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September 06, 2013
Vol. 55 No. 1

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Faculty offers reading to integrate students

With a new academic year having just begun, members of the creative writing department presented a faculty reading on Sept. 5 as a way to welcome new majors to the program and to help first-years and upperclassman get to know each other.
"The year we grew to having three creative writing professors, we began to do a faculty reading once a year," Professor of English and Director of the Writers' Institute Gary Fincke said of the event.
Fincke also mentioned that the reading has usually occurred during the second week of the fall semester for the past eight years.
Fincke said that the reading is a good way "to let our new professors be introduced through their writing, and when there are no new professors, we introduce ourselves to our new majors through something we're currently working on."
According to Assistant Professor of English Catherine Dent, "We all read from our work, about 10 minutes per reading, enough to give a feel for the voice and project."
First up for the reading was Fincke who read a story titled, "Gettysburg."
Fincke said that the story was created from a news article he had read "about a guy who collected antique war weapons, until he had a full house of all this stuff, and accidentally one day his miniature antique cannon went off and struck a cannonball through his neighbor's house."
"You really can't make that up," Fincke added.
After Fincke finished reading his story, Associate Professor of Creative Writing Karla Kelsey read from her story "Interval," which she mentioned "was just published in the online component of the literary journal Conjunctions."
"It's a piece that's written in prose and has some fragmented narrative in it," she said.
Kelsey said that the story "starts in this garden, this Mary Garden, and they are these gardens that I think mostly nuns have made in convents where different aspects of the Virgin Mary are represented in different flowers and I thought that was pretty fascinating."
Taking to the stage to read from his story "The Belle Weather," Assistant Professor of English Silas Zobal said, "I think I maybe should have chosen something different or funny."
"All day I have been thinking why I haven't read this out loud before and I am beginning to realize that their are a lot of good reasons," he said.
Taking the floor as the final reader of the night, Dent read from her story "Dead Man," which she said will be published in the spring in her upcoming collection "Unfinished Stories of Girls."
"It's a ghost story of sorts, the tale of an eight-year-old girl who finds a dead person in her woods and for 17 years never tells anyone about it," Dent said.
Dent said that "I wrote this story years after I'd read Louise Erdich's novel "Love Medicine" in which there's a disturbing scene about one of the main characters...it disturbed me so much that it went into my subconscious mind and rested there until I wrote this story and found my way to think about death and girls and men and growing up and coming to terms with the past."

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