Tag Archives: Melanie Brooks

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 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 April 2017

ALUMS

Erin Lyn Bodin‘s (Poetry & Creative Nonfiction, S’17) essay “How it Goes” has been published by So to Speak: a Feminist Journal of Language and Art. This piece, included in her Stonecoast thesis, took a little bit of coaxing to send out into the world. Many thanks especially to Barbara Hurd and Ted Deppe for their confidence in the work.

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13)’s first novel, an LGBT romantic pirate adventure set in 1822 Caribbean, Swift for the Sun, came out March 27, 2017, via Dreamspinner Press and is now available in ebook and paperback. Karen created a series of blog posts for review sites ranging from interviews to “Top 10 Weird Things I Researched While Writing Swift for the Sun” to a range of writer-education topics such as “Fear: Why Aren’t You Sending Out Your Drafts?,” “Maintaining Your Meat Blimp: Endurance and Novel Writing,” “Planning Your Garden: Finding the Middle Ground between Discovery and Architect Writing Styles,” “Inspired-Response Writing: Entering the ‘Great Conversation’ with Other Authors,” “Where Do You Look for Inspiration? An Extrovert’s Guide,” “An Eye on the Market: Where to Send Your Work,” and more! You can read these articles by following links on Karen’s Facebook page as she posts them through the first week of April. Karen’s red riding werewolf story “The Scarlet Cloak” will be reprinted in Fantasia Divinity Magazine’s Evil Within anthology. Karen’s unrequited astronaut love poem, “The Blind Elephants of Io,” will be reprinted in the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association’s Rhysling Award Anthology. Karen narrated her interstellar spies poem “Save Our Souls” for Silver Blade Magazine 33, Winter 2017, and you can listen to her read it here. Quick Sip did a review of Karen’s Strange Horizons poem “Syncing Minefields.” Karen is thrilled QS’s Payseur also reviewed her zombies vs robots flash “We Are Still Feeling” for Nerds of a Feather. Love you forever, Stonecoast!

Michael Beeman (Fiction, S’09) published his short story “The Siege” in the March issue of Juked. The story was also selected by Longform as a featured fiction pick for March.

Gro Flatebo (Creative Nonfiction, W’10) was accepted into a three-week May residency at the Atlantic Center for the Arts to work with Sigrid Nunez. Nunez’s work straddles the murky line between fiction and memoir. The ACA facility is on a 69-acre ecological preserve in New Smyrna Beach, Florida.

In a rare foray into pop culture, Andrea Lani (Fiction, W’14) had a piece called “I’ll Be There For You,” about watching Friends with her son, published at Grown and Flown and an essay called “No Fun,” about a Psychedelic Furs concert and the nature of having fun in your 40s, published at The Manifest Station. She shared some writing advice in “How to Write with (or Despite) Kids” at WOW! Women on Writing. Her guest blog post, “Post-Twin Stress Disorder,” appeared at Multiples Illuminated, as part of the run-up to the publication next month of the eponymous anthology, in which her essay “Individuality, Mutuality, and a Game of Twister” will appear. Finally, she saw two pieces about her summer spent hiking with her family go live: “How Being a Mom Helped Me Hike 500 Miles” at Parent Co. and “Five Hundred Miles” at Mothers Always Write.

For the fourth year, Kristin LaTour (Poetry, S’07) is holding a fundraiser for National Poetry Month. The Poem-a-Thon benefits the Matthew Shepard Foundation, and Kristin emails sponsors a brand new draft poem every day in April. Visit her Poem-a-Thon to Erase Hate page to join.

Ellen Meeropol (Fiction, W’06) will launch her third novel, Kinship of Clover on April 5. Upcoming events include Odyssey Bookshop, South Hadley, MA (April 5); Porter Square Books, Cambridge, MA (April 12); Forbes Library, Northampton, MA (May 10); PRINT Bookshop, Portland, ME (May 16); Book Culture, Manhattan (June 6); Wachtung Books, Montclair, NJ (June 7); Greenlight Bookstore, Brooklyn, NY (June 8); and Belmont Books, Belmont, MA (June 28). Details and full events listing can be found on Ellen’s website.

Adam Mills (Popular Fiction, W’12) has a story in FUSION Magazine: “Birdheart,” which was originally a story in his MFA thesis.

Laura Navarre (Popular Fiction, W’11) is scheduled to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee on the suspicious activities of her notorious twin Nikki Navarre, whose sexy spy romance The Russian Obsession hit the shelves in March. Nikki and her accomplice Steven Denlinger wrote the accompanying TV pilot for the Foreign Affairs series, their agent is negotiating with Hollywood, and the Senate fears the worst. Download this steamy expose from WikiLeaks and spy on Nikki at www.NikkiNavarre.com.

Lisa Romeo‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’08)​ flash essay, “A Dress for the Wedding,” appeared on Beautiful Things at the River Teeth website. A craft essay, “When Prose Turns to Horses, Remember the Humans,” is up at Ephemeral Artery, the online companion of the journal Hunger Mountain. Another essay, “Reminiscing with My TV Friends,” is at The Sunlight Press.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam (Popular Fiction, S’13) won the Grand Prize in the Syfy Wattpad “Battle the Beast” Magicians contest; in addition to the cash prize, her flash fiction set in The Magicians universe will be turned into a digital short. On April 1, her short story “Bitter Orchids” will appear in the magazine Nat Brut.

CURRENT STUDENTS

Peter Adrian Behravesh (Popular Fiction) has accepted a position as an associate editor for Escape Pod, a SFWA-qualifying science fiction podcast magazine. If you’re interested in submitting your stories to Escape Pod, please see the submission guidelines.

FACULTY

Jeanne Marie Beaumont (Poetry) will be reading from Letters from Limbo on April 19th at Book Culture, 536 W. 112 St, NYC at 7:00 p.m. More information here. Later in the month, on April 28 at 4:00 pm, Jeanne Marie will be one of the panelists taking part in a Scholar Roundtable at the New York Public Library to celebrate the launch of This Business of Words: Reassessing Anne Sexton. Free registration here.

Ted Deppe (Poetry, Coordinator of Stonecoast in Ireland) and Annie Deppe will be reading on 4 April 2017 at 6:00 p.m. at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock, Arkansas (Fine Arts Building, Room 157).  They will also be reading on 6 April at Georgia State University at 4:00 p.m. Anyone in the area is invited!

Nancy Holder (Popular Fiction) will serve as Toastmaster at StokerCon 2017, the annual gathering of the Horror Writers Association. StokerCon will be held aboard the Queen Mary floating hotel in Long Beach, California, from April 27-April 30. George R.R. Martin and Popular Fiction Faculty Elizabeth Hand are Guests of Honor.

Jim Kelly (Popular Fiction) is pleased to announce his new novel, Mother Go, will be released July 11—in the middle of the summer residency!—by Audible.com as the first title of its new Audible Original Publishing initiative. Mother Go will debut exclusively as an audiobook, with a print version to come in 2018. Jim has also placed a new story with Asimov’s Science Fiction called “And No Torment Shall Touch Them,” which will appear in the November/December issue. In May, Jim will lecture at the 36th Annual Writers Conference at Christopher Newport University.

Mike Kimball (Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) has two plays in the works. The Secret of Comedy runs March 31-April 16 at The Players’ Ring, in Portsmouth, NH: Friday & Saturday at 8:00 p.m., Sunday at 3:00 p.m. For more info, click here. Mike’s new play, Patience Boston, will have its first public reading on Saturday morning, April 8th, at 10:00 a.m., with a talkback following the performance. Limited Seating. The Actors Studio of Newburyport, 50 Water St, Newburyport, MA. For more info: 978-465-1229. http://www.newburyportacting.org

Elizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) has been interviewed about her new novel We Got Him on radio shows including the national Frankie Boyer show and in a talk with Stonecoast alum Bruce Pratt on Downtown with Rich Kimball (WZON, Bangor Maine). She was interviewed online in Solstice: a Magazine for Diverse Voices and on Boston area cable TV on The Literari Scene, Behind the Pages, and Books and Authors. She has an interview forthcoming on Urban Update (Channel 7; NBC, Boston), which will be broadcast in the Boston area on April 9th after Meet the Press. Elizabeth will read in the Arlington Salon Series in Arlington, MA, on April 6th.  For links and updates, see: www.elizabethsearle.net.

Bay Path University’s 15th Writers’ Day, to be held April 2 at the campus in Longmeadow, MA, will feature Stonecoasters Melanie Brooks, who’ll be talking “Writing Hard Stories,” the topic of her highly acclaimed newly published first book, and Mary Heather Noble, who’ll be talking about sources of inspiration for her acclaimed essays on family, nature and current events. The lineup will include inspiration panelist John Sheirer and Dave Stern, and a primer on podcasting by Bernadette Duncan Harrison, a former national talk-show producer and author of Yappy Days, a newly-published memoir of her time in that arm of radio. Find Suzanne Strempek Shea (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction), Bay Path’s writer in residence, at the registration table. She hopes to see you there, and sends this link with schedule and registration information. Suzanne also is looking forward to the week of April 2 as Melanie Brooks will be Bay Path’s visiting writer that week. Melanie’s duties will include giving a talk and reading on Thursday, April 6, at 6:30 p.m., at the university’s Hatch Library. The event is free of charge. Melanie’s Writing Hard Stories will be available for purchase at both Writers’ Day and Melanie’s reading. Suzanne will travel one mile south on April 7 to lead a workshop on “Writing Your Home Town (or Village).” It’ll be held from 6:00-9:00 p.m. at the Interactive School House, 2055 Main St. in Three Rivers, MA, the village in which she grew up. Looking at our home turf in fresh ways on the page will be the focus. Writers of all genres will be welcome. Cost is $15 per person and registration is required. Phone 413-967-3001 if you’d like to register. Elizabeth Searle and Suzanne Strempek Shea have a date of April 30 for the launch of Soap Opera Confidential: Writers and Soap Insiders on Why We Tune in Tomorrow as the World Turns by the Guiding Light of Our Lives. They and seven contributors, including Stonecoast alumna Brenda Sparks Prescott, will read on that Sunday at 2:00 p.m. at Newtonville Books in Newton Center, MA. Another Stonecoast connection is the bookstore, which is owned by alumna Mary Cotton and her husband, Jaime Clarke. Other readers at the launch will be Lisa Borders, Emily Franklin, Allan Hunter, Marianne Leone, Leigh Montville, and Sebastian Stuart. Coincidentally, April 30 is the same date as the Daytime Emmy Awards, which will be held that night. A Western Mass. launch of Soap Opera Confidential is scheduled at Broadside Bookshop in Northampton on Wed., June 7, 7:00 p.m. Readers scheduled so far are Elizabeth and Suzanne, plus former Stonecoast faculty member Lesléa Newman, and Suzanne’s husband, Tommy Shea. A Sunday, July 9, reading at 1:00 p.m., at Politics and Prose in Washington, D.C., has been organized by faculty member and Soap Opera Confidential contributor Aaron Hamburger, and will include former faculty member Shara McCallum. And stay tuned for more info on a soapy reading in Portland during the July residency. Elizabeth, Suzanne, Aaron, and contributors yet to be confirmed will read Wednesday, July 12.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

Current student Allen Baldwin (Popular Fiction) is running a script contest called the Maine Film Initiative as part of his Third Semester Project. Please see the press release below:

Contact: Allen Baldwin, Maine Film Initiative
207-776-8737
maineneedsstories@gmail.com

New Maine Screenplay Contest Seeks to Jumpstart Maine Film Industry

The Maine Film Initiative is Part Contest, Part Crowd-Funding Effort.

Portland, ME—Maine filmmaker Allen Baldwin knows first-hand of the vast amount of creativity and passion that exists in the filmmaking industry in Maine. What he also understands is the need for funding to produce films in Maine. Thus, Baldwin has launched a new program to help support Maine filmmakers. The Maine Film Initiative (MFI) is a new screenplay contest that seeks to create funding for Maine-based film productions. In addition to over $4,000 in cash prizes, the Maine Film Initiative is offering a Production Prize. The winning script will be produced in Maine using proceeds from the screenplay contest entry fees.

The MFI is seeking diverse scripts that can be produced in Maine on a small budget, and is produced by Baldwin. “We have a thriving, talented film community in our state that is eager and excited for new opportunities,” said Baldwin. “With the Maine Film Initiative, we are proud to highlight Maine as a micro-budget independent film destination while providing resources to produce work here in the state, and reward great screenwriting along the way.”

Though the winning script will be produced in Maine, MFI is open to screenwriters from around the world. Categories include short screenplays, feature length screenplays, and episodic scripts of 30 or 60 minutes in length. Submission fees apply and will go towards the production of one of the winning films. Entries are being accepted on the Film Freeway platform. To submit, visit: www.filmfreeway.com/festival/Mainefilm. The competition has a regular deadline of February 28 and extended deadlines of March 31 and April 30.

Baldwin, executive producer and co-founder of the long running Maine film showcase Damnationland, hopes to make the Maine Film Initiative an annual event. “Ideally, this event will grow over time and provide the filmmaking community of Maine with great scripts and startup funds for a long time to come. We are already receiving submissions from all over the world, and hopefully this project will allow us to show off the quality of the filmmakers here in Maine.”

For more information on the Maine Film Initiative, visit www.mainefilminitiative.com or call Allen Baldwin at 207-776-8737. You can also find MFI on Facebook, facebook.com/mainefilminitiative ,  and Twitter, @maine_film.

About The Maine Film Initiative

The Maine Film Initiative exists to generate and reward bold original screen-writing; to highlight Maine as a low budget film-making destination; and to support Maine film artists by investing directly in paying productions. MFI is a screenwriting contest, where the top prize is the production of a script in Maine. Funds raised from submission fees will be used to produce one of the top screenplays, using Maine cast and crew.

About Allen Baldwin

Born and raised in Norridgewock, Maine, Allen Baldwin attended Bowdoin College before moving to Portland, Maine, where he lives today. He is the co-founder of Damnationland, a long running short dark genre film showcase of Maine filmmakers. Recently, he produced Derek Kimball’s feature film debut Neptune, which screened at Slamdance, the Nashville Film Festival, the Atlanta Film Festival, and over a dozen other fests around the world. Criterion Cast called Neptune “One of the best films to come out of Slamdance in quite some time.”

In September of 2016, Baldwin attended the IFP Film Forum in support of Kimball’s latest feature, A Winter Table. Baldwin is a partner at the Story Board, a production company in Portland, Maine, where he produces videos for clients worldwide. He is currently pursuing his MFA in Scriptwriting as part of the Stonecoast MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Southern Maine.

 

 

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Community News & Updates March 2017

2017 STONECOAST ALUMNI REUNION

The submission deadline for readers and presenters for the 2017 Stonecoast Alumni Reunion has been extended to March 15th! Stonecoast celebrates our 15th anniversary this July residency with an alumni reunion July 14th-17th. Readers will be chosen by a small committee through a blind submission process, and will be featured in the residency-wide evening reading on Friday, 7/14. Panelists and seminar leaders will receive free registration to the reunion. To apply for either position, or to register for the reunion, visit http://usm.maine.edu/stonecoastmfa/stonecoast-alumni-0. Any questions can be directed to Jenny O’Connell, Stonecoast Community Outreach Coordinator: jennifer.a.oconnell@maine.edu. We hope to see you this summer!

ALUMS

9-tales-told-in-the-darkKaren Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) is thrilled to announce four flash fiction sales: 1000-word original featuring creepy prognosticating dolls called “Eyes That See Everything” in February’s Pseudopod Horror Podcast’s Artemis Rising 3: Return of Hecate; 800-word evil dollhouse reprint “What the Dollhouse Said” forthcoming in Red Lighthouse’s Mrs Rochester’s Attic anthology (Mantle Lane Press); 1200-word alien overlords reprint “Like a Soul,” which originally appeared in the Stonecoast Review’s first issue, will appear in July’s Darkhouse Books’Descansos anthology; and 1500-word tarot murders reprint “The Red Red Rose,” which appeared in Stonecoast Lines and was inspired by faculty Tony Barnstone’s “The Tarot of Creativity” session at the S’12 residency, will appear in Bride of Chaos’s 9 Tales Told in the Dark #21, March 9, 2017. Yay for short disturbing fiction about kids and bullies! Karen also sold an original whimsical poem about a flying girl titled “Essential Elements for a Tea Party” (inspired by alumna Bonnie Stufflebeam) forthcoming in Dreams and Nightmares Magazine #107 September 2017. And, last but not least, Karen’s first novel, an LGBT romantic pirate adventure set in 1822 Caribbean, Swift for the Sun, comes out March 27, 2017, via Dreamspinner Press and is now available for ebook and paperback preorder! Woo hoo!

nhrJulie C. Day (Popular Fiction, S’12) is thrilled to announce she has just signed a contract with PS Publishing for her first short story collection, scheduled for release later this year. The collection, titled Uncommon Miracles, contains eighteen stories, many previously published in fantasy magazines, horror anthologies, or literary journals. Laura Page in The Review Review praised Julie’s work as “startling and elegant,” while Paul Michaels of This Is Horror described it as “[melding] magical realism and southern gothic…to beautiful and immersive effect.” Julie’s novelette “Idle Hands,” which is part of the collection, can also be found in the most recent issue of the New Haven Review. “Idle Hands,” among other things, is a generational story about mothers, daughters, the multiverse, and a family’s unusual addiction.

one-nation-under-baseballJohn Florio (Fiction, Pop Fiction, S’07) is a frequent contributor to The New Yorker and The Atlantic. His latest book, One Nation Under Baseball: How the 1960s Collided with the National Pastime, will be released by University of Nebraska Press on April 1. The book covers the intersection of race, politics, social issues, and sports during the turbulent ’60s; Bob Costas wrote the foreword. You can read the Kirkus review here. John is also writing a young adult sports book for Macmillan/Roaring Brook Press.

Mike Langworthy (Creative Nonfiction, W’11) will be in Moscow until May 11 consulting with development executives and writing staffs on television series in production for Sony Television Russia. His half hour comedy pilot script for the Independent Film Channel, Get Your Shit Together, has been approved by development executives and is now under consideration for a production order. In prose-world terms, the publisher has bought the manuscript and is now deciding when and if to publish.

Will Ludwigsen‘s (Popular Fiction, W’11) alternate disco-and-crime history novelette “Night Fever” will appear in the May/June 2017 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction. It even has a playlist on Spotify (search for “Will Ludwigsen’s Night Fever”) for added atmosphere for the story.

Kelsey Olesen (Popular Fiction, W’017) will be presenting a paper at the International Conference for the Fantastic in the Arts in Orlando, FL, on March 23, 2017. Her paper, “A Feminist in Disguise: On Cinderella Past and Present,” will be presented as part of the Young Adult and Children’s Division of the conference. Arguing that popular retellings of this infamous fairy tale fail to bring the story into a modern feminist world, Kelsey’s paper will urge listeners to teach and write retellings that retain the original heart of the Cinderella fairy tale to create empowering literature for children and young adults. She is eager to attend ICFA with fellow Stonecoast Winter ’17 graduates Steve Cave and Alex Sherman, as well as her thesis mentors James Patrick Kelly and Theodora Goss. Kelsey wishes to thank Nancy Holder, her project mentor, for assisting in the conception and creation of the original paper that provided the research and discoveries for this presentation.

Kelsey at presenting on "Damsels Without Distress: Rewriting Fairy Tales for a Modern Audience" at the Stonecoast Winter 2017 residency

Kelsey at presenting on “Damsels Without Distress: Rewriting Fairy Tales for a Modern Audience” at the Stonecoast Winter 2017 residency

David Page, MD (Popular Fiction, W’06), has published a book with Praeger entitled The Laparoscopic Surgery Revolution: Finding a Capable Surgeon in a Rapidly Advancing Field.

a-symphony-of-cowbellsHeather Preusser‘s (Fiction, S’13) debut picture book, A Symphony of Cowbells, will be released March 15, 2017, from Sleeping Bear Press. The story, about a cow who loses her bell and disrupts the harmony of the herd, is illustrated by Eileen Ryan Ewen.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) short story “The Orangery” is a 2016 Nebula Award finalist in the novelette category.

CURRENT STUDENTS

Peter Adrian Behravesh (Popular Fiction) has accepted a position as Editorial Assistant at IDW Publishing, one of the top four comic book publishers in the U.S., renowned for its diverse catalog of licensed and independent titles.

FACULTY

David Anthony Durham (Fiction, Popular Fiction) has accepted a tenure-track position in the MFA program at the University of Nevada, Reno. He’ll be moving out there right after the summer residency. Yes, this will be the Durham’s third summer move in a row. When will it end? By the way, David has no plans to leave Stonecoast anytime soon! Thanks to Deb Marquart, he’ll be reading at Iowa State University on March 23rd (his birthday) along with author Benjamin Percy. They will, no doubt, talk about werewolves…

Aaron Hamburger (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) and Stacie Whitaker’s initiative to Bury the White House in Books received national and international media attention from The Huffington Post, CNN, and many others, and attracted 3000 followers on Facebook.

soap-opera-confidentialElizabeth Searle‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) and Suzanne Strempek Shea‘s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) anthology on soap operas is scheduled to be out this spring from McFarland Books: 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. Elizabeth is reading from her novel We Got Him on March 3rd at 7:00 p.m. at the Out of the Blue gallery in Cambridge, MA, at the Dire Reading Series and on March 25 at the Falmouth Library on Cape Cod. Interviews about We Got Him are coming up: The Frankie Boyar Show (national radio show; 11:30 a.m. March 16th; live interview), Behind the Pages (Brookline Access TV; broadcast date TBD), Books & Authors (AT&T; broadcast date TBD), Cape Cod’s South Shore radio (April 12: 8:40 a.m.), and ET-WATD-FM “The South Shore’s Morning News” (taped interview). For updates:  www.elizabethsearle.net

Bay Path University’s 15th Writers’ Day, to be held April 2 at the campus in Longmeadow, MA, will feature Stonecoasters Melanie Brooks, who’ll be talking “Writing Hard Stories,” the topic of her highly acclaimed newly published first book, and Mary Heather Noble, who’ll be talking about sources of inspiration for her acclaimed essays on family, nature and current events. The lineup will include inspiration panelist John Sheirer and Dave Stern, and a primer on podcasting by Bernadette Duncan Harrison, a former national talk-show producer and author of Yappy Days, a newly-published memoir of her time in that arm of radio. Find Suzanne Strempek Shea, Bay Path’s writer in residence, at the registration table. She hopes to see you there, and sends this link with schedule and registration information. Suzanne also is looking forward to the week of April 2 as Melanie Brooks will be Bay Path’s visiting writer that week. Melanie’s duties will include giving a talk and reading on Thursday, April 6, at 6:30 p.m., at the university’s Hatch Library. The event is free of charge. Melanie’s Writing Hard Stories will be available for purchase at both Writers’ Day and Melanie’s reading.

 

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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.

juliecday_interzone

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)

pillars2

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.

red-hen-press

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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Community News & Updates March 2015

ALUMNI

Karen Bovenmyer (Popular Fiction, S’13) is pleased to announce her story “The Scarlet Cloak” will be reprinted in Life After Ashes, an anthology published by Alliteration Ink to benefit a military family who lost everything in a fire.

Jennifer Marie Brissett (Popular Fiction, S ’11) will be on panel at the Astro Blackness 2 Conference, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA.

Atro Blackness 2 Conference

xiii_webJulie C. Day‘s (Popular Fiction, S’12) story “Pretty Little Boxes” is now available in the Resurrection House anthology XIII edited by Mark Teppo.

Bruce Pratt (Fiction, S’04) has recently sung the US and Canadian anthems at UMaine men’s and women’s hockey and basketball games, and will sing them again at the opening ceremonies for US National Alpine Skiing Championships next month at Sugarloaf USA. Currently he’s playing the part of Harvey in Harvey’s Dream, a short film based on the Stephen King story of the same name being filmed in Bangor. He will be reading at the Poetry & Science Reading on Sunday, March 22, at 1:00 p.m. at The Rock & Art Shop, 38 Central St. in downtown Bangor, and again at the annual Poet’s Speak on April 4th in Bangor. He would also ask that anyone who has recently published a book that deals with sports—in the broadest sense—consider sending a copy for possible discussion on his weekly Sports Lit 101 segment on the Downtown with Rich Kimball Show heard in Eastern and Central Maine on WZON 620 AM on Wednesday at approximately 4:35 p.m. The station is also available on the web and on the free WZON app.

Tamie Parker Song (Creative Nonfiction, S’12; formerly Tamie Harkins) won second place for her essay “David the Green Dragon Goes to the Opera” in the Literal Latte essay competition. The essay can be read online here.

Gina Troisi (Creative Nonfiction, W’09) is happy to announce that her essay, “The Angle of Flickering Light,” was recently published in Fourth Genre‘s Spring 2015 issue (17.1). Her email is ginatroisi@yahoo.com.

Dumped coverThe anthology Dumped: Stories of Women Unfriending Women is now available! This anthology, edited by Nina Gaby, contains the work of twenty-five women writers, including six Stonecoast students, alumnae, and faculty. The book explores “the fragile, sometimes humorous, and often unfathomable nature of lost friendship.” Stonecoasters included in the book are: Penny Guisinger (Creative Nonfiction, S’13), Kristabelle Munson (Fiction), Alexis Paige (Creative Nonfiction, S’14), Judith Podell (Fiction, ’06), Julie L. Vandekreke (Creative Nonfiction, S’10), and faculty member Elizabeth Searle. A selection of the SC contributors to the anthology will participate in a reading at the summer 2015 residency with books available for purchase. To hear editor Nina Gaby interviewed about the book on ListenUP! Talk Radio, click here.

STUDENTS

Kristabelle Munson (Fiction) won the title of The Flash at the Boskone Flash Fiction Slam. Kristabelle took first place and was invited to compete at the New Hampshire Institute of Art for the NH Writers’ Project Three-Minute Fiction Slam.

FACULTY

German The Sacred Band CoverBlanvalet will publish the German edition of David Anthony Durham‘s (Fiction, Popular Fiction) final Acacia novel, The Sacred Band (Reiche Ernte), on March 16th.

Aaron Hamburger (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Popular Fiction) served as a judge for the Bethesda Magazine Fiction Contest.  Also, his Stonecoast-themed essay “How a Gay Guy from the City Found his Inner Rugged Country Boy in Snowy Maine” appeared on Matador.

On Wednesday, March 4th, at 7:30 p.m., The Provincetown Theater (238 Bradford Street, Provincetown, MA 02657 | 508-487-7487) will present a staged reading of Mike Kimball‘s play Best Enemies, the story two cowboys, lone survivors of a sabotaged rodeo cruise, who are marooned together on a tiny desert island. To preserve their sanity, they’ve invented imaginary geography and instituted a system of laws, but ultimately they go to war over their shared cowboy hat. As they rob each other of food and sleep, and their carefully constructed universe begins to unravel, each man faces his death and, in so doing, each begins examining his life. The Portland Phoenix called it “A sly, haunting, and remarkably fun new existential comedy.”

Scene from Best Enemies.

Scene from Best Enemies.

Poetry faculty members Eléna Rivera and Stephen Motika read in San Francisco March 22, 2015, at 5:00 p.m. at CCA Writers Studio, co-presented by the Poetry Center. The reading is a celebration of the work of Kathleen Fraser on her 80th birthday with participants including Bev Dahlen, Frances Richard, John Sakkis, Brenda Hillman, Robin Tremblay-McGaw, Linda Russo, Brian Teare, Latasha Diggs, Eléna Rivera, Lauren Shufran, Stephen Motika, and Susan Gevirtz. Also, Eléna reads in New York on Wednesday, March 25, 2015, as part of “Collection Processed by Poets: Five Writers Respond to the Wagner Labor Archive”; other poets reading are John Keene, Robert Fitterman, Paolo Javier, and Johannah Rodgers. The reading is at the Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives at New York University, Bobst Library, 10th floor. The event is co-sponsored by Nightboat Books.

Mags Riordan, the subject of Suzanne Strempek Shea’s (Creative Nonfiction, Fiction) book This Is Paradise: An Irish Mother’s Grief, an African Village’s Plight and the Medical Clinic That Brought Fresh Hope to Both, is returning to New England in March for two weeks of talks. Riordan, a native of Ireland, ten years ago founded The Billy Riordan Memorial Clinic in Cape Maclear, Malawi, in memory of her son who drowned in Lake Malawi in 1999. The former high school guidance counselor now lives in the African nation and runs the clinic that has served more than 275,000 people in an area that previously had one doctor for 800,000 people. Since its publication last year, This Is Paradise has been featured in publications in the U.S. and Ireland, including the Boston Globe, Yankee magazine and The Irish Times. Copies of This Is Paradise and Shea’s ten other books will be available for sale and signing at all events, which are open to the public free of charge. Crafts from Cape Maclear also will be sold to benefit the clinic. Kelly’s Books to Go will be selling at both Maine events, so stop by and say hi to Kelly, too. The schedule:

March 19, 7:30 p.m., Cheshire United Methodist Church, 205 Academy Road, Cheshire, CT.
March 23, 6:00-7:30 p.m., Centerville Public Library, 585 Main St., Centerville, MA.
March 24, 7:00 p.m., Maine Irish Heritage Center, 34 Gray St., Portland, ME
March 25, 12:00-1:00 p.m., Wells Public Library, Route 1, Wells, ME
March 25, 7:00-8:30 p.m., West Springfield Public Library, 11 Main St., West Springfield, MA.
March 26, 7 p.m., Kingston Public Library, 6 Green St., Kingston, MA. With Marianne Leone.
March 27, dinner event, time TBA, Ludlow Country Club, Ludlow, MA.
March 28, 2:00 p.m., Sandwich Public Library, 142 Main St., Sandwich, MA.

For more information, visit www.suzannestrempekshea.com or write the author at sess7(at)comcast.net

Ted Deppe (Poetry, Coordinator of Stonecoast in Ireland) and Annie Deppe of Co. Galway, Ireland, were the visiting writers last month at Bay Path University in Longmeadow, MA, where Suzanne Strempek Shea is writer in residence. They spoke to and wrote with classes and gave a reading open to the public, and Ted gave a presentation on “Taking It All the Way to Coleman’s: On Abandoning the Good for the Marvelous” at the university’s eleventh Writers’ Day, February 14. Taking second prize for longest distance covered to get to Longmeadow was grad Penny Guisinger, who braved several of the many February snowstorms to drive from Lubec, ME, to present a Writers’ Day talk on “You Should Get a Grant for That! Applying for Funding to Support Your Writing—A Nuts and Bolts Approach.” Suzanne sends many thanks to all the Stonecoasters, past and present and including Stonecoast Ireland alums, who attended the events.

Ted Deppe and Annie Deppe reunite with Stonecoast grad and Stonecoast Ireland participant Melanie Brooks at Bay  Path University in Longmeadow, MA.

Ted Deppe and Annie Deppe reunite with Stonecoast grad and Stonecoast Ireland participant Melanie Brooks at Bay Path University in Longmeadow, MA.

Penny Guisinger begins her talk at Bay Path University’s Writers’ Day.

Penny Guisinger begins her talk at Bay Path University’s Writers’ Day.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

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, pop fiction, nonfiction and poetry, for their third and fourth issues. Emerging and established writers welcome. (Deadline: APRIL 1st)

 

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