Month: February 2015

Benjamin S. Grossberg: Writers Who Edit, Editors Who Write

Benjamin S. Grossberg gave a poetry reading at the Co-op Bookstore on February 24.  Grossberg is the author of three books of poetry: Space Traveler, Sweet Orchard (winner of the Tampa Review Prize for Poetry and a Lambda Literary Award), and Underwater Lengths in a Single Breath (winner of the Snyder Prize).  He has been the recipient of a Pushcart Prize and an Artist Fellowship from the Ohio Arts Council.  He is currently Director of Creative Writing and an associate professor at the University of Hartford.

Debra Doyle and James D. Macdonald

Authors Debra Doyle and James D. Macdonald made two public appearances on the Storrs campus on Tuesday, February 17.

Publishing Scams—Doyle and Macdonald spoke about publishing scams and how writers fall prey to them.  Macdonald’s efforts to expose publishing scammers have been profiled in the Los Angeles Times and elsewhere and he is widely known as an expert on the subject.

Reading and book signing—Doyle and Macdonald read from recent work and discussed how they became writers and the process of collaborating on fiction.

Debra Doyle, author or co-author of more than thirty books, teaches at Viable Paradise.  Her doctorate in English from the University of Pennsylvania specialized in Anglo-Saxon literature.

James D. Macdonald’s more than thirty books range from space opera and military science fiction to (pseudonymously) military thrillers and an annotated book of sea chanties.  A former Navy officer, he lives in New Hampshire with his wife and frequent co-author, Debra Doyle.

For more information contact Leigh Grossman at (860) 208-4829 or


Serkan Görkemli Wins 2015 CCCC Lavender Rhetorics Award

Serkan Görkemli, who teaches at the Stamford campus, has won the 2015 CCCC Lavender Rhetorics Award for Excellence in Queer Scholarship for his book, Grassroots Literacies: Lesbian and Gay Activism and the Internet in Turkey. The Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC) is an association within the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE).

This award is presented annually to three works (one book, one article, and one dissertation) published within the past two years that best make queer interventions into the study of composition and rhetoric. Works should rise to a high level of excellence in their originality, the significance of their pedagogical or theoretical contributions to the field, and their existing or potential influence. The Selection Committee considers the nature of the problem(s) addressed, the contribution’s timeliness, how effectively the work utilizes research or scholarship to fill voids in our existing knowledge, how well the work demonstrates potential for application (pedagogically or in other contexts), and what promise the work holds for future exploration and investigation.

Long River Reading Series

Darcie Dennigan, Jonas Moody, and Kashawn Taylor read their work on March 3 at the Co-0p Bookstore in Storrs Center.


Darcie Dennigan’s recent writing has been called “a Beckettesque epic” and poetry that “can horrify, shock, gross you out, turn you off.” Her work includes three poetry collections– Corinna A-Maying the Apocalypse, Madame X, and forthcoming in 2016, Palace of Subatomic Bliss– as well as Dandelion Farm (forthcoming soon), a short play that takes place “in the darkened jewel-box theater of the skull.”


Jonas Moody is a story writer, essayist and translator. Much of his work centers on masculinity and the North. His work has appeared in New World Writing, Iceland Review, New York Magazine and Time Magazine. His most recent piece “In Cod We Trust” was published in Mandens byrde, a Danish anthology on contemporary Nordic masculinity.


Kashawn Taylor is a UConn graduate who earned a degree in Psychology and English, as well as a Concentration in Creative Writing.  He enjoys writing creative nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. He has released two books:  Hi! I’m Your New Best Friend and There’s Nothing You Can Do About It and Slurs of the Vodka Saints. He continues to write both poetry and creative nonfiction with hopes of releasing another collection this year.

Alternative Careers Panel–Friday, Feb. 6

The Graduate Placement Committee and the EGSA Professional Development Committee will host a panel for graduate students on alternative academic careers this Friday, February 6th, from 1-3pm in the Stern Lounge. The panel will feature three recent UConn English alums who have taken up successful and fulfilling careers outside the traditional academic route.  It is intended for graduate students who are considering alternatives to academe.  The panelists are: Emily Wojcik, Managing Editor, The Massachusetts Review (Amherst, MA) Amber West, Senior Grant Writer, Girls Write Now (New York, NY) Sarah McIntyre, English Faculty, Horace Mann School (New York, NY) The panelists will address what drew them to these careers, what they would recommend to scholars envisioning alternative careers, how they have used their Ph.D.s, their biggest challenges and rewards, and their continuing participation in academe.  They will be joined later by Kay Gruder, Career Consultant for the Graduate School, who will outline the services offered by the Graduate School for graduate students considering alternative career paths.

Kate Monica and the CT Poetry Circuit

Each year the Connecticut Poetry Circuit holds a contest for undergraduate student poets. Each college in the state of Connecticut is eligible to nominate one undergraduate poet for consideration for the Poetry Circuit reading tour. For 2015, five students have been chosen: Kate Monica (University of Connecticut), Nikki Byrne (University of Saint Joseph), Lisa Gaudio (Central Connecticut State University), Justin Greene (Wesleyan University), and Jessica Yuan (Yale University).


Kate Monica, a 6th-semester English major, won the Collins Literary Prize for Poetry and finished second in the Wallace Stevens Poetry contest. She has been published in the Long River Review, Holey Scripture Magazine, and Orchid Children.


The reading, sponsored and organized by the Creative Writing Program, was held in the Stern Lounge, Austin 217 on February 3.