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Community News & Updates January 2020

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

ANNOUNCEMENTS

News from Stonecoast
Join the Stonecoast MFA community for a week of inspiring readings and discussions with Stonecoast’s award-winning faculty and guest writers, January 10-13th and 15-18th at the historic Harraseeket Inn in downtown Freeport, Maine.

The weeklong series includes flash faculty and guest readings, a conversation on the possibilities and perils of adapting one’s work for the stage, and a discussion of the inaugural WISE common text. The residency concludes with the Winter 2020 graduation ceremony.

A detailed schedule of the week’s events and readers can be found here.

CURRENT STUDENTS

In November, Nina B. Lichtenstein (Creative Nonfiction) was invited to Ottawa, Canada, to give a book talk on the occasion of the International Memorial Day for Jewish Refugees from Arab Lands. It was in connection with the recent publication of her translation from French to English of the novel For the Love of the Father by French-Tunisian-Jewish writer Chochana Boukhobza. Nina is also happy to share that her essay “Ink Stains and Blood Stains: The Spring of My Becoming” has been accepted for publication in the forthcoming Hippocampus anthology tentatively titled “INK” due out in 2020.

FACULTY

Tom Coash‘s (Playwriting, Dramatic Arts) play Raghead will be produced in North Hollywood by Actors Workout Studio, as part of their terrific TABOO Festival January 10 – February 8, 2020.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Fiction, Creative Nonfiction) novel Nirvana Is Here is now available as an audio book!

Elizabeth Hand (Popular Fiction, Fiction) sold a stand-alone psychological thriller, Baby Go Bang, to Mulholland Books/Little, Brown. Her novel Generation Loss has been optioned by British production company Fremantle.

Cara Hoffman‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) children’s novel Bernard Pepperlin was a Kirkus Best Book of 2019 and Audiofile’s Best Audio Book of the Year.

Broadway icon Andrea McArdle (the original Annie) will star in a new 2020 production of Elizabeth Searle’s (Fiction, Playwriting, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera. The production is being fully produced by longstanding Equity theater TheaterZone and is opening on February 6, 2020; it was featured in two recent articles in Broadway World. Further productions and a possible tour are in the works for 2020/2021; see the website for updates.

ALUMS

Elisabeth Tova Bailey’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’15) film short adaptation of her memoir The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating heads next to the Wild & Scenic Film Festival (CA), Victoria Film Festival (BC), and Kinofilm 16th Manchester International Short Film Fest (UK). The film also received a Jury’s Choice Award from the Thomas Edison Black Maria Film Festival, which tours throughout 2020.

Carina Bissett (Popular Fiction, S’18) is a finalist for the NESFA Short Story Contest. The story she submitted was one of the first pieces workshopped at Stonecoast with David Anthony Durham. The winners will be announced at BOSKONE 57 in February.

Linda Buckmaster (Creative Nonfiction, S’11) has had her essay “Alibi Bar, 1968” published in Atticus Review‘s “Super Unknown. Stories About Songs” series. Two of her poems have appeared in The Comstock Review, one in the Spring/Summer issue and one in the Fall/Winter. She has been awarded a writing residency in May at NES in Skagastrond, Iceland, to work on her current project—a literary journey across the North Atlantic. From there, she will go on to the Hebrides. She and Elizabeth Garber (Creative Nonfiction, ‘10) were on a panel at the WORD Conference in Blue Hill, Maine, with Jaed Coffin discussing the ethics of memoir.

Julie C. Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) piece “Flyover Country” can be found in the January/February issue of InterzoneFirst lines: “Lovers are like flash floods, car collisions, aneurysms: always a possibility but never exactly expected. A small-plane pilot for AeroFix Corp, Sam arrived in my bed via a tray of purple pansies and a convoy of trucks intent on invading the Verona Municipal Airport.” Richard Wagner created the amazing illustration. This will be Julie’s 7th story with Interzone and her 8th with TTA Press.

Lesley Heiser (Fiction, S’11) was thrilled to see her essay “Rose” up on Diagram this past year. She wishes all Stonecoasters the very best for 2020.

Veda Boyd Jones (Fiction, S17) has an essay in the January-February issue of Good Old Boat, available at newsstands now.

Mike Langworthy (Creative Nonfiction, W’11) is co-writing dialogue and lyrics for Take The High Road, a musical produced in Denver during 2020. The show will combine repurposed melodies from musical theater and popular music with an original story of a real estate developer who locks horns with, and falls for, a community activist fighting his attempts to build a resort in her idyllic mountain town. The show is being produced by Magic Moments, a company that for over thirty-five years has created large-cast, high-quality musical productions that give performers with a broad range of special needs, both physical and developmental, opportunities to work alongside seasoned professionals. Rehearsals begin in January for performances in late March 2020.

Fiona Lehn (Popular Fiction W’15) has a new speculative novella, Lift-Off, published by Devine Destinies. Click here to read more about the project and here to view the book trailer.

Kristin Leonard‘s (Fiction, S’18) poetry was published in Maine’s Best Emerging Poets 2019 anthology. Her short story, “Jason’s Daddy,” was published in The Showbear Family Circus.

The Thomas Memorial Library in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, will host Catharine H. Murray (Creative Nonfiction, S’17) on January 11th from 1:00-3:00 p.m. for Writing the Stories of Your Life, a free workshop on writing memoir. Catharine will then offer a Six-Week Series for Women at the Good Medicine Collective from January 13th to February 17th; Writing to Heal will incorporate small group support, instruction and practice for using writing as a way to move through loss. On January 26th from 9:00 a.m. to noon, Catharine will join with Deb Cook to offer Winter’s Deep Peace Practice: Yoga Nidra and Writing, a morning of deep rest and integration. Participants will move from Yoga Nidra into a quiet hour of meditative journaling supported by prompts and guidance.

Mary Heather Noble (Creative Nonfiction, W’14) is pleased to share that her long-form essay, “Plume: An Investigation,” will be published in the January 2020 issue of True Story. The essay was started during her time at Stonecoast and has been modified from her Stonecoast thesis.

Jenny O’Connell’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’17) flash nonfiction piece “How to Sleep in an Airport,” published last spring in Hippocampus, has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize! This November, she spoke about positive risk-taking and her 2014 solo trek across Finland to a packed Camden Opera House at Midcoast Pecha Kucha night. You can watch her speech here.

Bruce Pratt (Fiction, S’04) has poetry in or forthcoming from The Cafe Review, Coal City Review, and Connecticut River Review and anthologies from Main Street Rag and Flying Ketchup Press. On January 25, Bruce will be offering a seminar entitled “Creating Your Novel in Ninety Minutes” at the Blue Hill Library; this is open to the public but limited to twelve participants. Contact Hannah Cyrus at the library for more information. Bruce will also be teaching a seminar for Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance at the Cobscook Community Learning Center in Trescott on February 29 from 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. on learning to inhabit your fictional characters. Contact Hannah Perry at MWPA for details.

Sean Robinson (Popular Fiction, W‘14) doesn’t have much on the writing front, but just completed a Certificate of Graduate Studies in Educational Leadership and is now certifiable (exactly) as a school principal. He was also recently accepted into the Harvard Principal’s Center for a Certificate in School Management and Leadership. He has also, also, been accepted to a residency at the University of Washington’s Olympic Natural Resources Center this April. While he’s delighted, it all sounds way fancier than it is, he promises.

Patricia Smith, former faculty member and member of the Stonecoast 2008 class in poetry, has been named a Distinguished Professor for the City University of New York, the highest rank in the state’s university system.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) story “Where You Linger” will appear in the January/February issue of Uncanny Magazine.

Morgan Talty‘s (Fiction, W ’19) short story “The Blessing Tobacco” will be published this January in TriQuarterly. The story will also be excerpted in Literary Hub: The Best of the Literary Internet. 

Darlene Taylor (Fiction, W’17) received an award for a fellowship grant as an individual artist in literary arts from the DC Commission on Arts and the Humanities. She is completing research and writing that expands her short story “Piper’s March” into a novel (“Piper’s March” was published in Kweli Journal in 2018). In other news, Darlene will moderate a panel during the 2020 AWP Conference in San Antonio, Texas. The panel also features Breena Clarke of Stonecoast and authors Rion Amilcar Scott, Jacinda Townsend, and Crystal Wilkerson. The authors will discuss how fiction writers use historical imagination to create characters from little-known histories. “They Must Have Felt: Imagining Emotional Landscape and Place” is scheduled for Friday, March 6, 2020, from 12:10-1:25 p.m. in Room 205, Henry B. González Convention Center, Meeting Room Level.

Lisa C. Taylor (Poetry, S’04) was honored to be a part of a holiday reading in Orleans, MA, on December 27th with Tom Daley, Christine Jones, and J. Barrett Wolf, music by Jordan Renzi, sponsored by Voices of Poetry. Lisa has officially named her workshop offerings Whitewater Writing. She will offer an all-day writing retreat with a catered lunch on January 4th in Connecticut—snow date: January 11. This retreat is nearly full but contact Lisa if you are interested. Lisa is a fiction editor and interviewer for Wordpeace, an online magazine created by Lori Desrosier (the founder of Naugatuck Review). In the upcoming issue, Lisa interviewed Maida McKenna, founder of Word Scientists, a literacy organization in Nepal; and Kevin Brodie, an award-winning playwright who is currently working on a play about American Indian Schools directly related to time spent on a Shoshone reservation with his grandfather. This issue should be out in late February or early March. Lisa also writes book reviews; her latest review was on Look Look Look by Calista Buchen (Black Lawrence Press) and appeared in the Mom Egg Review in December. Western Stonecoasters: Lisa and her husband Russ will be moving to Colorado (near Durango) in late summer 2020. She would love to organize some readings and make contact with writers who live in that area. Finally, Lisa will be at AWP in San Antonio March 4-8 and would also like to meet up with Stonecoasters.

Melanie Viets (Creative Nonfiction, W’17) is pleased to share some of her efforts guest editing “Root Mapping” at The Learned Pig. Published features include new work from Rick Bass (Faculty: Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Writing for Social Change) and in January, a new essay by Catharine Murray (Creative Nonfiction, S’17). Submissions are welcome as the journal series continues in 2020.

 

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Community News & Updates January 2019

ANNOUNCEMENTS

The Task Before Us: Writing Truth to Power
Stonecoast MFA invites you to join Pulitzer Prize finalist Martín Espada (Poetry, Writing for Social Change) and award-winning writer Cheryl Clarke for an interactive discussion interrogating the intersection of creative writing and participatory democracy. Join us at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, January 18th, at the Harraseeket Inn in Freeport, Maine, to listen, question, and reconsider where you stand.

CURRENT STUDENTS

Nina Lichtenstein (Creative Nonfiction) is excited to be a new writing coach for the Young Writers and Leaders program at The Telling Room in Portland, ME, where she is also an editor of their “Stories” on-line publication. The Telling Room is a non-profit whose mission is to help young writers ages 6-18 to find their voices and share them with the world. She also is grateful to have completed her first round as a first reader for the Stonecoast Review: A Literary Arts Journal, an experience she found to be enlightening, since there’s nothing like seeing how it works on the other side of the submit/publish process. While in Norway this fall (writing away for her workshop submissions!) she published an essay in Klassekampen (Norway’s largest liberal/cultural newspaper)—in Norwegian—about the importance of meeting “the other” in the battle against racism and antisemitism. The non-profit organization Narrative 4, founded by Colum McCann, has asked for it to be translated, because in her essay she sheds light on their ground-braking work using storytelling as a tool for breaking down prejudice and building what they call “radical empathy.”

Lauren Erin O’Brien’s (Fiction) short story “No Horns, Just Sharp Bones” was named a Finalist for Glimmer Train‘s Short Story Award for New Writers.

FACULTY

Tom Coash (Playwriting, Dramatic Arts) has received an HBMG Foundation playwriting fellowship to attend the National Winter Playwriting Retreat 2019 in beautiful Creede, Colorado, where he will be working on his play Cry Havoc.

Susan Conley’s (Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, Writing for Social Change) new novel Elsey Come Home will be published on January 15th with Knopf. The book received a Starred Review from Publishers Weekly and is an Oprah Magazine “Ten Books to Read” for February, a Marie Claire Magazine “Best Fiction for 2019” pick, a Southern Living “Best New Books Coming Out Winter 2019” pick, a Fodor’s “2018 Holiday Books” pick, and a Library Journal “Pre-Pub Pick for January.” A book launch event will take place on January 17th at Mechanics Hall in Portland (6:00-9:00 p.m.), to which the Stonecoast Community is heartily invited.

Elizabeth Hand (Popular Fiction, Fiction) recently reviewed N.K. Jemisin’s How Long ‘til Black Future Month?: Stories for The Los Angeles Times and Lili Anolik’s Hollywood’s Eve: Eve Babitz and the Secret History of L.A. for The Washington Post.

Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction) has been selected as a judge for the World Fantasy Awards. The World Fantasy Convention will be held in Los Angeles from October 21-November 4. The other judges are Stephen Graham Jones, Kathleen Jennings, Garry Douglas Kilworth, and Tod McCoy.

Amanda Johnston (Poetry, Writing for Social Change) was recently interviewed by Cindy Huyser as part of her feature at the Bookwoman 2nd Thursday Reading Series. Read the interview here.

Elizabeth Searle’s (Fiction, Playwriting, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) one-act play Stolen Girl Song will be produced at the Act One: One Act play festival “off off Broadway” in Long Island City, New York, on January 2nd, 5th, and 10th at The Secret Theatre.  The play, most recently performed in September at The Hobart Book Village Festival of Women Writers, stars Broadway actress Heidi Friese (Matilda).

ALUMS

Elizabeth Beechwood (Popular Fiction, S’14) is pleased to announce that her short story “The Painted Ponies of Wiley Creek” was included in Not a Pipe Publishing’s anthology, Strongly Worded Women. Many thanks to everyone at the Ireland Howth residency (Winter ’17) for their input, especially Ted Deppe, as well as Stonecoasters Sarah Flynn ParkeGenevieve Williams, and Andrea Adams.

Katie Bickham’s (Poetry, S’13) second book of poetry, Mouths Open to Name Her, was selected by Louisiana Poet Laureate Ava Leavell Haymon for inclusion in her Barataria Poetry Series. It will be published by LSU Press in February 2019.

Brenda Cooper (Fiction, S’17) is pleased to announce the publication date for A Year Without a Winter from Columbia University Press. She worked as a fiction editor for the book alongside Arizona State University editors Joey Eschrich and Cynthia Selin through the ASU Center for Science and the Imagination. The four fiction stories in this mix of fiction and essays about climate change include work by Tobias Buckell (now a faculty member at Stonecoast), Nnedi Okorafor, Nancy Kress, and Vandana Singh.

The Butcher’s Daughter: A Memoir by Florence Grende (Creative Nonfiction, S’08), has won the 2018 Kindle Book Award for Non-Fiction. The memoir had previously won the Reader’s Digest 2017 Book Award and received Honorable Mention in the Eric Hoffer 2017 awards.

Penny Guisinger’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’13) piece “The Five C’s” received a Pushcart nomination. The piece appeared as part of the Voices of Addiction feature at The Rumpus in September 2018.

Lesley Heiser (Fiction, S’11) recently published a review of Nicole Walker’s Sustainability: A Love Story on the Brevity blog. Her essay “Rose” is forthcoming in Diagram magazine. She’s enjoying a new behind-the-scenes experience as a nonfiction reader for Carve Magazine.

Gail Hovey (Creative Nonfiction, S’11) read “Lost Change,” an except from her memoir What Goes by the Name of Love, at the Brooklyn Film & Arts Festival Nonfiction Award Event on December 21, 2018, in Brooklyn Heights. She was a finalist for the award and is seeking an agent for her memoir, begun at Stonecoast.

Two Stonecoasters are involved in Sleuthfest (Boca Raton, FL, March 14-17), the conference for mystery writers organized by the Florida Chapter of Mystery Writers of America. GOH is T. Jefferson Parker. Other guests include Alexia Gordon, Alex Segura, Tom Straw, and Elaine Viets. There will be half-a-dozen editors and agents taking pitches. Michael L. Joy (Popular Fiction, S’13) is Conference Co-Chair. Alison McMahan (Popular Fiction, W’10) will teach a workshop “Practice Your Pitch” Thursday, March 14, 2019, at 10:45 am. She will also appear on the panel “Back to School: Writing for Middle Grades & Young Adults” Saturday, March 16, 2019, at 10:30 am.

Catharine H. Murray’s (Creative Nonfiction, S’17) television interview with Portland’s Rob Caldwell of 207 will air the first week of January on WCSH. Her recent radio interview with Bill Radke of KUOW in Seattle can be heard in the third part of this show. Catharine will be reading from her memoir Now You See the Sky in Camden at the Public Library on Sunday, January 13th, at 2:00 p.m. Local memoirist and USM writing professor Liz Peavey will join Catharine in conversation about Now You See the Sky and memoir writing at the Portland Public Library Lunch and Learn on Wednesday, January 30th, from 12:00-1:00 p.m.

Bruce Pratt‘s (Fiction, S’04) short-story collection The Trash Detail from New Rivers Press is now available in stores and online. His poetry chapbook Forms and Shades is due mid-January from Clare Songbirds Publishing. Schoodic Arts for All will present some of his one-act plays as part of their summer program in Winter Harbor, Maine, during the first two weeks of August 2019. And Bruce’s short story “Eastern Bluebird” is in the newest edition of Portland Monthly Magazine.

“Maximum Security,” a poem by Steve Rhodes (Poetry, W’11), appears in the current issue of Hospitality, published by the Open Door Community of Baltimore—“A Prophetic Discipleship Community Honoring the Black Jesus, Dorothy Day, and Martin Luther King, Jr.”

Erin Roberts (Popular Fiction, W ’18) ended 2018 with something a little different—the release of her first game. “Thanks for the Memories” is a short work of interactive fiction available online at Sub-Q MagazineBonus story notes can be found on her website, as can her summary of all her published work in 2018. Happy new year to all!

 

 

 

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Community News & Updates March 2018

ANNOUNCEMENTS

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

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

ALUMS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

FACULTY

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

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

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

Ashley Spencer as “Tonya”

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

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

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

 

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Community News & Updates May 2017

STONECOAST REUNION 2017

Please mark your calendars for the Stonecoast reunion, July 14-17 in Brunswick, Maine! The planning committee has been hard at work, and we’re excited to announce the schedule of events. We’d like to thank all of you who submitted proposals for readings and seminars!

We are proud to feature readings by Julia Munemo, Tony Pisculli, Richard Squires, and Cheryl Boyce Taylor. Seminar presenters include Mihku Anderson, Melanie Brooks, Meriah Lysistrata Crawford, Alexandria Delcourt, Penny Guisinger, David Healey, Barbara Kelly, Ellen Meeropol, Suri Parmar, Lisa C. Taylor, and Erin Underwood. Reunion attendees will also have the opportunity to sign up for limited-seating faculty seminars.

To see the full events schedule and register to attend the reunion, please visit the site here. All alumni who register by May 15th will receive a beautiful Stonecoast MFA coffee mug!

ALUMS

Emma Bouthillette (Creative Nonfiction, S’12) is pleased to announce her first book, A Brief History of Biddefordis scheduled to launch June 12, 2017. In this work of nonfiction published by The History Press, Emma explores four centuries of her hometown and its evolution from fishing port to booming mill town to a city re-imagined. Visit her website www.EmmaBouthillette.com for further information about the writer, the book, and news updates for Maine reading and signing events.

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) had a great time at StokerCon the last weekend of April with other Stonecoasters Alumni and Faculty. She presented as a panelist on “Power Writer: How Games Can Level Up Your Fiction” and “Beat Sheets and Novel Outlines” at StokerCon and gave a paper titled “Shirley Jackson and the Fear of Ordinary People” as part of the Ann Radcliffe Academic Conference. Karen attended her first novel-signing fair on April 8 for Swift For The Sun and people seemed to enjoy her pirate ship decorations. She was interviewed on local radio station 89.1 FM KHOI’s Community Bookshelf show on April 11. Viva la Stonecoast!

Karen Bovenmyer at StokerCon 2017, with pirate ship

Julie C. Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) short story “Raven Hair” can be found in the most recent issue of The Cream City Review. “Raven Hair,” among other things, is a riff on fairy tales, the seething resentment of a certain type of lover, and the inevitability of transformation. “Raven Hair” is also part of Julie’s collection, Uncommon Miracles, scheduled for release by PS Publishing later this year.

Florence Grende‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) memoir The Butcher’s Daughter has been nominated a finalist for the Eric Hoffer New Horizon Prize, which recognizes “superior work by a debut author.” Winner to be announced in May.

Lesley Heiser (Fiction, S’11) published a work of literary journalism, “Growing Season,” on The Rumpus, where it was the debut story in the new series Torch, on the refugee and immigrant experience in America. Please check the story out here.

Alison McMahan‘s (Popular Fiction, W’10) short mystery “The New Score” appeared in the Fish Out of Water anthology (Wildside Press, April 2017), and her short story “The Drive By” appeared in the Busted! Arresting Stories from the Beat anthology (LevelBest Books, April 2017). “Kamikaze Iguanas” will appear in the MWA anthology for middle grade readers entitled Scream and Scream Again, edited by R.L. Stine (HarperCollins, 2018).

Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks? Novelist Ellen Meeropol (Fiction, W’06) has two recent essays published: “Losing Mom and Finding Flo” in The Writer Magazine, April issue, and “Fiction and the Costs of Activism” for the Powell’s Bookstore Blog. She will be reading from her new novel, Kinship of Clover, on May 16 at PRINT Bookstore in Portland.

Renée Olander (Poetry, W’05) has a poem, “Grace Sherwood, Witch of Pungo, Advanced in Age,” in the new anthology Forgotten Women (edited by Ginny Lowe Conners, Grayson Books, 2017); another poem, “Llewellyn Avenue Redevelopment,” is forthcoming in Free State Review.

L​isa Romeo (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) is now represented by Joelle Delbourgo Associates Literary Agency. Lisa’s longform essay, “An Attractive Portal to Uncertainty,” appears in the new print issue of the journal Harpur Palate (Vol. 16, No. 1). In early May, Lisa is teaching a one-day workshop, “The Art of Short Nonfiction Prose,” in Bedminster, New Jersey, sponsored by Tiferet Journal. Her lyrical, second person essay, “From Boys to Men.” kicked off Motherwell ​Magazine’s Motherhood and Waiting series. ​Her ​essay​, “Why Can’t It Be Me?,” is part of a new anthology, The Book of Hope: 31 True Stories from Real People Who Didn’t Give Up (Silver Owl Publications). And something light, “March Madness with my Son: Why I Love this Crazy Month” ​was on the Grown and Flown ​website during the NCAA tournament.

Linda K. Sienkiewicz (Fiction, S’09) is super excited to announce that her debut novel, In the Context of Love, has won its FOURTH finalist award: the 2016 Sarton Women’s Book Award from Story Circle Network. Also, Linda is in the 2017 Metro Detroit cast of the nationwide live storytelling event, Listen To Your Mother. Linda will be sharing the story of how she coped with the suicide of her eldest child in 2011.

Kara Storti‘s (Fiction, S’06) YA novel, Tripping Back Blue, won a 2017 Independent Publisher Book Award (IPPY) gold medal in the Young Adult Fiction category. The IPPY Awards, launched in 1996, are designed to bring increased recognition to the deserving but often unsung titles published by independent publishers. The contest drew approximately 5,000 entries from across the world.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) take on Kafka’s The Metamorphosis“Needle Mouth”, appeared in Podcastle. Her collaborative triptych poem “The Santa Monica Prophecies” appeared in Mithila Review. And her flash fiction “The Ocean Indoors” appeared in Four Way Review.

Lisa C. Taylor (Poetry, ‘04) has a poem in the recent anthology Washing Windows? Irish Women Write Poetry, published by Arlen House in honor of Eavan Boland and Catherine Rose who both played a part in the beginning of this wonderful Irish literary press. Annie Deppe also has a poem in this anthology! Lisa will offer a workshop: She Did What? Surprise in Fiction on May 13 at 10:00 a.m. at the Clickspace in Northampton. This event is sponsored by Straw Dog Writers Guild and the public can register for this event; this will be a generative workshop. She will also be offering a workshop on Hybrid Writing (mixing genres) at the Stonecoast Alumni Reunion July 14-17. I hope to see some of you there!

Erin Underwood (Popular Fiction, S’09) is a nominee for the Best Fanzine Hugo Award with her co-editors of Journey Planet. Her edition of Journey Planet featured a historical look back at 54 years of Boskone, New England’s longest running science fiction and fantasy convention. The Hugo Awards, presented annually since 1955, are science fiction’s most prestigious award and are voted on by members of the World Science Fiction Convention (“Worldcon”), which is taking place in Helsinki, Finland, this August.

FACULTY

The trade paperback version of David Anthony Durham‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) The Risen is now out from Anchor Books. On June 6th, David will be featured in the Mosesian Arts Center’s Earfull series in Boston . He’ll be reading along with Jayne Anne Phillips in an evening of words of and music. He’d love to see some Stonecoast faces at the event!

Elizabeth Hand (Popular Fiction, Fiction) was a Guest of Honor at Stokercon, in Long Beach, along with George R.R. Martin and Stonecoast’s own Nancy Holder, the convention’s toastmaster. Hand’s novel Hard Light is a finalist for the Bran Stoker Award. She did a podcast interview for Wired.com, talking about her recent book Fire and her experiences with a government think tank, researching the future of fire management in an environmentally challenged age. Forthcoming reviews include Jeff Vandermeer’s Borne, for The Los Angeles Times.

Elizabeth Searle’s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) novel We Got Him has been chosen as one of three finalists for the 2016 Midwest Book Awards in Fiction. The awards have been running for 27 years by the Midwest Independent Publishing Association; winners will be announced in May. In April, Elizabeth was interviewed about We Got Him on Urban Update (Channel 7, NBC Boston), Woman Watch (forthcoming on WBZ-AM radio, Boston), and WATD-FM, the South Shore News show. On April 30, she and Suzanne Strempek Shea have their book launch for Soap Opera Confidential at Newtonville Books in MA, featuring star readers including Stonecoast alumna Brenda Sparks Prescott. On May 11th, Elizabeth will read from her novel We Got Him at the Kittery Library in Kittery, ME, at 6:30 p.m. Finally: in Chicago, the Jeff Awards for Theater featured two nominations—Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress—for the 2016 Chicago production of Elizabeth’s Tonya & Nancy: the Rock Opera.

 

 

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Community News & Updates August 2016

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Elisabeth Tova Bailey (Creative Nonfiction, S’15) will have an essay in the forthcoming anthology Nature, Love, Medicine, edited by Tom Fleischner, to be published by Torrey House Press.

Patricia Barletta (Popular Fiction, W’12) will be presenting a workshop, based on her graduation presentation on using body language in fiction, at the Connecticut Romance Writers’ mini-conference, Fiction Fest, September 9-11. The conference is genre-friendly and not geared only to romance writers, so she’d love to see some fellow Stonecoasters wandering the halls.

GenCon Writers' SymposiumKaren Bovenmyer’s (Popular Fiction, S’13) sexy poem “Dream Weaver” was published by the literary “The Skinny” Poetry Journal. Shhhhh, don’t tell them it was inspired by a vampire romance novel Karen’s been re-reading (J. R. Ward, anyone? Mary and Rhage 4ever!). Karen’s also very excited to be moderating four panels of the seven she’s presenting on at the GenCon Writers’ Symposium August 4-7 in Indianapolis. Stonecoast Alumni Mur Lafferty will also be presenting on panels—a good time will be had by all! Folk Horror Revival’s Corpse Roads anthology, which features two of Karen’s poems—a new one called “Effects of Moonlight” and a reprint of “So Normal and Unwritten”—is now available for purchase. Also, her flash “What the Dollhouse Said,” which was chosen as a top ten Women in Horror entry, has been reprinted in Mocha Memoirs Press’s Dark Brew: 10 Tales of Horror micro-anthology. She’s also sold a fairy-tale novella she wrote while she was a Stonecoast student called “The Beaded Slippers,” which will appear in Crimson Edge Press’s Maidens and Magic anthology. Woo hoo, being a writer is so much fun! Thanks, Stonecoast!

John Florio (Fiction/Popular Fiction, S’07) has a new article on The New Yorker website; you can read it here. His next book, One Nation Under Baseball, will be published by University of Nebraska Press in Spring 2017.

RosencoverHank Garfield (Fiction, S’04) wrote the foreword to a forthcoming book about his great-great grandfather. Murdering the President: Alexander Graham Bell and the Race to Save James Garfield, by Fred Rosen, will be published by the University of Nebraska Press on September 1. Hank is currently penning articles for Points East, a boating magazine that circulates throughout New England, and looking for a publisher for his latest novel, A Sprauling Family Saga.

Lesley Heiser (Fiction, S’11) has a short story, “La Concordia,” in the spring issue of Boulevard. Her story “Via Dolorosa” was a finalist in Boulevard’s 2016 Emerging Writers Short Story Contest.

Karen Jersild‘s (Fiction, S’06) short story “Where You’re Looking Is Where You’re Going” appeared in the Spring 2016 issue of Pinyon literary journal.

Constance McKee (Fiction, W’13) was thrilled to win the Georgia Author of the Year award in the Science Fiction/Fantasy category for her novel The Girl in the Mirror. Many thanks to her Stonecoast mentors, especially Suzanne Strempek Shea and Boman Desai, for their excellent guidance and support.

Constance McKee

Constance McKee

Anne Britting Oleson (Poetry, W’05) has been selected to be one of the twenty-four 2016-17 Amtrak Writers in Residence. According to Amtrak’s press release, “Amtrak is excited to announce the selection of the second group of writers selected to participate in the #AmtrakResidency program. Over the next year, they will work on writing projects of their choice in the unique workspace of a long-distance train. The residents offer a diverse representation of the writing community and hail from across the country.” View the press release here.

Michaela Roessner‘s (Popular Fiction, S’08) novella “Ah, Sweet Mystery of Life,” about the strange outcome of a chance encounter between the great illustrator/cartoonist Winsor McCay and a very young W.C. Fields in a railway beer hall in Chillicothe in 1896, has been reprinted in the newly revived OMNI Magazine Online. The link for a free read is here.

An essay, “Romeo at Pin Oak,” by Olive L. Sullivan (Fiction/Cross Genre, S’15) appears in the summer issue of The Konza Journal. Two of Olive’s poems, “A Woman is Walking” and “Sylvia Bloody Plath,” are appearing in Sisterspeak as well.

STUDENTS

2016 Endeavour Logo FINALIST 150Brenda Cooper (Fiction) has two poems, “Visitors” and “Extinction,” appearing in the Abyss & Apex, Issue 59, Third Quarter 2016. Her work is appearing beside fellow Stonecoast student David Arroyo, whose poem “Captain Volta” is in the same issue. Brenda’s 2015 novel, Edge of Dark, is a finalist for the 2015 Endeavour Award, an award given by the Oregon Science Fiction Conventions, Inc. (OSFCI) for the best science fiction or fantasy book published during the preceding year.

FACULTY

Liminal BlueTed Deppe‘s (Poetry, Coordinator of Stonecoast in Ireland) sixth book has just been published by Arlen House in Ireland. Liminal Blue comprises twelve shorter poems, a lyric essay on memory, train horns, and loss, and a book-length poem that begins with a swim after his father’s death and then explores the thresholds between land and sea, waking and sleep, and the living and the dead.  Set mostly on the coast of Connemara, the 54-page poem begins as an elegy for his parents and ends up celebrating the lives of many others, including Philip Levine, Seamus Heaney, Elizabeth Bishop, Dermot Healy, and W.G. Sebald.  The easiest way to purchase Liminal Blue from the U.S. is to order it from Kenny’s Bookshop in Galway—they offer free delivery!  The link is https://www.kennys.ie/liminal-blue.html

High StakesDavid Anthony Durham‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) novel The Risen has just been purchased for publication in Spanish by Ediciones B. The film rights for Pride of Carthage have been renewed by Sonar Entertainment. His multi-part story will appear next month in the Wild Card’s collaborative novel High Stakes, edited by George R.R. Martin.

Elizabeth Hand‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) short novel Wylding Hall just received this year’s Shirley Jackson Award for best novella. Her noir novels were covered in an article by Terrence Rafferty in The Atlantic Monthly, on the rise of women crime writers. Last month, she taught at the Yale Writers Conference. In August, she’ll be on book tour in Sweden, promoting the Swedish editions of the Cass Neary books, and will be the only American writer featured at Gotland Crimetime, the Scandinavian literary festival celebrating Nordic noir.

Jim Kelly (Popular Fiction) has sold a new novelette called “One Sister, Two Sisters, Three” to Clarkesworld, where it will appear in the Tenth Anniversary issue in October. Speaking of October, his ten minute play Glitch will receive its first production in Chicago as part of Otherworld Theater’s Paragon science fiction play festival (40 Plays in 2 Days) October 1-2.

Elizabeth Searle‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) forthcoming novel We Got Him was featured in The Boston Globe on July 8, 2016. Elizabeth talks with SC faculty star Breena Clark (Fiction) about the upcoming Hobart Village Festival of Women Writers (Sept 9-11) and more on this new podcast.

Elizabeth Searle and Breena Clark

Elizabeth Searle and Breena Clark

On July 15th, Governor Terry McAuliffe named Tim Seibles (Poetry) the Poet Laureate of Virginia.

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Community News & Updates June 2015

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Karen Bovenmyer‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) drabble about an unfortunate house cat entitled “What Dolls Eat” will appear in The Were-Traveler in late May/early June. She is most pleased the editor called it “damn creepy” in her acceptance letter.

Jennifer Marie Brissett (Popular Fiction, S’11) published a short story “A Song For You” on Motherboard themed from the Donny Hathaway song of the same name and the myth of Orpheus. Her novel Elysium has been placed on the James Tiptree, Jr. Award Honor List and is a Finalist for the Locus Award for Best First Novel.

808_largeJulie C. Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) story “The Re’em Song” is now available in issue 258 of Interzone. Turns out so is Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) story “Doors.” This is almost more fun than one Stonecoast writer can handle—thankfully there are two of them to handle the load.

Hank Garfield (Fiction, S’04) will present a paper entitled “Madmen on the Water: The Golden Globe Singlehanded Sailboat Race of 1968-69 and Robert Stone’s Outerbridge Reach at the annual Sport Literature Association conference June 28 in Johnson City, Tennessee. See Hank’s blog, Slower Traffic, on walking, bicycling and not owning a car, at slowertraffic.net.

Bone SongBunny Goodjohn‘s (Poetry, W’07) first poetry collection, Bone Song, launches at the downtown YWCA in Lynchburg on June 18th at 7:15 p.m. Bone Song won the 2014 Liam Rector Prize and includes a jacket blurb from the rather fabulous Baron Wormser. The collection is available at Amazon; however, signed copies with free positive energy may be ordered from Bunny’s Etsy store.

Penny Guisinger (Creative Nonfiction, S’13) is proud to announce that her first book, a collection of micro-essays called Postcards from Here, will be released by Vine Leaves Press in 2016. Some pieces from the book have been previously published, and curious people can read online excerpts here and here.

Lesley Heiser (Fiction, S’11) won the 2015 Maine Literary Award for Short Nonfiction for her lyric essay “Saudade,” which was first published in The Stonecoast Review. She thanks Review editors Alexandria DelCourt, Alexis Paige, and others for helping to improve the piece. A shorter version was published this month in Hippocampus Magazine and is available here. Earlier this month, Lesley had a review/essay inspired by Los Angeles writer Wendy C. Ortiz’s second memoir, Hollywood Notebook, up on The Rumpus.

Alan King (Poetry, W’13) created a book trailer for his debut poetry collection, Drift.

The High Cost of Flowers by Cynthia Kraack (Fiction, W’10) won the best literary fiction award and the best contemporary fiction award in the 2014 Midwest Book Awards held April 13. This was the 25th anniversary of the awards with books submitted by independent, small, and academic presses in a twelve-state region. The High Cost of Flowers was released by Calumet Editions.

0615asimovs_smWill Ludwigsen (Popular Fiction, W’11) appears in the July 2015 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction with “Acres of Perhaps.”

Mary Heather Noble‘s (Creative Nonfiction, W’14) essay “Reintroduction” is featured in Issue 7: Wilderness of Minerva Rising. She will be participating in the Bread Loaf Orion Environmental Writers’ Conference in Ripton, Vermont, this month, and will be working with acclaimed environmental writer Scott Russell Sanders. Mary Heather has also been invited as a writer-in-residence for PLAYA’s “Beyond Creating: A Climate of Change,” an Art + Ecology themed artist retreat that fosters collaboration among artists and scientists around environmental issues. PLAYA is a nonprofit organization based in Summer Lake, Oregon, that supports innovative thinking through work in the arts, literature, natural sciences and other fields of creative inquiry.

The 2014 edition of American Fiction (New Rivers Press)—an annual anthology of the best new fiction from established and emerging writers, edited by Bruce Pratt (Fiction, S’04)—has just been awarded the Midwest Independent Publishers Association award for Fiction: Short Story/Anthology, the first time an anthology has won the top prize. Former Stonecoast Director Lee Hope is one of the authors in the anthology, and founding faculty member Michael C White was the finalist and prize-awarding judge. He read the submissions blind. Submissions for the 2016 are being accepted through Submittable. Details are available at the New Rivers Press web site.

Lisa Romeo‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’08) narrative essay “Your Boyfriend’s Back” appears in the May issue of Front Porch. Lisa will present at HippoCamp 15, Hippocampus Magazine’s creative nonfiction conference in August. A preview of her session is at their blog.

Kara L. Storti’s (Fiction, S’06) debut young adult novel, Indigo in D-Town, will be released in Spring 2016 by CarolRhoda Lab, a division of Lerner Publishing Group. The book is about charming but tortured Phineas “Finn” Walt, a seventeen-year-old drug dealer who develops an unexpected friendship with an 80-year-old addict. Together they harvest and deal an unknown drug that transports the user to a favorite memory after which a “souvenir” appears from the past. The drug “hippo” is miraculous, highly addictive, and threatens to ruin Finn’s life by dredging up horrific childhood memories, tumbling him further into heroin abuse, and involving a psychopathic drug king out for blood.

51K-wdh5TxL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Nancy Swan (Fiction, W’11) is honored to have her essay “An Internship at New Rivers Press” included in the 50th Anniversary publication of New Rivers Press titled Paper Camera. This edition is published as a celebration of the enduring quality of the small press in the face of an ever-increasing pressure by other modes of publication in the writing world. The contents are intended to highlight the dynamic range of material considered by New Rivers Press as noteworthy of finding its way into print.

Lisa C. Taylor (Poetry, ’04) is the winner of the New Works Competition at Hugo House for a flash fiction story, “Mosaic.” She will read alongside Meg Wolitzer, Justin Torres, and Amelia Gray in Seattle the end of May. Growing a New Tail, Lisa’s debut collection of short fiction, will launch late summer 2015 and in September in Dublin and Galway. The book will be published by Arlen House, distributed by Syracuse University Press.

Julie L. Vandekreke‘s (formerly Scharf; Creative Nonfiction, S’10) poem “Transparent” is forthcoming in the June 2015 edition of Mused: Bella Online Literary Review.

Karrie Waarala (Poetry, S’11) is pleased to announce that her full-length poetry manuscript, Pierce & Brand’s World of Dangerous Wonders, is currently a semifinalist in the 2015 Negative Capability Press Book Competition. In addition, her chapbook manuscript, Imperative, is currently a semifinalist in YesYes Books’ 2015 Vinyl 45s Chapbook Contest.

2015 Negative Capability Press Book CompetitionMarco Wilkinson (Creative Nonfiction, S’13) has two new pieces out.  His essay, “A House of Swing Doors: This Future Life (Calvatea gigantea)” on mushrooms and mortality, which began and greatly profited from being in a Stonecoast workshop, is in the May issue of DIAGRAM. His piece “Some Rules for Foraging” will appear in the summer issue of Taproot. Marco was also a finalist for the Sumer Literary Seminar Disquiet program in Lisbon and will be participating in the program this summer.

FACULTY

Jaed Coffin (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Writing for Social Change) will be telling a story for The Moth, on May 30th, at a sold-out show at Portland’s State Theater. The episode will be broadcast nationally on NPR. His story will be about the brief and wondrous life of Poppins, the cat.

Portuguese The Sacred Band V2The final volume of David Anthony Durham‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) Acacia series comes out this month in Portugal. It’s called Acácia – Vozes da Profecia, and is the sixth book in the series, as the publisher, Saída de Emergência, divided each book into two volumes.

Aaron Hamburger‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) short story “The Safe Word” will be published in the fall issue of Zone 3 literary magazine.

Elizabeth Hand‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) recent reviews include The Fellowship: The Literary Lives of the Inklings, in the Los Angeles Times, and Stephen King’s Finders Keepers for the Washington Post.

Labor Poetic Labor! 2Eléna Rivera (Poetry, Translation) has a new poem available on-line at Essay Press in the second volume of Labor Poetic Labor!. Stephen Motika (Poetry) has written an afterword to this issue.

The New York City premiere of Elizabeth Searle‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) rock opera—Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera—now has tickets on sale. It will be produced this summer as an official full-production show at the New York Musical Festival (NYMF) with dates now announced and tickets available June 1st for NYMF pass holders and June 15th for the general public. In addition to the performances, songs from the rock opera will be performed on June 25 at two showcase events: a NYMF Preview at the World Wide Plaza, West 50th and 8th Ave in NYC, 12:00-2:15 p.m. and also a showcase in the Broadway Sessions series at the Laurie Beechman Theater, 11:00 p.m., hosted by Broadway star Ben Cameron. In addition, there will be a Songwriters’ Showcase for Elizabeth in NYC later in July, details TBA. Elizabeth will be in NYC with the show during the residency but will be at Stonecoast in spirit and hopes to see Stonecoast alums at Rinkside. Check out the coverage in Backstage and Theater Mania. For more info and updates on performances and tickets, visit the show’s website.

Tonya & Nancy The Rock Opera NYMF Logo Hi Res

Bay Path University in Longmeadow, Massachusetts, will feature Stonecoast grad Elli Meeropol (Fiction, W’06) at its eighth annual “Are you a Bookie?” gathering of book clubs and book lovers, June 14, 2:00 to 4:00 p.m., at the campus, 588 Longmeadow St., Longmeadow, Massachusetts. Admission is free of charge and cake will be served. Elli will be reading from On Hurricane Island, her new novel. Several Stonecoasters are featured in the anthology that will be read from by panelist Nina Gaby, editor of Dumped. The event will include Karen Shepard as keynote speaker. She is the author of The Celestials, an historical novel inspired by the true story of 75 Chinese laborers brought to North Adams, Massachusetts, in 1870 to break a strike at a shoe factory. Emcee will be Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction), the university’s writer in residence and director of its writing program. All authors’ books will be available for sale and signing.

CONFERENCES

DSC_5904There is still space for writers to enroll at Iota: Short Prose Conference! Started by alum Penny Guisinger as a third semester project, Iota is now in its third year of offering high-quality writing instruction in short fiction, essays, prose poems, and all things flash and micro. You define “short”—it’s anything shorter than “long.” This year’s dates are July 23-26, and faculty are Richard Hoffman and Sarah Einstein. Come spend a long weekend writing short forms in Downeast Maine!

charles and sue-iotaCALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

Interested in writing for the Stonecoast Community blog? We’re looking for all types of essays from alumni, students, and faculty about creative nonfiction, fiction, poetry, film, writing, MFAs, post-MFA, interviews, etc. Please contact Robert E. Stutts if you have something you’d like to share.

 

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Community News & Updates February 2015

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Eric M. Bosarge (Popular Fiction, W’12) is happy to announce that Medallion Press has acquired his novel The Time Train. It will be released in 2016.

Jennifer Marie Brissett‘s (Popular Fiction S’11) debut novel Elysium has been listed as a Locus New and Notable Book and also has been nominated for the 2014 Philip K. Dick Award. She will be reading and signing with Carlos Hernandez at the NYRSF Reading Series in SoHo on February 3rd.

13coverimage Julie C. Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) story “The Church of Forgotten Gods” is out in the latest issue of the magazine A cappella Zoo.

Terri Glass’s (Creative Nonfiction / Poetry, S’13) haiku chapbook, Birds, Bees, Trees, Love, Hee Hee will be forthcoming from Finishing Line Press in mid-March. Cait Johnson states, “Glass delivers her crystalline observations of nature—and of being human—with incisive thrust and an unexpected wry humor. I could spend hours happily inhabiting these beautiful miniature worlds, each so alive, so sensual, so ultimately delicious. Like gems shining with concentrated brilliance, here we find language and insight distilled to the bone.” To order, click here.

Lesley Heiser (Fiction, S’11) recently enjoyed having her first flash fiction publication at Stirring: A Literary Collection. She’d love for you to read “Speaking in English, Speaking in Sudanese” here. Her memoir piece, “Saudade,” which was originally published in the Stonecoast Review, will be reprinted in Hippocampus Magazine in May 2015. Her email is lesleyheiser@yahoo.com.

Two Faint Lines in the Violet (Negative Capability Press) by Lissa Kiernan (Poetry, S’11) is a 2014 Julie Suk Award finalist for best poetry book by an independent press.

Flowers-COVERIt has been a busy six months for Cynthia Kraack (Fiction, W’10). Leaving Ashwood, the final book in the dystopian Ashwood trilogy, was released by North Star Press. In December, Calumet Editions released The High Cost of Flowers, a literary novel. The opening chapters of this book were reviewed in workshop sessions at Stonecoast. The High Cost of Flowers follows a family adapting to the rapid decline of its matriarch from heart disease and dementia.

Joe M. McDermott (Popular Fiction, S’11) sold the short story “Farmer” to Analog Magazine, an excerpt of an unpublished novel.

Sandra McDonald (Popular Fiction, W’05) sold the story “The Cthulhu Navy Wife,” a Lovecraftian mash-up, to the anthology The Mammoth Book of Cthulhu for publication later this year. She tweets about markets, writing tips, and more @sandramcdonald.

22999456Ellen Meeropol‘s (Fiction, W’06) second novel, On Hurricane Island, will launch on March 3 at the Odyssey Bookshop in South Hadley, MA, with events scheduled in Massachusetts, Virginia, New York, Texas, Minneapolis, and Calfifornia (full event schedule here). Former Stonecoast faculty member Walter Wetherell writes that “Meeropol takes on the complexities and dangers of contemporary life in a novel that starts fast and ratchets up the tension all the way to the end.” On Hurricane Island can be pre-ordered from Red Hen Press.

Janet Passehl (Poetry, S’10) has an untitled poem in Caliban Online 18.

Michaela Roessner-Herman (Popular Fiction, S’08) just wrapped up a year of serving as one of the judges on the 2014 Philip K. Dick science fiction award panel.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam (Popular Fiction, S’13) had three original stories out in January: “He Came From a Place of Openness and Truth” in Lightspeed (cross-published on io9), “Everything Beneath You” in Beneath Ceaseless Skies, and “Nostalgia” in Interzone“The Damaged” was reprinted in Story; it first appeared in the January 2014 issue of Interzone. Her story “Six Ways to Break Her” appeared on SmokeLong Quarterly, accompanied by her mother’s artwork.

STUDENTS

David Arroyo‘s (Poetry) poem “Eve’s Cheeseburger” was published in the January issue of Stirring.

FACULTY

Ted Deppe (Poetry, Coordinator of Stonecoast in Ireland) and Annie Deppe will be giving a reading on 12 February at 7:00 p.m., Breck Suite, Wright Hall, Bay Path University, Longmeadow, MA (free and open to the public). On 14 February, Ted will give a talk on writing titled “Taking it All the Way to Coleman’s: On Abandoning the Good for the Marvelous,” at Bay Path’s Writer’s Day from 11:05 a.m. to 12:20 p.m.  On Thursday 5 March at 7:00 p.m., Ted and Annie will give a reading at Trinity House, at Trinity Preparatory School in Winter Park, FL (free and open to the public).  On Wednesday 25 March, at 8:00 p.m. Ted and Annie will read at the Maier Museum of Art, 1 Quinlan Street, Randolph College, Lynchburg, VA (free and open to the public).

1-Marquart_Small Buried Things_2015Debra Marquart’s (Creative Nonfiction, Poetry) poem, “Lament,” was published in New Letters Magazine (Issue 81.1) in December of 2014 and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She was awarded the 2014 Paumanok Poetry Award from Farmingdale State College, New York, and in November 2014 she read from her prize-winning work at the college. She was invited by the North Dakota Humanities Council to travel in North Dakota for six weeks in January and February of 2015 to do field research and teach creative writing workshops in several communities impacted by the oil boom.  The name of the project is Our People. Our Places. Our Stories. 2015. Debra’s poetry collection, Small Buried Things, will be published by New Rivers Press in March of 2015.

Our People. Our Places. Our Stories. 2015.

Our People. Our Places. Our Stories. 2015.

 

DumpedCoverElizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) joins fellow Stonecoasters Kristabelle Munson, Alexis Paige, Judith Podell, Penny Guisinger and Julie L. Vandekreke as contributing authors in the new anthology Dumped: Stories of Women Unfriending Women, which is now available as a pre-order on Amazon and which was reviewed as “gripping from beginning to end” on MomsRising. Watch for news of an AWP reading for this anthology:  www.elizabethsearle.net

Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) looks forward to welcoming Ted Deppe and Annie Deppe at Bay Path University in Longmeadow, Mass., where they’ll visit classes for a week. The university, where Suzanne is writer in residence, well host a reading by both Ted and Annie Feb. 12 at 7:00 p.m. in Breck Suite on campus. The event is free and open to the public. Copies of books by both Ted and Annie will be sold.

On Feb. 14, Ted will speak on “Taking It All the Way to Coleman’s: On Abandoning the Good for the Marvelous” at  the university’s eleventh Writers’ Day. Other speakers will include Stonecoast alum Penny Guisinger, who’ll talk about grant writing, and former Stonecoast faculty member Roland Merullo, who’ll talk about conquering the demons of the blank page. Information including schedule, fees and how to register is available at http://www.baypath.edu/news-and-events/writers-day

The Irish Times recently published an essay by Suzanne and an excerpt from her book This Is Paradise: An Irish Mother’s Grief, and African Village’s Plight and the Medical Clinic That Brought Fresh Hope to Both, about the work of Irishwoman Mags Riordan and the medical clinic she founded in Malawi in memory of a son who drowned there. Southern Maine readers interested in meeting Mags Riordan are invited to the Maine Irish Heritage Center, at the corner of State and Gray Streets in Portland, March 24 at 7:00 p.m. Mags will give and update on the clinic. Copies of This Is Paradise and craft items from Malawi will be offered for sale. The center will be charging a $5 admission fee.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

Via Amanda Pleau (Creative Nonfiction): Stonecoast Reviewa journal edited and produced by students at the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program, is now accepting submissions of literary fiction, popular fiction, nonfiction and poetry, for their third and fourth issues. Emerging and established writers welcome. (Deadline: revolving)

 

 

 

 

 

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