Category Archives: Events

Dead Shakespeare Society Reading Friday

Three years ago, a small group of undergraduates banded together with me to adapt and reduce Shakespeare’s Macbeth for a performance in celebration of the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death (April 23, 1616). We joined students from the Spanish Department and Professor Stephen Hesselm as it was also the 400th anniversary of Cervantes’s death. They translated a Cervantes play for their portion of the evening; my group produced a dramatic reading, complete with audience participation, to a lovely crowd at the Kennedy Public Library. The event was a success and several of my students decided this should become an annual event. We dubbed ourselves the Dead Shakespeare Society, and this week we are preparing for our third-annual dramatic reading.

The group has expanded to include undergraduates, graduate students, and alumni from various Ball State departments. Each year, a devoted crew works tirelessly to reduce our chosen Shakespeare play to an hour or less. The actors, with the exception of a few lead roles, take on multiple characters. This year, we once again join forces with the Spanish Department to present a night of Renaissance drama titled “Calderón & Shakespeare: Dreams & Nightmares.” The Spanish Department undergraduates are presenting their translation of Pedro Calderón’s La vida es sueno/Life is a dream (1635) and the Dead Shakespeare Society will be reading our reduced version of Richard III. Together we will serve up dramas that ask you to reflect on power structures, history, propaganda, fitness to rule, and fake news—the stuff of dreams and nightmares! The performances will be held from 5-7 p.m. this Friday at the Kennedy Public Library. All ages are welcome.

–Dr. Vanessa Rapatz

Kaveh Akbar shares songs of recovery and rediscovery

Akbar speaks to students during book-signing after his reading. Photo by Prof. Mark Neely.

One of the most celebrated young poets on the scene visited Ball State this week. Kaveh Akbar, a professor at Purdue University and author of the poetry collection Calling A Wolf A Wolf, read from his book and from some new work before a large, rapt crowd in a tightly-packed AJ 175 on Tuesday, April 10.

In Calling a Wolf a Wolf, published by Alice James Books in 2017, Akbar explores himself, inside and outside, the mind, and ideas of religion, recovery, and rediscovery. Akbar is open about this collection being a recovery narrative, and the poems invite readers to experience the recovery with him.

On his visit, in addition to reading from the book and from new work in progress (including a poem written Tuesday morning!), Akbar shared personal stories and lingered for more than an hour talking with students and signing books. The line for autographs and hugs stretched outside the lecture hall.

Akbar’s poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, The New York Times, The Nation, Tin House, Best American Poetry 2018, The New Republic, The Guardian, Ploughshares, Georgia Review, PBS NewsHour, Harvard Review, American Poetry Review, Narrative, The Poetry Review, AGNI, New England Review, A Public Space, Prairie Schooner, Virginia Quarterly Review, Poetry International, Best New Poets 2016, Boston Review, and elsewhere. Akbar founded and edits Divedapper, a home for interviews with the most vital voices in contemporary poetry.

 

In Print Festival of First Books XIII – Itinerary of Public Events

For over a decade the BSU Creative Writing Program’s In Print Festival of First Books has brought three authors who’ve just published their first book and a literary editor/publisher to campus for a two-day event featuring a reading, classroom visits, and a panel discussion/Q&A on literary editing and publishing.

This year’s festival, to be held in the Student Center Ballroom from 8:00-10:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 28th and Thursday, March 29th, features poet Carolina Ebeid, fiction writer Nick White, creative nonfiction writer Jan Shoemaker, and editor/publisher Kristen Elias Rowley.

 

Here is a detailed schedule of events:

Wednesday, March 28th

 3 PM

  • Carolina Ebeid: Katy Didden’s ENG 308: Intro Poetry Workshop in RB 290
  • Jan Shoemaker: Jill Christman’s ENG 406: Advanced CNF Workshop in RB 361

8 PM

  • In Print Reading, reception and book signing (*remember to bring your books!) in the Student Center Ballroom

 

Thursday March 29th

12:30 PM

  • Carolina Ebeid: Mark Neely’s ENG 408: Advanced Poetry Workshop in RB 361

 2:00 PM

  • Jan Shoemaker: Silas Hansen’s ENG 406: Advanced Creative Nonfiction Workshop in RB 361

3:30 PM

  • Nick White: Sean Lovelace’s ENG 407: Advanced Fiction Workshop in RB 361

5:00 PM

  • Kristen Elias Rowley: Mark Neely’s ENG 489: Literary Editing in RB 361

8:00 PM

  • Panel discussion, reception and book signing in the Student Center Ballroom

In Print Author: Jan Shoemaker

This week, BSU’s creative writing program hosts its annual In Print Festival of First Books, a two-day event featuring a reading and panel discussion by writers who have just published their first books, as well as an editor from a small press or literary journal.

Today we introduce the third of our featured writers for this year’s festival: creative nonfiction writer Jan Shoemaker.

Jan’s Official Bio

Jan Shoemaker’s essay collection, Flesh and Stones: Field Notes from a Finite World, was published in 2016 by Bottom Dog Press. Her essays and poems have appeared in many journals and magazines. Having recently participated in a community reading of Walt Whitman’s “Song of Myself” in northern Michigan, she is increasingly interested in the idea of public readings as a form of political action. She writes and teaches in Michigan, where she lives with her husband and a succession of bed-hogging but well-meaning rescue dogs.

Interviews

Selected Essays

Event Details

Jan will be joined at the 2018 In Print Festival of First Books by fiction writer Nick White, poet Carolina Ebeid, and editor Kristen Elias Rowley.

Jan Shoemaker will also be visiting Professor Jill Christman’s ENG 406 class:

  • Wednesday, 03/28, 3:00-4:15 in Robert Bell, Room 361

She will also be visiting Professor Silas Hansen’s ENG 406 class:

  • Thursday, 03/29, 2:00-3:15 in Robert Bell, Room 361

All In Print events are free and open to the public, but contact Prof. Hansen or Prof. Christman if you would like to sit in on one of their classes.

 

In Print Editor: Kristen Elias Rowley

This week, the Ball State creative writing program will host its annual In Print Festival of First Books, a two-day event featuring a reading and panel discussion by writers who have just published their first books, as well as an editor from a small press or literary journal.

In anticipation of this event, we have prepared a series of blog posts highlighting each of our featured guests at the festival. Today we introduce you to editor Kristen Elias Rowley.

Kristen’s Official Bio:

Kristen Elias Rowley completed her graduate work in literary studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She is Editor-in-Chief at The Ohio State University Press, where she acquires academic monographs, in addition to nonfiction, fiction, graphic novels/memoir, and poetry for the new literary trade imprint Mad Creek Books. Her acquisitions include Phillip Lopate’s A Mother’s Tale, Lina Maria Ferreira Cabeza-Vanegas’s Don’t Come Back, and Nicholas Delbanco’s Curiouser and Curiouser. She previously worked for the University of Nebraska Press, where she acquired such books as Barry Jean Borich’s Body Geographic (a LAMBDA Literary Award finalist), Ellen Cassedy’s We Are Here (a recipient of the Grub Street Prize), Joy Castro’s Island of Bones (which received an International Latino Book Award), and Nancy Miller’s What They Saved (winner of the Jewish Journal Book Prize). Other authors she has published include Lee Martin, Sue Williams Silverman, Patrick Madden, Mary Clearman Blew, Dan O’Brien, Ilan Stavans, David Lazar, Jared Carter, Catherine Taylor, and Joy Passanante.

Interviews

Titles Acquired at Mad Creek Books

Title Acquired at University of Nebraska Press

Event Details:

Kristen will be joined at the 2018 In Print Festival of First Books by poet Carolina Ebeid, nonfiction writer Jan Shoemaker, and fiction writer Nick White.

Kristen Elias Rowley will also be visiting Professor Mark Neely’s ENG 489 class:

  • Thursday, 03/29, 5:00-6:15 in Robert Bell, Room 361

All In Print events are free and open to the public. Contact Professor Neely at maneely@bsu.edu if you would like to sit in on his class.

In Print Author: Carolina Ebeid

Next week, the Ball State creative writing program will host its annual In Print Festival of First Books, a two-day event featuring a reading and panel discussion by writers who have just published their first books, as well as an editor from a small press or literary journal.

In anticipation of this event, we have prepared a series of blog posts highlighting each of the writers whose work will be presented at the festival. Today’s writer: poet Carolina Ebeid.

Carolina’s Official Bio:

Carolina Ebeid is the author of You Ask Me to Talk About the Interior (Noemi Press, 2016). She is a student in the PhD program in creative writing at the University of Denver, and holds an MFA from the Michener Center for Writers. She has won fellowships and prizes from CantoMundo, Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference, the Stadler Center for Poetry, and the NEA. Her work appears widely in journals such as The Kenyon Review, Gulf Coast, Colorado Review, and more recent work appears in PEN America, Bennington Review, and jubilat.

Interviews

Poems

Many of her other poems can be found linked on her website

 Event Details:

Carolina will be joined at the 2018 In Print Festival of First Books by fiction writer Nick White, creative nonfiction writer Jan Shoemaker, and editor Kristen Elias Rowley.

  • Wednesday, 03/28: In Print Reading, 8-10 PM in the Student Center Ballroom
  • Thursday, 03/29: In Print Panel Discussion, 8-10 PM in the Student Center Ballroom
    Carolina Ebeid will also be visiting Professor Mark Neely’s ENG 408 class:
  • Thursday, 03/29, 12:30-1:45 in Robert Bell, Room 361

All In Print events are free and open to the public. Contact Prof. Neely at maneely@bsu.edu if you want to sit in on his class.

In Print Author: Nick White

At the end of this month, the Ball State creative writing program will host its annual In Print Festival of First Books, a two-day event featuring a reading and panel discussion by writers who have just published their first books, as well as an editor from a small press or literary journal.

In anticipation of this event, we have prepared a series of blog posts highlighting each of the writers whose work will be presented at the festival. This week’s subject: fiction writer Nick White.

Nick’s Official Bio

Nick White is the author of the novel How to Survive a Summer. A native of Mississippi, he teaches creative writing at Ohio State University. His fiction and essays have appeared in The Kenyon Review, Guernica, The Hopkins Review, LitHub, Poets & Writers, and elsewhere. His short story collection, Sweet and Low, will be published in the summer of 2018.

Selected Interviews

Fiction

Essays

Event Details

Nick will be joined at the 2018 In Print Festival of First Books by poet Carolina Ebeid, nonfiction writer Jan Shoemaker, and editor Kristen Elias Rowley.

Nick White will also be visiting Professor Sean Lovelace’s ENG 407 class:

  • Thursday, 03/29, 3:30-4:45 in Robert Bell, Room 361

All In Print events are free and open to the public, but contact Prof. Lovelace in advance if you want to sit in on  his class.

Faculty Reading Series: Rani Crowe and Kathryn Gardiner

At the beginning of February, the Ball State Creative Writing program will host a reading focused on two of our talented faculty members: Rani Deighe Crowe and Kathryn S. Gardiner. Aside from featuring their poetry and screenplays, the event will also screen several of Professor Crowe’s short films.

The reading will be at 8 p.m. Wednesday, February 7, in Room 225 Arts and Journalism Building (AJ). It is free and open to the public—so bring your friends and family and come support your amazing creative writing faculty!

Rani Deigh Crowe

Rani Deighe Crowe is a filmmaker, theater artist, and collaborative inter­disciplinary artist, and has been making and performing her work for more than twenty years. Her short film Beautiful Eyes was named “Best of ” at the Final Girls Women in Horror Film Festival and has screened in Berlin and Nuremberg, Ger­many, Tel Aviv, Israel, and Innsbruck, Austria. Her short film, Texting: A Love Story, has screened at more than 80 international film festivals in­cluding the Athens International Film and Video Festival, Tall Grass Film Festival, RapidLion South Africa International Film Festival, and the Valley Film Festival Los Angeles.

As a starving artist, Rani has lived in New York, Chicago, London, and Washington, DC. She has managed a bookstore, managed a restaurant, built theater sets, worked the spotlight at a nightclub, taught preschool, been a substitute teacher, been a live-in nanny, acted as a simulated patient training doctors, and much more. In her spare time she enjoys making jewelry and kayaking, and she is currently teaching herself to sew.

Kathryn S. Gardiner

Kathryn S. Gardiner received her bachelor’s degree in Telecommunications from Ball State University and her master’s degree in Screenwriting from Hollins University in Roanoke, Va. As editor of special products for the Hoosier Times in Bloomington, In. from 2007 to 2015, Kathryn spearheaded The South-Central Indiana Wedding Guide, H&L, INstride, BizNet, and Adventure Indiana. The latter publication let her try out roller derby, spelunking, gymnastics, contemporary dance, and a GORUCK Challenge.

She spent more than three years as an amateur mixed martial arts fighter, “retiring” in 2011 with a record of 2-2 (or 3-2, if you count her Muay Thai bout in Las Vegas, which she likes to). She has a deep love of The Lord of the Rings, Captain AmericaStar Wars, and Star Trek, as well as Abraham Lincoln, Shakespeare, and Jane Austen. She currently teaches screenwriting at Ball State and lives with a marvelous tabby cat named Cairo.

 

Author Ira Sukrungruang to Visit Ball State

Author Ira Sukrungruang will be visiting Ball State University on Wednesday, November 15, 2017 at 8:00 p.m., Arts and Journalism Building (AJ) 225, and it is free and open to the public.

Ira will be making two classroom visits to discuss his work in creative nonfiction and poetry. These visits are also free and open to the public.

  • Wednesday, 11/15: Ira visits ENG 613 (Graduate Poetry Workshop), 2:45-4:00, 305 Pittinger
  • Thursday, 11/16: Ira visits ENG 406 (Advanced Creative Nonfiction), 2:00-2:45, 306 Pittenger

Ira Sukrungruang is the author of the memoirs Southside Buddhist and Talk Thai: The Adventures of Buddhist Boy, the short story collection The Melting Season,and the poetry collection In Thailand It Is Night. He is the coeditor of two anthologies on the topic of obesity: What Are You Looking At? The First Fat Fiction Anthology and Scoot Over, Skinny: The Fat Nonfiction Anthology. He is the recipient of the 2015 American Book Award, New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Nonfiction Literature, an Arts and Letters Fellowship, and the Emerging Writer Fellowship. His work has appeared in many literary journals, including Post Road, The Sun, and Creative Nonfiction. He is one of the founding editors of Sweet: A Literary Confection (sweetlit.com), and teaches in the MFA program at University of South Florida. For more information about him, please visit: http://www.buddhistboy.com/.

Learn more about him

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Winners announced at revamped PCM / UES conferences

The Practical Criticism Midwest (PCM) and Undergraduate English Studies (UES) Conferences, October 13, were attended by over 85 students, faculty, and guests. The graduate students have run PCM in the past, but this year, we added the undergraduate student conference to it, and also opened up the conference to participants outside BSU English. We welcomed students from Ivy Tech, Anderson University, and IPFW. Many undergraduate students told us how exciting this experience was, and some told me that they want to present their work next year.

The best presentation awardees were Kathryn Powell (UES), who presented her creative work, “The Listening Horizon,”

Kathryn Powell

and Abdullah Albalawi (PCM), who presented his research, “Gender Differences in The Speech Act of Thanking in Saudi Arabic.”

Abdullah Albalawi

Hannah Bovino, Doggerel contest winner, presented her poem, “I’m sorry iPhone.”

The keynote speakers featured 4 alumni (Leslie Erlenbaugh, Emily Groch, Ashley Mack-Jackson, Aaron Nicely), who shared their experience finding careers with English degrees. The conference ended with the doggerel contest. This year’s winner was Hannah Bovino, who presented her poem, “I’m sorry iPhone.” The conference overall was a fun and educational experience where students, faculty, and alumni could meet and interact. This year’s conference chair was Angela Tomasello (MA Linguistics Student), who led the graduate student volunteers. Prof. Silas Hansen (Conference Faculty Advisor) and Dr. Megumi Hamada (Assistant Chair of Programs) helped organize the conference.