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April 2015

Life of a Writer: News & Events

April 2015


Tara Anderson (PW) has accepted a position covering arts and culture for WFPL, Louisville’s public radio news station. She feels very fortunate to get to talk to interesting people doing cool stuff and write about it.

Sandra Irwin’s (F) first poetry chapbook, Quiet, has just been published as part of the New Women’s Voices Series at Finishing Line Press.

Heather Meyers (PW) is on the writing staff and will perform in The Brave New Workshop Comedy Theatre’s Mad Vax: Beyond Measledome, a satirical sketch comedy revue running through August 1 in Minneapolis. Heather was recently a finalist for the History Theatre of Minnesota’s RAW Stages Commission. Her theatre for youth play, The Treasure Trove of Conservation Cove—A Pirate’s Tale, will continue its run in schools across the country through the end of this school year. In June, Theatre Pro Rata in Minneapolis will host a reading of Heather’s newest play, an adaptation of Convent of Pleasure.

Diana Wilson’s (CNF) critical essay, “Laces in the Corset: Structures of Poetry and Prose that Bind the Lyric Essay,” was published on Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies, in spring 2015 (

Faculty and Staff

Dianne Aprile read a poem by Elizabeth Bishop and another of her own, written in response to Bishop’s “Letter to NY,” at a lobby event following the final production of Dear Elizabeth, a play by Sarah Ruhl about the correspondence between Bishop and Robert Lowell, at Seattle Repertory Theatre on March 7. Dianne was a presenter for an AWP Panel in Minneapolis on April 10, titled Contemplation in Action: Thomas Merton in the 21st Century, with Maurice Manning, Danny Lawless, Mary Murray MacDonald, and Gregory Wolfe. The panel was designed and organized by Spalding faculty member Fenton Johnson. In July, Dianne is teaching a 4-week summer class on “Writing and Walking” for Seattle’s Hugo House. She is also featured reader for Seattle’s It’s About Time reading series in July.

Kathleen Driskell’s newest book of poems, Next Door to the Dead, a Kentucky Voices Selection, will be published by the University Press of Kentucky in August. Five of Kathleen’s poems appear in the latest issue of RiverStyx. She received three Pushcart nominations this year, including one from Shenandoah, which published her poem “What the Girl Wore” last fall. She visited Spalding MFA alum Veronica Munn’s creative writing club at Manual High School in Louisville in February, and she served as a judge for Kentucky’s state Poetry Out Loud competition. On Friday, June 5, she will teach the workshop “Seeing Your Poetry Manuscript through the Trees,” at the Carnegie Center’s Books-in-Progress Conference. The workshop will focus on organizing a book-length collection of poems. She also will be a featured writer at the Kentucky Women Writer’s Conference in Lexington, Kentucky, next September.

Robin Lippincott, on the fiction faculty since the program began in 2001, has two new books coming out. Blue Territory, a meditation on the life and work of the American abstract expressionist painter Joan Mitchell, will be published in November. The other book, Rufus + Syd, is a novel for young adults that Robin co-wrote with Spalding MFA graduate Julia Watts (F ’05). Written in response to the epidemic of bullying and suicides of gay and lesbian teenagers, it will be published in spring 2016.

Lesléa Newman has been on tour promoting the new edition of Heather Has Two Mommies, released by Candlewick Press in March, and has been interviewed by CNN ( and the Associated Press ( Her essay, “Great Expectations: The Journey of Heather Has Two Mommies” appeared in the Huffington Post ( And her poem “How to Watch Your Father Watch Your Mother Die” from her new poetry book, I Carry My Mother (Headmistress Press), was featured as the Mass Poetry “Poem of the Moment” on April 6 (

Katy Yocom’s poem “To the Way I Walk” was translated into Bulgarian and published in March on the online journal Public Republic ( The poem was also published in Slovak translation at in April ( Katy thanks Dimana Ivanova, who lectured for the MFA program in Prague, for making these translations possible.


Matt Berman (CNF ’13) has recently published one essay in On Foot: Grand Canyon Backpacking Stories and another in Motif, Vol. 4: Writings About Water, with a third on the way. Those three pieces were developed at Spalding and are chapters of an upcoming book. Check out for links to publications and a new series of photo essays.

Carrie Bistline (CNF ’09) won the Cobalt Review’s 2014 Frank McCourt Creative Nonfiction Prize with her essay “Egress.” The essay was published in January in the annual print issue of the Cobalt Review.

Brandi Bradley (F ’14) has been accepted into the Doctoral Graduate Program in English Creative Writing at Florida State University with the offer of a teaching assistantship.

Cheryl Brandreth’s (CNF ’14) book, Louisville’s Fern Creek, is slated to be published by Arcadia Publishing on May 11. The book honors Fern Creek’s rich heritage of agriculture, highlights historic homes and farms, documents the changes along Bardstown Road from the 1900s to the 1970s, and features the institutions that contribute to its lasting sense of community. The book will be available at retailers in the Louisville area and online.

Kate Buckley (P ’10) has been busy launching two companies ( and and working on a collection of linked short stories, one of which was shortlisted for the 2013 Bridport Prize. Kate was also nominated for a 2013 Pushcart Prize by 2nd & Church for her essay “A Literary Landscape.” 2nd & Church was also kind enough to include one of her poems, “Liquid is only liquid—evaporating as it does / without a shape to contain it, to shore it up,” in their May 2014 issue. Kate created poetry curriculum for the Southern California-based nonprofit Women Wonder Writers (which mentors at-risk young girls through writing and the arts). In July, she attended a Master Class with Tom Barbash at Litquake in San Francisco. While in the Bay Area, Kate did a reading and book signing with the Marin Poetry Center. Also in July, her poem “Harlan County,” from her book, A Wild Region (Moon Tide Press), was chosen as Poem of the Day (July 28, 2014) by The Poetry Foundation. In September, Kate attended the Kentucky Women Writer’s Conference, where she studied with novelist Margaret Wrinkle. Most recently, she edited a children’s book in verse, This Monkey’s Business, which won gold at this month’s LA ADDY awards.

David Carren’s (SW ’05) new screenplay, Target Julia, was a semifinalist in the Screencraft Family Friend Script Contest. It also earned an honorable mention in the London Film Awards.

Charlotte Rains Dixon (F ’03) has signed with agent Erin Niumata of Folio Literary, to represent her novel, The Bonne Chance Bakery. Charlotte is teaming with fellow alum Terry Price (F ’06) to present a writing workshop called “From Spark to Story” in Nashville on May 1 and 2 and is also leading a workshop in France this September.

Kathryn Eastburn (CNF ’06) has retired her personal column, “The Middle Distance,” on KRCC public radio for southern Colorado, after publishing and broadcasting 210 personal essays over four and a half years. The columns will likely be collected into a book on the pleasures and pitfalls of moving through middle age, based on Eastburn’s personal experience. You can hear Eastburn’s exit interview with producer Noel Black at This summer and fall, Eastburn will teach Creative Nonfiction Writing, a freshman year experience intensive in Food Journalism and American Food Movements; and her self-developed writing intensive class, Anatomy of a Story, at The Colorado College. She continues to teach workshops in memoir and personal essay writing at Denver’s Lighthouse Writers Workshop.

The Grasmere Writers—Rick Neumayer (F ’14), Joe Peacock (F ’08), Michele Ruby (F ’05) and Bob Sachs (F ’09)—staged a dramatic reading of their stories on Tuesday, April 21, at 7:30 PM, at the Bard’s Town in Louisville. They voiced the dialogue in each other’s stories, for a lively reading of the strangest funeral ever, the disastrous opening of the Big Cheese restaurant, a vacation ruined by an ever-present stranger, and a would-be actress working a BurgerCourt drive-through window.

Karen George’s (F ’09) poetry chapbook, The Seed of Me, was released in March by Finishing Line Press, available at She had poems published in Revolution John, Star 82 Review, and Emily: An Anthology Inspired by Emily Dickinson’s Life and Works.

Leah Henderson’s (W4CYA/F ’11) debut middle grade novel, One Shadow on the Wall, will be published by Atheneum Books, a young readers imprint at Simon & Schuster. Leah was honored to have the acquisition announced in the Publisher’s Weekly Children’s Bookshelf Newsletter.

Juyanne James (CNF/F ’07) gave the keynote address, titled “‘You Don’t Know Me, Child’: In Search of the ‘Identifiable’ in African American Writing,” at the South-Central Regional Conference on Christianity and Literature in New Orleans on February 27. Juyanne also read from her work at the Louisiana Association for College Composition conference on March 13. Juyanne’s interview, “Curiosity That Can Lead to Narrative: An Interview with Randy Bates” (Xavier Review 34:1), will be published in May. Juyanne’s collection of stories, The Persimmon Trail and Other Collected Stories, has a publication date of July 2015.

Alice-Catherine Jennings’s (P ’14) prose poem “1966” will be included in the upcoming first edition of The Poets’ Republic, north-east Scotland’s newest poetry zine, and her poem “Meditations at the Ruins of Aquincum” was published online by the Medieval Studies Department at Central European University in Budapest, Hungary. On March 21, in celebration of World Poetry Day, she read her poem “Afternoon Tea at the Four Seasons Hotel” at la Cruz de la Piedra in Oaxaca, Mexico.

Kaylene Johnson-Sullivan’s (CNF ’03) book, Our Perfect Wild: Ray and Barbara Bane’s Journeys in the Fate of the Wild North, will be published by the University of Alaska Press in Spring 2016. The biography explores the adventures of a young couple that followed their passion for conservation during a pivotal time in Alaska’s history. Johnson-Sullivan was the featured author for the March 49 Writers blog. She is at work on a book about the Alaska Railroad and will be a featured presenter at the National Federation of Press Women’s annual conference in September.

Marilyn Moss (CNF ’09) has recently launched a new website: She has also been working closely with the Writer’s Hotel ( and will be attending their Masters Class in Fiction, Nonfiction & Poetry in New York this coming June. Her memoir, Country Roads: An Appalachian Childhood, is in the final stages of editing.

Amy M. Miller (CNF ’14) is pleased to share two pieces of publication news. Her essay “Let’s Go” appears in the March issue of [PANK], and her essay “The Nose On Her Face” is forthcoming in The Louisville Review.

Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen (W4C ’03) recently spent two weeks doing school visits in six Eastern European countries and Malta. Her novel The Raft has won the 2015 South Carolina Junior Book Award, which was voted on by middle schoolers. It is currently a finalist on five other state award lists.

Jonathan Weinert (P ’07) has a renku, written in collaboration with Spalding poetry faculty member Debra Kang Dean, in the latest issue of Rattle. He also has poems forthcoming in Unsplendid, Plume, Harvard Review, Copper Nickel, and Pangyrus. A group of Jonathan’s poems was named a finalist for the 2015 Robert H. Winner Award from the Poetry Society of America, and the manuscript that includes these poems was named a finalist for the Colorado Prize. Jonathan joined the advisory board of the scholarly journal Merwin Studies in 2014. He introduced Even Though the Whole World Is Burning, a recent documentary film on the life and work of W.S. Merwin, at the Massachusetts Poetry Festival in April.

Aimee Zaring’s (F ’05) book, Flavors from Home: Refugees in Kentucky Share Their Stories and Comfort Foods, has just been published by University Press of Kentucky. She held a book launch party on Monday, March 23, at Simply Thai in Louisville. Please visit for more information about the book, how to purchase a copy, and for a list of author readings and events throughout Kentucky.


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