Join Poets Out Load tonight, Tuesday 2/26, at Fordham Lincoln Center and support living writers! Meg Day and Sharon Wang will read their work and answer questions about all things poetry and writing. Free and open to the public. 7-8:30 p.m. Lowenstein, 12th floor. 113 W. 60th st. Come on out!
On December 7, the annual Golden Gloves Literary Competition and Fair took place at the Lincoln Center campus. Creative writing classes across Fordham presented their work to compete for three prizes: Ram d’Or (Best in Show), Best Experiment, and the Audience Award. This year, the presentations were judged by Gina Apostol, winner of the PEN Open Book Award for her novel Gun Dealer’s Daughter, and recipient of the Philippine National Book Award.
Before the event, attendants enjoyed a pizza dinner and had the opportunity to attend a campus Literary Fair, which featured the publications Bricolage, The Ampersand, The Comma, and MODE Magazine. Staff members in these groups fielded questions from students interested in writing for publication.
The competition itself featured ten different creative writing classes: Performance Criticism, Poetry - What Good is It?, Essay is a Verb, The Stuff of Fiction, Poetry of Witness, The Good Life, First Flint, Writing the World, Writing for Teens in an Adult World, and The Outsiders: Reading and Writing Fiction about Outsiders, Outcasts, Exiles, and Rebels.
Taylor Shaw, FCRH ‘19, appreciated the diversity of voices and topics represented by the classes.
“Everyone brought something different to the table this year, and I really liked that the pieces covered a broad variety of topics,” said Shaw. “From hilarious parodies of guilty pleasure young adult novels to hard-hitting and chilling reflections on the Kavanaugh trial and its surrounding context, the different works kept us engaged and at the edge of our seats for the entire competition.”
Judge, Gina Apostol read a selection from her new novel, Insurrecto. She was followed by Writer in Residence Nyssa Chow, who presented her multimedia story on a hunger striker in Trinidad, as well as scenes from her Still.Life. Exhibition.
As a student in Chow’s Multimedia and Narrative Practice class, Shaw was grateful for the opportunity to hear, see, and be inspired by her professor’s work.
“As her student, it was really gratifying to get to see her brilliant work after such a wonderful semester,” said Shaw. “We had such a great opportunity to see the skills we’d learned in action.”
The Ram d’Or (Best In Show) award was given to Professor Nyssa Chow’s Essay is a Verb class for their poignant commentary on sexual abuse and feminism after the Kavanaugh trial. Best Experiment went to the students of Professor Sarah Gambito’s The Good Life, for their interpretation of a dialogue with the succulent plants they had nurtured over the course of the semester. Finally, Molly Horan’s class, Writing for Teens in an Adult World, took home the Audience Award for its rollicking tribute to the young adult fiction genre.
Though saddened that this would be her last Golden Gloves, senior Evgenia Mantika, FCLC ‘19, expressed her appreciation of how the event brought the creative writing community together.
“Golden Gloves reminds creative writing students of the incredible community they are a part of,” said Mantikas. “It is a chance for us to be inspired by our peers, whether it be by expressing our voices politically or by writing brilliant young adult fiction.”
You are invited to an evening of new music for string quartet by four present-day composers: Valerie Coleman, Jeff Myers, Matthew Welch, and Lawrence Kramer, Distinguished Professor of English and Music at Fordham.
The music covers a broad spectrum of expressive possibilities, from Coleman's groove-based propulsion to Myers musical portrait of trading on Wall Street, Welch's transformation of a bagpipe melody, and Kramer's evocation of the night sky.
Friday, November 16th at 7:30pm. Fordham Lincoln Center, 12th Floor Lounge. Admission is free.
For more information, see below.
For more information about Professor Kramer’s music, click here: http://musicbylawrencekramer.com/19101.html
You’re invited to join us for a symposium on one of the great works of world literature, Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, a work that is as fresh and resonant today as it was when it debuted in Paris in 1953.
The Iconic Druid Theater Company is in town to perform Beckett’s irreverent masterpiece, and they’ll be on hand to join in the discussion with several leading Beckett scholars. Details below.
We hope to see you there!
This past week, we were honored to host Lev Grossman as our 2018 Mary Higgins Clark Chair. Grossman is the New York Times bestselling author of the “Magicians” trilogy, now adapted into a Syfy original series. During his time in residence, Grossman delivered a lecture, conducted craft classes, advised students 1-on-1, and attended a High Tea with students and faculty at the St. Regis.
His presentation, titled “I Did It Wrong: How to be a Creative Person in the World,” addressed what he described as the “embarrassing or near-fatal mistakes” he made over the course of his writing career, as well as how such missteps could be avoided. In particular, he emphasized the importance of rejection, community, and knowing oneself as a writer.
“As much as [writing] is about finding your voice and honing your craft, it is about rejection,” said Grossman.
He spoke on his background as a writer, including growing up in a literature-loving household and his childhood enchantment with The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Later, as an undergraduate, he repeatedly failed to be published in The Harvard Advocate, and after graduation, he traveled to Maine for an unsuccessful attempt at literary isolation.
“Art is rarely made by people on their own,” Grossman said of this episode.
It wasn’t until years later that he was able to find his voice, his genre, and his form: the humorous fantasy novel, as represented by The Magicians.
After the lecture, Grossman answered questions from the audience and signed books. Students such as Brielle Intorcia, FCLC ‘20, reacted positively to his presentation.
“I really resonated with the idea that writing is always together, with other people,” said Intorcia. “I had never thought about that before.”
Intorcia also expressed her appreciation for MHC events as an opportunity to glean insight from successful writers.
Over the two days that followed his presentation, Grossman continued offering insight in the form of craft classes and 1-on-1 advising at Rose Hill and Lincoln Center. In classes, he gave students practical tips on how to improve their writing, advising them to write like a reader, break rules, and remember that fiction isn’t rocket science.
Finally, on Wednesday, Lev Grossman attended High Tea at the St. Regis along with English department students, faculty, and prospective majors. Creative writing concentrator Ann Pekata, FCLC ‘20, enjoyed this chance to meet Grossman face-to-face after reading his novel.
“I read Lev Grossman’s book a couple years ago and thought it would be cool to meet him,” said Pekata.
She also appreciated the opportunity to network with other members of the English department, particularly in such a high-class setting.
“I gained some new friends at the table, so that was cool!” said Pekata. “I also discovered how much I love tarts.”
Going forward, the English Department and the Creative Writing Program hope to continue to provide students with opportunities to learn from accomplished writers such as Grossman, as well as the chance to come together as a department and discuss the literature that inspires us. Deep thanks to the visionary Mary Higgins Clark for making all of this possible.
You are invited to the next Reid-Mullarky Reseach and Teaching Forum—Writing and Teaching in the Age of the Unspeakable. Wednesday, October 24th from 2:30pm-6:30pm at Rose Hill’s Duane Library, Room 351 and videoconference to LL309. Please plan to attend. Tea will be served. For more info see below.