Writing News

Posted on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 by Jim Norrena

[photo: Jim Norrena]

MFA Program in Writing second-year student Alka Joshi is heading off to Florida in October for a three-week artists residency (Comic Book Workshop / Graphic Novels Residency) at the Atlantic Center for the Arts (ACA) with Russian master artist and seasoned graphic novelist Svetlana Chmakova (Dramacon, 2007, and Nightschool, 2006), who also drew and wrote a monthly serialized manga strip (aka comic strip) for CosmoGirl and has recently finished

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Posted on Tuesday, May 18, 2010 by Lindsey Westbrook

City in the River, City in the Forest
Hag's Head Press, 2010
Paperback, 128 pages, 12.99 Euros

In this new book by Melanie Westerberg (Writing 2004), Mary is a tour guide at a remote lodge in the Amazon. There she meets Hector, who sneaks into her hammock late at night and leaves tiny gifts at her door. But then she begins to see fires on uninhabited land, hear gunshots, encounter suspicious strangers in the dead of night. She doesn’t know if it’s the start of another undeclared civil war or retribution against the lodge owner, whose husband had fought with the rebels before disappearing for a decade.

Says Peter Orner, author of The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo, "Melanie Westerberg has written a wondrous first book. The writing is unique and brave, and the story is as engaging as it is harrowing. It’s the sort of rare, completely original book I am always looking for and never finding."

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Posted on Tuesday, May 18, 2010 by Lindsey Westbrook

The New Make Believe
Post-Apollo Press, 2010
Paperback, 72 pages, $12

Norman Fischer says of this new book by Denise Newman (Writing faculty):

A strange intelligence guides the works in The New Make Believe toward insistent, yet nearly ineffable, redefinitions of commonplace words, as if everything were, in being named, strange. Accident, law, memorial, wolf, pants sex and other such terms participate in intense proto-symbolic musicalities to reveal (or cover) what seem to be crucial yet cheerily personal insights into what it is to be alive as or in a person surrounded by a baffling world of dark beauty and mysterious others. Denise Newman s work is here more haunting than ever, and as needful of contemplation."

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Posted on Wednesday, May 12, 2010 by Jim Norrena

I'm delighted to announce the release of issue 8 of Eleven Eleven, the winter online issue of 2009–10. You can also check out the journal's dedicated website to learn more about this issue's featured poets, writers, playwrights, translations, and other artists.

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Posted on Wednesday, March 31, 2010 by Lindsey Westbrook

Volume 1 cover

Ben Costa (MFA Writing 2008) recently received a Xeric Grant. The Xeric Grant provides financial support for up-and-coming self-publishing comic book creators.

The Xeric Foundation is a private, nonprofit corporation established by Peter A. Laird, cocreator of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Planet Racers.

Costa’s awarded project, Shi Long Pang, is a historical fiction/fantasy about a wandering Shaolin monk in 17th-century China. You can read portions of the comic online at his blog.

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Posted on Tuesday, February 23, 2010 by Jim Norrena

CCA's biannual journal of literature and art, Eleven-Eleven, previously featured writer Alison Doernberg's work that has subsequently been selected to appear in Dzanc Books' Best of the Web 2010 series, a national anthology.

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Posted on Monday, February 22, 2010 by Lindsey Westbrook

Seven Sacraments
Deconstructed Artichoke Press, 2009
Chapbook, n.p., $7

This chapbook of prose poems by Nikki Thompson (MFA Writing 2002) recounts the author's experiences as a working-class Jewish student at an affluent Catholic school. Thompson says, "Both my working process and my artist's books consist of layers and layers that must be picked at, like the leaves of an artichoke with a heart at the center." Deconstructed Artichoke's production occurs either in a living room with a terrific view of downtown or on a red Formica kitchen table in a San Francisco apartment. The letterpress printing happens in a Berkeley carriage house with a rich printing history and many small critters.

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Posted on Thursday, February 18, 2010 by Jim Norrena

Alumna Amanda Chiado is a Best New Poet

Alumna and poet Amanda Chiado (MFA Writing 2006) has had her poem "Openings" featured in Best New Poets 2009: 50 Poems from Emerging Writers, an annual anthology of 50 poems from emerging writers, compiled by a guest editor. The list is derived from nominations made by literary magazines and writing programs, as well as an open Internet competition.

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Posted on Wednesday, January 27, 2010 by Jim Norrena

CCA Writing and Literature chair and assistant professor Aimee Phan, also an assistant professor in the college’s MFA Program in Writing, has been awarded a $25,000 National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) 2010 Literature Fellowship in Creative Writing.

Read the web feature.

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Posted on Wednesday, January 27, 2010 by Jim Norrena

Image: Tanya Traboulsi, *Music is Life: Lebanese Sounds Stills*, a Kleio Projects exhibition

Congratulations to CCA Graduate Program in Writing alumna, writer, and visual artist Youmna Chlala for being awarded the distinguished 2009 Joseph Henry Jackson Award for her poetry manuscript The Paper Camera. In addition to a $2,000 cash award, Chlala’s manuscript will be permanently housed at UC Berkeley’s Bancroft Library. She was also invited to read from her award-winning manuscript at a separate awards ceremony held November 16 at 7 p.m. at Intersection for the Arts in San Francisco.

About the Award

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