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February 2015

Life of a Writer: News & Events

February 2015


Peter Field (SW) has joined forces with the publishing side and started a new literary journal in Portland, Oregon. The Timberline Review ( is a semi-annual journal seeking short fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction submissions through March 31st for its first edition in July 2015.

Jeffrey Fischer-Smith’s (PW) short play “Reservations” was included in the Short + Sweet Theatre Sydney Festival in February 2015 at the The Fusebox, Factory Theatre in Sydney, Australia. This was the ninth production of Reservations, the third production in a Short + Sweet Festival (the others being Malaysia and Tasmania), and the third one outside the USA. Reservations was originally workshopped at the 2013 Spalding Summer residency in Ireland.

Heather Meyer’s (PW) play The Treasure Trove of Conservation Cove – A Pirate’s Tale continues its tour with the National Theatre for Children throughout the eastern United States. The show will visit 2,500 schools by the end of the 2014-2015 school year. She also wrote the water conservation graphic novel The Aqua League, which is being used in select California school districts. This past fall, Heather’s comedy WAITRIX: Dominatrix Waitress premiered at the Minnesota Fringe Festival in Minneapolis. She is currently creating this year’s version of her sketch comedy/game show Women’s History Month: The Historical Comedybration (with fabulous prizes) playing in Minneapolis in March. Heather is a regular contributor to, the online satirical women’s magazine, with her articles such as Woman Pretends Week-Old Cat Vomit ‘Just Happened and Six Bodily Functions to Steal the Spotlight at Any Public Proposal.

Brian Neighbors’ (F) prose short story “Ol’ Man River” was published this month in Edge Volume 8, the Tahoe Writers Works yearly print book. It was published under his pen name Brian Behr Valentine.

Paul Ruben’s (F) short story, “An Actress Prepares,” has been accepted for publication by Wild Violet Literary Magazine. The story was workshopped at the Fall 2013 residency, conducted by Robin Lippincott. Award-winning audiobook narrator Kathleen McInerney has recorded the story. It will be made available (along with all published stories) on Paul’s website: For an immediate copy, contact Paul:

Susan Ryan (CNF) is the nonfiction winner in the Winning Writers 2014 Sports Fiction and Essay Contest for her essay “Proper Equipment.” About golf, this selection is from her memoir Vital Signs: Reflections from a Career in Hearts about her three-decade career in medical device sales. The essay, published in November, may be read at

Ashlee Clark Thompson’s (CNF) first book, Louisville Diners, is slated to be published by History Press on March 16. Ashlee profiles unique diners, burger stands, and soul food restaurants in Louisville. The book will be available at retailers in and around Louisville and online.

Faculty and Staff

Dianne Aprile is one of six Washington writers invited to participate in a collaborative poetry/dance/visual art project titled The Incredible Intensity of Just Being Human, which opened at Seattle City Hall in January ( The project examines the stigma surrounding mental illness. Dianne presented her poem “Lavabo #3” at a reading at a related City Hall event on February 5. The poem, about an event in the life of her maternal aunt, appears in the art exhibition catalog. Dianne also served as Creative Nonfiction judge for the New Southerner Literary Contest in the fall of 2014. She is also among writers published in a new anthology, Thomas Merton: We Are Already One (Fons Vitae, 2015).

Julie Brickman was invited by The California Writers Club, Orange County, to give a talk on interiority in writing, followed by a reading from her story collection, Two Deserts. The event took place at the Orange Public Library in January. On February 1, Julie hosted a literary gathering in her home featuring Karen Mann reading from her novel The Woman of La Mancha. Guests included Spalding alums and students Deidre Woollard (F ’03), Frances Nicholson (P ’04), Cynthia Allar (P ’04), Thea Gavin (P ’05), Julie Jenner (F), Patty Haddad (F), Lindsay Indermill (CNF), as well as writers Susan Dworkin, Randy Kraft, Christina Adams, and Edward Kaufman. It was a superb afternoon, filled with the lively intelligence of literary minds, and a riveting presentation and reading by Karen Mann. And it was on Super Bowl Sunday!

Leslie Daniels has two short essays publishing this month: a piece on dialogue (with text from the brilliant George Saunders) in New Ohio Review, and her infamous one on blender drinks in Stone Canoe.

Edie Hemingway attended the Children’s Book Guild of Washington, D.C., luncheon on February 19, where Kwame Alexander, recent winner of the 2015 Newbery Medal for his novel-in-verse The Crossover, was the featured speaker. Deborah Taylor, the 2015 recipient of the Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement, was another honored guest.

Fenton Johnson’s essay “Opulence in Solitude: The Dignity and Challenge of Being Alone” will be a cover essay included in the April 2015 issue of Harper’s Magazine. In February, University Press of Kentucky will be reissuing Fenton’s out-of-print novels, Crossing the River and Scissors, Paper, Rock, along with a big new novel, The Man Who Loved Birds. In March, Fenton will present the New Pioneers Award in Sustainable Living to Martha and Arthur Young, his oldest sister and her husband, at the New Pioneers for a Sustainable Future’s tenth anniversary dinner at St. Catharine College in Springfield, Kentucky. Finally, Fenton will chair a panel at AWP that includes Spalding’s Dianne Aprile, Kentucky poet and Pulitzer nominee Maurice Manning, Thomas Merton scholar and director of the Cleveland State Writing Program Mary McDonald, and Image magazine editor Gregory Wolfe. The panel, “Contemplation in a World of Action: Thomas Merton in the 20th Century,” will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birth of Thomas Merton, arguably the 20th century’s foremost writer on spirituality.

Lesléa Newman is thrilled that her newest poetry collection (for adults), I Carry My Mother, was published by Headmistress Press in January. The book explores a daughter’s journey through her mother’s illness and death and her own grief. A poem from the collection, “Looking at Her,” was published in Lavender Review: Her essay about becoming a writer, “Best Friends,” was published on Prosen People: And her essay about almost not becoming a writer, called “Dear Professor H.,” was published in Passages North: Lastly, her picture book Here is the World: A Year of Jewish Holidays was named an Association of Jewish Libraries Sydney Taylor Notable book:

Eleanor Morse, a member of the fiction faculty, will be speaking at the Long Beach Festival of Authors on March 14 in Long Beach, California. She’d love to see any California MFA people who happen to be nearby.


Lynda Archer (F ’05) is thrilled to report that her short story “After the Fall” has been published in The New Quarterly, No. 133, and her novel, Coming Home, part of which comprised her creative thesis, has been accepted for publication by Dundurn Press, Toronto, release date probably 2016.

Priscilla Atkins (P ’08) has a collection, The Café of Our Departure (Sibling Rivalry Press, Little Rock), just out. Poems appearing in recent issues of journals include “A February Day” (Kindred, No. 8); “February 10, 2013” (Superstition Review, No. 14); and “Pajama Party” (The Great American Literary Magazine, No. 1).

In October, Tay Berryhill (F ’09) attended the One-on-One Plus Conference sponsored by the Rutgers University Council on Children’s Literature. She also attended the Society for Children Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Writing and Illustrating for Kids Conference in Birmingham, Alabama, where her novel Blood at the Root received an honorable mention in the Southern Breeze Writing Contest.

Ruby Berryman’s (PW ’13) ECE, “Distilling Genocide Into Drama: Adaption of Holocaust and Slave Narratives to the Stage,” was published in the Fall 2014 issue of The Quint, a journal published by University College of the North in Canada.

The jounal can be viewed here.

Ms. Berryman’s Englewood Boys art exhibit/performance project working with inmates at the Northeast Correctional Complex in St. Johnsbury, Vermont, culminated in an exhibit and performance in January at the Catamount Arts Center. For pictures of the watercolor portraits of inmates painted by Chicago-based artist Julian Williams and Ms. Berryman’s accompanying performance piece, visit this link and this link to watch the KATV recording of the show.

Kristin Brace (F ’12) recently stepped into the role of Executive Director at the Grand Rapids Creative Youth Center, a nonprofit organization that prepares kids for life’s adventures by supporting their writing and amplifying their voices. Last fall, she participated in a poetry chapbook exchange with a dozen other writers across the United States. Remaining copies of her chapbook The Farthest Dreaming Hill are available for sale at The Sparrows Coffee Tea & Newsstand. Her interview with novelist and Spalding faculty member Eleanor Morse appeared on Fiction Southeast on January 15 and the poems “Lukewarm Coffee at a Blue Desk in Michigan” and “Somewhere in Newfoundland” are forthcoming in The Other Journal.

David Carren’s (SW ’05) new play, Hunter’s Moon, a very dark werewolf comedy, is a semifinalist in the 2015 Eugene O’Neill Playwrights Conference.

Jessica Caudill (CNF ’13) has an essay published in a new anthology from MuseWrite Press, titled Shifts: An Anthology of Women’s Growth Through Change. A book launch party, sponsored by MuseWrite and Mahogany Heritage Foundation, is scheduled for March 14 at the Oak Park Public Library in Oak Park, Illinois, and will include readings from the anthology contributors, as well as performances from local women artists.

Shannon Cavanaugh (F ’13) won first place in the Ozark Writers League writing contest for her creative nonfiction story “Calico Roche.” Roche is a French word that means rock. The French explored much of northern Arkansas along the famous White River and named the bluffs for its color. Cavanaugh published four photos with Typehouse Literary Journal, Portland, Oregon, in September 2014. One photo was used for the cover and three others used as a photo essay.

Linda Cruise (F ’08) recently signed a two-year book deal with Tandem Light Press, for a nonfiction children’s picture book, due out later this year.

Joan Donaldson’s (CNF ’08) collection of essays, Wedded to the Land, was featured in the January 2015 issue of Country Woman in the section “On Our Bookshelf.” The collection grew from her creative thesis.

Carolyn Flynn (F ’12) won the 2014 Rick Bass/Montana Prize for Fiction for her short story “Pretend.” The story was published in The Whitefish Review (, and author/environmental activist Rick Bass ( read from her story at the party for review’s “The Geography of Hope” issue. The award was particularly meaningful for Flynn because she has long admired Bass’s work. She heard him read his scored stories with the acoustic band Stellarondo ( at the 2014 Associated Writers & Writing Programs Conference in Seattle. Flynn worked on “Pretend” with faculty member Robin Lippincott at the 2009 Barcelona residency.

“Resurrection,” an excerpt from Flynn’s memoir-in-progress, Straight to Heaven, was published in Fourth Genre ( in January. The essay was a finalist for the 2014 Fourth Genre Steinberg Essay Prize, judged by Robert Root. Root’s detailed feedback and FG editor Laura Julier’s masterful editing led to the story being accepted for publication. An earlier version placed second in the 2013 Pinch Journal creative nonfiction contest, judged by Abigail Thomas. Flynn worked on “Resurrection” with faculty member Bob Finch during her first year at Spalding. Find out about Flynn’s writings and literary events at

Foust (F ’08) had her short story “Road Trip” included in the inaugural issue of the online magazine Waypoints ( Her short story “Molting” will be in the February issue of Bread and Beauty ( Her story collection Sins of Omission and her cartoon collection Six of One, Half-dozen of the Other will be published this spring by Tidal Press (

Barry George (P ’09) has published a new chapbook of tanka, The One That Flies Back (Kattywompus Press). His poetry appears in the first-ever bilingual English-Chinese anthologies of haiku and tanka, respectively, Butterfly Dream and One Man’s Maple Moon (NeverEnding Story). He is one of 75 international haiku poets featured in Something Out of Nothing (Red Moon Press), a collection of haiga—haiku presented in calligraphy and brush painting—by the Romanian artist Ion Codrescu. Three of his senryu will be published by the Russian journal Ershik. And a haiku was chosen for the 2014 annual Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku. He talks about his chapbook and the distinguishing features of haiku and tanka in an interview on the Accents Publishing blog,

Karen George’s (F ’09) poetry collection, Swim Your Way Back, is available from Dos Madres Press at The inaugural issue of the online journal Waypoints (for which she is the fiction editor) was launched, including work by Spalding MFA alums Foust (F ’08), Kathleen Thompson (F/P ’03), and Alice-Catherine Jennings (P ’14) at Karen was one of the featured readers at Thomas More College’s Outloud Festival on February 15 and was honored to have her short story “Cornerstone” published as a Judge’s Choice finalist in Still: The Journal’s fiction contest. She had poems published in Sugared Water and Blue Lyra Review. Her poems that appeared in 94 Creations Issue 5 were nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

Tara Goldstein (PW ’06) had a staged reading of her new play Castor and Sylvie, about French feminist writer Simone de Beauvoir and her mid-life companion Sylvie Le Bon, at the Festival of Original Theatre at the University of Toronto. The fourth season of Gailey Road’s Women Writing Letters literary performance series ends on April 12 with A Letter to My 18-Year Old Self. At the April event, Gailey Road will launch its third publication, Women Writing Letters Seasons 3 and 4. Spalding playwriting student Samantha Vakiener’s letter is included in the latest volume, as is a letter by Tara herself.

Robert X. Golphin (SW ’13) has released a teaser trailer for Under the Thumb, a narrative short psychodrama that he wrote and starred in:

Brian Hampton’s (PW ’06) one-act play, Gossip, was featured at the Council of Prejudice Reduction’s annual Fall Conference at Stony Brook University this winter, where he spoke about the effects of gossip and bullying in communities. Gossip is currently being produced across the country and in Canada, Australia, London, and Africa and is published at Brian’s indie film, Checking In (based on his play), can now be seen on Amazon Instant Video and DVD. Brian is producing his fifth theatre festival, The Puzzle, at the historic Marble Collegiate Church in New York City this June. The Puzzle is currently seeking 10-minute plays, and details can be found at under the “Connect” tab and “The Puzzle” tab. If interested, submit by March 31.

Colleen S. Harris-Keith’s (P ’09) two poetry chapbooks, That Reckless Sound and Some Assembly Required, were published at the end of 2014 by Porkbelly Press.

Robin Heald (W4C ’06) is the winner of the Katherine Paterson Prize at Hunger Mountain, the Vermont College of Fine Arts Journal of the Arts. Robin’s picture book, Isadora’s Sandálias, was written during her time at Spalding. She thanks Ellie Bryant, Joyce McDonald and Luke Wallin, as well as her W4C cohorts. Robin is the director of the Pomegranate Preschool for the Arts in Ashland, Oregon.

Sandi Hutcheson (CNF ’12) is a Sunday Lifestyle columnist for The St. Augustine Record in St. Augustine, Florida. She also has a new book, I AM LOVED at Community Bible Church, the history of a church in Atlanta, being released in March to coincide with the church’s 50th anniversary celebration.

Alice-Catherine Jennings’s (P ’14) poems “Accordion Lesson” and “Passages” were translated into Bulgarian by poet Dimana Ivanova and published online in Public Republic ( In addition, her poem “Septembris” was selected for the inaugural issue of Waypoints (

Marci Rae Johnson’s (P ’05) chapbook A Dictionary of Theories won the 2014 Friends of Poetry chapbook prize for Michigan authors and was published by Celery City Chapbooks in December. Steel Toe Books will publish her second full-length poetry collection, Basic Disaster Supplies Kit, in 2016. Marci’s poems have recently appeared in the anthology Light Upon Light: A Literary Guide to Prayer for Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany, and in the following journals: Quiddity, The Mid American Review blog, St. Katherine’s Review, and Windhover.

Teddy Jones (F ’12) celebrated the release of her new novel, Well Tended, from MidTown Publishing, with a reading and book signing at Barnes and Noble in Lubbock, Texas, in December. Well Tended is now available in paperback and digital versions through Barnes and Noble, Amazon, and by order from your favorite independent bookseller. Information available at Following the launch party, she returned home and began begging colleagues and friends to read and post reviews of the book. She continues that pursuit, while working on her next novel, provisionally entitled Slanted Light.

Mary Knight (W4CYA ’13) recently signed a contract with Scholastic for the publication of her middle-grade novel, Saving Wonder, due out in Spring 2016.

Nancy Chen Long (P ’12) is thrilled to have two poems nominated for Pushcart Prizes: “Reunion: Day 3” ( in Boxcar Poetry Review and “Blazing Black Holes Spotted in Spiral Beauty” in Sycamore Review. She is also delighted that Mason’s Road recently published the poem “When We Finally Arrive Stateside, My Father Gets Deployed to Vietnam” ( in their issue on memory. For the past couple of years, Nancy has been submitting a manuscript to contests, a manuscript that’s comprised primarily of poems from her Spalding creative thesis. It has come in as a runner-up in the May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Prize, a finalist in both the New American Poetry Prize and the Moon City Poetry Award, and a semifinalist a handful of other contests. Nancy has her fingers crossed that the manuscript will be accepted for publication soon. Lastly, she is coordinating a new offering by the Spalding Alumni Association: the Poetry Lecture Discussion Series, which welcomes all alumni regardless of genre.

Roland Mann (W4CYA ’11) had his short story “Broken Down Truck” published in the Arkansas Review Vol. 45 No. 2, and a graphic novel adaptation of Sony Pictures’ The Remaining.

Cheri (Thomas) Maxson (W4CYA ’13) is now an adjunct instructor, teaching Introduction to Creative Nonfiction for both Syracuse University and the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford for the Spring semester. She also is facilitating an adult writer’s group in Shinglehouse, Pennsylvania, focusing on writing for children during their spring session. In Fall 2015, she will be teaching an Introduction to Poetry Writing course at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford. Recently she began submitting poetry and plays actively again (after a very long hiatus)!

Angie J. Mayfield (CNF ’09) was promoted to Associate Professor of English at Vincennes University in Southern Indiana. She is a columnist for Boomer, Growing in the Heartland, and Mules and More magazines.

Anna C. Morrison (W4C ’08) recently published her second children’s picture book, Green Gooey Goop, through Guardian Angel Publishing. The book was released in October and features a child, a health drink, and a very green dog. The recommended age range is 0-8 years.

Jae Newman’s (P ’06) first collection of poetry, Collage of Seoul, has recently been released by Cascade Books through the Poiema Series. To find out more about the book, visit Collage of Seoul |

Loreen Niewenhuis (F ’07) just sent the manuscript for her latest adventure memoir, A 1,000-Mile Great Lakes Island Adventure: Exploring the Islands of the Great Lakes, to her publisher. The book will be pre-released to select indie bookstores this May, then available everywhere books are sold in June. This is Loreen’s third 1000-mile Great Lakes Adventure, and it completes the trilogy. Learn more about her and her Great Lakes Adventures at

Sherry McCaulley Palmer (CNF ’12) is happy to announce that her book Life With Charley: A Memoir of Down Syndrome Adoption was published in October by Zharmae Press Publications, of Spokane, Washington. Available on, Sherry’s book is about the adoption of her son, Charley, at the age of two months and the twenty-one year journey that follows. Charley has Down Syndrome. Sherry is planning a book signing in Louisville in late May.

Mary Popham (F ’03) read her poem “Offertory” in October with the organization Interfaith Paths to Peace, in a Skype with Tehran. During two weeks in October, she presented the workshop “Spirituality on the Page.” In November, she had a book-signing for Back Home in Landing Run at Sixth and Main Coffeehouse in Shelbyville, Kentucky, and a book-signing for Christmas Greetings: An Anthology by the Cherokee Roundtabl,e Louisville, Kentucky at A Reader’s Corner Bookstore, Louisville. In November, she was also guest contributor for Literary Labors (and the Occasional Cheese Dip) with her essay “Literary Heroes.” In January, she read from her short story “Mickey Make-Out,” with the winners and finalists for 2013 New Southerner Literary Editionby Bobbi Buchanan at The Bard’s Town Theatre; and her article “Looking for Lilith in Louisville” appeared in the Winter 2015 issue of 2nd & Church Magazine.

Diana M. Raab (CNF ’03) organized a reading on February 10 at Antioch University- Santa Barbara, called Love, Lust and Longing. Her poem “Desperation,” published in Reverie: Ultra Short Memoirs, was a Pushcart nominee. Another poem, “Pick Up,” was published Café in Space: The Anais Nin Literary Journal. In February, she was interviewed on The Coaching Show and Voice America. In November, she gave a lecture on “Writing for Healing Transformation” at ORT (Organization for Rehabilitation and Training). An excerpt of her dissertation, Creative Transcendence: Writing for Transformation and Empowerment, will be published in the Journal of Transpersonal Psychology.

Lori Reisenbichler’s (F ’10) debut novel, Eight Minutes, was published in February by Lake Union, a division of Amazon Publishing. The novel was written and revised with the support of mentors Kirby GannMary Waters, and Robin Lippincott. An early version of the work was critiqued in the Book-length Manuscript Workshop led by Ellie Bryant. Lori recently participated in the Fall 2014 Launch Lab, sponsored by Grub Street, a literary center in Boston, and will join her fellow Launch Lab authors for a reading and book signing at the Harvard Book Store on March 20.

Michele Ruby (F ’05) is currently teaching fiction writing at Bellarmine University. Her short story “Order” will appear in the spring issue of Shenandoah. 

Graham Shelby (CNF ’10) will create and perform a multimedia one-man show based on work he originally wrote while earning his MFA at Spalding. Louisville’s Frazier History Museum is sponsoring The Man on TV, Graham’s account of getting to know his birth father, a troubled combat veteran whom Graham first saw when his father appeared on national television. Graham performed a version of this story that aired nationwide on The Moth Radio Hour. Graham’s presentation will combine live storytelling with video, music and other multimedia elements. The Man on TV debuts at the Frazier on March 24. For more info, click here.

Nicholas Siegel’s (F ’13) story “Sprezzatura” will be published in the Bird’s Thumb’s 2015 Summer Flash issue.

Katerina Stoykova-Klemer’s (P/CNF ’09) latest book, the Bulgarian-only Как наказва Бог (How God Punishes) published by ICU Press, won the prestigious Ivan Nikolov National Poetry Book Award. The first prize was split between Katerina’s book and the book of another Bulgarian poet, Vasil Balev. Each of the poets received 4000 leva and a plaque. Katerina also co-wrote the story for Proud Citizen, a locally made narrative feature film, directed by Thom Southerland. Katerina also acted in the lead role. Since July, the film has been featured at festivals around the country, where it has received the following awards: Audience Favorite at Knoxville Film Festival, Best Narrative Feature at New Orleans Film Festival, Best of Fest at River’s Edge International Film Festival, and Best Narrative Feature at Weyauwega International Film Festival. Additionally, Katerina received a Special Jury Award for Acting from River’s Edge International Film Festival for her performance. Proud Citizen had its Lexington premiere on January 15 at the historic Kentucky Theater. More information about the film, as well as a trailer, can be found at

Kathleen Thompson’s (F/P ’03) passion for the sea turtle has surfaced again: “Nesting” is published in the current and inaugural issue of Waypoints at www.waypointsmag.comKaren George (F ’09) is the founding fiction editor. Thompson has also successfully collected and delivered the papers of Alabama writer, and subject of Thompson’s ECE, Helen Norris, to the Hoole Library of the University of Alabama.

Vickie Weaver’s (F ’05) short story “The Shootist” was published in Vol. 27 No. 2 of Green Mountains Review. Another short story, “Suggestion,” was a Lush Triumphant Contest Winner for SubTerrain and is in Issue 69.

Colleen Wells (CNF ’10) had the poems “Out of Chaos Comes Art,” “In a Fog,” “The Night Nurse,” “Stranger’s Got a Gun,” and “Summertime and the Livin’ Is Almost Easy” published in Deltona Howl on November 13 (  “Thirteen Years – An Adoptive Mother and Her Baby Son,” a personal essay, was published on November 26 on the Brain, Child blog. Her nonfiction piece “This Land Is Your Land, This Land Is My Land: Bloomington’s Deer Dilemma,” appeared as a cover story in the November issue of The Ryder Magazine. “Last Minute Shopping,” a personal essay, was also published by The Ryder Magazine in December ( ELJ Publications’ Wild Horses: The Women on Fire Series will publish her short story “Scrabble Life” in March.

Colleen’s memoir, Dinner With Doppelgangers – A True Story of Madness and Recovery, will be available April 11 from Wordpool Press and ( Preorders can be made beginning March 14 through Wordpool Press. Watch the book trailer here: Colleen volunteered in an English class for ninth graders in January at The Center for Science and Entrepreneurship in Bloomington, Indiana, and spoke on the writing life at Ivy Tech Community College in Bloomington in February.


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