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Community News & Updates January 2014

ALUMNI

The Young Adult novel Being Henry David by Cal Armistead (Fiction, W’07) has been listed among the “Best Young Adult Novels of 2013” by Kirkus Reviews, Mashable, and Buzzfeed.

Michael Beeman (Fiction, S’09) was thrilled to receive the Sewanee Review‘s 2013 Andrew Nelston Lytle Fiction Prize for his story “The Sleeping Santas” (written in his first semester at Stonecoast). He was also excited to see another story, “The Children Without Fathers,” published in Per Contra and to receive an acceptance letter from Volume 1 Brooklyn for “The Burglaries,” which he workshopped with Boman Desai during his master class at Stonecoast just before graduating. It was a great end to 2013!

Jennifer Marie Brissett (Popular Fiction, S’11) will be reading from her upcoming novel Elysium at the New York Review of Science Fiction Reading Series held at the Soho Gallery for Digital Art on January 7th. She will be reading along with Sam J. Miller. If you’re in town, stop by!

Nancy Brown‘s (Fiction, S’08) short story “Old Orchard” won first place in the Green River Tales Short Fiction competition sponsored by Green River Writers.

Mike Langworthy (Creative Nonfiction, W’11) has joined the writing staff of Instant Mom with the title Consulting Producer. Instant Mom is a situation comedy starring Tia Mowry-Hardrict, Michael Boatman, and Sheryl Lee Ralph. It follows the life of Stephanie Phillips, a 25-year-old woman forced to change her single lifestyle radically when she marries an older man and suddenly finds herself the full-time stepmother of three children. The series is produced at Paramount Studios Nightlife Coverin Los Angeles and airs on Nick At Nite. Mike also continues to consult on the web series The Day Crew, which shot its first five episodes on location in Los Angeles during the week of December 8, 2013.

Matthew Quinn Martin‘s (Popular Fiction, S’10) debut novel Nightlife (PocketStar/Simon & Schuster) was selected by Badass Book Reviews as one of the top 5 horror novels of 2013 (for their “best of 2013” roundup). Earlier in the month, Matthew handed in the manuscript for the sequel Nightlife: As the Worm Turns, which is set to be released in 2014.

Maze_cover1J.M. McDermott‘s (Popular Fiction, S’11) novel Maze is coming out in this month from Apex Books. Part of it was workshopped during his first semester at Stonecoast.

From every corner of time and space, sometimes people go missing without a trace. They never come back.

Get lost in the long stone halls of the maze with the ones that find each other, form tribes, scrape out a life from rocks and sand. Their stories interweave. Maia Station is a scientist ripped from stasis, but she has no tools to test the way things are. Instead, she raises her daughter as best she can and survives. Wang Xin once had his head dipped in water, and a djinni in the water entered his eye. He sees the future, exactly as it was supposed to be if he hadn’t seen the light, but it does him no good in the life he has. In a world much like our own, Joseph comes home from a ten-year high school reunion and encounters a light in the darkness. The light speaks.

My name is Jenny. Put me in your lung. Breathe deep.

Autumn Newman

Autumn Newman‘s (Poetry, ’09) poem “Cleave” has been accepted for publication by Cider Press Review. She currently teaches full-time at College of San Mateo in California.

Bruce Pratt‘s (Fiction, S’04) poem “In A Japanese Woman’s Photos of Paris” will appear in the next issue (#75) of Hiram Poetry Review due out in spring 2014.

Stonecoasters Ann Rosenquist Fee (Fiction, S’08) and Jacob Strunk (Fiction, W’07) collaborated with musician Paris Zax on a short film built around Ann’s short story “Eucalyptusexy.” The film goes live January 2, 2014, here. Follow Ann and Jacob on the Twitters at @arosenquistfee and @sevenmileswest, respectively; they promise more spoken words and moving pictures soon.

Strunk Fee 01-2013

STUDENTS

Sandra Dascensao (Popular Fiction) has won an honorable mention in the Thriller category for the 2013 Writer’s Digest Popular Fiction Award for her short story “A-1 Charter.” Her story will be listed in the May/June issue of Writer’s Digest and on writersdigest.com. Sandra is a new student at Stonecoast this semester.

Alexis Paige‘s (Creative Nonfiction) Pithead Chapel essay “A Decent Happiness,” published last March, has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

FACULTY

David Anthony Durham (Fiction, Popular Fiction) will be featured in a lengthy interview in the February volume of The Writer’s Chronicle.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) essay on New Zealand author Frank Sargeson will appear in the summer issue of Tin House.

Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction) sold “In Arkham Town Where I Was Bound” to Out of Tune, an anthology to be published by JournalStone in May. She is teaching The Secrets of a Satisfying Short Story, an online class for Odyssey, from January 20-February 20.

9781250046215_p0_v1_s260x420Jim Kelly‘s (Popular Fiction) story “The Promise of Space” from the September issue of Clarkesworld has been selected for a second Best of the Year collection, this one being The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirty-First Annual Collection edited by Gardner Dozois (St. Martin’s Griffin).

In Portland, ME, on Friday, January 24, at 8:00 p.m., The Portland Stage Company will present Mike Kimball‘s (Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) play Bar Exam as performed by the Improvised Puppet Project. In other words, the first scene will be performed as scripted (a woman runs into her gynecologist at a singles bar), and then the puppets will take off on their own. Live theatre doesn’t get any “liver” than this. Or stranger. For details, click here.

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David Mura (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Poetry, Writing for Social Change) will publish a new book of poetry, The Last Incantations, in March 2014 last-incantations-poems-david-mura-paperback-cover-art(Northwestern University Press). This fall David published two essays: “An Asian American Race Man” in Black Renaissance Noire and “Mixed Voices”/ “Ambiguously Brown” in the Asian American Literary Review. An essay critiquing the musical Miss Saigon and an essay critiquing large mainstream arts institutions recently appeared on the website Opine Season. An essay, “Asian Americans: The Front & Back of the Bus,” will appear next year in an anthology of essays on poetry and race published by University of Georgia Press.

In a recent interview with The Toronto Quarterly, Alexandra Oliver (Poetry, ’12) waxes eloquent on her new collection Meeting the Tormentors in Safeway—and explains why readings in bars and restaurants need their own handbook.

Elizabeth Searle‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera is coming to Los Angeles. The show will be performed in a “rock concert” version on February 4, 2014, at the King King Club in Hollywood. The performance will be produced by Harborside Films and will serve as a benefit concert for the iconic LGBT Celebration Theatre. A full-production run of the rock opera, produced by Harborside, is in the works for later in 2014 in L.A. Check for updates at elizabethsearle.net.

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Community News & Updates December 2013

ALUMNI

Sheila Boneham (Creative Nonfiction/Cross Genre, S’13) answered author Sherman Alexie’s challenge to fellow writers to support local bookstores by playing “bookseller for a day.” She spent Small Business Saturday (the independent business response to Black Friday) by volunteering at Pomegranate Books in Wilmington, NC. Sheila recommends the experience highly—you don’t have to wait until November! Here‘s Sherman’s letter to us book nerds.

Kathy Briccetti (Creative Nonfiction, W’07) has accepted an adjunct instructor position teaching a Transitional English class (e.g. English 95) at The Art Institute of California in San Francisco. Before launching into each day’s discussions, grammar practice, and writing instruction, she reads a poem and offers a five-minute free-writing period. The students now know that poems do not have to rhyme or declare romantic love. Visit her website here.

Jennifer Marie Brissett‘s (Popular Fiction, S’11) story “Secrets of the Sea” is a finalist for the 2013 storySouth Million Writers Award.

397Nancy Brown‘s (Fiction, S’08) short story “Hay Day” appears in Summer Stories, published in November. The book features a series of paintings by Maine artist Leslie Anderson along with a dozen short stories by ten Maine writers. The stories, which were inspired by the paintings, were selected by Maine author Ron Currie, Jr., as part of a contest sponsored by Shanti Arts Publishing and the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance.

Michael L. Joy (Popular Fiction, S’13) will reprise his graduate presentation “Applying a Romantic Subplot for Non-Romance Writers” at the Estero Library as part of the 2014 Southwest Florida Reading Festival on Thursday, March 20th.

Bruce Pratt‘s (Fiction, S’04) villanelle “According to a Spokesman” has been selected for the upcoming anthology Veils, Halos and Shackles: International Poetry on the Abuse and Oppression of Women. His short story “Marble” will appear in the December issue of Solstice.

“Make Me Beautiful,” a short story by Karen Pullen (Popular Fiction, S’08), was published in the December 2013 issue of bosque (the magazine).

Patricia Smith (Poetry, S’08, and former Stonecoast faculty) was awarded the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize ($25,000) from the Academy of American Poets for Shoulda Been Jimi Savannah, chosen as the most outstanding book of poetry published in United States last year.

1167719_650164738326974_193626512_nBonnie Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) poem “Strange Monster” appeared in the most recent issue of Mythic Delirium. Her short story “Mrs. Stiltskin” appeared in the first issue of Lakeside Circus. She is also thrilled to have taken part in the successful Kickstarter campaign for the anthology Kaiju Rising: Age of Monsters, which should be released in the next couple of months.

Tamra Wilson (Fiction, S’11) captured first place in the 10th annual literary competition sponsored by Arts Council of York County, SC. The winning piece, “The Crazy House,” was an excerpt from her Stonecoast creative thesis.

STUDENTS

Alexis Paige‘s (Creative Nonfiction) latest essay, “Arrivals, an Autobiography,” appears in the November issue of Pithead Chapel. She also won the New Millennium Nonfiction prize for her essay “The Geography of Consolation,” which “examines the unique challenges of a writer’s life, the long fallout of an emotional affair, and the inevitable realization that no matter how far or how often we roam, the internal journal still lies before us.” She’ll receive $1,000, and the essay will be published online and in print in the 2104 issue.

FACULTY

Jeanne Marie Beaumont‘s (Poetry) ekphrastic persona poem “In Preparation,” which she read at the summer residency flash reading, is featured on the American Arts Quarterly site along with the Gustav Courbet painting that inspired it.

Aaron Hamburger (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) sold his short story “Honeymoon for One” to Subtropics magazine; it will appear early next year. (Thanks to Suzanne Strempek Shea for editorial guidance and moral support!)

Jim Kelly‘s (Popular Fiction) story “The Promise of Space” from the September issue of Clarkesworld has been selected for The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year: Volume Eight, edited by Jonathan Strahan (Solaris Books). His 2000 Hugo Award-winning novelette “10^16 to 1” will be reprinted in an upcoming issue of Clarkesworld. His novelette “The Chimp of the Popes,” first sold in 2009 (!), is finally scheduled for publication in The Book of Silverberg, edited by Gardner Dozois (Subterranean Press) in the summer of 2014.

safewaycoverAlexandra Oliver‘s (Poetry, ’12) Meeting the Tormentors in Safeway is the first poetry book in Biblioasis’ history to have received a full review from critic Michael Lista in The National Post (one of Canada’s two national papers). You can read the review here.

On December 4th, Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) reads from the new anthology Knitting Yarns (which is out from Norton and which includes Suzanne Strempek Shea) in Pawtucket, RI, at Slater Mill. Knitting Yarns received a four-star review in People and was a recommended book in Vanity Fair. Elizabeth is also reading on December 9th at 4:30 p.m. at the New England Institute of Art bookstore in Brookline, MA, along with fellow Iowa Short Fiction Prize winner Kate Milliken. Elizabeth will read from her own Iowa Prize collection My Body to You, which was re-released in a new paperback version in 2011. On December 20th, at the Armory Center for the Arts in Somerville, MA, a Stonecoast event will be presented by alum Richard Cambridge as part of his series Poet’s Theater. A Night at the Theater will combine theater and performance-style readings. Elizabeth’s short play Stolen Girl Song, which premiered at the Northern Writes New Play Festival in Maine in 2012, will be performed by actress Norah Bird and directed by Bruce Pratt. The event will also feature readings/performances by Bruce, Richard, and Stonecoasters Alexis Paige, Enza Vescera, Barbara Greenbaum, Anthony D’Aries, Amy M. Alvarez, and Mikhu Paul.

Knitting Yarns contributors Marianne Leone, Elizabeth Searle, and Suzanne Strempek Shea at the Knitting Yarns book launch at Newtonville Books on Nov. 9th; photo by Stonecoast alum, Helen Peppe

Knitting Yarns contributors Marianne Leone, Elizabeth Searle, and Suzanne Strempek Shea at the Knitting Yarns book launch at Newtonville Books on Nov. 9th; photo by Stonecoast alum Helen Peppe

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Community News & Updates April 2013

ALUMNI NEWS

Faith and MadnessSarah Slagle Arnold‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’05) memoir, Faith and Madness: A Spiritual and Psychological Journey, was published August 1, 2012, by Wipf & Stock’s Cascade Books imprint. The story of growing up with a manic-depressive father and Sarah’s own major depression at age 19 takes place in the Depression years of the 30s and 40s. The department store where Sarah worked only part-time paid for her three-time-a-week therapy, which she believes saved her life, for a year and a half. Receipt of her first royalty check in March was a thrill, Sarah reports, and should be shared with all her mentors at Stonecoast. Look for Faith and Madness at the summer 2013 residence or on Amazon.

A capella ZooJulie Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) story “Finding Your Way to the Coast” appears in A capella Zoo‘s best-of, fifth-anniversary edition, entitled Bestiary: The Best of the Inaugural Demi-Decade of A capella Zoo.

Christopher Fisher‘s (Fiction, W’08) novel A History of Stone and Steel will be released in print and available via Amazon.com this month. The novel, which he affectionately calls HOSS, began as his creative thesis at Stonecoast.

The Rooster Moans Poetry Cooperative, a provider of online poetry workshops created by Lissa Kiernan (Poetry, S’11), was profiled in the Co-operative News for World Poetry Day.

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The Rooster Moans Poetry Cooperative

Jeanette Lynes‘ (Poetry/Fiction ’05) sixth collection of poetry, Archive of the Undressed (Wolsak & Wynn, 2012) has been shortlisted for two Saskatchewan Book Awards:  the Poetry Award and the Saskatoon Book Award.

Sandra McDonald (Popular Fiction, W’05) recently attended the AWP national conference in Boston and participated in a panel about Low-Res MFA programs as well as the Stonecoast reading at the Boston Public Library. She also attended the International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts in Orlando and read from her story “The Black Feminist’s Guide to Science Fiction Film Editing” (forthcoming, The Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasty 2013).

Janet Passehl (Poetry, S’10) has three poems in Calibanonline #11, forthcoming in mid-April 2013.

Mihku Paul (Fiction, S’10) will be participating in a group ekphrasis exhibit at the Yarmouth Memorial Library (Yarmouth, ME) titled Poets Speaking to Silent Works of Art, April 8-May 25. She will contribute a poem to accompany Evelyn Dunphy’s watercolor painting The Embrace, which can be viewed on the YML site.

Bruce Pratt‘s (Fiction, ’04) short play Memories of Paradise will be performed as part of the Maine Playwright’s Festival and will appear in the March issue of Aethlon: The Journal of Sports Literature. The play festival runs from April 25-May 5 at the St. Lawrence Arts Center in Portland, ME. Information is availabler here (Stonecaost faculty member Mike Kimball has a play in the festival, too). Also, Bruce will join fellow Stonecoast classmate Marcia Brown in Cape Elizabeth for the May Local Buzz reading on Saturday, May 18, 4:00-5:00 p.m.

Steve Rhodes (Poetry, W’11) reports that three of his poems—“Possums,” “Sparrows,” and “Toad”—will be part of an exhibition, “Fables of the Eco-Future,” at the Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts and Sciences in Rabun Gap, GA. The exhibit (March 30-June 8), by both visual artists and writers, will feature works either about environmental degradation or its alternative.

My First BeatriceMoon Pie Press published its 70th poetry book, My First Beatrice by David Stankiewicz (Poetry, S’05), recently. Former Stonecoast faculty member Baron Wormser said of David’s collection: “David Stankiewicz’s poetry has a natural depth and balance to it. Degrees of tenderness, ruefulness and the ever-new standbys that are grief and joy intermingle and influence one another so that the complexity of a moment or feeling or place or life is properly honored. The sensibility at work here is at once American in its feeling for how locales speak and European, specifically Polish, in its feeling for the shades and shadows of history. The poems are, above all, shot through with love. The poet’s hand and heart are—as it should be—intimately connected.”

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Christopher Watkins

Christopher Watkins‘ (Poetry, W’08) poem “The Clock Hands of a Child” has just appeared in the new issue of The Massachusetts Review. His poem “As If She Has Two Marbles In Her Ears” has just appeared in the new issue of Redivider. Additional details available here.

Erin Underwood (Popular Fiction, S’09) invites you to a Reading & Signing for Futuredaze: An Anthology of YA Science Fiction, co-edited by Erin and Hannah Strom-Martin (Popular Fiction, W’09) and published on February 12, 2013.

futuredaze-cover-finalDate: Saturday, April 6
Time: 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
Location: Spirit of ’76 Bookstore, 107 Pleasant Street, Marblehead, MA 01945
Young adults will be reading excerpts from Futuredaze at the Spirit of ’76 Bookstore in Marblehead! A reception and book signing with Marblehead resident Erin Underwood, the anthology’s co-editor and publisher, will follow. Students aged 12 to 18 are encouraged to drop off in advance or write a one-paragraph essay at the event on why they like to read science fiction to be entered in a drawing for two signed copies of Futuredaze. More information here.

Tamra Wilson (Fiction, S’11) has a story, “December Bride,” in Marco Polo Arts Magazine. The piece was first drafted at Stonecoast. Two of Tamra’s “bridesmaids” have won second place in competitions sponsored by Charlotte Writers Club: the 2013 Creative Nonfiction Contest and the 2013 Children’s Story Contest.

STUDENT NEWS

Ed Ferrara (Popular Fiction) has just sold his short story “Gig Marks” to the horror podcast Pseudopod. No firm information yet as to when the story will appear, but it could be within the next few months.

A Decent Happiness,” an essay by Alexis A. Paige (Creative Nonfiction), appears in the March issue of Pithead Chapel. Also, she guest blogged during AWP for Brevity Magazine, which plans to feature two of her posts.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction) short story “The Siren” will appear in Strange Horizons on April 15. You can read it for free here.

FACULTY NEWS

Ted Deppe and Annie Deppe will give a reading at 7:00 p.m. on April 15 at Manchester Community College as part of the Mishi-maya-gat Spoken Word and Music Series. The reading is free and open to the public, and it will be followed by an evening of jazz with Norman Johnson and featured musicians. The address is 903 Main Street, Manchester, CT. More information can be found here.

LiteraryOrange_p090331_02sqNancy Holder (Popular Fiction) has a busy April. On Saturday, April 6, at 10:30-11:30 a.m., she will participate in The Horror Panel: Dead and Loving It, with a signing following, at Literary Orange: A Celebration of Authors, Readers, and Libraries, to be held at the Irvine Marriott. On April 20, she will sign from 12:00-2:00 p.m. in the Horror Writers Association Booth (#859) at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, held on the campus of the University of Southern California; she will also work in the booth on Saturday. On April 23, she will participate in World Book Night; her book is Fahrenheit 451. And on April 24, Nancy will participate in the Chapman University Pub(lishing) Crawl; students will meet and greet authors and discuss publishing; Stonecoast poetry faculty member Tony Barnstone will also participate.

On April 1st, Mike Kimball‘s (Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) short play Janey Succumbs to Polar Madness will have a staged reading at Stonecoast alum Emily Young‘s ongoing author series Portland Writes at LFK burger bar (188A State Street, Portland, ME. 207.899.3277). STONECOAST ALERT: Jim Kelly and Emily Young will also be reading! Drinks at 8:00 p.m.; readings at 9:00.  Also, a full production of Mike’s Janey Succumbs to Polar Madness will be staged as part of the 12th annual Maine Playwrights Festival at the St. Lawrence Center for the Arts in Portland, ME, April 25-May 5. See the schedule here.

On April 6, Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) will read in the Storied Nights reading series, sponsored by the Somerville Arts Council at Bloc 11 Cafe, 11 Bow Street, Somerville, MA, from 7:00-9:00 p.m., along with other authors, storytellers, and host Daniel Gerwetz. On April 22, a New York City showcase of Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera will be performed, featuring Broadway star Melissa Van Der Schyff as the Mother(s) and directed by Kenny Howard of Broadway Consortium. This NYC showcase is produced by Paul Boghosian and Harborside Films. For more information, check Events on Elizabeth’s website.

CONTESTS

Via Christopher Fisher: Attention novelists: If you’ve complete a book (maybe a NaNoWriMo manuscript you’ve been sitting on and wondering what to do with) and you have considered going indie/self-pub with it, then you need to check this out! The Editorial Department’s contest is free to enter, and the winning manuscript receives a grand-prize book design package worth $2500. If a lack of funds is the only thing keeping you from publishing, then this could be your ticket to having a book in print (and Kindle) and available for sale on Amazon as soon as this October!

Via Bruce Pratt: The American Fiction Prize (The Best Unpublished Short Stories by American Writers). This series, whose first six issues were published by Birch Lane Press/Carol Publishing Group, was called “a must-read collection for all short-fiction enthusiasts” by Booklist. The series moved to New Rivers Press in 1997; editors Alan Davis and Michael White chose previously unpublished stories for inclusion in the first ten volumes. Volumes 11 (2010) and 12 (2012) were edited by Kristen Tsetsi, Bayard Godsave, and Bruce Pratt. Volume 13–set for publication in 2014–is being edited by Bruce Pratt. A well-known writer serves as guest judge, chooses three prizewinners who receive a cash award, and writes the introduction. This year’s judge is Michael White. In 1998, Writer’s Digest chose the series as one of the top fifteen fiction magazines in the United States.

First Prize: $1,000
Second Prize: $500
Third Prize: $250
Entry Fee: $16/story

Previous finalist  judges include Charles Baxter, Ann Beattie, Robert Boswell, Ray Carver, Louise Erdrich, Clint McCown, Antonya Nelson, Josip Novakovich, Joyce Carol Oates, Tim O’Brien, Wallace Stegner, Anne Tyler, and Tobias Wolff.

Contest Guidelines: New Rivers Press will publish approximately twenty short stories in each American Fiction volume, subtitled The Best Unpublished Stories by Emerging Writers. We seek well crafted, character driven literary fiction in any genre with a maximum of 10,000 words per story. Each of the selected story authors will receive national publication and distribution, author discount, and two complimentary copies. $1,750 in prizes will be awarded. ($1,000 for 1st place, $500 for 2nd place, and $250 for 3rd place). The finalist judge for Volume 13 is Michael White. There is a reading fee of $16 for each online submission from Feb. 1 through June 15 at the Submittable website.

Submit electronically or mail entries to

American Fiction Prize
New Rivers Press
1104 7th Ave. S.
Moorhead, MN 56563

Mailed entries must include a cover page with your name, story title, mailing address, and email address. Do not include your name on the pages of the story. Please ensure all stories are typed, double-spaced, and that the title and page number appear on each page. Please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope and an e-mail address.

We welcome multiple entries ($16/story). For entries outside the U.S., please send entry fee in U.S. currency or money order. While we cannot return manuscripts, we will forward a list of the winning stories to any entrant who includes an SASE and we will e-mail contest updates to anyone who provides an active e-mail address. Entrants retain all rights to their stories.

Please e-mail any questions to obdriveway@aol.com

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS

Via Christopher Fisher: Call for applications: The Editorial Department is looking for an experienced book designer for independent contractor work. See the ad here for details and to apply.

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