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Life of a Writer: March 2023



Judy Harju Galliher’s (CNF) essay “Choosing to Stay” was published in Pangyrus on February 7.

Abigail Rudibaugh (P) has her article “Meaningful Revision: Cultivating Students Voice with Tools and Time” published in the Winter/Spring 2023 Issue of the Ohio Journal of English Language Arts. Find her on Instagram @abigailrudibaugh_.


Cathy Berresheim’s (CNF’13) essay “Catlike” was recently published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Lessons Learned from My Cat.

Tay Berryhill (F ’09) was awarded second place in the Alabama Writers’ Cooperative short story contest for “Grimm’s School for the Morally and MeToo Challenged,” published in the 2022 Awarded Writers Collection journal. In October, she attended the Rutgers University Council of Children’s Literature One-On-One-Plus Conference. In November, Tay’s YA novel, Doomed to Repeat, won first place in the SCBWI-Southern Breeze Writing Contest. She serves as the assistant Illustrator Coordinator for her SCBWI region.

Drēma Drudge (F ’13) is excited to announce that her second novel, Southern-Fried Woolf, is now available. It is the winner of a silver Literary Titan Book Award and runner-up in the 2022 Page 100 Competition. It has been long listed for the 2023 Somerset CIBAS Literary and Contemporary Fiction. She and her husband, Barry Drudge (F’18), host the podcast MFA Payday. They interview MFA graduates from any and all writing programs about their writing journey and the unique ways they use their MFAs.

Elizabeth Felicetti (CNF ’20) was interviewed for Publisher’s Weekly for her forthcoming book Unexpected Abundance: The Fruitful Lives of Women Without Children (Eerdmans, August 2023). Check it out here: Finding Gifts in a Childless Life: PW Talks with Elizabeth Felicetti ( She also has a new feature up on Christian Century which was workshopped in Jason Kyle Howard’s professional writing workshop in spring 2021: "A Very Long Discernment An Incarcerated Person’s Very Long Discernment for Ordained Ministry” (

Holly Gleason’s (CNF ’15) essay “Stand By Your Man”—Tammy Wynette (1968) has been

added to the Library of Congress as part of the National Recording Preservation Board, as part of the Board’s recognition of Wynette’s song.

Karen George (F ’09) won the Rosemary Daniell Fiction Prize, and Minerva Rising Press will be publishing her short story collection, How We Fracture, in Spring 2023. She had poems published in Panoply, Heron Tree, Silver Birch Press, OyeDrum Magazine, Persimmon Tree, The Ekphrastic Review, The Ekphrastic Review 2, The Ekphrastic Review 3, Gulf Stream Magazine, and Sheila-Na-Gig online. She was one of the featured readers at the August edition of the Voice & Vision reading series, sponsored by Spalding, The Louisville Review, and 21c Museum Hotel, and she was a featured guest in July on RadioLex 93.9’s Kentucky Writers Roundtable interview.

The Caravan Theatre Co. and the Institute Library will present a reading of Lynn Hoffman’s (DW, W4CYA ’15) full-length play, Three Mothers, on March 14 in New Haven, Connecticut, as part of their 2023 Winter Play Reading Series. Peter B. Hodges directs.

Andra Laine Hunter (PW ’21) is thrilled to announce that her play Holly Abel and the Missing Mothers will be released in March by Next Stage Press. You can get a copy HERE. And in other fun news, Andra is featured on the cover of an anthology of holiday plays (two of which contain roles she originated) which is available HERE. Finally, her play Henny Penny is due to be released in Drama in Plague Time from Flowersong Press this spring.

Laura Johnsrude’s (MAW, PrWr ’21) essay “Brown Barrette in My Hair” was winner of Sweet’s 2022 Flash Nonfiction Contest and will be published in the March issue of Sweet: A Literary Confection. Find Laura on Instagram @Laura.Johnsrude and Twitter @LauraJohnsrude.

Jessica Love Kim’s (W4CYA ’16) latest YA novel This Is for Tonight was recently awarded first place in the Young Adult category and second runner-up overall in the 2022 Orange County Romance Writers’ Book Buyers Best contest. This Is for Tonight, published as Jessica Patrick, is Jessica’s third YA novel. Her first two, Push Girl and In Real Life, are published as Jessica Love.

Just prior to graduating from Spalding this past November, John Maclay’s (CNF ’22) newest show, Arthur and Friends Make a Musical (based on the Marc Brown books and PBS Kids television series), had its world premiere at First Stage in Milwaukee. In February, his one-person play Hopper (written while a student at Spalding) had a professional staged reading at Third Avenue PlayWorks in Door County, Wisconsin. Additionally, there are currently twenty-three different productions of his other plays and musicals scheduled in the 2022–23 season. John is also putting his fancy new degree to work as he is currently teaching advanced playwriting as Adjunct Associate Professor in the English department at North Central College in Naperville, Illinois. Simultaneously, he is putting his other MFA to work as he spends this winter directing Cymbeline for the University of Minnesota Guthrie BFA program.

Michael Madden’s (F ’17) band, Vacant Church, released their debut album, Stabilizer, on October 7 via Ropeadope Records. “Written by Michael Madden, the songs feel friendly, melodic, and have a sense of gentle comfort. The lyrics cover an incredibly deep range of emotion and struggle reflective of this time on planet Earth. Madden has a very personal, introspective lyrical style that speaks of sadness and transformation. Madden does not present answers, but rather the real questions that haunt us all. One would think this makes for a morose body of work, and while his deep vocal begins with a dreamy sadness, somehow the music wraps around the style to give it a longing and hopeful feel.” –Ropeadope Records

Mark Madigan (P ’17) had two poems published recently: “First Snow” appeared in the Fall 2022 issue of Broad River Review (Vol. 54), and Last Love Note appeared in the Winter 2023 issue of Third Wednesday. Two other poems, “Leaving Sarajevo” and “Lunch in Arezzo,” will appear in a future issue of The Main Street Rag.

Quincy Gray McMichael (CNF, PrWr ’22) is grateful her writing is finding a place in the world. In October, Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies published a shortened version of her ECE essay “Laboring Toward Leisure” in Issue 9.1. Burningword Literary Journal selected Quincy as the Featured Writer for October, making room for her poems “Stolen Gum” and “Fire in the Hole” in Issue 104. published Quincy’s short, lyric essay “On This Farm, There’s No Thanksgiving in late November. THAT Literary Review selected “Peeping” as their Creative Nonfiction of the Month in December. Quincy feels deep appreciation for Appalachian Review, which nominated her essay “Grasping at Grace” (published in August) for a Pushcart Prize.

Andrew Najberg’s (P ’10) horror novel Gollitok is due out Winter 2023 from Cactus Moon Press, and his novel The Mobius Door is due out Winter 2023 from Wicked House Publications. In addition, his poem “When the path forks ahead” is forthcoming in Ghost City Press.

On February 14, in Miami, Florida, the fourteenth Annual International Kidscreen Awards ceremony took place. While many notable shows had nominations and wins, no other show swept the awards as much as Netflix’s Deepa & Anoop. The head writer/ story editor of this series is Atul N. Rao (SW ’16). The four awards this show received are Best New Series, Best Inclusivity, Best Music, and Best Voice Acting.

Suzanne Craig Robertson (F ’22) launched her memoir, He Called Me Sister: A True Story of Finding Humanity of Death Row, on Feb. 21 at Parnassus Books in Nashville. Spalding alum and faculty Erin Keane was kind enough to write a blurb for its cover. The foreword is by Sister Helen Prejean, and the preface is by Bill Moyers. The book, from Morehouse Publishing, an imprint of Church Publishing Inc., recounts a fifteen-year friendship of Suzanne and her family with Cecil Johnson, who was sentenced to die in Tennessee.

Michele Ruby’s (F ’05) short story “Sound Effects” appeared in Frankly Feminist, Lilith Magazine’s very first print anthology, drawn from forty-four years of Lilith short stories. The Louisville Jewish Federation is renewing its Jewish Book Month programming by sponsoring a reading of that story by Michele and a reading by Robert Sachs (F ’09) of his story “Vondelpark.”

Alan Samry (CNF ’12), author of Stump the Librarian: A Writer’s Book of Legs, is pleased to announce his latest book, Mapping Fairhope: Legends, Locals, and Landmarks, is now available. Mapping Fairhope is a collection of Alan’s features, histories, and profiles published in Fairhope Living, a hyper-local Fairhope, Alabama, magazine no longer in print. If you purchase the book from the Fairhope Public Library or the Eastern Shore Art Center, Alan donates 100 percent of the proceeds back to those respective organizations. He will be signing books at Page and Palette Bookstore on St. Patrick’s Day during the annual Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival. In addition to leading writing workshops at the Eastern Shore Art Center, Alan is embracing the opportunity to expand his role as a Coastal Alabama Community College librarian by teaching an eight-week creative writing class to a group of homeschool students. Alan’s forthcoming book, Fairhope, an Arcadia Publishing Past and Present title, is co-authored with Gabriel Gold-Vukson and is slated for publication in Fall 2023.

Ron Schildknecht (SW ’12) and Amy Foos Kapoor (W4CYA ’19) were featured in Louisville Film Society’s Fall 2022 Short Film Slam. Ron served as director/editor and Amy was the producer for Louisville band Nolia Noon’s debut music video, “Roses.” The video was an Official Selection for the Short Film Slam, held at the Speed Art Museum in Louisville in November. “Roses” has also been named an Official Selection in the Capital City Film Festival in Lansing, Michigan, April 5-15. The photo above features indie filmmaker Stu Pollard, Ron Schildknecht, and Amy Foos Kapoor (left to right) during a Q&A at the film slam.

John Styron’s (F ’22) short story, “Oedipus Wrecks,” was published in Adelaide literary magazine’s December issue. John recently made a pandemic-delayed trip to Liberty Island’s new Statue of Liberty Museum (opened November 2019) to see the three-part signature media experience that winds through the core of the museum. Styron worked as the lead writer in concept and script development, in collaboration with Donna Lawrence Productions, Louisville, KY. In other news, Styron’s short story “His True Nature” will appear in the Spring/Summer ’23 issue of Smoky Blue Literary and Arts Magazine.

Heidi Taylor (P ’20) had a magical year in the back end of 2022. Her work with the Mattel Aquarius (with Dr. Roy Templeman) was reviewed by John Hancock, featured in Skrolli Magazine (Finland) in September and Retro Gamer Magazine (UK) in October. Several blurbs were published in Pixel Addict Magazine (UK), and her graphic design was featured on the cover of Warp Factor (Cronosoft, UK). In addition, her piece “My Gatekeeper Wasn’t the Paris Review, it was a Graduation Trip to Paris” was accepted by Moot Point Magazine in December, the first piece she had submitted anywhere in two years. Writing as Huntress Thompson, Heidi is a team member reading submissions for Taco Bell Quarterly since July 2022. Issue Six is available now.


Larry Brenner (SW, PW) had his first scholarly article, “Playing with Dragons: Using Role-Playing Games to Support Academic Objectives” published in Gamification in the Rhet Comp Curriculum. His play First Blood will be produced in March as part of Theatre Three’s Festival of One-Act Plays. Another play, Periphery; or the Plagiarist, is the winner of the Nantucket Short Play Festival and will be produced at the Nantucket Theatre later this year.

“Poem for Grown Children,” by Naslund-Mann Chair Kathleen Driskell, was published in the December 12 issue of The New Yorker. That poem appears in her new chapbook, The Vine Temple, published by Carnegie Mellon University Press in February. With other contributors during the AWP conference in Seattle, she will read from her essay “Church of the Goat Man,” which appears in River Teeth, at the offsite reading for the journals Fourth Genre, Hippocampus, River Teeth, & Under the Gum Tree, on March 10, 6 – 8 p.m. at The Blarney Stone Irish Pub, just a 10-minute walk from the convention center. She also looks forward to seeing Spalding friends at the Spalding MFA Happy Hour at 6 p.m. on March 9, in the Kirkland Room at the Sheraton Grand Hotel.

Roy Hoffman’s (CNF, F) personal essay, “Before 9/11, There Was 2/26,” about being in the first World Trade Center bombing of 2/26/93, was in The Wall Street Journal on the thirtieth anniversary of the attack, the weekend of 2/26/23. At the Jewish film festival in Mobile, in January, Roy led audience discussions after screenings of the French film about a Holocaust denier, The Man in the Basement (L’Homme de la Cave). Roy’s novel, The Promise of the Pelican, is newly available in an audio edition on

Erin Keane (CNF, P, PrWr) was interviewed recently on the Chills at Will podcast about her memoir in essays, Runaway: Notes on the Myths That Made Me, named one of NPR’s Best Books of 2022. Runaway is out in paperback now, and you can read excerpts in LitHub and Salon, as well as an original essay in Salon on why habitual liars like her father “embellish” their life stories. In addition to gearing up for the spring leg of her tour in support of Runaway, Erin has recently re-launched her newsletter, It Just Doesn’t Matter, exploring themes related to the most memorable motivational speech in (late-1970s raunch-comedy) cinematic history. (Sign up here—it’s free!) Her essay in praise of “The Neverending Story” theme song will be competing in the March Fadness Tournament of 1980s One-Hit Wonder Songs, which launches March 1.

The Historical Novel Society called Lee Martin’s (F, CNF) new novel, The Glassmaker’s Wife, “an absorbing read of small village life and the people with their intertwined lives full of gossip and superstition.” Lee recently taught an online class, “If ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’: Reimagining True Stories,” via the Larksong Writers Center in Lincoln, Nebraska. The class focused on techniques for combining imagination and history.

Nancy McCabe’s (F, CNF) young adult novel Vaulting through Time, forthcoming from CamCat Books, is now available for pre-order. Her middle grade novel Fires Burning Underground is forthcoming from Fitzroy Books/Regal House in spring 2025. Her essay “Crimes against Property” from ACM was named a notable essay of 2021 by Best American Essays 2022, her ninth appearance on a Best American notable list.

Lesléa Newman (W4CYA) is pleased to share that her bilingual picture book, “Alicia and the Hurricane: A Story of Puerto Rico/Alicia y el huracán: Un cuento do Puerto Rico” was named a Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection. She was also recently a guest on Woodbridge, talking about her teen novel-in-verse, October Mourning; A Song for Matthew Shepard. Lesléa can be found online at and on Twitter @lesleanewman.

Jeremy Paden (Translation) has recently published a number of translations and a handful of his own poems. In the summer of 2022, the Mexican journal Círculo de Poesía published three of his English-to-Spanish translations of Ada Limón’s poetry. Tupelo Quarterly 28 has recently published seven translations of his by the poets Mario Meléndez Muñoz and Alexandra Domínguez, Interim Magazine has published five translations of Meléndez’s poetry, and Defunct has published one. Santa Rabia Poetry Press has recently published Exodus: Bilingual Edition by the Peruvian poet Elí Urbina Montenegro and translated into English by Paden. Aérea: Revista hispanoamericana has published eight of Paden’s own poems in Spanish. Still: The Journal has published four of his poems in English and Spanish with accompanying illustrations by the artist Anne Hermosilla. And About a Place has published three of his poems.

Greg Pape (P) has a new book of poems, A Field of First Things, to be published by Accents Publishing in 2024. He has an upcoming reading scheduled for March 22, 6 p.m., at University of Kentucky at the Cornerstone, and on April 5, 6 p.m., at Paul Sawyier Library in Frankfort, Kentucky.

Charlie Schulman’s (PW, SW) The Relationship Plays (Married Life and Sibling Rivalry) will be produced together at Cincinnati LAB Theater’s New Works Festival in July. The play will also be produced in August at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Charlie was recently hired to write two short films: “Man Versus Musk” and “The Kardashian Komplex.” His TV Pilot CRISIS U is currently making the rounds in Hollywood. Join Charlie’s Writing for TV, Screen, and Stage workshop this summer in Quebec City.


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