Wednesday, March 16, 2011

2nd Annual Spring Writing & Creative Process Festival - April 11-17, 2011

During the week of April 11th through 17th, 2011, the Writing Department will host our Second Annual Spring Writing & Creative Process Festival. Festival events are free and open to the public, with the exception of the Creative Process Seminar on the 17th that is co-sponsored by the Writing and Music Departments. Several of our mentors and students are on the schedule, so come to campus and join the celebration! Those of you who need to make up residency time can use these events for that purpose.

On Monday evening, Paola Corso will hold a flash fiction writing workshop, which is open to MFA students, grads, mentors and WCSU undergrads. Send me a note to register for the workshop.


Monday, April 11th: Fiction
6:00 p.m., Reading by Paola Corso, Warner 103
7:00 – 9:30 p.m., Flash Fiction Workshop by Paola Corso, Higgins 206  
  • Open to MFA students, grads, mentors and WCSU undergrads.
  • Description: Sudden Stories: In this workshop, we'll critique participant writing in terms of the elements of flash fiction—character, plot, mood, voice/style, intensity, brevity, and surprise and what distinguishes it from longer stories. Participants will be asked to read assigned short shorts and handouts, then email a 1-page sudden story or self-contained climactic moment from a longer work of prose to participants in advance, and come prepared to discuss at the workshop. 

Tuesday, April 12th: Nonfiction

1:30 – 3:30 p.m., Everything You Learned on Facebook is a Lie, Warner 103
  • Lecture: Sara Lewis
  • Panel Discussion: Sara Lewis, Vincent Kmetz, Kristin Santa Maria, Kristina Zupnyk (all MFA in Creative & Professional Writing students)
  • Description: That’s not true. But, how do we know what is true? This lecture will explore the relationship between social media and public opinion, with a focus on where the burden of proof lies. Through blogs, status updates, web articles, and embedded videos, social media users are saturated with news and opinions. We will examine topics in politics and pop culture to discuss how websites like Facebook and Twitter affect the dissemination of information.

4:00 p.m., The Making of an Anthology, Warner 103
  • Speaker: Anne Witkavitch, editor, Press Pause Moments: Essays about Life Transitions by Women Writers
  • Description: Anne will speak about why anthologies are good opportunities for writers to get their work published as well as tips to help improve a writer’s chances for acceptance. She’ll also give a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Press Pause Moments and talk about what’s involved with creating a collection of nonfiction essays. Among the topics discussed will be: developing a theme; creating submission guidelines; reviewing, selecting and sequencing stories; and the challenge of editing a book-length manuscript with diverse voices.

Wednesday, April 13th: Journalism

2:00 – 3:30 p.m. Online Journalism Panel, organized by Valerie Roth and Echo, Student Center 201 
  • Moderator: John Briggs
  • Elizabeth Bacelar-Nunes (Communications Director at LivePerson Community, graduate of WestConn and the Columbia School of Journalism and former WCSU adjunct),
  • Mark Langlois (editor of Danbury Patch, former print journalist for The News-Times of Danbury and WestConn graduate and present WCSU adjunct), and
  • Eugene Driscoll (editor of the exclusively online news site The Valley Independent Sentinel based in Ansonia and former online editor at The News-Times and the Hartford Courant)
  • Karen Ali (Regional Director for, in charge of 12 Danbury towns' websites, and former Sunday editor at The News-Times)
  • James A. Cutie (chief executive officer and publisher of The CT Mirror and former president of New York Times Co's information services group)

Thursday, April 14th:  No Writing Festival events planned; event on campus: 7:00 p.m., Sister Helen Prejean, Dead Man Walking author, on death penalty abolishment, Ives Concert Hall

Friday, April 15th: Poetry

2:00 – 4:00 p.m., Poetry Readings by Black & White, location TBD

6:00 p.m., Poetry Performance, “Ogunquit” by Confluence, made up of J.D. Scrimgeour & Philip Swanson, Alumni Hall
  • In 2007, composer Philip Swanson and poet J.D. Scrimgeour, both on the faculty of Salem State College in Salem, Massachusetts, created Confluence. In Confluence, Scrimgeour and Swanson merge their two art forms to produce work that is immediate and accessible, yet also resonant and profound. Confluence has performed at such venues as the Robert Frost Place, the Massachusetts Poetry Festival, and the Association of Writers and Writing Program’s (AWP) Annual Conference. The group’s first CD, Ogunquit, was produced by Grammy-award winner Richard Price and released by MSR Classics in Feburary 2010.  

Sunday, April 17th: Music & the Creative Process

(The first event is sponsored by the Music Department; the seminar is held in collaboration with the Writing Department.)

3:00 p.m.: The PROMETHEUS quintet performs a formal concert in Ives Hall. Chamber music of Beethoven, Schostakovich and Brahms, Ives Hall, Admission: general admission $20, Seniors $15, free for students w/ valid ID.

5:00 p.m.: SEMINAR ON THE CREATIVE/RE-CREATIVE PROCESS FOR NEW SOLUTIONS (in collaboration with the WCSU Writing Dept.), White Hall, Rm. 127

Discussions and interview conducted by Dr. John Briggs with PROMETHEUS
  • Topics under discussion will include: Chaos Theory in Artistic Process; Interpersonal Relations for Innovation; Rehearsing for Inspiration Primitive Telepathy: and The Chamber Music Principle with Empathy and Compassion.
  • Admission: general admission $20, Seniors $15, free for students w/ valid ID.
Links to information on some of our participants.
- Paola Corso:
- Anne Witkavitch:
- Echo:
- Journalists on panel:

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