Community News & Updates May 2022

ANNOUNCEMENTS

From Rick Bass (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction Faculty)

Dear Stonecoast-community-working-for-Yaak,

(Pardon the inelegance of that phrasing. Any ideas? Poets?)

So much for your continued and spirited defense of the Yaak Valley and our proposal for the country’s first Climate Refuge to be located there, dedicated to the storage of carbon in old Forest, ancient forest, and focus scientific inquiry into these ancient forests’ mysteries. Your work and engagement has helped empower Representative Chellie Pingree to lead a congressional push for protection of old and mature forest on our public lands. On your public lands. You and she are to be commended and thanked.

 President Biden signed an executive order on Earth Day last week, directing the mapping of all old and mature forest on public land. It’s a great start–an opportunity now for us to reach out to the rest of Maine’s delegation, in addition to thanking Representative Pingree for this leadership on climate justice, and let her know we want to designate a Climate Refuge–the country’s first–dedicated to the maximum storage of carbon in the ancient forest at Black Ram, in the Yaak, on the Kootenai National Forest. 

Ultimately, our success in the Yaak will lead to the creation of a “Curtain of Green” all along the northern tier of the United States, including Maine’s North Woods. Indeed, the Curtain of Green, initiated by your advocacy, can become circumpolar: a new way of looking at recovering our natural world. 

Please thank Representative Pingree again for her leadership in protecting your national forest at Black Ram, and elsewhere, and reach out to the rest of Maine’s delegation. (A great resource in Maine is www.protectancientforests.org, as well as www.yaakvalley.org)

 I’m so grateful for your help. I hope each of you can see this forest someday that you have helped save. For now. The deal is not closed but it is on the table. You’ve saved the ancient forest, for now. Thank you. It’s time to close.

Send your letter to:

https://pingree.house.gov/contact/contactform.htm

info@yaakvalley.org

Randy.Moore@usda.gov

and anyone else you care to! Thank you!

For a wild Yaak–

ALUMS 

Darcie Abbene (Fiction, S’21) will be teaching a four-week workshop on revision at Hugo House starting in June, and she recently had an essay, “The B+ Student: On Balance, Brevity and Powder Days,” published in Teachers and Writers Magazine.  

Peter Adrian Behravesh (Popular Fiction, W’18) is once again a finalist for both the Hugo Award for Best Semiprozine and the Ignyte Award for Best Fiction Podcast for his work as the audio producer of the fantasy fiction podcast PodCastle, alongside former co-editors C.L. Clark and Jen R. Albert, current co-editors Shingai Njeri Kagunda and Eleanor R. Wood, former assistant editor/host Summer Fletcher, and all of PodCastle‘s fabulous associate editors.

Ryan Brod‘s (Creative Nonfiction/Fiction, S’17) first book, an essay collection called Tributaries, comes out next year from Islandport Press.

KT Bryski (Popular Fiction, W’16) appears this month in The Deadlands Issue 12 with her Pre-Raphaelite/Lady of Shalott story, “This is I.” Her story “In the Stillness of Bone and Sea” will appear in the final issue of Lackington’s Magazine later this spring. Finally, her co-chaired event, the ephemera reading series, has been nominated for an Aurora Award in the Best Fan Organizational category. Check out the April 2022 event to see Stonecoast alum Marisca Pichette (Popular Fiction, S’21) reading flash fiction and poetry! 

Aimee Degroat (Fiction, S’21), writing as A.J. Newsom, had her flash-fiction piece “Tastes Killer” published at Hearth & Coffin

Jennifer Dupree‘s (Fiction, W’15) debut novel, The Miraculous Flight of Owen Leach, was published by Apprentice House Press on April 19, 2022. 

teri elam (Poetry S’19) is a 2022 Stowe Story Labs semi-finalist for her comedy feature #Wifelessons: A Coming (Out) of Age Story.

In a new direction after the publication of her memoir She Said God Blessed Us, Gail Hovey (Creative Nonfiction, S’11) is writing poetry and essays. She and her partner, Pat Hickman, exhibited work together at the Mark A. Chapman Gallery, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS, earlier this year. The work was the result of a joint residency in September, 2021 at Mother’s Milk Residency in Newton, KS. The tab “Our Residents” includes images of writer and artist at work. The exhibition included ekphrastic poems that Gail wrote in response to Pat’s work. These can be seen as the first eight images on Pat Hickman’s website gallery

Remembrance, installation, Mark A. Chapman Gallery, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS, © 2021 Photo by Rebecca Hackemann-Bahlmann

Nina B. Lichtenstein (Creative Nonfiction, S’20) had fun writing another article for Tablet Magazine about an 87-year old Holocaust survivor, Gidon Lev, who has become a major TikTok influencer. Check it out here, and be inspired! It’s never too late to take on social media in order to build community AND boost your book sales.

Alexandra Oliver (Poetry, W’12) will be defending her PhD dissertation on May 10th. Her third collection, Hail, the Invisible Watchman (Biblioasis), was released on April 5th; you can read more about it here

The poem “Something Like This” about waldeinsamkeit, by J. Stephen (Steve) Rhodes (Poetry, W’11), will appear in the July issue of Plainsongs. He also has a new website beautifully designed by Stonecoast alum Lissa Kiernan:  jstephenrhodes.com

Patricia Smith (Poetry, S’08) has been elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.

“After the Uprising” by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam (Popular Fiction, S’13) was published on April 1st by Daily Science Fiction

Lisa C. Taylor‘s (Poetry, S’04) fifth collection of poetry, Interrogation of Morning, will be released by Arlen House in Ireland in early June and distributed by Syracuse University Press. She will be traveling to Ireland for the book launch and is happy to travel to offer readings with other Stonecoasters in 2022 and beyond. 

Adrienne S. Wallner (Poetry, W’09) is ecstatic and stunned to announce that she has been chosen as an opening act poet for Rupi Kaur’s World Tour stop at the Pabst Theater in Milwaukee, WI, on May 14, 2022.  Tickets are on sale now here.  https://www.pabsttheatergroup.com  According to Rupi Kaur’s tour team, there were over 4,000 submission to her Opening Act Audition Call. Also, on May 1st a Meet the Artist and Poetry Art Project event will occur in the Social STUDIO at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center in Sheboygan, WI, in conjunction with Adrienne’s interactive poetry installation, “Seeds of Inspiration.”  “Seeds of Inspiration” will remain on display in the same location through May 21, 2022.  Free and open to all!

“Both prayer and creativity are expressions of a primal feeling that there is something more,” says Sr. Teresa of St. Gertrude’s Benedictine Monastery in northern Idaho, describing the impetus behind their Artist in Residence program which has offered pagan Fiction alum sidney woods (W’19, writing as sid sibo) a November retreat.

FACULTY  

Tom Coash (Scriptwriting) will be teaching a scriptwriting workshop at the beautiful Pyramid Lake Fall WriterFest in September. Stonecoast alums Ellie O’Leary (Poetry, W’17) and Clif Travers (Popular Fiction, S’17) will also be teaching workshops. Great price, no scriptwriting experience required, fabulous location. Registration now open!

David Anthony Durham‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) middle-grade fantasy, The Shadow Prince, has been selected for the 2022-2023 Reading List by the Maine Student Book Award Committee.

Aaron Hamburger (Fiction, Creative Nonfiction) was interviewed by the Massachusetts Review in conjunction with his new story published there. Check out “10 Questions for Aaron Hamburger” to find out how he first became inspired to become a writer, how he wanted to be a prophet when he was a young boy, as well as latest reading recs! Aaron will also be teaching two classes, both online this May. One, via the Writer’s Center, examines the work habits of successful writers and how you can adapt them for your own practice. The other, <a rel="noreferrer noopener" href="http://&lt;!– wp:paragraph –> <p>https://www.politics-prose.com/class/philip-roth-american-elegies-1804</p&gt; <!– /wp:paragraph –> <!– wp:paragraph –> <p></p> for Politics and Prose, is a class on three underrated masterpieces by Philip Roth with plenty of stylistic strategies to inspire your own writing!

I’ll Show You Mine—the Duplass Brothers Productions feature film that Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) co-wrote—premiered April 16, 2022, at Seattle International Film Festival. It won Third Runner-Up for Best Film (from over 100 films screened). The film stars Poorna Jagannathan (Never Have I Ever) and Casey Thomas Brown (The Kominsky Method) and was named a “Pick of the Fest” in The Sunbreak and in The Stranger. It drew national coverage in Women and Hollywood and more. Review Quotes:

  • The Sunbreak calls it a “terrific new movie” and a “fascinating character study”
  • High On Films headline: “A Clear-Eyed, Radically Frank Look into Sexual Exploration and Trauma” that is “unmistakably refreshing and reverberatingly contemporary, tapping the global moment of deep anxieties around and reckonings with plural sexualities” 
  • A Moveable Fest praises: “the provocative drama in which sex and all it entails emotionally, psychologically and physically is explored in revealing candor and with impressive consideration” that “proves most stimulating.” 

Stay tuned for news on I’ll Show You Mine making its way to a screen near you! See updates at www.elizabethsearle.net.

I’ll Show You Mine stars Poorna Jagannathan and Casey Thomas Brown (pictured in a scene from the film; reviewed in A Moveable Fest)

Kirkus gave a starred review to Morgan Talty’s (Fiction Faculty | Fiction, W’19) short-story collection Night of the Living Rez, published by Tin House (to be released July 5th).

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