Here’s what Spalding MFA students, alumni, faculty, and staff have been publishing, producing, and doing since our last update!
I’m a big fan of ambiguous endings. I have no problem with being left in the middle of things in the last scene. In fact, I find pleasure in lingering with a range of possibilities after the final page is turned. I have no quarrel with a novel or memoir that closes with its main character teetering on the brink of change—rather than safely ensconced on the other side of it. Continue reading “NO EXIT: When Endings Disappoint”
The Spalding low-residency MFA in Writing program is gearing up for its spring residency, May 26-June 4 in Louisville, Kentucky. The residency features dozens of special events and sessions, acclaimed guest speakers, faculty craft lectures, and a special performance by the nationally acclaimed Louisville Leopard Percussionists.
In addition, the MFA program is pleased to welcome a new faculty member in writing for children and young adults, as well as a special guest workshop leader in poetry.
When you pack your bags for your next trip, whether a few hours from home or as far away, to an American traveler, as Buenos Aires, Rome, or Edinburgh, take along your travel writer’s sensibility. You’ll already have the tools in place—pen and paper, laptop and camera—so making a record of where you go, what you see, eat, and learn, is not a practical but perceptual challenge. Our senses become heightened by the excitement of travel, the allure of different landscapes, languages and foods. As writers we note it all in colorful detail in our journals and e-mails home. But how can we shape this material into articles or personal essays for a larger audience? Here are some tips—and questions—to keep in mind. Continue reading “REFLECTIONS ON TRAVEL WRITING”
For Spalding MFAers who write creative nonfiction, the George Getschow Scholarship provides funding to attend the 2017 Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference, July 21-23, in Grapevine, Texas.
The $800 scholarship is available to Spalding MFA students and alums, regardless of area of concentration. The scholarship is made possible by the MFA program and a generous donation from an anonymous MFA alum. Others are welcome to make a tax-deductible donation to the fund. Continue reading “GEORGE GETSCHOW SCHOLARSHIP FOR MAYBORN CONFERENCE BENEFITS SPALDING MFA STUDENTS, ALUMS”
“…reminiscing about my origins as a writer is not just a nostalgic act, but one that helps me to keep sight of the reasons why I write.”
I’m surprised by people who think of writing as drudgery, an onerous task we take on to punish ourselves only because of our unforgiving work ethics. For me, the need to write goes back to my childhood, when writing was just another game, like playacting or drawing. Writing, when I was young, was a pleasure, a refuge, solace, a chance to play, with no need to demand perfection from myself, and writing as an adult, is, much of the time, an attempt to recapture that experience. Continue reading “GROWING UP WRITING”
…the collage form encourages us to write in a distilled, imagistic, unconsciously meaningful way…
A year or so ago, I started thinking about teaching writing classes at an art center near where we live on the east side of Seattle. At first, I thought I’d like to lead ekphrastic writing classes, making use of the art exhibited at the Kirkland Arts Center, which draws to its gallery the work of artists from all over the country—and beyond. Continue reading “CUT, PASTE, REPEAT: Collage Writing”
A priceless Shakespeare first folio, the new and improved Speed Art Museum, and a musical interlude with the Louisville Orchestra all figure into the Spalding low-residency MFA in Writing program’s Fall 2016 residency. The residency will include dozens of special events and sessions, acclaimed guest speakers, faculty craft lectures, and a special focus on “Will in the Ville.” Residency takes place November 11-20 in Louisville, Kentucky.
By: Susan Bartoletti
Spalding MFA Faculty
For me, a nonfiction book doesn’t begin with a fact or a subject. It begins with the feeling I get about the fact or subject. If the subject makes my heart turn over, that’s when I know I’m on to something. Continue reading “Writing the Nonfiction Book Proposal”
by Fenton Johnson
Spalding MFA Fiction and CNF faculty
Here’s the great secret to the storyteller’s approach to narrative time: It has nothing to do with the time of clock and calendar. In a very real way, storytelling time is timeless – outside of time – if one needs evidence of this, consider the power of that magical phrase, “Once upon a time . . .”, which might be appended to the beginning of every work of fiction and creative nonfiction, even those that we think of as “realistic.” (Involuntarily I think of the great novelist and memoirist Vladimir Nabokov’s observation: “Reality is the only word that ought always to be enclosed in quotation marks – ‘reality.’”) Continue reading “All Moments Are Present to This Moment: The Elasticity of Time in Storytelling”