Category Archives: News & Updates

Community News & Updates June 2018

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Poetic Voices of Social Justice: A Reading with Martín Espada and Lauren Schmidt
Thursday July 12th, 7:00 pm
SPACE Gallery, Portland Maine

Please join Stonecoast MFA for a reading and discussion with poetry faculty Martín Espada, recent winner of the prestigious Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, and award-winning poet Lauren Schmidt. There will be live music, and a chance to share thoughts and inspiration as a community. The $10-20 suggested donation will directly benefit the Stonecoast MFA Writing for Social Justice Scholarship Fund.

 

Pitch 2018

Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance (MWPA) Pitch 2018 offers writers the chance to pitch their manuscripts or book proposals to agents from leading NYC-based literary agencies and editors from some of Maine’s largest publishers. Pitch 2018 provides the rare opportunity to make a literary pitch face-to-face in Maine, to make connections with agents, editors, and other writers, and to gain insider knowledge on the publishing industry. MWPA is proud to offer a three-pitch scholarship to a writer who is from an underrepresented community currently living in Maine and who can demonstrate financial need, sponsored by participating agent Saba Sulaiman. Applications are due in the MWPA office on July 2nd at 9:00 a.m. MORE INFORMATION → Pitch will be held Saturday, September 29th from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Glickman Library on the University of Southern Maine campus in Portland. Registration opens on June 12th. More information is here.

ALUMS

Patricia Barletta (Popular Fiction, W’12) is excited to announce that her paranormal historical romance Moon Shadow, Book #2 (The Auriano Curse Series) won the Readers’ Choice Award. Part of the manuscript was workshopped at Stonecoast and mentored by the fabulous and inimitable Mike Kimball. Thank you to everyone who had a hand in making this book a winner.

Peter Adrian Behravesh (Popular Fiction, W’18) narrated the May 3rd episode of Escape Pod, featuring the story “Fire Rode The Cold Wind” by Aimee Ogden. You can listen to it here.

Carina Bissett (Popular Fiction, S’18) published her mermaid-inspired story “The Landscape of Lacrimation” in the second issue of the online literary magazine The Hunger. She also has recently placed her poem “C8: A Tessellation of Faces, Wings, and other Obscure Things,” which will be featured in forthcoming issue of the NonBinary Review Issue 17: A Wrinkle in Time.

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) was happy to learn her LGBTQ+ historical romance novel Swift for the Sun was selected as a finalist for the Eric Hoffer award.

After ten years of work, Elizabeth Garber‘s (Creative Nonfiction, ‘10) book, Implosion: A Memoir of an Architect’s Daughter, will be released June 12th from She Writes Press. Her memoir focuses on how her family was caught in a collision between modern architecture, radical social change, and madness in the turbulent 1960s and 1970s in Cincinnati. Her book tour takes her from New York City, Boston, Maine, Cincinnati, and Vermont. The book has received a starred Kirkus review (“poetic and incisive”) and Library Journal calls it “an extraordinary debut memoir.” Implosion has a contract to be released by a large-print press as well. For more details and dates to join her for a reading/presentation, go to www.elizabethgarber.com

Terri Glass’s (Poetry/Creative Nonfiction, S’13)  poem “Wind Turbines of Altamont Pass” will be published in the anthology Fire and Rain: Ecopoetry of California. Her poem “Puma” was accepted for publication in The Marin Poetry Center Anthology 2018. Her poem, “Where Did it Go?” and four animal haiku were printed in Poem in Your Pocket Day by Berkeley Public Library.

Penny Guisinger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’13) essay “Looking for Luke Skywalker,” first published in Hippocampus, is a finalist for a Maine Literary Award in the short works category. This would be her second MLA. Winners will be announced at an event on June 14th, so cross some fingers for her!

Michael L. Joy (Popular Fiction, S’13) was offered a full-time Professorship in the English Department at Florida SouthWestern State College starting this Fall.

Lissa Kiernan (Poetry, S’11), is happy to announce Poetry Barn’s Peak Color Retreat, October 6-9​, an inspiring weekend of poetry steeped in the vibrance of fall in the Catskills. Judith Vollmer (MFA faculty, Drew University) will offer a master workshop titled: The Living Object: Image & Movement. Visit the website for full details.

Alan King (Poetry, W’13) posted a new blog post, “No Country for Old Books…Or So It Seems,” which explores the challenges of marketing a book over a year old. The post highlights advantages that “older” books have over “newly-released” ones. Read it here.

Sean Robinson (Popular Fiction, W’14) recently completed a writing retreat at the University of Washington’s Whiteley Center on San Juan Island, Washington. He has had two recent non-fiction publications: his essay “Parable of the Cascade” was published by About Place Journal (as Ryan Patrick Gannon) as well as an article called “Open and Closed: The Class That Sank” in the Open Pedagogy Notebook. He presented an essay “She Has Always Been Here: Mystique, Destiny, and Female LGBT Representation in Marvel Comics” at the Dartmouth College conference on Illustration, Comics, and Animation. Later this month, he will be heading back to Ireland to participate in NUI-Galway’s Summer School program on Teaching in Ireland, where he will also hopefully complete that book of poems he started during the SCI 2017 residency in Howth.

Ruthie Rohde’s (Creative Nonfiction, W’12) essay “Wild Abandon” was recently published in The Palgrave International Handbook of Women and Outdoor Learning, edited by Tonia Gray and Denise Mitten (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018). Ruthie and Stonecoast alumnus Anthony D’Aries (Creative Nonfiction, W’09) presented together with Dr. Ann Murphy on a panel at the Western Connecticut Trauma Conference at Western Connecticut State University. The panel was titled: “Write Where you Are: Building and Fostering Writing Workshops in Prisons, Homeless Shelters, Hospitals and Other Medical and Community Settings.”

Lisa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) is pleased to note that her new book, Starting with Goodbye: A Daughter’s Memoir of Love after Loss, published May 1st, has been reviewed at Brevity and in Publishers Weekly, where she’s also been featured in a Spotlight interview. Lisa is also interviewed on the Shelf Awareness “Reading with…” series; contributed to the LargeHearted Boy’s “Playlist;” and appears on the Creative Nonfiction podcast . Her craft article and excerpts, on adding humor to a grief memoir, appears on The Memoir Project, and an essay in Books by Women, “If You Give a Writer a Book Contract, She’s Going to Want…Everything,” takes a look at author envy. Lisa appeared with Suzanne Strempek Shea at Amherst Books (MA) recently, and is interested in partnering with other Stonecoast folks who have new(ish) books out, for bookstore appearances, conference panels, reading, and/or other events. Contact her here. In June, she’s making many book tour stops in New Jersey and in July, in Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

Catherine Schmitt (Creative Nonfiction, W’12) has managed to publish creative work while continuing her full-time job as a science writer for the University of Maine: a lyric essay, “The New Diving Duck Blues,” is in the Spring issue of Cold Mountain Review. She also co-authored the cover story about coastal storms in the spring issue of UMaine Today, wrote an article about alewives in lakes in the May issue of Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors Magazine, and published a short reflection on “Communicating about rare and common species” in The Plainspoken Scientist.

Marco Wilkinson (Creative Nonfiction, S’13) has been awarded an Individual Excellence Award and a $5000 grant for his writing by the Ohio Arts Council.

FACULTY

On May 31st, Elizabeth Hand (Popular Fiction, Fiction) spoke at the Lewiston Public Library about her forthcoming novel, Curious Toys, and the work and influences of noted outsider artist Henry Darger, the book’s inspiration.  On June 2nd she will one of the featured writers at the Maine Crime Wave Festival in Portland. On Tuesday, June 5th, she’ll be part of a panel honoring the legacy of writer Thomas M. Disch at Brooklyn Common, in Brooklyn, NY.  On Wednesday, June 6th, she’ll be reading at the Kinokuniya Bookstore in New York City as part of the group faculty reading for the Writer’s Hotel Writers Conference, where she’s an instructor June 6-11. On June 21-22, she’ll be guest instructor at the Odyssey Writers Workshop in Manchester, NH. Forthcoming book reviews include A True History of the Vampire Uprising for The Washington Post.

Jim Kelly’s (Popular Fiction) new existential starship novelette, “Grace’s Family,” was published last month on Tor.com.  Also in May, Jim had the honor of introducing his friend and longtime editor, Sheila Williams, at the Science Fiction Writers of America’s Nebula Awards Ceremony. Sheila won the Solstice Award, which acknowledges “individuals who have had a significant impact on the science fiction landscape.” In reprint news, not only did Jim write the introduction and the afterword to the just published anthology A Fistful of Dinosaurs, but he contributed the oft-reprinted “Think Like A Dinosaur” to the table of contents. His novelette “Men Are Trouble” will appear in the forthcoming aliens-on-Earth anthology Not One Of Us from Prime Books. His Hugo-Award-winning “Ten to the Sixteenth to One” will appear soon in the international digital magazine The Short Story Project based in Israel. His story “The Promise of Space” will be published in China by Guangzhou Blue Ocean Press in an as-yet unnamed anthology aimed at the high school and university market.

Jim Kelly and Sheila Williams at the Nebula Awards ceremony.

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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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