Writing in the World

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So You Want to be a Writer or Editor?

Our recent graduates pursue a range of professional opportunities. Most recently we have been hearing from former students who are working writers. Whether you choose to pursue the literature or writing option (or both), an English major can lead to professional writing opportunities in both digital and print publications. Here are a few of the students who are working in the field:

Kelly Decerbo is the Social Media and Digital Communications Assistant at BIC Sport in Florence, Italy.

Taylor Thomas works in the marketing department at Outside Magazine’s New Mexico office.

Kelly Bishop is the Digital Advertising Coordinator at Mary Ann Liebert Publishing, Inc in New Rochelle, New York.

Andrew DiCristina is a photojournalist at ABC Fox Alaska News.

Jess Lulka is an Associate Editor at Desktop Engineering. Desktop Engineering’s mission is to guide their audience through the myriad of engineering tools by showcasing not only why they should be implemented, but how to take advantage of new technologies.

Samantha Norton works as a Paginator at Digtal First Media in Monroe, Connecticut, where she lays out daily and weekly pages of northeast newspapers using Adobe InDesign, collaborates with design and content editors to meet deadline and production expectations, and proofreads layouts.

Kenzie Travers is a Special Publications Editor at the Keene Sentinel, where she edits ELF Magazine, the weekly entertainment and lifestyles magazine in the Monadnock reagion. She also works as a monthly blogger for Stay Work Play New Hampshire.

Dylan Freni is a web content writer from Instabill, an international merchant server provider. He writes articles for the company’s nine websites, including three articles a week for the Instabill blog.

Brittany Hemingway is the Content Editor at Tantor Media, an independent publisher of unabridged fiction and nonfiction audiobooks.

Jess Lulka is an Associate Editor at Peerless Media. Peerless Media’s mission is to guide their audience through the myriad of engineering tools by showcasing not only why they should be implemented, but how to take advantage of new technologies.

Steven Gonzalez, an MA candidate in Anthropology at Brandeis University, is employed as a Digital Marketing Consultant at Degree Controls, Inc. and has served as a Creative Technology Writer for SearchPro Systems, an Operations Administrator for Gateways Community Services, and Deputy Field Organizer for Granite State Forward.

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English at the 2016 Academic Excellence Conference

Memory, Identity, Meaning: A Memoir Reading Memoir, a subgenre of creative nonfiction, has come to be known as the “fourth genre” of creative writing. In combining true stories with creative narrative techniques, memoir contains both fact and fiction. Writer and theorist Patricia Hampl has said that, in memoir, “Memory impulsively reaches out its arms and embraces imagination” and for this reason, the genre has courted both tremendous popularity and significant controversy. For this performance, three students will read their memoir pieces and a discussion of each students writing and revision process will follow. The purpose of this presentation is to showcase the achievements of students within Dr. Kirsti Sandy’s Theory and Practice of Memoir course offered here at Keene State College.

Autumn Minery: These Stories Make a Storyteller is a memoir focusing on the development of a young writer whose family background, and strong connections to literature from the earliest years of her life, helps to shape her as an individual as well as help her explore the reasons behind her career choice and love for sharing her life with others through writing.

Katelyn Franco: I Will Pay You to Fire Me: My Life as a Custodian is a memoir that explores the inner workings of a job that most of the population views poorly and shows the reader the job and the person behind it from a whole different perspective.

Ossian, Johnson, and Wordsworth: Authors and Authenticity

John White: James Macpherson published “The Poems of Ossian” in 1760 as part of Fragments of Ancient Poetry, Collected in the Highlands of Scotland, and Translated From the Gaelic or Erse Language to much fanfare and popular acclaim. Even in Macpherson’s day, there were critics who disputed his claims to authenticity, notably Samuel Johnson, who said that Macpherson’s works were forgeries. This presentation contextualizes the idea of forgery and literary fraud within the framework of post-Romantic theories of authorship and originality as well as the editing practices of the late 18th century. Scholarship on Macpherson remains sharply divided on questions of plagiarism, forgery, and literary merit, though it is united on his influence and fame throughout Europe in the early nineteenth century. Revisiting the Ossian controversy in light of recent scholarship allows us to understand the complex reactions of major writers like Samuel Johnson and William Wordsworth in this case.

 Tooth Decay Dreams: Nicole Danish, Randii Elie, Brianna Hankel

Tooth Decay Dreams is the new collaboration of spoken word poetry presented by The Alive Poets Society slam poetry team. There is a myth that when one dreams about teeth decaying—missing—rotting it means there is regret for one’s actions or words. The slam team members are no exception to these immense feelings which is why we chose to use these themes as a framework for our individual pieces. Because it is impossible to live without regret, we hope that in writing and performing poetry we are able to process and cope better. Regret can be devastatingly isolating which is why we created these pieces—as a way of connecting people through similar human experiences and emotions.

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2016 Battenfeld and Fosher Awards

Heather Cory is the winner of this year’s Battenfeld Award. She is a Senior English major and Film Studies minor from Rochester, New Hampshire. In spring of 2016, she is employed as an intern at the Keene Public Library, in addition to being a Mason Library Research and Technology Fellow. She is passionate about literacy, reading and writing, as well as other forms of storytelling, such as film. After graduation, she plans to take a gap year to work on writing and submitting pieces for publication, then apply to Masters in Fine Arts programs for Creative Writing.

Arline Votruba is the winner of this year’s Fosher Award for Excellence in Writing and was last year’s winner of the Eder Creative Writing Award. Arline is  a senior from Oakham, Massachusetts and the host of Arline Live on WKNH in Keene. She also writes for the opinions section of The Equinox and is currently an intern at the Keene State College Center for Writing. She plans to attend Iowa State University in the fall to begin her MA degree in Rhetoric and Composition.

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2016 Janet Grayson Lecture in Literary Studies

imur’s Theatrical Journey: Or, When did Tamburlaine Become Black?Lecture by Dr. Linda McJannet

Wednesday, April 20, 2016  4 p.m.
Centennial Hall Alumni Center
Keene State College

Productions of Christopher Marlowe’s play, Tamburlaine, and historical interpretations of its main character, the Mongol conqueror Tamerlane or Timur Lenk, have gone through many incarnations and interpretations throughout history. The conqueror’s varied theatrical representations highlights both the malleability of iconic figures and the opportunities, nuances, and challenges of “color-blind” or cross-racial casting. In particular, a 2014 production, directed by Michael Boyd at The Theatre for a New Audience in Brooklyn, in which Tamburlaine and his men ultimately resembled ISIS fighters, demonstrated the play’s uncanny ability to anticipate, reflect, and illuminate contemporary issues of racial, cultural, and religious difference.

Dr. Linda McJannet, Department of English and Media Studies at Bentley University, is the author of two monographs, The Voice of English Stage Directions (1996) and The Sultan Speaks; Dialogue in English Plays and Histories about the Ottoman Turks (2006). She is also co-editor (with Bernadette Andrea) of the collection Early Modern England and Islamic Worlds (2011).

This event is free and open to the public.


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“A Metaphysician in the Dark”: A Poetry Reading

Featuring the work of Keene State College English faculty

Monday, April 18, 2016
4:00 PM
Student Center, Room 309


William Doreski ‘s  most recent book of poetry is The Suburbs of Atlantis (2013). He has published three critical studies, including Robert Lowell’s Shifting Colors. His essays, poetry, fiction, and reviews have appeared in many journals.

Jeff Friedman has published six poetry collections, five with Carnegie Mellon University Press, including Pretenders (2014), Working in Flour (2011) and Black Threads (2008). His poems, mini stories and translations have appeared in numerous literary magazines.  Dzvinia Orlowsky’s and his translation of Memorials by Polish Poet Mieczslaw Jastrun was published by Lavender Ink/Dialogos in August 2014. Friedman and Orlowsky were awarded an NEA Literature Translation Fellowship for 2016.

Kathleen Fagley’s chapbook, How you Came to Me, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2012. Her poetry has appeared in many journals and her critical essay on Jean Valentine’s poetry was included in in the 2012 publication Jean Valentine: This-World Company (University of Michigan Press.)

Jack Hitchner’s most recent poetry collection, Pieces of Life Between Latitudes, was published in 2015. In addition to several poems and stories appearing in literary magazines, he has also published two poetry chapbooks, Not Far from Here and Seasons and Shadows; a story collection (How Far Away, How Near); and a novel, The Acolyte.

Please direct any questions to Dr. Kirsti Sandy, Chair, Department of English (ksandy@keene.edu

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The New Hampshire Poet Laureate Collection

The New Hampshire Poet Laureate collection is now available at the Keene State College Archives & Special Collections. The collection contains the papers of four poet laureates: Marie Harris (1999-2004), Patricia Fargnoli (2006-2009), Walter Butts (2009-2013), and Alice Fogel (2013-2018). As part of a grant issued by the New Hampshire State Library and the Mooseplate License Plate program, the manuscripts of these four poets have been digitized in order to increase awareness and access.

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Spring 2016 Student Publications

Caitlyn McCain is blogging at the Huffington Post. Her writing on the HuffPost College blog includes “The Advantage of a Liberal Arts Living Space” and “In Support for Small Schools” as part of her internship at the Keene State College Office of Marketing and Communications.

Writing Option major Katelyn Franco’s nonfiction essay “I Will Pay You to Fire Me: My Life as a Custodian” has been published in the February 2016 issue of Furious Gazelle.

Literature and Writing Option major Arline Votruba’s poem, “Of all the Seasons,” will appear in the March 2016 issue of 30 North magazine. Votruba’s “Ask Arline” blog also appears regularly at The Equinox.


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Randall Horton

The Black Writers at Keene Series presents

Randall Horton

Thursday, February 11, 2016 at 7pm, Redfern Arts Center,  Alumni Recital Hall.

Randall Horton

Randall Horton

Dr. Horton will read from his new work HOOK, a memoir of  his transformation from a cocaine smuggler, felon and convict to a award winning poet, editor, publisher, and scholar. FREE and OPEN to the PUBLIC. Support from the Keene State Center for Writing, the English Department, and the Redfern Arts Center. Contact Michael Antonucci mantonucci@keene.edu

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Spring 2016 Shakespeare Events




“Sonnet and Song” –   Poetry Reading, Shakespeare’s Music, and Reception. February 10th 2016 at 2pm – Marion Wood Reading Room, Mason library

“I lov’d my books…” :  Shakespeare in Print. An Exhibit at the Mason Library Monday, February 29th – Friday, March 25th, 2016


The Bard in Bollywood  –  Screening of Maqbool  –  A remake of Macbeth. Directed by Vishal Bharadwaj. Thursday, February 25th 2016 at 6pm.  Drenan Auditorium, Parker Hall

“Baggage Books” – The story of the first Renaissance play texts  –  Presentation by Professor  Brinda Charry. Wednesday, March 2nd, 2016 at 10 am. West Wing Open Classroom, 2nd Floor, Mason Library

The Bard in Hollywood   – Screening of Romeo+ Juliet – A Remake of Romeo and Juliet. Directed by Baz Luhrmann. Thursday, March 3rd  at 6pm–. Drenan Auditorium – Parker Hall

Staging Shakespeare at KSC – An exhibit. Monday, March 14th- Friday, March 24th.. Main Lobby, Redfern arts Center

Aquila Theatre’s  Romeo and Juliet .Tuesday, March 22nd, 2016, 7:00 pm. Main Theatre, Redfern Arts Center. Tickets available at the Redfern Web Site. 603.358.2168, or in person M-F 12-6pm. Student tickets : $5

Keene State College Medieval and Renaissance Forum.  Friday April 15th and Saturday April 16th, 2016. Keene State College

Janet Grayson Lecture in Shakespeare Studies – Professor Linda McJannet (Bentley College. Wednesday, April 20th, 2016 at 4 pm. Centennial Hall, Alumni Center

Shakespeare Studies Seminar.  Wednesday, April 27th , 2016 at 10am. Student Project Presentations. ENG 327 – Shakespeare : Poetry and Plays and TAD 232:Theater History. Student Center Atrium Conference Room



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