Books All Georgians Should Read

Authors of the Month: October

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:Georgia Literary Festival:

The 2013 Festival

The 2013 Georgia Literary Festival will be hosted for the first time in historic Milledgeville on the weekend of November 9.

Planning for this multi-day event in the lovely central Georgia city has been underway for several months with a committee led by Barry Reese, director of the Twin Lakes Library System, serving as chairman. Representatives of many civic and educational organizations in the area are taking part in the planning, and invitations are now being prepared for authors.

Keynote Speakers

Sean Hill

SEAN HILL was born and raised in Milledgeville, Georgia. Hill received his MFA from the University of Houston.  He has received fellowships and grants from Cave Canem, the Bush Foundation, The MacDowell Colony, the University of Wisconsin, Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, the Jerome Foundation, and Stanford University where he was a Wallace Stegner Fellow in Poetry.  Hill's poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Callaloo, Crab Orchard Review, DIAGRAM, The Oxford American, Ploughshares, Poetry, Tin House, and other literary journals, and in the anthologies Blues Poems, Gathering Ground, The Ringing Ear, and Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry.  His first book, Blood Ties & Brown Liquor, was published by the University of Georgia Press in 2008. In 2009 Hill became an editor at Broadsided Press.  He makes his home in Bemidji, Minnesota, but he has moved to Fairbanks, Alaska, to join, the creative writing faculty at UA-Fairbanks as a visiting professor.

Judson Mitcham

JUDSON MITCHAM, named poet laureate of Georgia in 2012, is an author and professor best known as being the only writer to win the Townsend Prize for Fiction twice. Born in Monroe, Georgia, his writings, which examine basic human themes within the specific landscape of Georgia, are both poignant and powerful. His poetry is featured regularly in publications such as Harpers, The Chattahooche Review, and The Georgia Review, and his books have earned considerable critical acclaim. His most well-known book is The Sweet Everlasting. In 2004 the University of Georgia press published his book Sabbath Creek.

Mitcham is currently Senior Lecturer in English at Mercer University. He has also served as adjunct professor of creative writing at the University of Georgia, Georgia College, and at Emory University, where he has directed the Summer Writers' Institute.

Literary Soul Food Track- A Literary buffet that promotes awareness of art, literature, the environment and self.

PATTI DIGH is the author of six books, including bestsellers Life is a Verb and Creative is a Verb.  She travels the world teaching others about mindfulness: to live fully, love well, let go deeply, and make a difference. Patti's comments have appeared on PBS and in The New York TimesFortune, the Wall Street Journal, the London Financial Times, and many other international publications. She writes a thank you note every morning.

SARAH GORDON of Athens, Georgia, is the author of the poetry collection Distances and has published poetry in The Georgia Review, Shenandoah, Southern Poetry Review, Apalachee Quarterly, Christianity and Literature, Confrontation, Calyx, and elsewhere. She is the author of Flannery O’Connor: The Obedient Imagination and A Literary Guide to Flannery O’Connor’s Georgia. Gordon won the Ron Rash Poetry Award in 2010 for her poem “Apertures: Andalusia,” which was featured in Broad River Review and The Southern Poetry Anthology: Volume V, Georgia. Gordon continues her work on Flannery O’Connor, with essays forthcoming in the The Flannery O’Connor Review and Georgia Women. The founding editor of the Flannery O’Connor Review, Gordon is a member of the Flannery O’Connor—Andalusia Board of Directors.

TOM KOHLER, the Coordinator and Executive Director for the Chatham-Savannah Citizen Advocacy for the past 31 years, is a native of Savannah.  He attended the public schools in Chatham County and graduated in 1970 from Herschel V. Jenkins High School.  After this, he attended Armstrong State College and the University of Georgia, where he received his degree in 1976. Tom has been involved with people who have disabilities since he was 15 years old.  His first involvement was through a volunteer experience at the Temple Youth Group at Mickve Israel Temple.

Bret Lott

BRET LOTT is the author of fourteen books, most recently the essay collection Letters and Life: On Being a Writer, On Being a Christian and the novel Dead Low Tide. He received his MFA in fiction from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 1984, studying under Jay Neugeboren and James Baldwin.

From 1986 to 2004 he was writer-in-residence and professor of English at The College of Charleston, leaving to take the position of editor and director of the journal The Southern Review at Louisiana State University. In the fall of 2007, he returned to The College of Charleston and the job he most loves: teaching.

He serves as Nonfiction Editor of Crazyhorse, has spoken on Flannery O'Connor at the White House, and served as Fulbright Senior American Scholar to Bar-llan University in Tel Aviv, Israel. From 2006 to 2013 he served as a member of the National Council on the Arts. He is also director of the Spoleto Summer Study Abroad program in English at the College.

ANTHONY (TONY) MARTIN is a paleontologist and geologist who specializes in ichnology, the study of modern and ancient traces caused by animal behavior, such as tracks, trails, burrows, and nests. As a Professor of Practice at Emory University, where he has been for more than 20 years, he teaches a wide variety of courses in paleontology, geology, and the environmental sciences on campus and in field courses, including study-abroad programs. Along with his interest in the ichnology of the Georgia barrier islands, he has studied modern traces and trace fossils from elsewhere in the U.S. and other countries, with his most significant discoveries in Australia. He has published articles, textbooks, guidebooks and books for teenagers.

RUTH SCHOWALTER is a folk artist, English teacher, and wife of a scientist. Schowalter and author Ron Shaklee collaborated on the illustrated children’s book The Misadventures of Maria the Hutia which features Bahamian animal characters and teaches children about the importance of conservation. Currently, she is collaborating with a Georgia-coast ornithologist on a children’s book about the plight of the American oystercatcher. Ruth exhibits her artwork in the Decatur and Atlanta areas and on her meditative blog, Coffee with Hallelujah, which explores the creative process and the natural world. Her art was also published in paleontological publications in Spain and Australia.

PETER SELGIN is a playwright, essayist, visual artist and author. His short story collection Drowning Lessons, won the 2007 Flannery O’Connor Award for Fiction. His stories and essays have appeared in dozens of magazines and anthologies and His full-length play,  A God in the House, was a National Playwright’s Conference Winner and later optioned for Off-Broadway. His many works have appeared in Glimmer Train Stories, Poets & Writers, The New YorkerThe Wall Street JournalOutside, Gourmet, and other publications. He teaches at Antioch University’s MFA writing program and is Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Georgia College.

NAGUEYALTI WARREN is Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of African American Studies at Emory University. For seventeen years, Warren served as Assistant then as Associate Dean of Emory College. Her teaching and research specialties are African American literature, women’s fiction, creative writing, poetry, and W.E.B. Du Bois’ contribution to the field of African American Studies. She is currently conducting research for a book on the writings of Alice Walker. Warren’s publications include an edited poetry anthology, Temba Tupu (Walking Naked) Africana Women’s Poetic Self-Portrait; Margaret, a persona poem, winner of the 2008 Naomi Long Madgett Poetry Award; Braided Memory winner of the 2010 Violet Reed Haas Award for Poetry; Grandfather of Black Studies: W.E.B. Du Bois and Critical Insights: Alice Walker.

Literary Track

KEVIN CANTWELL is a poet whose works have appeared in such places as The New Republic, Poetry, Irish Pages, Commonweal, and The Paris Review. One of his poems was reprinted in The Paris Review Book of Heartbreak, Madness, Sex, Love, Betrayal, Outsiders, Intoxication, War, Whimsy, Horrors, God, Dinner, Death, Baseball, Travels, the Art of Writing, and Everything Else in the World Since 1953. His books include Something Black in the Green Part of Your Eye, One of Those Russian Novels, and Writing on Napkins at the Sunshine Club: An Anthology of Poets Writing in Macon. 2012, he won the James Dickey Prize from Five Points magazine.

GREGORY FRASER is the author of three poetry collections: Strange Pietà, Answering the Ruins and the forthcoming Designed for Flight. He is also the co-author, with Chad Davidson, of the workshop textbook Writing Poetry: Creative and Critical Approaches and the composition textbook Analyze Anything: A Guide to Critical Reading and Writing. His poetry has appeared in journals including The Paris Review, The Southern Review, and The Gettysburg Review. The recipient of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, Fraser serves as associate professor of English and creative writing at the University of West Georgia.

ALICE FRIMAN is the author of the poetry collection, Vinculum, for which she won the 2012 Georgia Author of the Year Award in Poetry. She is a recipient of a 2012 Pushcart Prize and is included in Best American Poetry 2009. Other books include The Book of the Rotten Daughte and Zoo which won the Sheila Margaret Motton Prize from The New England Poetry Club and the Ezra Pound Poetry Award from Truman State University. A new collection, The View from Saturn is forthcoming. Her new work appears in The Georgia Review, Shenandoah, Image, The Southern Review, and others. Friman lives in Milledgeville, Georgia, where she is Poet-in-Residence at Georgia College. Her podcast series Ask Alice is sponsored by the Georgia College MFA program and can be seen on You Tube.

LAURA NEWBERN is the author of Love and the Eye, selected by Claudia Rankine as the winner of the 2010 Kore Press First Book Award. Her poems have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Poetry, The Oxford American, TriQuarterly, and Stand (U.K.), and in the anthologies Best New Poets and Urban Nature. An associate professor of English/Creative Writing at Georgia College, Newbern earned an M.F.A. from the Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College and returned to Warren Wilson when she was awarded their first Joan Beebe Graduate Teaching Fellowship. She also holds an M.A. in English/Creative Writing from New York University and a B.A. from Barnard College at Columbia University. Other honors include a residency at Yaddo and a Writer’s Award from the Rona Jaffe Foundation.

A native Sierra Leonean, EUSTACE PALMER was educated in Sierra Leone and the United Kingdom. One of the pioneer critics of African Literature, he has published one book on the English novel, four on African Literature, and over sixty articles on English and African literatures. He has also published four novels: A Hanging is Announced, Canfira’s Travels, A Tale of Three Women, and A Pillar of the Community. His awards include the African Literature Association’s Distinguished Member award and Georgia College & State University’s Distinguished Professor Award. He served for two terms as Chair of the University System of Georgia’s Regional Council for Africa. Dr. Palmer currently teaches at Georgia College & State University where he is Distinguished Professor of English and Coordinator of African Studies.

MIAH ARNOLD earned a PhD at the University of Houston Creative Writing Program, where she received an Inprint Donald Barthelme Fellowship and the Inprint Diana P. Hobby Prize in Fiction. Leading workshops for non-profits and universities in the Houston area for over a decade, she received an established Artists Grant from the Houston Arts Alliance for her work, and has served as a fiction editor at Gulf Coast and a poetry editor at Lyric Poetry Review. Her short essays and fiction are published in a number of journals and magazines. She is the author of the novel, Sweet Land of Bigamy, and her essay “You Owe Me” appeared in Best American Essays 2012. She joins the faculty of Georgia College in fall 2013.

AMY ZIPPERER is an award-winning playwright whose short plays have received productions in Texas, Florida, Michigan, Nebraska, Virginia, Maine, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Tennessee, Iowa, North Carolina, and Alberta, Canada, and, most recently, her short play "The Game of Life" was produced in June as a part of Quickies 14 at Live Girls! Theatre in Seattle, Washington. Several of her short plays have been collected and are now available from Brooklyn Publishers.

EDDIE ZIPPERER is an award-winning playwright. His plays have been published by The Dramatic Publishing Co., Pioneer Drama, Eldridge Plays & Musicals, Brooklyn Publishers, Southern Theatre Magazine, and in the Smith & Kraus anthology The Best 10-Minute Plays of 2012. His works have been produced across the U.S. and Canada, as well as in England, Korea, South Africa, and Australia. Eddie is a full member of The Dramatists' Guild of America, Inc.