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Community News & Updates September 2015

ALUMNI

Quenton Baker‘s (Poetry, S’12) first chapbook, Diglossic in the Second America, is now available from Punch Press. You can hear him read two of the poems in recent radio segment with Washington State poet laureate Elizabeth Austen.
diglossic

Sheila Boneham (Creative Nonfiction/Cross Genre, S’13) has been honored with a 2015-16 fellowship from the North Carolina Arts Council to support creation of new work. In addition, Sheila has been granted a two-week residency at the Weymouth Center for the Arts & Humanities in Southern Pines, NC in December. Just before the fellowship news arrived, Sheila had made the difficult decision to decline an offer for two more books in her mystery series to devote time to nonfiction, and she feels well rewarded. They say “follow the money,” but sometimes you have to follow your heart.

Letters to TiptreeKaren Bovenmyer‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) haunted house flash “So Normal and Unwritten” (reprint) is forthcoming in Bosley Gravel’s Cavalcade of Terror.

Sandra McDonald (Popular Fiction, W’05) is very happy to see her creative non-fiction essay “Deception in Six Parts” published in the new collection Letters to Tiptree, celebrating the life of famed science fiction writer James Tiptree Jr. (a.k.a. former military officer Alice B. Sheldon). Four of Sandra’s short stories since her graduation from Stonecoast have received Tiptree Award Honor List mentions.

The Girl in the MirrorConstance McKee (Fiction, W’13) is pleased to announce that on September 3 her debut novel, The Girl in the Mirror, will be released by Deeds Publishing. Special thanks to Suzanne Strempek Shea, Boman Desai, and Ted Deppe for the tutelage that led to the completion of this book.

Kristabelle Munson (Fiction, S’15) had a story published by Guernica Magazine & PEN American simultaneously. PEN says: “The Guernica/PEN Flash Series is a collaborative effort in which both journals publish the best flash out there.”

Robert Ortiz (Fiction/Creative Nonfiction, S’14) is happy to announce his new job as an English Affiliate Instructor at Metropolitan State University of Denver.

Love Songs of CarbonJanet Passehl‘s (Poetry, S’10) ironed cloth sculpture Sleep is featured on the cover of U.K. poet Philip Gross’s latest poetry collection Love Songs of Carbon, just released by Bloodaxe Books. Love Songs of Carbon closes with the poem “Thirteen Ways to Fold the Darkness,” which was inspired by Sleep. Sleep is in the collection of the Blanton Museum of Art at the University of Texas, Austin, gift of Laurence Miller, 2015.

“Manhandled,” by Tamie Parker Song (Creative Nonfiction, S’12), will be published in the September 2015 issue of New Ohio Review. It is an essay about sexual assault in the Alaskan wilderness and is part of her memoir-in-progress.

Bruce Pratt (Fiction, S’04) has been asked to contribute an essay on Bill Gaston’s The Good Body for a critical anthology on Hockey Literature to be edited by noted Canadian writers and scholars, Jamie Dopp and Angie Abdou.

Michaela Roessner (Popular Fiction, S’08) has a short story, “Flattened,” included in Western Weird, this year’s Manifest West anthology. The anthology will be out at the end of August. The art catalog for Viktor Koen’s photomontage bestiary is now published and includes Roessner’s ekphrastic accompaniment, “Mormo,” along with the works of other contributing writers.

PenelopePenelope Anne Schwartz (f/k/a Penelope Schwartz Robinson; Creative Nonfiction, S’04) has recently published two new books of nonfiction: Penelope: Weaving and Unraveling, a Writing and Revising Life, a memoir of her writing life from 1970-2014; and When Lilacs Last, the McLaughlin Garden, an historical biography of Bernard McLaughlin, the “Dean of Maine Gardeners.” Her essay collection Slippery Men was chosen by Katha Pollitt for the Stonecoast Book Prize and published by New Rivers Press in 2009. Schwartz lives in Arcata, California, and teaches in the English Department of the College of the Redwoods in Eureka.

Kevin St. Jarre (Popular Fiction, S’10) will be reading with poet Carmen Mandley and current Stonecoast student Elisha Webster Emerson at LFK, 188A State St, Portland, Maine on September 7, 2015. Drinks at 8:00 p.m., readings start at 9:00 p.m.

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam‘s (Popular Fiction, S’13) horror story—and her first Stonecoast-workshopped story!—“The Devil’s Hands” appeared in the most recent issue of Black Static. Her Little Mermaid retelling “Sisters” appeared in Scheherazade’s Bequest. Her flash fiction “No Eyes” appeared in Psychopomp. And another flash fiction,”Mrs. Stiltskin,” was reprinted in audio version in Podcastle.

Growing a New TailGrowing a New Tail, Lisa C. Taylor’s (Poetry, S’04) debut collection of short fiction, will launch in Ireland in September and in the U.S. in late October. The book will be published by Arlen House, distributed by Syracuse University Press. Watch the book trailer here: https://vimeo.com/133364023

Marco Wilkinson‘s (Creative Nonfiction, S’13) lyric memoir, Madder, which was his Stonecoast thesis, was a semi-finalist for the Cleveland State University 2015 Essay Collection Prize.

In late June, Anne Witty (Poetry, W’12) “published” a work that could best be described as a 4,400-square-foot three-dimensional book. The occasion was the grand opening of a new permanent exhibition for Mystic Seaport in Mystic, Connecticut. Entitled “Voyaging in the Wake of the Whalers,” the exhibit looks at the impact of the whaling industry on American history and culture. It features objects, still and moving images, short explanatory texts, excerpts from literature, poetry (including an excerpt from Tony Barnstone’s  “Parable in Praise of Violence”), song, underwater sound, computer interactives, and much more. The project crowns Mystic Seaport’s many years’ work to restore and sail the last remaining American whaleship, the Charles W. Morgan (built in 1841), with an in-depth look at whaling’s continued effects on America. Creating museum exhibits, like creating books, requires many different skills. Anne’s freelance work as Guest Curator included writing, research, guiding object and image selection, and consultation in other areas (including an appearance in the exhibit’s orientation film). Other team members contributed 3-D design, graphics design, computer interactives, song and sound recordings, special expertise on whales and American whaling history, design and construction coordination, and many other pieces of the three-dimensional puzzle. If any Stonecoasters are interested in learning more about script-writing for exhibits and its kinship with screenwriting and other forms of non-fiction and fiction, please get in touch with Anne at witty[at]gwi.net.

FACULTY

Elizabeth Hand (Fiction, Popular Fiction) has sold the fourth Cass Neary novel, The Book of Lamps and Banners, to St. Martin’s Press/Macmillan, with audio rights to the third and fourth novels going to Blackstone Audio. All four books have also been sold in Sweden. Liz’s most recent reviews include Austin Grossman’s Crooked, and Ann and Jeff Vandermeer’s Sisters of the Revolution, both for The Los Angeles Times.

Demons of the HellmouthNancy Holder (Popular Fiction) is proud to announce that she has helped Rupert Giles, who served as the Watcher of Vampire Slayer Buffy Summers, take his newest book to publication. Demons of the Hellmouth: A Guide for Slayers (Titan Books) will debut September 29. Giles’s dear friend, the actor Anthony Stewart Head, wrote the introduction.

The latest installment of Jim Kelly’s (Popular Fiction) column in Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine “Welcome to Asimov’s” profiles ten new writers who have recently made their first sale to Asimov’s. His oft-reprinted story “Think Like A Dinosaur” has been selected to be translated for a new and as yet unnamed anthology that will introduce contemporary North American science fiction to the readers in Cuba. Jim plans to visit Cuba in the spring of 2016.

duck and cover--2015-with WB & PR bannerMike Kimball‘s (Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) play Duck and Cover has been nominated for 8 “Desert Star Awards” in Palm Springs, CA, including “Outstanding Production: Comedy.” For those in the northeast, Duck and Cover will open September 4 at The Players’ Ring Theatre (Portsmouth, NH) and run through Sept 20th. Duck and Cover is about a sheltered American family in 1962 suburbia trying to hold on to its innocence in the era of civil rights riots, birth control pills, rock ‘n’ roll, and an unexpected visit from closeted jazz trumpeter Uncle Bunny and his African-American band-mate and partner on the night that the Cuban Missile Crisis begins. Duck and Cover received the 2014 John Gassner Memorial Playwriting Award (New England Theatre Conference) and was also awarded “Best Play” at the Northern Writes Festival (Penobscot Theatre Co, Bangor, Maine) and “Audience Favorite” at the Dezart Performs Festival of New Plays (Palm Springs, CA). The Players’ Ring Theatre has intimate, three-quarter-round seating for 70 (general admission), so reservations are encouraged.

Benedict_Hair_pbkflps_comp.inddElizabeth Searle (Fiction, Popular Fiction, Scriptwriting) has an essay in the new anthology: Me, My Hair and I: Twenty-Seven Women Untangle an Obsession, released in September 2015 from Algonquin Books, edited by Liz Benedict. Elizabeth’s essay—“Act-Tresses: Hair as Performance Art”—has just been published on the online literary magazine, Solstice. Elizabeth will be reading from the anthology with Liz Benedict at Porter Square Books in Cambridge, MA, on October 5th. For other upcoming readings and events see  http://www.elizabethsearle.net

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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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