: Poets & Citizens Respond to Gun Violence, edited by Brian Clements, Alexandra Teague, and Dean Rader and published by Beacon Press in the fall of 2017.
  • Another poem, “Getting Ready,” was selected for inclusion in Who Am I?, a grade-school textbook designed to introduce children to poetry. Published by Perfection Learning in the Fall of 2017.
  • In the summer of 2017, Debra delivered keynote addresses and taught workshops at the following three festivals and conferences: (1) Luminous Moment, Luminous Word: A Creative Writing and Mindfulness Retreat in the Sheyenne National Grasslands (August 4-6, 2017); (2) the ASLE Conference, Association of the Study of Literature and Environment at Wayne State University (June 22-24); and (3) Iota: Short Forms Conference, Campobello Island, Maine.  8 – 11 July 2017.

Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) is preparing for performances of both her opera and rock opera in February. In January, ABC primetime showed a clip from the Chicago production of Elizabeth’s Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera on January 11th, 2018, as part of the ABC two-hour special on Tonya Harding. Also, On Superbowl Sunday afternoon (February 4th) at the Duxbury Free Public Library, Elizabeth is reading with superstar author and actress Marianne Leone (The Sopranos) from the anthology Elizabeth co-edited with Suzanne Strempek Shea featuring Leone and others: Soap Opera Confidential: Writers and Soap Insiders on Why We’ll Tune in Tomorrow As the World Turns Restlessly by the Guiding Light of Our Lives. On February 13th: Broadway Stars Sing Songs from Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera in New York City at 54Below. Since the last news post, the team announces that the concert and concert CD will be directed by Grammy- and Emmy-award winner Michael J. Moritz; the concert songs (Book and Lyrics by Elizabeth; music by Michael Teoli) will be recorded and released as a CD from Broadway Records. Watch for upcoming livestream coverage on Broadway.com. And then on February 23rd, a full production of Elizabeth’s one-act chamber opera Tonya & Nancy: The Opera (music by Abigail Al-Doory Cross) is being performed by Mixed Precipitation, an operetta group in Minneapolis/St. Paul, the night of the Women’s Figure Skating finals at the Olympics.

Stonecoast Alumnus Tigh Rickman (Fiction, S’10) watching the “ABC moment” at his home in California

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