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Life of a Writer – Summer Edition




Theresa Anne Carey’s (SW) second semester screenplay, MESTENGO, written under the tutelage of fabulous mentor Sam Zalutsky, has advanced as a Semi-Finalist in the Austin Revolution Film Festival (winners to be announced mid-July).

Joy Neighbors (CNF/PW) will be signing her new book “The Family Tree Cemetery Research Guide” at the American Library Association Conference in New Orleans June 22 – 24. Neighbors wrote the book during her first semester in CNF. She is scheduled for readings and signings throughout the year. The book is available at major bookstores and online. Earlier this year her first 10-minute play “All I Got” was performed in Bingham New York by Darkhorse Dramatists. Neighbors has just completed a full length play about Kentucky medical pioneer Jane Todd Crawford, and is currently working on one about Louisville civil rights activist Alberta Odell Jones.

Taylor Riley (CNF) began a new job as Managing Editor at the Henry County

Local, in Eminence, Kentucky. There, she will also be working with the Henry County Public Library to host writing workshops for the area, beginning in August. Taylor was also named Spalding University MFA Social Media Co-Coordinator, which will begin in Fall 2018. Taylor will be attending the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference in Dallas in July on the George Getschow Scholarship. There, she will be workshopping her essay on true crime, which she will also be expanding into her thesis.

Julia B. Rosenblatt, (PW) has been chosen to be a 2018 Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame “Women Center Stage” Honoree. Julia is being honored for her work as a playwright, co-founder and artistic director of HartBeat Ensemble in Hartford, CT. HartBeat is an award winning theater company whose mission is to create provocative theater that connects the community beyond traditional barriers of class, race, geography and gender. has called HartBeat a “rare theatrical experience that is equal parts intelligent, funny, moving, important and innovative.” Julia will be honored at the 25th Anniversary Induction Ceremony in November, just days before she returns to Louisville for her graduation residency. Link to Event can be found here.

portada Borderline y otros poemas

Vivian Sánchez’ (P) new poetry book in Spanish: “Borderline y otros poemas” it’s going to be published in Mexico this Spring 2018. You can follow Sánchez on Twitter: @VivianSanchbraj, and on Facebook, here.



Kristin Brace (F’ 12) is thrilled to announce that her first full-length poetry collection, Toward the Wild Abundance, was selected for the 2018 Wheelbarrow Books Poetry Prize (Emerging) and will be published by Michigan State University Press in late 2019.  Her first book, a chapbook of poetry called Fence, Patio, Blessed Virgin, was released in August 2018 from Finishing Line Press. A second chapbook, Each Darkness Inside, is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press in summer 2019. More at


Chad V. Broughman (F’ 16) is the 2018 Etching Press Chapbook Prize in Prose winner for his collection of short stories entitled the forsaken… Etchings Press, the University of Indianapolis student-run publisher, stated that “Broughman expertly strings together four stories of broken people surviving events that leave them with deep emotional scars. Through trauma, family, societal ideals of strength and masculinity, and mental health issues, Broughman’s characters and their stories evoke visceral heartbreak and empathy in readers.”

Additionally, Broughman won the 2016 Rusty Scythe Prize Book Award and has been published in numerous reviews and journals nationwide. He also won the 2017 Adobe Cottage Writers Retreat in New Mexico and recently was named a finalist in the William Faulkner: William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition.

Barry Drudge (F ‘18) and Drema Drudge (F ‘13) joined friends David and Shirley Rogers in conducting the EvenSong service at the Timbercrest Senior Living Community on May 30, 2018. They read psalms and poems and quotes by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Phillis Wheatley, and Helen Keller. In addition, Barry performed gospel songs by James L.L. Hendrix and Russell and Cynthia Taff, with Drema joining him with background vocals on the second. Barry played piano, sang, and shared the story behind the songs to the welcoming group.


Jeffrey Fischer Smith (PW ’17) and Julie Nichol’s (SW ’15) short film “Reservations” was an official selection in Shorts at the Seaside in Blackpool, United Kingdom in May and in the Genre Celebration Festival in Tokyo, Japan, in December 2018, and a semi-finalist in LA CineFest in Los Angeles, CA, in April. The film is based on Jeffrey’s short play, “Reservations,” which was written for his first Spalding residency. The play also was produced as part of Queer as F*ck in San Francisco, CA, in June. As part of The Grief Dialogues, Jeffrey’s short play “A Dog Dreams” was performed in Pittsburgh, PA, in April, Seattle, WA, in June and will be presented at the Dramatist Guild National Conference in New York, NY, in July. “A Dog Dreams” also was produced at Odenbear Theatre in Taos, NM, in June. His full-length play (and thesis), “When the Son is Shining,” will receive a staged reading at Cincinnati LAB Theatre New Works Festival in July. Even more exciting – fellow Spalding MFAer Heather Meyer’s (PW ’16) play, “The Hired Man,” will be in the festival and fellow Spalding MFAer Elizabeth Harris (PW ’15) is co-artistic director of the theatre. More information about Jeffrey can be found on Facebook here.


Barry George (P ’09) was the keynote speaker at the Haiku Society of America’s spring meeting in Cleveland. His presentation, “The Originality of Issa,” was a workshop based on the practices and philosophy of the Japanese master Kobayashi Issa (1763-1827). Barry’s own haiku was recently published in Echoes 2, an international anthology of haiku in English.  It is available here.  Follow Barry on Facebook, here.   Barry is the author of The One That Flies Back from Kattywompus Press , and Wrecking Ball & Other Urban Haiku from Accents Publishing.


Karen George’s (F ’09) second poetry collection, A Map and One Year, is now available from Dos Madres Press, here. All the poems in the book are found poems created from different source documents.


Mary Knight (W4CYA ’13) is pleased to announce that she and her writing partner, Christie McLean Kesler, recently signed a contract with NCTE (National Council of Teachers of English) to publish a professional development book called CoreEmpathy: Literacy Learning with a Greater Purpose. The original inspiration for this project grew out of Mary’s graduate lecture at Spalding on “The Power of Empathy in Young Adult Literature and How to Evoke It.”

Also, Mary’s debut novel, Saving Wonder, was selected for Choose to Read Ohio–a distinguished list of 20 books chosen every two years by the State Library of Ohio, the Ohioana Library Association, and the Ohio Center for the Book “to encourage Ohioans of all ages to read and enjoy books together.”

Mark Madigan2

Mark Madigan (P ‘17) has had several poems accepted recently: “The Drumming Out” will appear in the Spring/Summer 2018 issue of Valparaiso Poetry Review; “Major Music Studios” will appear in the July/August issue of The Broadkill Review, and “Percy” will appear later this year in Third Wednesday. Additionally, Finishing Line Press has accepted a chapbook of his poems, Thump and other poems, for publication. The poems in this chapbook are all set in foreign locations.


Paula Hendrickson, Mildred Lewis, Marilyn Millstone Steffi Ruben, Matthew Weaver, Charles White

Marilyn Millstone (PW ’16) has three productions of three different plays happening this summer, including two back-to-back world premieres:

  1. Her short comedy Compos Mentis will be produced at the End of the Road New Short Play Festival, July 13-15, Gulf Shores, Alabama (this is the play’s 8th production — a perennial shout-out to Spalding mentor Charlie Schulman for the great residency in which it was workshopped!);

  2. Her short play Play Date will premiere at the 2018 Rockford New Play Festival; the Festival will be streamed live on Facebook on August 23, details here.  

  3. The next day, August 24 (through the 26th), her new one-act play Birthday Girl will premiere at the 2018 Silver Spring Stage One-Act Play Festival, Silver Spring, Maryland.


Rick Neumayer (2014 Spring) read a new short story, “Settling An Old Score,” at the June session of “Spalding at 21c: Voice and Vision.”

diana raab

Diana Raab (CNF ’03) published several Memorial Day articles.  The first, “Remembering Loved Ones on Memorial Day? at Thrive Global is available here.   The second, “Writing a Creative Eulogy for Your Beloved”, ran in Psychology Today and is available here.


Dianne Aprile hi rez

Dianne Aprile (CNF Faculty)  Dianne recently taught a class on Personal Writing at Cloud 9 Art School in Bothell, WA. While in Louisville for the Spalding MFA residency, Dianne had a reunion with a class member from a workshop she taught decades ago, specifically for homeless women in transition. It was inspirational and heartening for Dianne to meet up with her former student, who is still writing and now in college working toward a degree. While teaching the class, Dianne used funds from a Kentucky Foundation for Women grant to print copies of the class’s prose and poetry, and she staged a reading for the women when the class ended.

SpaldingwritersJN 147

Jason Hill’s (Coordinator of Student Services and Marketing and Alumni, F ’14) story “Some Guesses About People in the Backgrounds of Our Photos” will be published in The Timberline Review Issue 7, this Fall/Winter.


Elaine Neil Orr (CNF/F Faculty) “Coming to the U.S. was a bit like going to Mars,” author Elaine Neil Orr tells of her transition moving to the American South, after being born and raised in Nigeria by her missionary parents in an interview at Encore.  The full interview can be found here.


Lesléa Newman (W4CYA Faculty) published a new poetry collection entitled LOVELY (for adults) which was reviewed in Mom Egg’s Review, available here  and was reviewed in IthacaLit, available here.  You can find Lesléa on Twitter: @lesleanewman, and on Facebook here.


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