Upcoming Readings Featuring MAWP Students and More

In Student News: Michael Van Kerckhove (M.A.W.P.) will be part of the inaugural line-up of That’s All She Wrote, a brand new entry into the alive and well Chicago live-lit storytelling scene. Michael will be debuting a new personal story at this reading, and you can support him and enjoy the live literature of That’s All She Wrote at Swim Cafe at 1357 W. Chicago Avenue this Sunday, October 14th at 8:00 p.m. (doors open at 7:30). The event is free and food will be available. Swim Cafe is BYOB.


In honor of the National Day on Writing, The University Center for Writing-based Learning’s Writers Guild will present a public reading of original works of non-fiction, fiction, essays, and poetry by its members, and all are invited to attend. The event will take place on Thursday, October 18th, from 4:00-5:30 p.m. on the second floor of the LPC Student Center in the Performance Area.

Members of The Writers Guild including M.A.W.P. students Raul Palma, David Mathews, and Mark Brand, alum Jennifer Finstrom (M.A.W.P. ’12) and other DePaul undergraduates and faculty members will share pieces of their writing that they have been discussing and critiquing throughout the quarter. Writers Guild and Writing Groups staff members will be on-hand to share information about our work and how to get involved with the UCWbL and The Writers Guild.


In addition to this reading, the UCWbL will also be hosting a program called National Day on Writing Literacy Narratives on Wednesday, October 17th. Students, faculty, and staff who would like to share their literacy narrative in a recording session can join the UCWbL on this day from 10am-12pm in the LPC Student Center Atrium or from 1-3pm on the 11th Floor of the Loop DePaul Center to record a quick statement on why you write or to describe an impactful literacy experience. These videos will be shared via the UCWbL YouTube page as a celebration for National Day on Writing.


And finally, if you’re looking to do some literary sightseeing this weekend, the Poetry Foundation will once again take part in the Chicago Architecture Foundation’s Open House Chicago, a free public event that offers behind-the-scenes access to more than 150 buildings across the city and suburbs. Visitors to the building on Saturday, Oct. 13th and Sunday, Oct 14th from 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. both days will have an opportunity to explore the space over the weekend as well as get a rare glimpse into the making of Poetry magazine, celebrating its centennial in 2012. The Poetry Foundation is located at 61 West Superior Street, and you can find out more about them at poetryfoundation.org.


Threshold Literary Award Winners and Childe Harold Conference at DePaul

This morning, DePaul’s literary journal Threshold announced the winners of the 2012 Threshold Literary Award for Excellence, and we are pleased to say that two of the winners are our own English graduate students. Congratulations to Angel Woods who will be receiving the Nonfiction Award for her piece, “A Lesson About Detours” and Zhanna Vaynberg who will be receiving the Dramatic Literature Award for her play for “What It’s Never About”. Both are students in the MAWP.  The fiction and poetry awards this year go to two undergraduate students: Alec Moran for “Table Manners”and Emsie Bartsch for “Gretel”. Congratulations to all!
Threshold’s launch party for this year’s issue is set for Friday, May 25th from 3-6pm at the DePaul Art Museum. All are invited to attend to support the judges, contest winners, and everyone who submitted their work– and of course to receive free copies of the published journal!

Threshold is also hosting a reading from the contest judges on Thursday, May 10th at 6pm at the Richardson Library on DePaul’s Lincoln Park campus. Three of the four judges will be reading their own work: Eileen Favorite, Kimberly Dixon, and Victor Giron.

More information about these events is forthcoming. Check back soon!


On Monday, April 30th, DePaul University will celebrate the 200th anniversary of the poem that made Lord Byron famous, Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, Cantos I and II. Begun at Lawrence’s hotel in Lisbon, Portugal and published in the spring of 1812 in London, the poem charts the 24-year-old poet’s response to war-torn Europe, Napoleon’s invasion of Spain and Portugal, Britain’s response, the Convention of Cintra, and the struggle of Greece to live up to its heroic past. The poem helped launch what we now refer to as the “Byronic hero” and influenced paintings by Turner and music by Berlioz, as well as numerous British, Russian, and French writers such as Pushkin, Lermontov, and Lamartine.

In celebration, DePaul is hosting a day-long conference sponsored by the DePaul Humanities Center, the University Honors Program, and the Department of English. The conference will take place from 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. at the Cortelyou Commons (2324 N. Fremont Street) on DePaul’s Lincoln Park Campus.

There will be two keynote addresses: Peter W. Graham (Virginia Tech), author of Don Juan and Regency England, winner of the Elma Dangerfield prize in Byron Studies, will speak on the Byronic hero in Childe Harold and the character of Darcy in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, and Christine Kenyon Jones (King’s College, London) will address Byron’s treatment of animals in Cantos I and II, drawing on her book Kindred Brutes: Animals in Romantic-Period Writing.

The conference also features a presentation by one of our own graduate students: MAWP student Jennifer Finstrom will address the topic of James Thomson’s The Castle of Indolence and its influence on Byron’s poem at 12:20 p.m. Congratulations Jennifer, and best of luck presenting!

All are welcome to attend this conference. For complete details, click on the flyer for a full-sized version, and download the conference agenda here.

Student News, a Literary Festival in Portugal, & More

Just when you thought DePaul English Graduate Students couldn’t possibly rack up any more awards and accomplishments in just one quarter, Ex Libris is happy to announce two great new pieces of student news:

Congratulations to current M.A.E. student Mary Parisoe, whose new one-act play, The Last Vagabond, has won $500 and a reading sometime in the new year at The Arts Club of Washington, DC.

Current M.A.W.P. student Jennifer Finstrom has had a poem accepted for publcation in Cider Press Review (either Volume 13 or 14). Jennifer wrote her poem,  “Instructions for Entering Rembrandt’s Landscape with trees, farm buildings and a tower (c.1651),”  in Prof. David Welch’s “Portrait in Poetry” class last spring. Congratulations, Jennifer!

Ex Libris is always happy to share good news about our students and alumni. If you have any good news you would like to share with the DePaul English Graduate community, please send it along to mhlohows@depaul.edu or jhicke11@depaul.edu.

The Dzanc Books/CNC DISQUIET International Literary Program is accepting submissions of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction for their second-annual International Literary Award. The winner of this multi-genre contest receives airfare, accommodations, and tuition to the International Literary Program in Lisbon, Portugal July 1-13, 2012, as well as publication in Guernica.

Judges will be looking for work that somehow broadens the landscape of North American literature outside the borders of North America and challenges the accusation that North American literature is too insular and doesn’t engage the outside world or speak to global concerns. Entries should be written in English.

Deadline for submissions is Jan. 31, 2012, and there is a reading fee of $15USD. Finalists will be judged by Colson Whitehead. For information on how to submit and details on both the contest and the program itself, please visit disquietinternational.org and check out their flyers.

ROPES, a literary journal published annually by students of The National University of Ireland, Galway’s Literature and Publishing MA, is issuing a call for submissions. Each year, ROPES seeks out contributions from postgraduate students in the form of scholarly essays, prose fiction, drama, and poetry, bound loosely by a chosen theme. The theme this year is ‘Links”, encompassing the relationship between literature and technological innovation, the ways in which technologies past and present have informed life, experience and other related subjects.

Submissions should be a maximum of 2500 words, no more than three submissions per author. All submissions must be unpublished. The launch date is set for April 26th, 2012 at Cúirt International Festival of Literature.  Send all submissions to ropes.submissions@gmail.com no later than 5 pm Dec. 9th, 2011. All ROPES proceeds will be donated Laura Lynn Children’s Hospice.

For more information, visit  http://ropesgalway2012.wordpress.com/, find ROPES on Facebook under the ‘Ropes Galway 2012’ and follow ROPES on Twitter under the name Ropes2012.

And finally, a reminder that there are two big events happening TONIGHT, Wednesday Nov. 2nd:

First, from 5:30-6:30 in SAC 151, join the DePaul Career Center for a special Resume and Cover Letter Workshop just for English students.

And then at 7:30, head over to the Chopin Theater to enjoy a fun literary night and support semifinalist Lisa Applegate at the Prose Awards Recognition Night!

Meet the New GA’s (Part 2)

You asked and Ex Libris delivers! Today we are happy to bring you Part 2 of “Meet the New GA’s”. If you missed part one, you can read about Matt, Julia, and Claire here. Please join me in congratulating all seven new GA’s.

Tracey HulsteinTracey Hulstein

Program & year: MAWP, first year
GA role: UCWbL Productions (formerly Multimedia) Team Leader

Bio: Tracey is originally from Rochester, MN, but somehow ended up living in Iowa for the past seven years. She graduated from Northwestern College in Orange City, IA, double-majoring in Theatre and Writing with a focus in Rhetoric. Tracey spent the past few years developing a fear of retail customers before dabbling in human resources at Pearson Assessments. She and her husband attempted to move to Chicago at the end of May but their moving trailer caught fire and they had to buy a bunch of new stuff. They actually moved to Chicago in June and, after experiencing the five stages of grief, love having a literal fresh start. Tracey has a rather obsessive personality, but her main obsessions are the Beatles and cats. She promises that she’s normal.

Favorite Books: Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, Chronicles of Narnia, Wishful Drinking
Authors who have inspired Tracey: Anne Lamott, Natalie Goldberg, Carrie Fisher, John Lennon
Favorite reading genre: Biography and memoir
Favorite writing genre: Creative nonfiction
Tracey’s dream job: Getting paid to tell stories (maybe in Japan?)

Mark JacobsMark Jacobs

Program & Year: MAE, first-year
GA role:
assistant website and technology coordinator in the UCWbL
Mark received his BA in International Studies and Creative Writing from DePaul this past June.  After moving here from South Bend, IN, four years ago, he’s excited to continue at DePaul in the MAE program.  He’s a fan of the Chicago music scene and likes to ride his bike everywhere.

Favorite author: Mark has spent the last year wading his way through all of Don DeLillo’s works, and hasn’t grown bored with him yet.
Mark’s dream job
: Marketing strategist for Allende Burritos Tacos y Mas (which, incidentally, Mark wants us all to know, has the best food to be found near campus)

Jennifer FinstromJennifer Finstrom

Program and Year: MAWP, second year
GA role:
Assistant Coordinator for Outreach in the University Center for Writing-based Learning
Jennifer came to DePaul University as a returning student in the summer of 2008 and received her B.A. in English in 2010. Her poetry has appeared in various literary publications, including Atlanta Review, Rhino, Wisconsin Review, and most recently, Threshold. In addition, she has been the poetry editor of Eclectica Magazine, an online literary quarterly, since October of 2005. Jennifer also enjoys attending writing center conferences and joining in the conversation about peer tutoring theory.

Favorite Authors: Margaret Atwood (both poetry and fiction), J.R.R. Tolkien, the Bronte sisters, George Eliot, Jane Austin.
Books Jen Recommends to Everyone:
Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
Favorite writing genre:
Poetry, speculative fiction, creative nonfiction

Maria HlohowskyjMaria Hlohowskyj

Program & Year: MAWP, first year
GA Role: Editor of Ex Libris, with a little UCWbL tutoring on the side
Bio: Maria was born to two biologists and grew up in Downers Grove, a mid-sized Chicago suburb which voted the apostrophe out of its name in the late 1800s. Maria graduated from Loyola University Chicago with majors in English and Spanish and a minor in Women’s Studies in 2010 with membership in three honors societies, one of which has a secret handshake. Maria made it for a year working part time as a research assistant/landscape technician and part time in a Downers Grove yarn shop before she realized how much she missed academic life. She is incredibly happy to be once again living in Chicago and studying writing.

Favorite Books: The Sparrow, The Art of Political Murder, Interpreter of Maladies, White Teeth, A Thousand Acres, The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, etc., etc.
Author Who Inspires Maria: Rachel Carson
Wait, did you say yarn shop?: Yes! Maria is an avid knitter and crocheter and had taught lots of crochet classes. If you ask nicely she might teach you.
Maria’s Dream Job: Writing about the amazing urban nature in Chicago, and the many wonderful, under-appreciated wild places in Northern Illinois
Fun Fact: Maria is editing this very blog post right this minute! And on that note, I want to wish all my readers a very happy weekend!