We are delighted to announce this year’s cohort of Emerging Writer Fellowships. Check them out at this year’s conference on June 12-13!
Kelsey Allagood is a writer and trained political analyst specializing in the causes of war and systemic oppression. This background led her to begin writing fantasy fiction steeped in the anthropology of conflict. Her work can be found in literary magazines such as Barrelhouse, GRIFFEL, Menacing Hedge, and Wanderlust. Website: kelseyallagood.com; Twitter: @kelseyallagood
Love Not War: Exploring Alternatives to Conflict and Conflict Resolution in Fiction
Conflict is a building block to compelling fiction, but it is often essentialized into a basic struggle of dominance, duality, and finality. In this workshop, writers will explore the numerous ways that conflict can manifest in interpersonal, cultural, and structural circumstances, gaining a greater understanding of how conflict can propel a story forward without perpetuating cycles of abuse or oppression. Drawing from real-world examples and methods from the conflict resolution, mediation, and peacebuilding fields, this workshop will introduce lesser-known—through no less narratively compelling—approaches to resolving conflicts in literature. In envisioning new ways of approaching real-world conflicts, writers will expand the relationships and worlds in which they can write, expanding both their own and their readers’ perceptions of what is possible. By the end of the workshop, each participant will have written a brief original scene and brainstormed several ways in which to express the conflict in the scene as well as resolve it.
Stanley Patrick Stocker
Stanley Patrick Stocker’s fiction has appeared in Kestrel and Middle House Review. His story “The List” which appeared in Kestrel was awarded the 2021 PEN America/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers. He also received an Individual Artist Award in Fiction from the Maryland State Arts Council. Originally from Philadelphia, Stanley lives in the Washington, DC, area with his wife and son where he practices law. He is currently working on a novel.
The Craft of the Short Story
This workshop will focus on developing ideas for short stories, developing the first draft of the story, letting it sit and germinate and let the subconscious do its work and add dimensions to the story. The workshop will address the various forms short story can take and draw upon the insights and wisdom of the great short story writer Joyce Carol Oates. I hope the attendees will take away how to generate ideas for short stories, effective drafting, and how to decide how and when to submit to various literary journals.
Cassie Mannes Murray
Cassie Mannes Murray is an emerging writer whose work has been featured in The Rumpus, Story Quarterly, Passages North, Hobart, and Fugue. She’s currently earning her MFA at UNCW in creative nonfiction. She has received a Notable in Best American Essays 2020, and a Pushcart Nomination.
Cartography of the Mind, Mind Mapping the Lyric Essay
Cartographers of the Mind would be a workshop focused on threading within the lyric essay. If you’ve ever watched a crime show, you’ve seen the wild cork board of red yarn, mug shots, pins, and maps that the detectives are using to get an exactness of a crime. If you’ve watched Always Sunny in Philadelphia, you might think of the meme of Charlie predicting a mail conspiracy, same concept. Using mind mapping, and two example essays (“Scarification” in Guernica by Melissa Febos and “Brittle Stars” in Orion by Hannah Dela Cruz Abrams), I’ll help writers discover how their potentially unlike memories, objects, places, art, and ideas about the world can come together through mapping and then writing, even if they at first seem opposed, dissonant, or just not a love match. In fact, that’s even better.
Shaina A. Nez
Shaina A. Nez is a Diné Creative Nonfiction writer. She is Táchii’nii born for Áshįįhi and originally from Lukachukai, Arizona. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from the Institute of American Indian Arts. She is a member of Saad Bee Hózhǫ: Diné Writers’ Collective. Her work has appeared in The Massachusetts Review, Yellow Medicine Review, Tribal College Journal, and will have forthcoming work with Woodhall Press in April 2022.
Writing Without Apology: Narrative on Its Own
Consider your narrative—what parts or sections stand on their own? How do we portray acceptance in all its complexity? How do we write unapologetic memoir conscientiously? In this session we will focus on selected examples from the works from Danielle Geller, T Kira Madden, and Terese Marie Mailhot, writers who form introspective narratives in family relationships, strength, and survival. We will focus upon selections from Geller’s DogFlowers (One World, 2021), Madden’s Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2019), and Mailhot’s Heart Berries (Counterpoint, 2018).
Laura B. Ginsberg has 20 years of experience in publishing and education, and she has edited content about everything from bad breath to bad brakes. Her specialty is recognizing creative content solutions and considers herself a poetic storyteller while currently working on a master’s in Teaching Writing at Johns Hopkins. Website: PoeticEditorial.com
Expanding the Potential of Poetry with Digital Visualization
With so many digital tools, the potential for creative writing to take on new forms gives writers the opportunity to stretch beyond basic words on a page. Easy and free access to stock photography, video creation tools, graphic design suites, editable templates, and print-on-demand publishing platforms means that anyone can create visually stunning and dynamically creative works of art with just a bit of patience and imagination. Beyond that, using those same digital tools to enhance the editing and revision process can broaden the scope of what a piece of writing can accomplish and help writers overcome writer’s block. Often, I will use one of these tools to take a second draft of a piece and narrow the editorial focus and tone to mimic some of the technological offerings. For example, stock images from Pexels helps me narrow my character and setting descriptions or even add an underlying metaphor to a story.
Madeleine Corley (she/her) is a writer by internal monologue with a proclivity for titles. She currently serves as Managing Editor at Barren Magazine after her stay as Poetry Editor for two years. An Atlantan, Ohioan, Californian, and Dubliner, she is fascinated with place, language, and their lasting impacts. She’s been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of Net Anthology. You can find her on Twitter @madelinksi or wrotemadeleine.com.
Starting a New Conversation: An Exploration of Erasure
In our current world, fostering conversation is paramount. Erasure poetry is a conversation, a collaboration, between the poet and original source author. This workshop will explore the dialogue created when engaging with an original text, as well as deepen the understanding of how our own lens affects what is found on the page. Attendees will be broken up into groups, each group provided the same formatted page of text from the chosen source material. Participants will be given a set amount of time to create their erasure poem. They will then be led in a discussion with their peers about the choices they made with their particular text. Despite having the same words and parameters on the page, every participant will create a piece wildly different from their peers given their own perception of the source and their personal connections. The goal of this workshop is twofold: to introduce writers to erasure poetry and to showcase the plethora of interpretations this form, as well as our peers, can provide. This workshop is necessary for how it visibly shows us what breathes behind our chosen lines, how what we say and what we don’t has implications beyond the page and in our own conversations.