August 2016

Life of a Writer: News and Events

August 2016

Students

Peter Field (SW) is the founding co-editor of The Timberline Review, a new, semi-annual lit journal based in Portland, Oregon. After the delightful experience of working with staff and fellow readers at The Louisville Review, in 2015 Peter marshaled the support of a local, non-profit writers organization and released the third collection of new short fiction, creative nonfiction, essays, and poetry. “Spalding-ers” represented in The Timberline Review include former dramatic writing student Jennie Kiffmeyer, fiction faculty member Jody Lisberger, and MFA alumna Rosanna Staffa (F ’13).

Jeffrey Fischer-Smith’s (PW) short play, “A Dog Dreams,” was produced in July by Artists’ Exchange in Cranston, Rhode Island, and in August at The Road Theatre in North Hollywood, California, and at Open Space Arts in Reisterstown, Maryland. “A Dog Dreams” was selected as one of 50 finalists for the 2016 Heideman Award at the Actors Theatre of Louisville, which will be announced in February. All finalist scripts are considered for inclusion in the Actors Theatre’s winter production of ten-minute plays as well as for the Humana Festival of New American Plays in April. “A Dog Dreams” will be published this fall in The Louisville Review and in the fall 2017 issue of Harmony, a visual arts and literary journal of the University of Arizona’s College of Medicine Program in Medical Humanities. Jeffrey’s short play “Reservations” will be included in Short + Sweet Hollywood in September. Dale Raoul (True Blood) and Ray Thompson will star. “Reservations” will also be produced in The Warner International Playwrights Festival in Torrington, Connecticut, in October.

Opal’s Jubilee by Leslie Lynch (F) has been awarded the prestigious Seal of Approval by the Catholic Writers Guild, an international organization that promotes the rebirth of Catholic arts and letters. The Seal of Approval provides a tangible reassurance to readers and bookstore owners that a book supports Catholic values and will have a certain level of editorial quality. A novel with romantic elements, Opal’s Jubilee examines domestic abuse, society’s often-blind eye, and the balance between justice and mercy. Learn more about Lynch at www.leslielynch.com and about Catholic Writers Guild at https://catholicwritersguild.org.

Marilyn Millstone‘s (PW) ten-minute play “Compos Mentis” won third prize at Baltimore’s Fells Point Corner Theatre 2016 10×10 Festival. The cash prizes were determined by audience ballot over the course of the festival’s eleven performances. Two of Marilyn’s plays were selected for the 3rd annual D.C. One-Minute Play Festival at Round House Theatre in Bethesda, Maryland. The festival–which this year focused on female playwrights and directors–ran for three performances, one on July 30 and two on July 31.

Faculty and Staff

The audio book of Blue TerritoryA Meditation on the Life and Art of Joan Mitchell by Robin Lippincott, narrated by Tandy Cronyn (daughter of Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn), was released by Blackstone Audio on August 23. Robin will be reading from Blue Territory at 7 p.m. Thursday, September 8, at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod, in South Yarmouth, Massachusetts, and the documentary about Joan Mitchell, Portrait of an Abstract Painter, will be screened. Robin will also read from Blue Territory and give his lecture “A Good Title is Not Hard to Find” at The Florida Heritage Book Festival & Conference in St. Augustine, September 15-17. He is honored to be on the faculty at the first annual Joy Farm Writer’s Retreat (Joy Farm was e.e. cummings’s summer home), founded by Spalding alumna Liza Mattison (F ’14) (http://lizamattison.wixsite.com/writeatjoyfarm).

Lesléa Newman has a new poem about the mass murder/hate crime in Orlando called “That Night” posted on the website Brilliantina: https://thebrillantinaproject.wordpress.com/2016/07/25/that-night/. Her short story (for adults) titled “Mr Clean” was one of 20 finalists for the 2016 Tillie Olsen Short Story Competition, and her poetry collection (for adults) titled I Carry My Mother received a Golden Crown Literary Society Award (“Goldie”) in poetry. A conversation about gender identity and children’s literature between Lesléa Newman and Christine Baldacchino, called “Heather Has Two Mommies and Morris Has a Dress,” was published in Slate: http://www.slate.com/blogs/nightlight/2016/08/03/lgbtq_children_s_book_authors_leslea_newman_and_christine_baldacchino_interviewed.html

Alumni

David Brasfield (F ’04), a.k.a. Christamar Varicella, has published a collection of literary parodies under the title There Are Sneetches in My BreechesAlong with open letters to famous authors, fake book reviews, and short satirical essays, the collection features two novellas: the romance parody The Oiliest Secret and the sci-fi/horror parody Dinosaur Ghost, which answers the age-old question, “What would happen if dinosaurs came back from extinction and started eating Republicans?” Free downloads of Dinosaur Ghost are also available at smashwords.com.

Karen George (F ’09) read from her poetry collection, Swim Your Way Back, July 29 at the Bonbonerie in Cincinnati. She wrote a poem each day in June as part of Lexington Poetry Month 2016, hosted by Accents Publishing. She had poems accepted for publication by Blue Fifth Review and Noctua Review.

Dave Harrity’s (P ’07) newest collections of poetry, These Intricacies (Cascade Books) and Our Father in the Year of the Wolf (Word Farm), were released in the spring of 2016. In May, he was the William Alexander II and Lisa Percy Fellow at the Rivendell Writer’s Colony in Sewanee, Tennessee, and he recently received a 2017 Emerging Artist Award from the Kentucky Arts Council. He continues to teach at Campbellsville University as an Assistant Professor of English. His website is daveharrity.net.

Patty Houston (F ’08) has two short story publications coming out in the fall:  “Where I Go” in Construction Magazine and “The Sedona Method” in Sundog Lit.

Mary Knight (W4CYA ’13) is pleased to announce that Burns Middle School in Owensboro, Kentucky, has chosen her debut novel, Saving Wonder, as this year’s “One School, One Book” selection. All 950 students will read Saving Wonder as a representation of this year’s theme: “Stand.”

This fall, Heather Meyer (PW ’16) will be teaching Improv: Structure and Storytelling at the Brave New Workshop in Minneapolis. This class will focus on how new or non performers can use improv techniques in all areas of their creative lives. A scene from Heather’s MFA thesis, The Hired Man, will be performed at Off Book at HUGE Theater in Minneapolis in August.

Jason Lee Miller (F ’08) published his debut full-length poetry collection, These Three Remain, available in paperback or e-book at the following link: https://www.amazon.com/These-Three-Remain-Jason-Miller/dp/1533388423. One of the poems, “Before This,” appeared in Accents Publishing’s anthology & Grace: Selections from Lexington Poetry Month 2015, and numerous others have appeared elsewhere, including “This Will Require an Apology,” which appeared in Accent’s 2013 anthology, Her Limestone Bones. In other news, Jason has taken on a new role as content strategist for the marketing and communications department at Berea College.

Paul Alan Ruben’s (F ’15) short story “A Minor Adjustment” was published in the July 2016 issue of Connotation Press.  All his published stories are available on Audiobooks.com. The latest was narrated by award-winning storyteller George Guidall.

Nicholas Siegel’s (F ’13) story “Adopting Mercury” will be published in the August issue of Five on the Fifth.

The Tampa Review will be publishing “Hotel Du Nord,” a short story by Rosanna Staffa (F ’13). Staffa’s short story “Praying in Suzhou” is in the Fall 2016 issue of The Timberline.