Tag Archives: Erin Roberts

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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Boskone 2018

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. Boskone’s full schedule of events is available at www.boskone.org, and the convention takes place February 16-18, 2018 at the Westin Waterfront Hotel in Boston, MA. 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!

FRIDAY

2:00 p.m. (free to public)
Star Wars Mad Libs
Mihku Paul (M), Frank Wu, Laurie Mann, Kaitlin R. Branch, Inanna Arthen
Griffin · 60 min · Game Show
Who doesn’t love a good session of Mad Libs, Boskone style? Join us for a special edition of Star Wars Mad Libs—in which the audience provides the nouns, adverbs, and adjectives for a raucous reading performed by our panel of program participants.

2:00 p.m. (free to public)
Stories Before the Apocalypse
Juliana Spink Mills, James Patrick Kelly (M), Julie C. Day, Alan Gordon, John Chu
Marina 4 · 60 min · Panel
We’re familiar with post-apocalyptic futures, from Max’s desert hellscape to Katniss’s dystopic districts. But what about right before the cataclysm—as doom and destruction loom large? How do people live? How do relationships change as we shift into survival mode? Let’s share our few existing “must-read” favorites, and discuss stories we’d like to see.

4:00 p.m. (free to public)
Japanese Light Novels
Kaitlin R. Branch

Lewis · 60 min · Solo Talk
Some of the most popular Japanese anime has come out of light novels. We’ll discuss what differentiates these novels from SF/fantasy literature from the U.S., run down some of the most popular titles, and explore what makes these books so popular.

4:00 p.m. (free to public)
Big YA
Michael Stearns, Tamora Pierce, Christine Taylor-Butler, Gregory Katsoulis (M), E. Ardell
Marina 3 · 60 min · Panel
What is Big YA? Well, it’s a term we just made up here at Boskone to talk about the intricacies of writing, editing, and publishing big, long young adult series. What are the challenges associated with writing a series where the characters often don’t age as quickly as their readers? How do you track all the details without dropping threads? And why are these long epic YA series so popular today?

5:00 p.m. (free to public)
Reading by James Patrick Kelly
James Patrick Kelly

Griffin · 30 min · Reading

5:00 p.m. (free to public)
Incorporating Cultures Into Fiction
Beth Meacham (M), Lauren Roy, Mihku Paul, Carlos Hernandez, Erin Roberts
Marina 3 · 60 min · Panel
In writing, it’s hard to navigate between inclusion and appropriation of a culture or cultural elements. But like it or hate it, people write what they know … or at least what they think they know. Complicating matters, the definitions of these two words are fuzzy for many. So, what is cultural appropriation? How do we incorporate cultures or aspects of cultures without crossing the line?

6:00 p.m.
The Sword in the Stone: A New Beginning for the Arthurian Legends?
Faye Ringel, Elizabeth Bear, E. Ardell, Auston Habershaw, Heather Albano (M)
Marina 2 · 60 min · Panel
First published in 1938 as a stand-alone tale, T. H. White’s The Sword in the Stone departs from older sources to (wonderfully) imagine King Arthur as a boy in Merrie Olde England. What did it bring to now-popular tropes such as shapeshifting, the hidden prince, or the magical education? Later incorporated into the first part of White’s 1958 novel The Once and Future King, it helped spark the musical Camelot. (And, of course, Spamalot.) Would we remember much about King Arthur, his Knights, and their Round Table without these books? How did they influence the wider fantasy genre? Have they been replaced by the stories they inspired?

6:00 p.m.
Folktales Within Poetry
Theodora Goss
(M), Jane Yolen, C. S. E. Cooney, John Chu, Trisha Wooldridge
Marina 3 · 60 min · Panel
From “The Lady of Shalott” to “Goblin Market” to The Iliad, some quite engaging poems are inspired by folklore, legends, or myths. What other examples can we add — perhaps from non-European poetry? What do folk sources bring that an original story might lack? Our panelists will discuss (and perhaps read) some of their favorites — what are yours?

7:00 p.m.
Name That Legendary Object
Michael Sharrow (M), Jennifer Pelland, Teresa Nielsen Hayden, Frank Wu, Erin Roberts
Marina 2 · 60 min · Game Show
Legendary objects of yore—from various worlds throughout the universe, and from myriad planes of existence—have been gathered together in anticipation of this special Boskone game, for the entertainment and edification of the public. Our expert “historians” compete for the ultimate prize as they seek to identify these awesome articles, which may have once been owned by gods, heroes, villains … or the occasional ancient street sweeper. Audience participation is encouraged: bring your favorite enigmatic items to be identified by our adepts of the interdimensional.

 

SATURDAY

10:00 a.m.
Writing Workshops & MFA Programs Redux
John Chu, Jeanne Cavelos, James Patrick Kelly (M), Teresa Nielsen Hayden, Erin Roberts
Marina 1 · 60 min · Panel
Thinking about attending a writing workshop or an MFA program? Wondering how to pick the one that’s right for you? Once you do: then what? There’s no magic formula to elicit an acceptance letter, but a solid application is a good place to start. Join representatives from various writing programs, and learn how to present the best of what you have to offer to win your place.

11:00 a.m.
Autographing: Jeffrey A. Carver, Theodora Goss, Mary Robinette Kowal, Marshall Ryan Maresca
Mary Robinette Kowal, Jeffrey A. Carver, Marshall Ryan Maresca, Theodora Goss
Galleria · 60 min · Autographing

11:00 a.m.
Alice in Wonderland’s Mad Hatter Hats
Mihku Paul

Galleria · 60 min · Children – DragonsLair
Join artist and author Mihku Paul for a wonder-filled hat making session.

11:00 a.m.
Star Wars: A New Beginning Reawakens Again
Craig Miller, Brianna Wu, Nik Korpon (M), Erin Underwood, Garen Daly
Harbor II · 60 min · Panel
Star Wars: The Last Jedi scored with many, but not all, fans—and broke many, but not all, box office records. Looking back over the SW saga: what’s it all about so far? And looking ahead: will we keep watching after 2019, when Episode IX caps the storyline begun by Luke, Leia, and Han? (Disney, now the franchise owner, says the Wars won’t be over for at least 15 more years.) Whose story do we want to see next? Whom do you ship? What would you skip?

11:00 a.m.
The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of the SF Short Story
James Patrick Kelly
, Paul Di Filippo, Julie C. Day, Suzanne Palmer, Darrell Schweitzer (M)
Marina 2 · 60 min · Panel
Back in the day, the SF/F/H short was the genre’s centerpiece, economically and artistically. Today SF is a novel business. Or is it? There may be more talented short story writers and ready markets around than ever. Let’s trace the importance and popularity of the short form, and consider how short stories might help shape the genre’s future.

11:00 a.m.
CRISPR, Gene Editing, and the Future of Food
David G. Shaw (M), Rajnar Vajra, Kaitlin R. Branch, Kristin Janz, Stacey Berg
Marina 4 · 60 min · Panel
Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) techniques for gene editing are said to find wide application in the food industry, raising the possibility of food that won’t spoil so fast. Or pigs that carry less harmful fat. Such genetically modified organisms (GMOs) carry considerable promise—plus a fat load of questions about possible consequences. Let’s talk about the future of food.

12:00 p.m.
How To Write A 10-Minute Play
James Patrick Kelly

Independence · 60 min · Workshop
Author and playwright James Patrick Kelly shares tips and tricks on how to write a short 10-minute play, covering basic structure issues, character development, and timing. Sign-up is required.

12:00 p.m.
Fan Fiction Is Fun!
Flourish Klink, E. Ardell, Gillian Daniels, M. C. DeMarco, Elise Sacchetti (M)
Marina 4 · 60 min · Panel
Let’s face it: fan fiction is fun. Despite all the good/bad arguments for writing/not writing amateur (or at least, unpaid/unauthorized) fiction about characters from your favorite book/movie/TV show, an extensive/enthusiastic community has grown up around this quirky genre. What is it about fan fiction that we love? (Besides the / (slash) stuff.) Why do we write it/read it? And where can we get some more?

1:00 p.m.
Fractured Fairy Tales
Theodora Goss
, Jack M. Haringa, Dana Cameron (M), J. Kathleen Cheney, Carrie Cuinn
Burroughs · 60 min · Panel
Perhaps the most piquant part of beloved animated TV series The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends (1959–1964) was the dry, sly, wry humor of its “Fractured Fairy Tales” segments. These managed to twist hoary stories into something sparkling new, adding biting satire with just a dash of horror. What’s the charm of these odd little gems? Do kids still watch them? Should they? What else (Shrek) has refreshingly revamped old fairy tales?

2:00 p.m.
Beyond Afrofuturism
William Hayashi (M), Gerald L. Coleman, Kenneth Rogers Jr., E. Ardell
Marina 3 · 60 min · Panel
Afrofuturism started as by definition an outsider movement. But, like many subgenres of speculative fiction, it has had a direct impact on the development of the larger field. Where is Afrofuturism going? Which authors should we be watching as they branch out into other subgenres? Are Afrofuturistic stories now becoming seen simply as science fiction, fantasy, or horror?

3:00 p.m.
The Scientific Method in SF
Genny Dazzo, Kristin Janz, Justin Key, Kaitlin R. Branch (M), Vincent Docherty
Marina 2 · 60 min · Panel
Scientists abound in science fiction. Do these characters behave like real scientists, the good and the bad? Which authors get it right as they present positive images of scientists, and depict the way they work? The “mad scientist” is a common type in our literature—but is that really the way scientists go wrong?

3:00 p.m.
Non-Genre Fiction That Inspires Us
Tamora Pierce, Alexander Jablokov, Theodora Goss, F. Brett Cox, Kenneth Schneyer (M)
Marina 3 · 60 min · Panel
We’re always talking about icons such as Mary Shelley, Stephen King, J. R. R. Tolkien, and others who breathed air into our literary lungs—but what about non-genre fiction? Our panelists discuss some of their favorite authors from outside the SF/F/H field, who have inspired them as writers and readers.

4:00 p.m.
Science Guest Interview, Featuring Catherine Asaro
Catherine Asaro, E. Ardell
Harbor II · 60 min · Interview
Come get your geek on with Catherine Asaro, Boskone 55’s Hal Clement Science Speaker. Catherine shares her experiences in theoretical chemical physics, as well as her work as a science teacher, coach for nationally ranked math teams, member of the governmental advisory group SIGMA, and Nebula-award-winning SF author.

5:00 p.m.
Border of the Unknown
Theodora Goss
, Errick Nunnally (M), Trisha Wooldridge, Dana Cameron, Gerald L. Coleman
Marina 1 · 60 min · Panel
Much fine fantastika involves crossing the boundary between the known and the unknown—especially that uneasy border between the village and the trees. Let’s look at the long history of that great unknown, the enchanted forest. Why has it pushed and pulled at people’s imaginations since ancient times? To find out, let’s stroll away from safety and into the woods, as the liminal light fades and the shadows gather all under the boughs unbowed …

5:00 p.m.
Spiritual Animals
Mihku Paul
, Christopher Irvin (M), Tui Sutherland, Beth Meacham, E.J. Stevens
Marina 3 · 60 min · Panel
Animals in SF/F/H aren’t all just lazy lap dogs or cozy cats. Dæmons and familiars, patronuses and spirit animals—these creatures often play subtly influential roles in the lives of main characters. Why do some animals assume such importance? Have their roles changed over time? Is over-anthropomorphizing a concern? Our panelists discuss our furry, feathered, and scaled friends in all of their glory.

6:30 p.m.
Boskone Book Party
Erin Underwood
(M), Nat Segaloff, Les Johnson, James Patrick Kelly, E. C. Ambrose, Jane Yolen, Robert V.S. Redick, Christopher Paniccia, Kenneth Rogers Jr., Walter H. Hunt, Adam Stemple, Kristy Acevedo, Christopher Irvin, Rob Greene
Galleria – Stage · 60 min · Event
Come join the fun at Boskone 55’s Book Party—and meet the presses and authors who have new books coming out at the con! This is your chance to see what’s new from writers you already love, as well as those you have yet to discover.

8:00 p.m.
Open Mic: Myths & Legends!
Elaine Cunningham (M), Kenneth Schneyer (M), Lauren Roy, C. S. E. Cooney, Carlos Hernandez, Gabriel Erkard, E. Ardell, Benjamin Newman, Roberta Rogow, Don Pizarro, Trisha Wooldridge, Mary Ellen Wessels, Edward L. Stauff
Galleria – Stage · 60 min · Event
Live from Boskone: A special selection of tall tales as told by our program participants—plus audience members. All show off their open mic skills in the third annual Boskone Open Mic extravaganza. This year features the myths and legends of yesterday, today, and tomorrow! Each participant contributes his/her most legendary performance—a 5-minute story, poem, song, skit, interpretive dance, or whatever! OPTIONAL: For extra appeal, feel free to come dressed as your favorite mythic or legendary character.

The Rules: Boskone members are invited to join our participants in the open mic by signing up for one of the six open slots at the door to the event, which opens for sign-ups at 7:30 p.m. Each performer is given a firm 5-minute time limit (max), including setup time. So a quick transition between acts is key. Please no profanity: DragonsLair is within hearing distance.

8:00 p.m.
Saturday Night Special Event: Boskone Awards and Rapid-Fire Theater
Bruce Coville, Gay Ellen Dennett, David G. Grubbs (M), Bob Kuhn, Laurie Mann, Mihku Paul, Michael Sharrow, Jane Yolen, Ginjer Buchanan, Fred Lerner, Tui Sutherland, Jen Gunnels, Erin Roberts, Christine Taylor-Butler, William Hayashi, Nat Segaloff, Daniel M. Kimmel
Harbor II+III · 120 min · Event
Saturday night’s presentation is a fast-paced theatrical extravaganza, featuring a set of mini-shows that resemble live-action podcasts (akin to a science fiction variety show with a short awards ceremony, an interview, a game show, and an original radio show with aliens). This special Saturday night program has something for every fan. Hosted by Boskone’s very own David G. Grubbs.

 

SUNDAY

9:30 a.m.
Flash Fiction Slam
Rob Greene (M), James Patrick Kelly, Shahid Mahmud, Vikki Ciaffone, Jen Gunnels
Marina 4 · 90 min · Reading
Boskone’s Flash Fiction Slam returns! Be one of eleven (10) writers to compete for the title of The Flash, reading your own original fiction—which must tell a complete tale within a 3-minute period. Our expert panel of judges will score your work, and you automatically lose 10 percent for going over your 3-minute time. You may only read your own work. The reader with the top score wins!

Sign up before the con by sending an email to program@boskone.org for one of eight (8) reading slots on a first-come, first-served basis. Or sign up onsite at Program Ops in the Harbor Foyer for one of three (3) at-con openings. A waiting list will also be available.

10:30 a.m.
Reading by Theodora Goss
Theodora Goss

Griffin · 30 min · Reading

12:00 p.m.
Autographing: E. Ardell, John Langan, Christine Taylor-Butler
E. Ardell, John Langan, Christine Taylor-Butler
Galleria · 60 min · Autographing

12:00 p.m.
Stories for Themed Anthologies
Tom Easton, Julia Rios (M), Erin Underwood, Elaine Cunningham, Clarence Young
Harbor III · 60 min · Panel
The growing popularity of themed anthologies is creating new life for short fiction. Editing and writing for these collections, however, can be tricky. How do you find the right stories? To what extent do you edit? And what kind of anthology would we all like to see?

12:00 p.m.
Women Who Write Science Fiction
LJ Cohen, Victoria Sandbrook (M), Catherine Asaro, Erin Roberts, Marianna Martin PhD
Marina 3 · 60 min · Panel
Mary Shelley, Leigh Brackett, Ursula K. Le Guin, Connie Willis, N. K. Jemisin — women have been in the thick of writing science fiction for a very long time. Let’s discuss some of their landmark publications that captured our imagination. Why do we love these stories? What works should we look for the next time we’re browsing the shelves?

1:00 p.m.
Weird Science and Odd Inventions
James Cambias, John P. Murphy (M), Julie C. Day, David G. Shaw
Marina 2 · 60 min · Panel
Sometimes ideas sound better in your head! Scientific discovery and invention can take strange and unexpected turns when creativity is let loose. Fortunately, some of the end products turn out to be truly remarkable. Our panelists discuss their favorite unusual inventions and surprising scientific discoveries.

1:00 p.m.
Igniting the STEM Literary Movement
Kathleen Cheney, Catherine Asaro, Kaitlin R. Branch, Brenda Noiseux (M), Cady Coleman
Marina 3 · 60 min · Panel
There’s a growing focus in education on bringing more science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) into the classroom. Stories with strong STEM components are being written for children and young adults. But how do we attract younger readers’ attention, and build greater interest in this literature? Participants share their ideas and invite suggestions from the audience.

2:00 p.m.
Group Reading: Stonecoast MFA
James Patrick Kelly
(M), Theodora Goss (M), Julie C. Day, Kaitlin R. Branch, Mihku Paul, E. Ardell
Griffin · 60 min · Reading
Come hear the literary stylings of the Stonecoast MFA alumni, students, and faculty who have come together for this special group reading at Boskone.

 

 

 

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Community News & Updates January 2018

ALUMS

Elisabeth Tova Bailey’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’15) essay “Biophilia at my Bedside” was just published in the anthology Nature, Love, Medicine. The anthology, edited by Thomas Lowe Fleischner and published by Torrey House Press, includes essays by twenty-three writers including Robin Wall Kimmerer, Jane Hirschfield, and thich Nhat Hanh.

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) is excited her story “The Scarlet Cloak” was reprinted in Like A Woman, a domestic violence benefit anthology. Her short story “Snow as White as Skin as White as Snow” was published in December’s issue of Gamut Magazine—classmates will recognize this story as inspired by her thesis novel-in-progess The Sleeping Boy. This just in: Factor Four Magazine will be publishing Karen’s science fiction short story “To Infinity and Beyond” in their inaugural issue. With this sale, Karen’s happy to announce she is applying to SFWA. She’s serving as a guest editor for Pseudopod Podcast for March 2018 and hope you all tune in to listen to the five awesome stories she selected (with the associate editing help of fellow ‘coasters Shawna Borman, Erin Roberts, and Cecelia Dockins). Her poem “Fire Lover” will appear in February’s Heroic Fantasy Quarterly, with an accompanying narration. Karen also has been narrating stories by others. Karen has created a recording of Penelope Evans’ “Wasps Make Honey” for a forthcoming episode of Escape Pod and Evan Dicken’s “The Taking Tree” for Pseudopod.

Illustration for Karen’s story “Snow as White as Skin as White as Snow”

Jennifer Marie Brissett (Popular Fiction, S’11) puts her memories of being a bookseller to use in a flash fiction story for the anthology Welcome to Dystopia edited by Gordon Van Gelder from OR Books. (Shh, most of the story I didn’t have to make up!)

Julie C. Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) short story “Re-stitched” can be found in the January edition of Split Lip magazine. “Re-stitched” is about two sisters, Alicia and Stephanie, their family dysfunction, and the impurity of human flesh. It’s about as creepy as you’d expect…

Terri Glass’s (Poetry/Creative Nonfiction, S’13) Terri’s poem, “Violet Green Swallows” was published in Young Raven’s Review, Issue 6. Her poem “Cow Tipping Tuesday” will be published in the 2018 San Diego Poetry Annual and her haiku in the Spring Issue of The Fourth River.

Cindy Williams Gutiérrez (Poetry, W’08) received the 2017 Oregon Book Award for Drama for her play Words That Burn. The play dramatizes the WWII experiences of conscientious-objector William Stafford, Japanese-American internee Lawson Inada, and Chicano Marine Guy Gabaldón in their own words. The play premiered at Milagro Theatre in Portland, Oregon, in September of 2014 in commemoration of the William Stafford Centennial, Hispanic Heritage Month, and the 70th anniversary of the rescindment of Executive Order 9066 (incarcerating Japanese-Americans). Words That Burn was also produced in 2017 at the Merc Playhouse in Twisp, Washington, and the Linkville Playhouse in Klamath Falls, Oregon.

Alan King’s (Poetry, W’13) Point Blank was reviewed in The Washington City Paper, Auburn Avenue, and Run Tell That Magazine.

Will Ludwigsen‘s (Popular Fiction, W’11) third collection of short fiction tinged with crime and the supernatural, Acres of Perhaps, will be appearing in April 2018. It is available now for preorder from Lethe Press if you would like to support the small press.

Carolyn O’Doherty‘s (Popular Fiction, W’11) debut novel, Rewind, will be released April 10, 2018. The novel, published by Boyds Mills Press, tells the story of a group of teenagers with the ability to freeze time. The sequel will be published in Spring 2019.

Alexandra Oliver (Poetry, W’12) recently attended Continuum Music’s Urgent Voices multimedia performance in Toronto, featuring the debut of From the Diaries of William Lyon Mackenzie King, an operatic work for which she write the libretto. The Birmingham-based composer, Scott Wilson, was also in attendance. The Canada Council for the Arts has provided Oliver, Wilson, and Continuum director Ryan Scott with funding to develop the project.

Bruce Pratt‘s (Fiction, S’04) play Radio Silent has won the 2017 Meeting House Theatre Arts Lab’s annual new play contest and will receive a staged reading on January 20 at Schoodic Arts for All in Winterport, Maine. Pratt also won the award last year for his play The King of France. Several of his plays are among those being considered for full production next spring.

In addition to winning one of the South Carolina State Poetry Society contests, Steve Rhodes’s (Poetry, W’11) poem “Inheritance” won First Prize in Still: The Journal’s annual poetry contest.  He and his wife, Ann, moved to Charleston, South Carolina, three years ago. Steve recently completed his third poetry collection, What You Don’t See, and is looking for a publisher. He is currently working on a prose and poetry memoir. This past summer and fall he was invited to give poetry readings as part of hikes in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park led by the singer/song-writer Doug Peters. Great fun.

Tamie (Harkins) Parker Song’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’12) poem “Thirteen Ways of Killing the Captain’s Son” was published in Selkie Zine, issue 5. You can find it here.

Kathleen Saville (Creative Nonfiction, S’13) has been invited as a speaker to the Match 2018 Virginia Festival of the Book to share her memoir Rowing for My Life: Two Oceans, Two Lives, One Journey, published by Skyhorse/Arcade Publishing in February 2017. Information on how to attend the Festival is here.

Olive L. Sullivan‘s (Fiction/Poetry, S’15) poetry collection Wandering Bone is now available on Amazon or directly from the publisher, Meadowlark Books. Several of the poems in this book were written as part of her second semester project with Jeanne Marie Beaumount.

Karrie Waarala (Poetry, S’11) has three poems—“Memory of Museum of Memory,” “How to Remember,” and “The Morning After”—in the current issue of Blackbird. Her poem “Death Spends Halloween at the Country Bar” was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize by Escape into Life, where her work was featured in July. And her short story “High Side” appeared in Five on the Fifth earlier this year; this was her first fiction publication.

Marco Wilkinson’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’13) essay, “Hidden Light, Wooden Ladder, Bucket of Clay, Pillar of Water,” will appear in issue four of the Bennington Review. His nonfiction manuscript, Madder, was the first runner-up in the 2017 Red Hen Press Non-Fiction Prize, judged by Mark Doty.

Tamra Wilson (Fiction, S’11) was published in Vol. VI of The New Guard. “Dearest Mum” is part of The Dream Letters, an ongoing feature of the journal. Wilson’s fictional letter is excerpted from a novel-in-progress based on her great-grandmother, an orphan train.

CURRENT STUDENTS

Sarah Mack (Popular Fiction), publishing under S.M. Mack, won first place for the Katherine Patterson Prize for Young Adult Writing for her short story “The Carrying Beam.” The story was published online in Hunger Mountain, The VCFA Journal for the Arts, and is available here.

Illustration for Sarah’s story “The Carrying Beam”

FACULTY

David Anthony Durham (Fiction, Popular Fiction) just renewed the film option for Gabriel’s Story with Redwave Films, as well as the film/TV option for Pride of Carthage with Sonar Entertainment. His short story “All the Girls Love Michael Stein” will be republished in The Stonecoast Review and was recently published in translation in the Polish SFF magazine Nowa Fantastyka. He’s also signed on as one of the judges for the 2018 World Fantasy Awards. Details here via Locus.

Elizabeth Searle’s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) novel We Got Him (New Rivers Press) is forthcoming as an AudioBook in 2018, recorded by Stonecoast alum Tanya Eby and her Blunder Woman Productions. Both Elizabeth’s opera and her rock opera about Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan will be produced in early 2018, at the time of the Winter Olympics. In January, the operetta group Mixed Precipitation in Minneapolis, Minnesota, will present Tonya and Nancy: The Opera—a one-act opera with libretto by Elizabeth and music by Abigail Al-Doory Cross—on Lake Harriet for the Art Shanties. Meanwhile, in New York City at 54Below on February 13th, Broadway stars sing a concert version of Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera, a show which will be recorded as a CD from Broadway Records and which has recently received coverage from Playbill and Broadway World (you can read the Broadway World article here). For updates, see: www.elizabethsearle.net

 

 

 

 

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Community News & Updates December 2017

ALUMS

Jen Hodsdon (Fiction, W’08) edited and published the first issue of the zine That’s What She Said: News from Florence House. Florence House is a Portland, ME, homeless shelter for women operated by Preble Street. TWSS publishes writing and art created by guests of the shelter. Issue 2 is forthcoming in early 2018.

Lisa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) has written an essay on memory and childhood experience with racist remarks at The Nervous Breakdown, “Unspoken Words that Begin with N (even when they don’t)”.

Lisa C. Taylor‘s (Poetry, S’04) short story “Salt and Blue” will be published in the March issue of Tahoma Literary Review. Lisa received an AAUP Faculty Development Award for her project “Turbulence and Tenor: Hybrid Forms and Diverse Voices.” This project will take her to Ireland for the month of July to launch a book, offer a class, and host a writing retreat. For information about the retreat, contact Lisa at lisactaylor22@gmail.com

CURRENT STUDENTS

Erin Roberts (Popular Fiction) was recently awarded the 2017 Diverse Writers Grant and the 2017 Diverse Worlds Grant from the Speculative Literature Foundation. The Diverse Writers Grant supports new and emerging writers from underrepresented groups, while the Diverse Worlds grant is intended for work that best presents a diverse world, regardless of the writer’s background.

FACULTY

The Spanish edition of David Anthony Durham‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) novel The Risen has just been published by B DE BOOKS. It’s called La Rebelión. (And Spartacus is now called Espartaco…)

T Clutch Fleischmann‘s (Creative Nonfiction) book-length essay Time Is the Thing a Body Moves Through will be published by Coffee House Press in Spring 2019.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) short story “Refugees” has been accepted by The Bennington Review for publication next year. Also watch out for his creative non-fiction personal essay “Sweetness Matters” in Tin House Magazine, due out winter 2018.

Jim Kelly (Popular Fiction) contributed an essay to the rotating Another Word guest column in the November issue of online magazine Clarkesworld. It’s called “Listen Up!” and discusses his lifelong love affair with audiobooks. His short novel The Wreck of the Godspeed has been reprinted as an ebook in Italy by Delos Digital.

A New York City concert of Broadway stars singing songs from Elizabeth Searle’s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera will be produced at 54Below at 254 54th St. on February 13, 2018, during the Winter Olympics. The show stars Ashley Spencer as “Tonya” and Lauren Worsham as “Nancy” (Lauren is a Tony nominee and Drama Desk Award winner for A Gentleman’s Guide and Ashley starred in Broadway’s Grease, Hairspray, Priscilla Queen of Night, as well as on TV and film). This concert will be recorded and released n the 54Below Concert CD series of Broadway Records. Join Elizabeth at ‘rink-side’ at 54Below (formerly Studio 54). For updates, see: www.tonyaandnancytherockopera.com

Ashley Spencer as “Tonya” and Lauren Worsham as “Nancy”

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Community News & Updates July 2017

THE STONECOAST REUNION


The Stonecoast Reunion is coming up fast, and we’re excited to welcome you to Brunswick, Maine, July 14th-17th!  The weekend will be an exciting time for readings, seminars, and networking with fellow graduates of the program. If you have not done so, please register now! Please visit: http://usm.maine.edu/stonecoastmfa/stonecoast-alumni-0.

If you are not able to attend the reunion’s day events, we’re still delighted to invite you to the evening events, including the alumni reunion reading, welcome reception, and book fair on Friday, July 14th! A professional photographer will be present at the reading and reception, and we’re planning for a group photo. We’d love to have as many alumni as possible participate!

We ask that if you are not registering for the reunion but wish to attend the evening alumni reading and reception (July 14th) or the graduation and dance party (July 15th) that you RSVP here. Family and friends are also welcome, and donations will be accepted at the door for attendees not registered for the reunion.

ALUMS


Eric M. Bosarge (Popular Fiction, W’12) was pleased to learn his novel The Time Train won the Maine Literary Award in the speculative fiction category.

Karen Bovenmyer’s (Popular Fiction, S’13) poem “Pseudopod” will be reprinted in The Were-Traveler’s Mythos Planet Issue.

Jennifer Marie Brissett (Popular Fiction, S’11) has reprinted her story “The Executioner” in the special issue People of Color Take over Fantastic Stories of the Imagination Magazine. She also has published a story in FIYAH Magazine called “The Breeze in the Boughs,” which is a fabulist short story about life in gentrifying Brooklyn as well as a bit of a parody of Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willow.

Julie C. Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) short story “The Rocket Farmer” can be found in Interzone 271—the magazine’s July/August edition. “The Rocket Farmer” concerns itself with a family of rocket farmers and the ugliness that arises out of their crop’s many failed launches. It’s also about a fourteen-year-old girl who is sick of her mom.

Andrea Lani (Fiction, W’14) was pleased that her essay “The World in their Hands” was published in issue 3.2 of The Maine Review. She also had a short piece on mountain lingo appear in TrailGroove and an interview with Rad Dad founder, Tomas Moniz, in Literary Mama.

John Christopher Nelson‘s (Fiction, S’15) flash piece “Inroads Up Hills” is featured online for Broke-Ass Stuart‘s new fiction series. Incidentally, John workshopped this piece at Stonecoast in Sarah Braunstein‘s Flash Fiction workshop.

Anne Britting Oleson (Poetry, W’05) has been away on an Amtrak Writer’s Residency from June 22 through July 2. Her trip took her to Chicago, New Orleans, and New York City for research, writing, and revision on her next novel. She is more than grateful to Amtrak for this opportunity for work and adventure.

Bruce Pratt‘s (Fiction, S’04) poem “Barachois,” is included in the just-released 3 nations Anthology: Native, Canadian, and New England Writers from Resolute Bear Press in both its original French and in an English translation by the author. Barachois is an Acadian word many believe come from the M’iq M’ac language and might best be translated as a delta or the sand bars in the mouth of a tidal tributary. The anthology is available as an electronic publication and a print journal.

Sean Robinson (Popular Fiction W14) has been busier than expected. After returning from the Stonecoast in Ireland Residency in Howth in January, he began a career change. He’s happy to announce that he’s left social work behind and accepted a position teaching high school English in New Hampshire. June saw the publication of his flash piece “Spindle Talk” at The Future Fire (Cinderella meets Mean Girls meets Narcan). His essay “I Would Fly with Dragons” was released in Invisible 3, and his short story “Tide Child” is forthcoming from On Spec.

During June, Lisa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) moderated the panel “Nurturing the Writer in Your Child or Teenager” at the Maplewood-South Orange (NJ) Book Festival and was on the panel “Nothing But the Truth: A Women’s Perspective on Writing the Memoir” at BooksNJ (Paramus, NJ).

An Elder Man, the new short film by Jacob Strunk (Fiction, W’07), premieres July 2 at the Walla Walla Movie Crush in Washington State. Further festival screenings will follow later this year.

Tamra Wilson (Fiction, S’11) has an essay, “It Could Happen to You,” in the 2017 issue of City Works Literary Journal. City Works is a publication of San Diego City College.

FACULTY


On Sunday, July 30, 2017, Jeanne Marie Beaumont (Poetry) will be reading in the East Hampton Poetry Marathon Reading at the Marine Museum, Bluff Road, Amagansett, NY. The event starts at 5:00 pm.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) essay on writers in translation, why some make it and others don’t, is in the current issue of Tin House. Read it here. Also, Aaron is thrilled to be participating in TWO readings in support of the anthology Soap Opera Confidential, edited by our very own Stonecoast rock star faculty Elizabeth Searle and Suzanne Strempek Shea. The first will be on July 9th at 1:00 p.m. at Politics & Prose Bookstore in DC, along with contributors Kyoko Mori and Shara McCollum. The second will be in Portland, Maine, during the break at the Stonecoast residency, Wednesday, July 12th, at the USM Glickman library on the seventh floor in the University Events Room at 6:00 p.m. Free and open to the public. Come hear Aaron confess about his obsession with Dynasty II: The Colbys, as well as his struggles to learn ballroom dancing…. Finally, Aaron will be teaching a class on food writing at Politics & Prose Bookstore in DC this month, July 18th and 25th. Details are here.

Elizabeth Hand‘s (Popular Fiction, Fiction) neo-noir novel Available Dark has been optioned for television as a joint venture between producer Mike Ryan’s Greyshack Films and Votiv Film. She was profiled by The Portland Press Herald for her work on a National Forest Service study on the future of fire management, and for Fire, her new book of fiction and essays (mostly) related to climate change. Hand was a recent guest on The Writer’s Cast and the Eating the Fantastic podcasts. Her recent novel Wylding Hall has just been released in Spain, with foreign rights sold in Russia, and she was named one of the Six Literary Horror Writers You Should Read in an article on Tor.com. Recent reviews include Jeff Vandermeer’s Borne for The Los Angeles Times, and Literary Wonderlands, edited by Laura MillerPeter Beagle’s Summerlong, and Graeme Macrae Burnet’s His Bloody Project: Documents Relating to the Case of Roderick Macrae, all for The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction.

Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction) will be reading and signing “Look Homeward, Vampire,” her essay on Dark Shadows, with the Soap Opera Confidential crew at 5:00 p.m. on July 12th at Glickman Library in Portland, Maine. She’ll appear at San Diego Comic-Con, working in the Kymera Press booth, #2003, during exhibitor hall hours on Thursday and Friday. This is her additional schedule:

  • Signing a special limited edition issue of her new comic book, Mary Shelley Presents, Thursday, July 20th, from 12:30–2:30 p.m. and Friday, July 2nd, from 3:30–5:30 p.m.
  • Signing at Mysterious Galaxy booth, #1119, on Thursday, July 20th at 5:00 p.m.
  • Panel with other members of the International Association of Media Tie-in Writers Friday, July 21st, 2:00-3:00 p.m., Room 32AB

Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) and her show Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera were featured in The New York Times article “Tonya Harding: a Tragic Muse?” published on June 13 with a photo from the NYC NYMF production of Tonya & Nancy in the NYT print edition and a reel from the Boston production of the show online at nytimes.com. Elizabeth is writing the book for a new rock opera—Skypaint: A Cyber Rock Opera—with music and lyrics by guitarist Russell Chudnofsky who has toured with Frank Black, Trisha Yearwood, Faith Hill, and more. The show will be performed in October, details TBA; check out the website here.

Stonecoasters and Soap-lovers, join Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) and Elizabeth Searle and All-Star readers Aaron Hamburger, Nancy Holder, Allan Hunter, and Erin Roberts as they read from Soap Opera Confidential (on sale via our own Kelly!) at Glickman Library USM in Portland 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, July 12th. D.C. soap opera fans: Hear Soap Opera Confidential contributors Aaron Hamburger, Shara McCallum (former Stonecoast faculty member), and Kyoko Mori read from their soapy essays July 9th, 1:00 pm at Politics and Prose. Suzanne discussed Soap Opera Confidential on a radio interview on Pine Valley Radio. The June 28th issue of the national magazine Soaps In Depth features Soap Opera Confidential with a special “giveaway” offer—the issue will available at supermarket or drugstore near you!

 

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Community News & Updates June 2017

UPCOMING READINGS

Lissa Kiernan (Poetry, S’11), founding director, Poetry Barn, is pleased to announce a reading of Stonecoast faculty and alumni Jeanne Marie Beaumont, Cheryl Boyce-Taylor, Cait Johnson, and Elizabeth Searle, on August 18th at the Woodstock Public Library, Woodstock, NY.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

Andrea Lani (Fiction, W’14), co-editor of the Literary Reflections department at Literary Mama, seeks essays by mother writers, both established and emerging, about the intersection of motherhood and literature. We’re looking for first-person reflections with an intellectual as well as personal focus. Potential topics include: how motherhood influences the creative process and vice versa; a close reading of a piece of literature through the motherhood lens; how reading with children builds connections; how literature can provide answers or solace during difficult times. Please see our submissions page for complete guidelines, as well as our recent “Tips from the Editors” blog post, which rounds up several of our favorite essays.

ALUMS

AJ Bauers’ (Popular Fiction, W’17) flash-fiction story “The Wrong One” can be found in the most recent issue of Chantwood Magazine. “The Wrong One” examines the grief of a self-editing protagonist as she walks her path toward closure. For AJ’s more lighthearted fiction, check out her weekly webcomic.

Michael Beeman (Fiction, S’09) was thrilled to publish his short story “A Unified Drone Theory” in the summer issue of The Indiana Review.

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) had a fabulous time at the ConQuesT 48 Science Fiction Convention in Kansas City presenting on “Dark Fantasy vs. Horror,” “From Fan to Pro: Writing as a Career,” “Horror Fiction and Xenophobia,” “Where Do We Go from Here: Current Developments in Writing Speculative Fiction,” and “Why Write Short Stories” over Memorial Day Weekend. Her flash “Like a Soul” will be reprinted this month in Darkhouse Books’ Descansos anthology. Stonecoasters have supported her throughout the hardest challenges of her life and she is forever grateful! Viva Stonecoast!

Michael L. Joy (Popular Fiction, S’13) has been named the Co-Chair of SleuthFest, the annual educational mystery writers’ conference put on by the Florida chapter of the MWA.

Lissa Kiernan (Poetry, S’11) is pleased to announce that her book-length braided essay, Glass Needles & Goose Quills: Elementary Lessons in Atomic Properties, Nuclear Families, and Radical Poetics, is now available for pre-order. Also, Lissa, as founding director of Poetry Barn, is pleased to announce Poetry Barn’s 2017 programming celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love.

Andrea Lani (Fiction, W’14) was thrilled that her humorous and hot short story, “Toy Story,” about a mom who finds herself in a sex-toy shop, found a home in the anthology If Mom’s Happy: Stories of Erotic Mothers, which was released by Cwtch Press on May 1.

Matthew Quinn Martin (Popular Fiction, S’10) is thrilled to report the feature-film script he co-wrote, Being, is now in pre-production. Directed by Doug C. Williams, it stars Lance Henriksen (Aliens, Near Dark, Millennium) and Robert John Burke (Stephen King’s Thinner, Law & Order: SVU), with more casting announcements forthcoming. The practical effects-heavy, science-fiction movie is slated to begin principal photography in mid-August.

Mary Heather Noble (Creative Nonfiction, W’14) is pleased to share that her essay “Things Seen in the Dark: A Triptych” will appear in the June 2017 issue of Hippocampus Magazine. Special thanks to Suzanne Strempek Shea, Melanie Brooks, and Penny Guisinger for their moral support with this publication.

Shannon Ratliff‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’16) essay “The Collected Cathedrals of Mary Magdalene” appears in the Spring 2017 issue of Seneca Review, currently out. Her essay “The Man on the Moon” will appear in the new issue of Gulf Coast this month.

Lisa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction, S ’08) announces with great pleasure that the University of Nevada Press will publish her memoir, tentatively titled Every Loss Story is a Love Story: The Father Daughter Reunion, in June 2018.

Catherine Schmitt (Creative Nonfiction, W’12) was a finalist for the 2017 Iowa Review Awards. Her article on land-locked salmon and Arctic char, two native Maine fishes, is in Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors Magazine. Catherine has also been elected to a second term as a member of the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance Board of Directors. Later this month she will be attending the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents as part of a project with Mount Desert Island Historical Society.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) first published short story, “They Come In Through the Walls,” got its first audio version at Tales to Terrify. Her story “Secret Keeper,” a Phantom of the Opera retelling set in a high-school theater where the phantom is an outcast teenage girl, will be out from Nightmare in early June.

Lisa C. Taylor (Poetry, ‘04) has her first piece of nonfiction up on Gravel Literary Magazine’s web site. A short story, “Second Lives,” is forthcoming in Quail Bell.

Ashley Warren‘s (Fiction, S’12) poems “Alice and the Snake”, “Neighborhood”, and “To Those Who Meet Me After” appear in the current issue of Typehouse Literary Magazine.

CURRENT STUDENTS

Graduating student Brenda Cooper‘s (Fiction) next novel, Wilders, will be released by Prometheus Books on June 13th, 2017. Ramez Naam, award-winning author of the Nexus series, call it “A vivid picture of a world rebuilding from the edge of ecological ruin and the seeming conflicts between civilization and the nature it depends on.”

FACULTY

David Anthony Durham (Fiction, Popular Fiction) will be reading along with National Book Award Finalist/Bestseller Jayne Anne Phillips at Earfull, presented by the Mosesian Center for the Arts in Watertown, MA, on Tuesday, June 6th. The readings will be accompanied by the music of Jen Trynin and Aaron Perrino. If you’re near Boston please consider coming out! Tickets available here.

Aaron Hamburger (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) has been combining writing with activism this month. His piece “My Grandmother, the Undocumented Immigrant” appeared in Tablet Magazine. Also, he recently taught a sold-out course called “Writing as an Act of Resistance” at Politics & Prose Bookstore. The class was so successful that it’s going to be offered again this fall. Details will be posted on the store website.

Wonder Woman: The Official Movie Novelization, written by Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction), comes out on June 6th, to coincide with the worldwide release of the film starring Gal Gadot.

Stonecoast alumna Alexis Paige (Creative Nonfiction, S’14) will be among the featured authors at Bay Path University’s annual Booklovers event, June 4th, 2:00-4:00 p.m., in the dining commons at 588 Longmeadow St., Longmeadow, MA. The author of Not a Place on Any Map, Alexis will be joined by Kate Clifford Larson (Rosemary: The Hidden Kennedy Daughter), Ed Orzechowski (You’ll Like it Here), and Sophfronia Scott (A Child of Faith: Raising a Spiritual Being in a Secular World). Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction), Bay Path’s writer-in-residence and director of writing programs, will welcome the audience. The event is open to the public free of charge, and both book clubs and individual readers are welcome. Books will be sold and refreshments will be served.

A few winters back, faculty members Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) and Suzanne Strempek Shea met in Elizabeth’s Harraseeket Inn room during lunch at January residency to press “send” on their proposal for a collection of essays on soap operas by writers and poets who have some fixation with the classic television and radio form of storytelling. The result, 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, was launched April 30th at Newtonville Books in Newton Center, MA. The co-editors and seven of their 33 contributors enjoyed a standing-room-only crowd at the bookstore owned by Stonecoast alumna Mary Cotton and her husband, author Jamie Clarke. Among the readers was Stonecoast alumna Brenda Sparks Prescott, who read from her essay “The Doctors and William Beaumont General Hospi-tale.” Other Stonecoast connections among the 35 contributors: student Erin Roberts; alums Marie Hannan-Mandel, Tigh Rickman, and Susan Lilley; faculty members Ted Deppe, Aaron Hamburger, and Nancy Holder; former faculty members Jamie Cat Callan, Ann Hood, Lesléa Newman, and Shara McCallum; and Nuala Ni Chonchuir, who’s read and lectured at Stonecoast Ireland. The book is dedicated to the late Elisabeth Wilkins Lombardo, an award-winning fiction writer who was a member of Stonecoast’s inaugural graduating class and who was to have contributed an essay on how soap operas helped her learn the culture of Japan when she moved there for what turned out to be ten years of work in radio and television broadcasting. Elizabeth and Suzanne send many thanks to Stonecoast students including Shellie Leger, who made the trip to help celebrate the book. Suzanne and Elizabeth continue to celebrate—most recently over the fact that, at a grocery or pharmacy checkout very near you, from coast to coast, readers can find CBS Soaps in Depth magazine and its two-page spread on Soap Opera Confidential. The May 29th issue dedicated two pages to the story “Fan Nonfiction: Soap Opera Confidential Examines Why We Always Have—and Always Will—Tune in Tomorrow.” The piece included photos of The Bold and the Beautiful star Thorsten Kaye, who contributed a poem to Soap Opera Confidential and is shown holding a book. Is it Soap Opera Confidential? Tune in tomorrow to find out… Soap Opera Confidential also is featured in a story by G. Michael Dobbs of The Reminder in East Longmeadow, MA. Join Elizabeth Searle and Suzanne as they celebrate Soap Opera Confidential June 7th, 7:00 p.m. at Broadside Bookshop, 247 Main St., Northampton, MA. The night will feature readings by contributors Lesléa Newman, Tommy Shea, and Sebastian Stuart.

Alumna Brenda Sparks Prescott reads from her essay “The Doctors and William Beaumont General Hospi-tale” at the April 30th launch of 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 at Newtonville Books.

Elizabeth Searle with Newtonville Books owner and Stonecoast alumna Mary Cotton.

Soap Opera Confidential featured in the national magazine Soap Opera Insider.

Yes, at a shop counter near you: Soap Opera Insider and its two-page feature on Soap Opera Confidential.

Contributors and co-editors at Newtonville Books’ launch of 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: (from left) alumna Brenda Sparks Prescott, Sebastian Stuart, Emily Franklin, Elizabeth Searle, Allan Hunter, Lisa Borders, Marianne Leone, Suzanne Strempek Shea, and Leigh Montville.

Soap Opera Confidential co-editors Suzanne Strempek Shea and Elizabeth Searle at the Newtonville Books launch.

 

 

 

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Community News & Updates February 2017

ALUMS

swift-for-the-sunKaren Bovenmyer’s (Popular Fiction, S’13) thrilled to announce her first novel, an LGBT romantic pirate adventure set in 1822 Caribbean, Swift for the Sun, now has a cover (by the amazing Anna Sikorska) and a release date: March 27, 2017, from Dreamspinner Press. Karen’s also sold a 300-word prose poem featuring marooned interstellar spies called “Save Our Souls” to Silver Blade Magazine for their February issue and created an audio recording of the poem as a companion piece. She’s excited to announce that her zombies vs robots 1500-word story “We Are Still Feeling” earned a Finalist for 4th Quarter 2016 in L Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future contest. Her 15,000-word Dickensien fairytale novella, “The Beaded Slipper,” will appear in Crimson Edge Press’s Maidens and Magic maidens-magicanthology, February 14, 2017; she’s thrilled that her character Sasha is on the cover (the blonde woman holding the red slipper). Karen is also chuffed her unrequited astronaut love poem “The Blind Elephants of Io” (which you can hear read by British actress Patsy Prince) has been nominated for a Rhysling award by members of the Science Fiction Poetry Association. Two other flash stories “Samuel Alexander’s Storm Angel” (Roane Publishing’s Flash Fiction Fridays) and a reprint “Like a Soul” (Creepy Campfire Quarterly: Science Fiction Issue) will be published in February. STONECOAST REPRESENT!

Two new stories by Julie C. Day (Popular Fiction, S’12) are out this month. “Everyone Gets a Happy Ending” concerns itself with female friendships, national fertility, and the desert Southwest; it’s available in the January/February issue of Interzone. Julie’s second story, “One Thousand Paper Cranes,” melds ideas about the neurobiology of memory, restricted-environmental-stimulation therapy, and part selves; you can find it online in the Winter 2017 issue of Kaleidotrope. On the podcasting front, both episode 135 of Far-Fetched Fables and episode 433 of Podcastle are now available. The first podcast features Julie’s narration of Sharon Shinn’s “The Double-Edged Sword.” The second contains Julie’s reading of Sandra O’Dell’s fabulous and fabulously funny “Telling Stories.” You can also find Julie—live and in person!—on various panels at Boskone 54, February 17-19 at the Westin Waterfront Hotel in Boston, MA. Stop by and checkout her reading on Saturday, February 18th, at 1:30 p.m. in the Independence room.

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Alan King’s (Poetry, W’13) book Point Blank was named among the “Best New Poetry of the New Year 2017” by the Washington Independent Review of Books! Learn more here.

Paul Kirsch (Popular Fiction, W’11) is writing for Obsidian Entertainment’s upcoming game—Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire—which has recently launched a crowdfunding campaign through Fig. You can learn more about the game and the campaign here. Fig is similar to Kickstarter in many respects, but also incorporates opportunities for financial investment in the game’s success. (Whether you’re a backer, an investor, or just an enthusiastic gamer with a taste for isometric D&D-esque PC games, I can’t recommend Deadfire enough. This is going to be a fun ride, and thanks for reading this deep into my ramblings. ~PK)

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Ellen Meeropol (Fiction, W’06) will be on a panel at AWP titled “Second Blooming: Women Authors Debuting after Fifty” on Friday, February 10, 10:30 a.m. She will also be reading from her third novel, Kinship of Clover, at Politics and Prose Bookstore on Friday, February 10, at 6:00 p.m.

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rowing-for-my-lifeBruce Pratt‘s (Fiction, S’04) short-story collection The Trash Detail has been selected for publication by New Rivers Press. His full-length play The King of France, which won the Meetinghouse Theatre Lab’s annual new play contest, received a staged reading on January 21 in Winter Harbor Main.

Kathleen Saville‘s (Creative Nonfiction, W’13) memoir Rowing for My Life: Two Oceans, Two Lives, One Journey has recently been published by Arcade Publishing, an imprint of Skyhorse Publishing; read about it here. She teaches creative writing at the American University in Cairo, Egypt.

incendiary-artPatricia Smith‘s (Poetry, S’08) 8th book of poetry, Incendiary Art, will be released on February 17 from Northwestern University Press. Her last two books were Gotta Go, Gotta Flow (City Files Press, 2015), a collaboration with award-winning Chicago photographer Michael Abramson, and Shoulda Been Jimi Savannah, winner of the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize for the best U.S. poetry book of 2012. Patricia has also been chosen as a 2018 Civitella Rainieri fellow—this summer, she will be in residence for six weeks in a 15th-century castle in rural Umbria, Italy.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) short story “The Maneaters” appears in the January issue of Black Static. This was the first story Bonnie brought to Stonecoast workshop.

FACULTY

On Friday, February 3, 2017, Jeanne Marie Beaumont (Poetry) will be visiting Syracuse to read in the Visiting Author Reading Series at the Downtown Writers Center at the YMCA, 340 Montgomery St., Syracuse, NY. The reading starts at 7:00 p.m. and is free. Later in the month, Jeanne Marie will be traveling to the AWP Conference in Washington, DC. If you are there, please stop by the CavanKerry Press Bookfair booth #330 on Friday, February 10th from 11:00-11:30 a.m., where she will be signing copies of Letters from Limbo.

David Anthony Durham (Fiction, Popular Fiction) is going to be the Genre Fiction Keynote speaker at this year’s Writing the Rockies Conference at Western Colorado University. He’ll be flying out there right after the Stonecoast summer residency to deliver an address he’s calling “The Virtues of the Multi-Genre Toolbox.”

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) flash fiction “The House Husband” was a runner-up for DC’s City Paper‘s fiction issue. It’s his first foray into Washington, DC-themed fiction, and given the current political situation, he’s expecting to write quite a bit more!

fireFire, a collection of interviews, essays, and short fiction by Elizabeth Hand (Fiction, Popular Fiction), has just been published by PM Press. In January, she was the subject of a profile at Literary Hub by Adrian Van Young, and her 2014 Salon essay on the Affordable Care Act was picked up by the Dept. of Health and Human Services as part of the effort to encourage people to enroll in the ACA. Recent reviews include Simon Reynolds’ Shock and Awe: Glam Rock and Its Legacy and Al Ridenour’s Krampus and the Old, Dark Christmas for The Los Angeles Times, and Anne Rice’s Prince Lestat and the Realms of Atlantis for The Washington Post.

Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) hopes to see fellow Stonecoasters at AWP February 8-11 in DC! She has had two events accepted at AWP 2017: she will read in the event “Written on a (Woman’s) Body: A Cross Genre Reading of Bold Writings about Women and Their Bodies”—which also features Dolen Perkins-Valdez—and Elizabeth will moderate “Adaptation in Three Acts: Adventures in Adapting Material for Scripts” (featuring Suzanne Strempek Shea as well as Danny Eaton and David Shields). Elizabeth will also give a brief reading at a New Rivers Press/Fairfield University party at Mandu restaurant February 9th at 6:00 p.m. Back home in Boston, on March 3rd at 7:00 p.m., Elizabeth will read from her novel We Got Him at the Dire Reading Series in Cambridge, MA, at The Out of the Blue Gallery. At 7:00 p.m. on March 24th, Elizabeth will read at Falmouth Public Library on Cape Cod. Finally, check out this new piece on Elizabeth and We Got Him by bestselling author Caroline Leavitt.

soap-opera-confidentialElizabeth Searle and Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) soon will be reading proofs of Soap Opera Confidential: Writers and Soap Insiders on Why We’ll Tune in Tomorrow as the World Turns Restlessly to the Guiding Light of Our Lives (McFarland). The life-long soap fans are delighted to have so many Stonecoast voices—current and past—in this collection of essays. In order of appearance in the book, past and present contributors from our community include Aaron Hamburger, Brenda Sparks Prescott, Ann Hood, Lesléa Newman, Shara McCallum, Nancy Holder, Ted Deppe, Marie Hannan-Mandel, Tigh Rickman, Erin Roberts, Susan Lilley, and Jamie Cat Callan. Stay tuned for the exact publication date and a schedule of readings… Suzanne is looking forward to being on two panels at AWP in DC this month, and thanks the hosts for including her. On Thursday, February 9, find her on Washington Convention Center Level 2, Room 209 ABC, from 10:30-11:45 a.m. as a panelist on Elizabeth Searle’s “Adaptation in Three Acts: Adventures in Adapting Material for Scripts.” Other panelists will include Danny Eaton, who wrote the one-woman play Mags: A Conversation With an Audience, based on Suzanne’s book This Is Paradise: An Irish Mother’s Grief, an African Village’s Plight and the Medical Clinic That Brought Fresh Hope to Both (PFP). From 4:30 to 5:45 p.m., find her again on Level Two, this time in Room 203 AB, for Helen Peppe’s panel “Juggling from Within: The Art of Voice,” also featuring Sue William Silverman, Alice Cohen, and Melanie Brooks. Speaking of Melanie Brooks, Suzanne is looking forward to the launch of Melanie’s first book, Writing Hard Stories (Beacon), at AWP, and also to introducing her when Melanie reads from her book Wed., February 15, at 7:00 p.m. at Broadside Bookshop, 247 Main St., Northampton, MA. Any Stonecoasters in the Western New England area are invited to meet up at the Broadside and cheer Melanie on as she begins to get this vital title into the world.

 

 

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