Search

About Us

News Archive - 2015

Back to current news

Seventh Annual YAWP High School Playwrights Festival Coming Dec. 12

YAWP festival
Hayley Lund and Elizabeth Hochstedler in Hayley Lund’s play “The Things You Learn in History Books,”  a Bridgehampton High School entry in the 2014 Young Artists and Writers Project High School Playwrights Festival at Stony Brook Southampton.

Five short plays written and performed by local high school students will be presented in a free program open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton's Avram Theater on Saturday, December 12, at 7 p.m., as the culminating event of the 2015 Young Artists and Writers Project (YAWP) High School Playwriting program. Playwrights for the fall festival were drawn from YAWP playwriting classes at Bridgehampton High School, Sag Harbor's Pierson, Eastport South Manor, and the YAWP Summer Workshops.

The festival represents a collaboration between student playwrights, actors and designers who have been taught and mentored by theater and writing professionals affiliated with Stony Brook Southampton’s MFA in Creative Writing and Literature, which created and sponsors the YAWP programs. Professional directors stage the plays, which encompass a wide array of genres—from comedies to dramas—with subject matter drawn from the students' own lives.

The Young Artists and Writers Project is dedicated to mentoring middle and high school students in the development of creative expression and critical thinking through writing, and is an integral part of Stony Brook Southampton’s commitment to its community and to the next generation of readers and writers. The YAWP programs send professional writers and teaching artists into classrooms to lead workshops in a wide array of writing disciplines, including playwriting, screenwriting, poetry, personal essay and fiction.

More than 100 students participated in the YAWP High School Playwriting Residency this fall. Over the course of two months, students explored the basic elements of dramatic writing: how to develop ideas, characters, themes, dialogue and scenes. One play from each participating class was then selected for production in the Festival.

The Young Artists and Writers Project is organized and administered by Executive Director Emma Walton Hamilton and Program Director Will Chandler. Ms. Hamilton is a bestselling children’s book author, editor and arts educator and serves as director of the Southampton Children’s Literature Fellows Program at the campus. A co-founder of Bay Street Theatre, she was the theatre’s co-artistic director, and subsequently director of education and programming for young audiences for 17 years.  

Mr. Chandler, an American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) Nicholl Fellowship screenwriter, also served as education director and as a teaching artist for Bay Street Theatre. He has written a number of screenplays for clients ranging from Sony Pictures to actor Russell Crowe and has been a story analyst/script doctor for ABC, CBS, NBC, Viacom and HBO, among others.

For ongoing curriculum development and program design, the YAWP administrators draw on the substantial strengths of the Stony Brook Southampton MFA faculty, including novelist and MFA Director Robert Reeves; Whiting Award-winning poet Julie Sheehan; best-selling memoirist and editor-in-chief of The Southampton Review, Lou Ann Walker; and screenwriter and Emmy award-winning producer Annette Handley Chandler.

“The YAWP programs are a wonderful way for us to reach—and to help shape— the next generation of American writers,” said Reeves, “as well as an ideal way to offer training and teaching experience to our very talented graduates and graduate students.”

The YAWP Playwriting Festival takes the stage on Saturday, December 12, at 7 p.m. at the Avram Theater in the Fine Arts Building on the campus of Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Old Montauk Highway, Southampton. Tickets for the performance are free. For reservations and more information, email william.chandler@stonybrook.edu.

 

Poet 'Hurricane' Willie Perdomo Comes to Writers Speak on Dec. 2

willie perdomoAward-winning poet Willie Perdomo will be the featured guest in the next Writers Speak Wednesdays event, a free author talk and reading open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. Perdomo will speak on Wednesday, December 2, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

Poet Willie Perdomo has been setting the literary world ablaze. Author and Boston Review Fiction Editor Junot Díaz has said of the East Harlem poet that "there is no poet alive who can match his lyrical intelligence, ferocious wit and searching humanity. Perdomo is the hurricane we all write home about." The poet Martin Espada refers to Perdomo as "electric" while Publisher's Weekly praises him as "a necessary and insistent voice in the current American literary scene."

Perdomo's most recent collection, The Essential Hits of Shorty Bon Bon (Penguin Poets, 2014), was a finalist for the 2014 National Book Critics Circle Award in Poetry. His book Smoking Lovely (Rattapallax Press, 2003) won the PEN Beyond Margins Award and Where a Nickel Costs a Dime (W.W. Norton & Company, 1996) was a finalist for the Poetry Society of America Norma Farber First Book Award. Other literary works include Postcards of El Barrio (Isla Negra Press, 2002), and his children's book, Visiting Langston (Square Fish, 2005), which received the Coretta Scott King Honor.

A central figure in American-Puerto Rican poetry, Perdomo has been a recipient of a Woolrich Fellowship in Creative Writing at Columbia University and a New York Foundation for the Arts Poetry Fellow twice, in 2001 and 2009. His work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, BOMB, Mandorla, and African Voices. A member of the VONA/Voices faculty, he is currently teaches English at Phillips Exeter Academy.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. The evenings begin with a brief reception at 6:30 p.m.; readings begin at 7 p.m., followed by a Q&A and book signing. All programs are held in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway, Southampton, NY 11968.

For more information, call 631-632-5030. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

Author and Photographer Arlene Alda Comes to Writers Speak Nov. 18

  arlene alda
  Arlene Alda  (Photo by Alan Alda)

Critically acclaimed author and photographer Arlene Alda will be the featured guest in the next Writers Speak Wednesdays event, a free author talk and reading open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. Alda will speak on Wednesday, November 18, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

Arlene Alda most recently published Just Kids From the Bronx (Holt, 2015), a memoir of oral history in a place from which many celebrated cultural figures emerged. Drawing on six decades of living in the Bronx, Alda offers a textured portrait of her neighborhood from the early 20th century until today. Former President Bill Clinton called the book, "A down-to-earth, inspiring book about the American promise fulfilled."

Alda is the author of 19 books, including The Last Days of MASH (Unicorn, 1983), and On Set—A Personal Story in Pictures and Words (Simon and Schuster/Fireside Books, 1981). She has also published many books for children, including Except the Color Grey (Tundra Books, 2011), Lulu's Piano Lesson (Tundra Books, 2010), Hello, Good-bye (Tundra Books, 2009), and more.

In addition to her writing career, Alda works as a freelance photographer and has had several one-person shows. Her photos have appeared in The Saturday Evening Post, Vogue, People Magazine, Life Magazine, and Today's Health Magazine. She won the Chicago Graphics Communications Award for her photo essay "Allison's Tonsillectomy."

Before her career as a writer and photographer, Alda received a Fulbright Scholarship to study clarinet in Germany. She went on to play clarinet for the Houston Symphony under the baton of Leopold Stokowski. The mother of three daughters and a grandmother of eight, Alda lives with her husband, actor Alan Alda, in New York and Long Island.

he final guest author of the fall Writers Speak series will be poet and children's book author Willie Perdomo on December 2. On Wednesday, December 9, the evening will be devoted to readings by "the stars of tomorrow": students currently enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. The evenings begin with a brief reception at 6:30 p.m.; readings begin at 7 p.m., followed by a Q&A and book signing. All programs are held in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway, Southampton, NY 11968.

For more information, call 631-632-5030. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

Roger Rosenblatt Wins Kenyon Review Award for Literary Achievement

roger rosenblattThe internationally acclaimed literary journal The Kenyon Review has selected Distinguished Professor of Writing and English Roger Rosenblatt as the winner of the 2015 Kenyon Review Award for Literary Achievement. Rosenblatt, who teaches in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton, will accept the award at a gala dinner held in his honor in New York City on November 5, 2015.

As the winner of this year's Award for Literary Achievement, Rosenblatt was tapped to present the Denham Sutcliffe Memorial Lecture at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, on October 3. The lecture was part of the annual Kenyon Review autumn celebration of literature, featuring readings by local, national, and international authors, workshops, presentations, panel discussions and receptions.

In the announcement of the award, Rosenblatt—author of bestselling novels, plays, memoirs, and narrative essays, including the award-winning Kayak Morning, and most recently The Boy Detective and The Book of Love—was lauded as one of "the most innovative authors of our time. His essays soar with riffs that are by turns playful and majestic. His lyricism, depth of insight, and wise humor animate his prose with singular grace."

"I'm very happy with the award," Rosenblatt said last week. "But think of the other awards won by members of our program: Julie Sheehan's Whiting Award and Lou Ann Walker's McDowell Colony fellowship, to name just two. We're all lucky to be in one another's company."

The Kenyon Review Award for Literary Achievement is presented at a gala benefit dinner each year in New York City at the Four Seasons Restaurant. The prize honors "careers of extraordinary literary achievement, recognizing writers whose influence and importance have shaped the American literary landscape. It celebrates writers for the courage of their vision, their unparalleled imagination, and for the beauty of their art."

At the November 5 awards dinner, Rosenblatt will join a distinguished roster of past attendees, including such luminaries as W.S. Merwin, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Gloria Vanderbilt, and the late George Plimpton, to name only a few. Past years have seen such corporations as Bloomberg, MacAndrews & Forbes, O’Melveny & Myers, LLP, and other distinguished companies sign on as sponsors.

Professor Rosenblatt is the author of 17 books, five of which have been New York Times Notable Books, and six off-Broadway plays. His one-man show, Free Speech in America, was cited by the Times as one of the 10 best plays of 1991.

At age 28, Rosenblatt held the Briggs-Copeland appointment in the teaching of writing at Harvard University, and at 29 was named Master of Dunster House—the youngest House Master in Harvard's history. In his mid 30s he served as Literary Editor and was a columnist at The New Republic. He went on to write a column for The Washington Post, for which Washingtonian magazine named him Best Columnist in Washington, before beginning a career writing essays for Time magazine, which won him two George Polk Awards, as well as honors from the Overseas Press Club, the American Bar Association, and others. He gained further renown as the first essayist on the "PBS NewsHour," winning both Peabody and Emmy awards.

Since deciding in 2006 to devote himself to writing memoirs, extended essays and novels, Rosenblatt has produced a steady stream of highly regarded works, including his celebrated first novel, Lapham Rising, almost all of which have been national bestsellers. His memoirs include Making Toast, a powerful meditation on the death of his daughter, which appeared originally as an essay in The New Yorker, and Kayak Morning, a further lyrical examination of grief.

Unless It Moves the Human Heart, an exploration of the art of writing based on a class he taught in the Stony Brook Southampton MFA program, was also a Times bestseller. An innovative memoir, The Boy Detective: A New York Childhood, appeared in 2013. And in 2015 he published The Book of Love: Improvisations on a Crazy Little Thing. His latest novel, Thomas Murphy, to be excerpted in The Kenyon Review, will be published in January 2016.

In his recent books, Rosenblatt has experimented with a form of narrative that connects section to section, without chapter demarcations, dismissing chronological time, and mixing fact and fiction. The effect he seeks is akin to movements in music. In his review of The Boy Detective in The New York Times Book Review, Pete Hamill compared Rosenblatt's style to that of "a great jazz musician, moving from one emotion to another, playing some with a dose of irony, others with joy, and a few with pain and melancholy (the blues, of course). Alone with the instrument of his art, he seems to be hoping only to surprise himself."

In 2008 Roger Rosenblatt was appointed Distinguished Professor of English and Writing at Stony Brook University. Seven colleges and universities, including Kenyon College, have awarded him honorary degrees.

'Poetry Czar' Bob Holman Up Next at Writers Speak October 21

bob holmanAward-winning and critically acclaimed poet and filmmaker Bob Holman will be the featured guest in the next Writers Speak Wednesdays event, a free author talk and reading open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. Holman will speak on Wednesday, October 21, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

Bob Holman is an accomplished poet, spoken word performer, professor, activist, filmmaker, proprietor of the Bowery Poetry club, and more. Having published more than 16 poetry collections, Holman has been named to the "Poetry Pantheon" by New York Times Magazine. The New York Daily News has anointed him as "Ringmaster of The Spoken Word," while the Village Voice simply refers to him as "Poetry Czar."

Holman's most recent projects include filming and serving as the host of "Language Matters," a two-hour PBS special on "Endangered Languages" and publishing a poetry collection, Sing This One Back to Me (Coffee House Press 2013). He introduced slam poetry as co-director of the Nuyorican Poet's Cafe, and published an anthology ALOUD! Voices of the Nuyorican Poet's Cafe in 1994, which won the American Book Award.

He is also known for his five-part 1996 PBS series, "The United States of Poetry," which offered a comprehensive look at 20th century poetry. The show, hailed by The New York Times as "downright courageous," examined the art of the spoken word from poet laureates to emerging voices alike.

A central figure in redefining poetry on, off, and beyond the page, his many honors include: two Emmy Awards; the 2006 Elizabeth Kray Poetry award from Poets House; the Nuyorican Poets Cafe's Legend Award; the 2011 Villager Award from the Greenwich Village Historical Preservation Society; the 2012 Urban Word Champion Award, and the 2003 Poets & Writers Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award.

Other writers scheduled for the series include: Arlene Alda, November 18; and Willie Perdomo, December 2. On December 9, the evening will be devoted to readings by "the stars of tomorrow": students currently enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. The evenings begin with a brief reception at 6:30 p.m.; readings begin at 7 p.m., followed by a Q&A and book signing. All programs are held in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway, Southampton, NY 11968.

For more information, call 631-632-5030 or visit www.stonybrook.edu/mfa. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

David Lynn and Roger Rosenblatt Talk Writing at October 14 Writers Speak

david lynnKenyon Review editor and writer David Lynn will talk about writing with author and distinguished professor Roger Rosenblatt following a reading by Mr. Lynn at the next installment of the fall Writers Speak Wednesdays series on Wednesday, October 14.

The reading and discussion begins at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall, following an Open House for the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program starting at 5:30 p.m. Writers Speak is a series of author talks and readings that are free and open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton.

Lynn and Rosenblatt share a long history as friends and fellow writers, with Lynn having edited several of Rosenblatt's pieces for the Kenyon Review.

The editor of the highly esteemed Kenyon Review literary journal since 1994, David Lynn was a senior Fullbright Scholar in India from 1995-96. He is the author of one novel, "Wrestling with Gabriel," a critical study, "The Hero's Tale: Narrators in the Early Modern Novel," and two collections of short stories, "Fortune Telling" and "Year of Fire," which Publisher's Weekly called "quietly haunting."

His stories and essays have appeared in magazines and journals in America, England, India, and Australia. He currently teaches workshops in fiction writing as a professor of English at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, where he lives with his family.

Stony Brook Southampton's Distinguished Professor of English and Writing Roger Rosenblatt is the author of six Off-Broadway plays and 17 books, including New York Times Notable Books "Kayak Morning" and "The Boy Detective," and "Unless It Moves the Human Heart," "Making Toast," "Rules for Aging," and "Children of War," which won the Robert F. Kennedy Book Prize and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.

Prior to the Writers Speak program on October 14, the Open House for Stony Brook Southampton's MFA in Creative Writing program will begin at 5:30 p.m. in Chancellors Hall at the Southampton campus.  MFA Program Director Julie Sheehan and other faculty members will be  discussing workshops in fiction, memoir, creative nonfiction, poetry and more, all taught by distinguished working writers.

Other topics at the Open House will include combining course work in Manhattan and Southampton, and, for those interested in writing kids' books, the one-year Children's Lit Fellows program.

Sheehan and Executive Director of Southampton Arts Carla Caglioti are also coordinating an Open House at Stony Brook's Manhattan campus on October 17 and an online info session and Q&A on Tuesday, October 20, to discuss the design of the MFA program, courses offered, writing in multiple genres, and more.

For more information or to attend the online session, send an email with "Online Info Session" as the subject line to RSVP_MFA@stonybrook.edu. A link and instructions for logging on will be sent a few days prior to the event. RSVP is by email only.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. Preceded by a brief reception at 6:30 p.m., all readings begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway, Southampton, NY 11968.

For more information, call 631-632-5030 or visit www.stonybrook.edu/mfa. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

CWL Program Hosting Open Houses in Southampton, Manhattan and Online

sheehan and rosenblattThe MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton has scheduled Open Houses in Southampton, Manhattan and online in October for prospective degree candidates and all those who would like to know more about what's offered and who's teaching.

Wednesday, October 14
Open House at Southampton Campus

The MFA Open House in Southampton is being offered in conjunction with the Writers Speak Wednesdays October 14 program, which will feature a reading by Kenyon Review editor and writer David Lynn followed by a conversation between Lynn and celebrated author and distinguished professor Roger Rosenblatt.

The Open House begins at 5:30 p.m. in Chancellors Hall at the Southampton campus, with MFA in Creative Writing Director Julie Sheehan and other faculty members discussing the program's workshops in fiction, memoir, creative nonfiction, poetry and more, all taught by distinguished working writers.

Other topics will include opportunities to combine course work in Manhattan and Southampton, the design of the MFA program, the application process and, for those interested in writing children's books, the one-year Children's Lit Fellows program.

At 6:30 p.m., all those attending the Open House will have a chance to meet current MFA in Creative Writing students at a reception in the Radio Lounge in Chancellors Hall preceding the Writers Speak program with David Lynn and Roger Rosenblatt, which begins at 7 p.m. A book signing follows at 8 p.m.

The Stony Brook Southampton campus is at 239 Montauk Highway, Southampton, NY 11968. For more information, call 631-632-5030, or email RSVP_MFA@stonybrook.edu.

Saturday, October 17
Open House at the Manhattan Campus

The Manhattan campus Open House for the Stony Brook Southampton MFA in Creative Writing and Literature is scheduled for Saturday, October 17, beginning at 11 a.m. in the large conference room.  MFA in Creative Writing Program Director Julie Sheehan, Executive Director of Southampton Arts Carla Caglioti, and other faculty members will discuss MFA workshops in fiction, memoir, creative nonfiction, poetry and more, all taught by distinguished working writers.

Other topics will include the design of the MFA program, the application process, and opportunities to combine course work in Manhattan and Southampton. Lunch will be served at noon, when all who attend can meet current MFA in Creative Writing students and feast on deli fare.

The Stony Brook Manhattan campus is on the 3rd floor at 387 Park Avenue South (entrance at 101-113 E. 27th Street), New York, NY 10016. For more information, call 631-632-5030, or email RSVP_MFA@stonybrook.edu.

Tuesday, October 20
Online Info Session with Q&A

MFA in Creative Writing Program Director Julie Sheehan and the executive director of Southampton Arts, Carla Caglioti, will offer an info session and Q&A online on Tuesday, October 20. Topics to be discussed include: typical course offerings at both campuses; the design of the MFA program and application process; writing in multiple genres, including books for kids; and combining course work in Manhattan and Southampton.

To "attend" this online session, send an email with "Online Info Session" as the subject line to RSVP_MFA@stonybrook.edu. A link and instructions for logging on will be sent a few days prior to the event. RSVP is by email only.

Photo caption: Roger Rosenblatt and Julie Sheehan.

 

Patricia Marx Scores a Hit with Let's Be Less Stupid

marxPatricia Marx, who teaches fiction and creative nonfiction for the Stony Brook Southampton MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program, has scored a hit with the recent release of her latest book, Let's Be Less Stupid: An Attempt To Maintain My Mental Faculties.

Published by Grand Central Publishing and released July 14, 2015, Let's Be Less Stupid uses Marx's trademark sharp-edged humor to tackle one of the most challenging aspects of aging: the mind's decline. From forgetting her brother-in-law's name while he was wearing a nametag to hanging up the phone to look for her phone, Marx "confesses to her failures," according to the publisher, "and not only to make you feel better about yourself."

Marx, a staff writer for The New Yorker and former writer for Saturday Night Live, addresses such conundrums as "if there are more neural connections in your brain than stars in the Milky Way, why did you put the butter dish in your nightstand drawer?" She also describes her quest to get smarter, or to at least make a stand against the onslaught of stupidity. Her efforts include such activities as "learning Cherokee, popping pills (not the good kind), and listening to - who's the guy who didn't write dum de de dum but the other one?"

In a review headlined "Equal Parts Sarcasm, Silliness And Smarts In Let's Be Less Stupid” at npr.org, Heller McAlpin describes the book as "a very funny chronicle of [Marx's] four-month effort to 'turbocharge' her brain and 'jump off the cognitive escalator heading downward to you-know-where.' "

NPR’s Arun Rath also did an interview with Marx for "All Things Considered."

Writing in The New York Times, Sarah Lyall, who refers to the book as "a distracted meditation on absent-mindedness," notes that "I read Let's Be Less Stupid over a few days - you can dip in and out, the way you might take an occasional swig of whiskey (or whatever works) as a pick-me-up."

Lyall's review also celebrates all of Marx's oeuvre, from such earlier nonfiction works as Pets Allowed to her two novels on "the vexing issue of romance," including Starting from Happy, and her "wonderful articles in The New Yorker.  

Marx is the author of twelve books, including the novels Starting From Happy and Him Her Him AgainThe End of Him, both of which were finalists for the Thurber Prize for Humor, and several collaborations with the cartoonist Roz Chast. Marx was the first woman elected to the Harvard Lampoon. She has taught screenwriting at Princeton University and, according to her bio on the Stony Brook Southampton website, "can take a baked potato out of the oven with her bare hand."

 

 

patricia marx Patricia Marx Is One of Three SBU Faculty to Receive a 2015 Guggenheim Fellowship

Novelist Patricia Marx, a member of the Southampton Arts faculty in the MFA program in Creative Writing and Literature, was one of three Stony Brook University faculty members to be awarded a 2015 Guggenheim Fellowship.

Guggenheim Fellows are awarded annually by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation to artists, scholars and scientists in all fields. This year, 175 Fellowships were awarded based on "distinguished achievement in the past and exceptional promise for the future."

Marx is a staff writer for The New Yorker and a former writer for Saturday Night Live. She is the author of twelve books, including the novels Starting From Happy and Him Her Him Again The End of Him, both of which were finalists for the Thurber Prize for Humor, and several collaborations with the cartoonist Roz Chast. Marx was the first woman elected to the Harvard Lampoon. She has taught screenwriting at Princeton University and is currently teaching a course on humor this term at Stony Brook Manhattan.

Matthew Barnson and Rowan Ricardo Phillips were also selected from Stony Brook. Barnson is an Assistant Professor of Composition in the Department of Music. Phillips is an Associate Professor and Director of the Poetry Center in the Department of English.

"A Guggenheim Fellowship is a most esteemed honor and reflects the highest levels of scholarship and professionalism," said Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., MD. "Stony Brook University is very proud to have these outstanding faculty members chosen for this venerated distinction."

 

Jules Feiffer Interviewed by NPR on Occasion of New Biography, Out of Line

Southampton Arts faculty member Jules Feiffer was interviewed by NPR's Robert Seigel recently to talk about his extraordinary career, which is the subject of the new biography, Out of Line: The Art of Jules Feiffer, written by Martha Fay.

Excerpts from the interview and the full audio can be found at the NPR website here.

 

Laura Lippman in Conversation with Daniel Menaker at Writers Speak April 29

lippmanLaura Lippman will be interviewed by former New Yorker fiction editor Dan Menaker in the next installment of the spring Writers Speak Wednesdays series of free author talks and readings open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. The author will read from and talk about her work on Wednesday, April 29, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

In the final installment of the spring Writers Speak series, on Wednesday, May 6, the evening will be devoted to readings by "the stars of tomorrow," students enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton.  

Laura Lippman is the author of six New York Times bestselling novels, including three of the award-winning "accidental P.I." Tess Monaghan series, and the stand-alone novels What the Dead Know, Life Sentences, and I'd Know You Anywhere.

Since the publication of her first novel in 1997, she has won virtually every major award given to U.S. crime writing, including the Edgar Award, Anthony Award, Agatha Award, Nero Wolfe Award, Shamus Award, and the Quill Award.

In addition to his 22-year stint at The New Yorker, novelist and memoirist Dan Menaker has served as the executive editor in chief of Random House and currently teaches in the Stony Brook Southampton MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. All readings begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway. For more information, call 631-632-5030. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

Novelist Roxana Robinson Joins Writers Speak Series on April 22

robinsonRoxana Robinson will be the next guest in the spring Writers Speak Wednesdays series of free author talks and readings open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. The author will read and talk about her work on Wednesday, April 22, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

In the final installment featuring guest authors in the spring Writers Speak series, Laura Lippman will be interviewed by former New Yorker fiction editor Dan Menaker on Wednesday, April 29. And on May 6, the evening will be devoted to readings by "the stars of tomorrow": students enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton.  

Roxana Robinson is the author of five novels, including Sparta, winner of the U.S. Marine Corps James Webb Award for Distinguished Fiction. Her 2008 novel, Cost, was named one of the five best novels of the year by The Washington Post. She has also written three collections of short stories, as well as an award-winning biography, Georgia O'Keeffe: A Life.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. All readings begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway. For more information, call 631-632-5030. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

McCormick, Kriegman to Headline Writers Speak Wednesdays on April 15

mccormickPatricia McCormick and Mitchell Kriegman will be the next guests in the spring Writers Speak Wednesdays series of free author talks and readings open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. The two authors will read and talk about their work on Wednesday, April 15, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

A mentor in the Stony Brook Southampton MFA in Creative Writing Children's Literature Fellows program, Patricia McCormick is a two-time National Book Award finalist. She is the author of five critically acclaimed novels: Never Fall Down, based on the true story of an 11-year-old boy who survived the Killing Fields of Cambodia by playing music; Purple Heart, a psychological exploration of the killing of a 10-year-old boy in Iraq; Sold, a moving account of sexual trafficking, which was recently made into an independent film; My Brother's Keeper, a realistic view of teenage substance abuse; and Cut, an intimate portrait of one girl's struggle with self-injury.

McCormick also worked with Malala Yousafzai to write the New York Times bestseller I Am Malala (Young Readers Edition), about the Pakistani young lady who defied the Taliban by pursuing her education. Shot in the head one afternoon as she was returning home from school, she lived to inspire millions and win the Nobel Peace Prize.

Kriegman is the author of Being Audrey Hepburn, and an upcoming novel due out this year, Things I Can't Explain,  a modern-day, mid-20s follow-up on the lead character of his groundbreaking cult classic '90s Nickelodeon show, "Clarissa Explains It All."

kriegmanKriegman, who formerly worked on television projects out of a studio in East Hampton, was also the executive story editor of the original "Ren and Stimpy," "Rugrats," and "Doug and Rocko's Modern Life." He won four Emmys for his work on children's TV shows, including "Bear in the Big Blue House," "Book of Pooh" and "It's a Big Big World."

He has written original screenplays for Rogue, Universal, Disney, Columbia Pictures and others, and his short stories have been published in The New Yorker, the National Lampoon, Glamour, New York Press and Harper's Bazaar.

Other writers scheduled for the spring series include Roxana Robinson, April 22, and Laura Lippman interviewed by former New Yorker fiction editor Dan Menaker, April 29. On May 6, the evening will be devoted to readings by "the stars of tomorrow": students enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. All readings begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway.

For more information, call 631-632-5030 or visit www.stonybrook.edu/mfa. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

MFA in Creative Writing & Literature student will teach a War Memoir course at Yale

Adrian Bonenberger, an MFA student in Stony Brook Southampton's MFA program in creative writing and literature, will be teaching a course he began developing in CWL 581, the Practicum in Teaching Writing, next fall as part of the College Seminar Program at Yale University. The course, called "Memoir and the War on Terror," will be offered through Jonathan Edwards College.

Read the whole story inHappenings.

 

Poet Alice Fulton Reads April 1 in Writers Speak Wednesdays Series

alice fultonPoet Alice Fulton will be the next guest in the spring Writers Speak Wednesdays series of free author talks and readings open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. The author will read on Wednesday, April 1, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

On Wednesday, April 15, author and MFA in Creative Writing and Literature faculty member Patricia McCormick and filmmaker and novelist Mitchell Kriegman will be the next guests in the spring Writers Speak series.

The recipient of a 2011 American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature "to honor exceptional accomplishment," Alice Fulton's eight books include The Nightingales of Troy: Connected Stories; Cascade Experiment: Selected Poems; and Felt, which was awarded the Rebekah Johnson Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry from the Library of Congress.

Other books include Sensual Math; Powers Of Congress; Palladium, winner of the National Poetry Series and the Society of Midland Authors Award; and Dance Script With Electric Ballerina, winner of the Associated Writing Programs Award. A collection of essays, Feeling as a Foreign Language: The Good Strangeness of Poetry, was published by Graywolf Press.

Her work has been included in The Penguin Anthology of Twentieth-Century American Poetry; The Open Door: 100 Poems, 100 Years of Poetry Magazine; five editions of The Best American Poetry series; and the 10th anniversary edition and the 25th anniversary edition (forthcoming) of The Best of the Best American Poetry. Two stories from The Nightingales of Troy were selected for the Best American Short Stories series, another for the Pushcart Prize, and a fourth for the Editor's Prize in Fiction.

Other writers scheduled for the spring series include: Patricia McCormick and Mitchell Kriegman, April 15; Roxana Robinson, April 22; and Laura Lippman interviewed by former New Yorker fiction editor Dan Menaker, April 29.

On May 6, the evening will be devoted to readings by "the stars of tomorrow": students enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. All readings begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway.

 

'Self-Publishing and Small Presses' at March 11 Writers Speak Wednesday

Special guests Sande Boritz Berger, Céline Keating, Judy L. Mandel, and Kamy Wicoff will discuss "What's New in Self-Publishing and Small Presses" in the next installment of the spring Writers Speak Wednesdays series of free author talks and readings open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. The panel discussion will be held on Wednesday, March 4, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

Sande Boritz Berger, who earned an MFA in Creative Writing and Literature at Stony Brook Southampton, was awarded the Deborah Hecht Memorial Prize for fiction. Her debut novel, Sweetness, was a semi-finalist in Amazon’s Breakthrough Novel Awards.

Céline Keating's new novel, Play for Me, will be published this spring by She Writes Press. Her debut novel, Layla, was published by Plain View Press.

Judy L. Mandel is the award-winning author of Replacement Child—A Memoir, published by Seal Press in 2013.

Kamy Wicoff is the best-selling author of I Do But I Don’t: Why the Way We Marry Matters. She is co-founder of SheWrites.com and She Writes Press, one of the world’s largest communities for women writers.

Other writers scheduled for the spring series include: Alice Fulton, April 1; Patricia McCormick and Mitchell Kriegman, April 15; Roxana Robinson, April 22; and Laura Lippman interviewed by former New Yorker fiction editor Dan Menaker, April 29. On May 6, the evening will be devoted to readings by "the stars of tomorrow," students enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. All readings begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway.

For more information, call 631-632-5030. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

Five Faculty Writers Featured at Spring Writers Speak Wednesdays Series March 4

rosenblatt and sheehanMFA in Creative Writing and Literature faculty members Ursula Hegi, Susan Scarf Merrell, Roger Rosenblatt, Julie Sheehan and Lou Ann Walker will be the next guests in the spring Writers Speak Wednesdays series of free author talks and readings open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. All five writers will read on Wednesday, March 4, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

The Wednesday, March 11, Writers Speak program will feature a panel discussion on publishing, "What’s New in Self-Publishing and Small Presses," with special guests Sande Boritz Berger, Céline Keating, Judy L. Mandel, and Kamy Wicoff.

Ursula Hegi is the author of 12 books. Her Burgdorf Cycle encompasses four of her novels: Stones from the River, Floating in My Mother's Palm, The Vision of Emma Blau and Children and Fire. Her work has been translated into many languages, and her awards include the Italian Grinzane Cavour, an NEA Fellowship, and a PEN/Faulkner Award.

Susan Scarf Merrell is the fiction editor of The Southampton Review. Her most recent work is Shirley: A Novel, and she is also the author of the novel A Member of the Family and the nonfiction book The Accidental Bond: How Sibling Connections Influence Adult Relationships. Her short stories and essays have been published in the literary reviews Tin House, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Publishers Weekly online, Large Hearted Boy, The Southampton Review, The New Haven Review and elsewhere.

Distinguished Professor Roger Rosenblatt is the author of six off-Broadway plays and 15 books, published in 13 languages. His books include the New York Times bestsellers Kayak Morning, Unless It Moves the Human Heart and Making Toast, a memoir of his family, which initially appeared as an essay in The New Yorker. Other books are the novels Beet and Lapham Rising, another bestseller, as were Rules for Aging and Children of War, winner of the Robert F. Kennedy book prize. His most recent works are The Boy Detective and The Book of Love: Improvisations on a Silly Little Thing.

Julie Sheehan, the director of the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature at Stony Brook Southampton, has published three poetry collections: Bar Book: Poems & Otherwise (W.W. Norton); Orient Point (W.W. Norton); and Thaw (Fordham). Her honors include a Whiting Writers’ Award and NYFA Fellowship in Poetry. Her poems have appeared in many magazines and anthologies.

Lou Ann Walker is the editor-in-chief of The Southampton Review. Her memoir, A Loss for Words, won a Christopher Award. Her other books include Hand, Heart & Mind and her fiction and nonfiction has appeared in many publications, including The New York Times Magazine, Esquire, Life, Allure, Parade, The Chicago Sun-Times, The New York Times Book Review, O, The Oprah Magazine, The Writer, and The Hopewell Review. Formerly an editor at Esquire and New York Magazine, she is also the author of several screenplays and is a member of the Writers Guild of America.

Other writers scheduled for the spring series include: Alice Fulton, April 1; Patricia McCormick and Mitchell Kriegman, April 15; Roxana Robinson, April 22; and Laura Lippman interviewed by former New Yorker fiction editor Dan Menaker, April 29.

On May 6, the evening will be devoted to readings by “the stars of tomorrow”: students enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. All readings begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway.

For more information, call 631-632-5030 or visit www.stonybrook.edu/mfa. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

 

Jessica Soffer Kicks off Spring Writers Speak Wednesdays Series Feb. 25

sofferNovelist Jessica Soffer will be the first guest in the spring Writers Speak Wednesdays series of free author talks and readings open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. The author will read on Wednesday, February 25, at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall.

Soffer’s debut novel, Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots (Mariner Books, 2014), much of which was written at the East Hampton Library, has already been published in eight countries. According to the author, it is a story about “accepting the people we love—the people we have to love and the people we choose to love, the families we’re given and the families we make.”

Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots was featured in an NPR segment titled “Hidden Gems: 5 Summer Books That Deserve More Fanfare.” A review in O, The Oprah Magazine described the novel as “breathtaking prose” that “interweaves delectable descriptions of food with a profoundly redemptive story.”

Soffer earned her MFA at Hunter College. Her work has appeared in Granta, The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Real Simple, The Wall Street Journal, Vogue and on NPR’s “Selected Shorts.” She teaches fiction at Connecticut College and lives in New York City.

On Wednesday, March 4, MFA in Creative Writing and Literature faculty members Ursula Hegi, Susie Merrell, Roger Rosenblatt, Julie Sheehan and Lou Ann Walker will be the next guests in the spring Writers Speak series.

The Wednesday, March 11, Writers Speak program will feature a panel discussion on publishing, “What’s New in Self-Publishing and Small Presses,” with special guests Sande Boritz Berger, Céline Keating, Judy L. Mandel, and Kamy Wicoff.

Other writers scheduled for the spring series include: Alice Fulton, April 1; Patricia McCormick and Mitchell Kriegman, April 15; Roxana Robinson, April 22; and Laura Lippman interviewed by former New Yorker fiction editor Dan Menaker, April 29. On May 6, the evening will be devoted to readings by “the stars of tomorrow”: students enrolled in the MFA in Creative Writing and Literature program at Stony Brook Southampton.

Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. All readings begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway.

For more information, call 631-632-5030 or visit www.stonybrook.edu/mfa. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.


Stony Brook Southampton Adds First MFA Degree in Film in the SUNY System

Applications Now Being Accepted for Fall 2015

New York and Southampton, NY, February 3, 2015—Stony Brook University announced today that the NY State Education Department has approved SUNY’s first ever Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Film. With locations in Manhattan and Southampton, Stony Brook Southampton's innovative three-year graduate program in narrative film is led by Graduate Director Christine Vachon, Co-Founder of legendary indie production company, Killer Films. Under Vachon, students receive real-world, practical experience at an affordable SUNY tuition and an opportunity to work on movies produced by Killer Films.

Students in the 45-48 credit MFA program have worked on several Killer Films' productions, including STILL ALICE starring Julianne Moore, which earned her the Best Actress Golden Globe Award, the Screen Actors Guild Award and an Academy Award® nomination, and the forthcoming NASTY BABY, starring Kristen Wiig and Alia Shawkat. Killer has produced over 80 acclaimed features, from Academy Award® winning BOYS DON’T CRY and Academy Award® nominated FAR FROM HEAVEN to Emmy Award® winning HBO mini-series MILDRED PIERCE, and soon-to-be released CAROL, directed by Todd Haynes, starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara.

Robert Reeves, Associate Provost of Southampton Graduate Arts, said, "We believe affordable, project-driven, in-the-practice programs are the future of graduate arts education. The new MFA in Film is the ideal fit for the advanced training we already offer in creative writing and theater. Our programs emphasize original storytelling and are taught by a faculty of the most distinguished practicing artists in the country. We welcome all aspiring filmmakers who want to pursue their art without signing on to a lifetime of debt."

Vachon said, "The coming year marks milestones for Killer Films and Stony Brook Southampton. We’ll celebrate the official launch of our MFA in Film as well as the 20th Anniversary of Killer Films. These are great achievements for us as an independent film company and a graduate school. We’re excited to continue re-inventing the traditional film school model and turning it on its head."

The MFA program focuses on screenwriting, directing, and producing, with production cycles culminating in a feature screenplay, a portfolio of short films including an MFA thesis film or a final producer’s package. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Deadline to qualify for financial aid is March 15, 2015 and for domestic students not applying for aid, the deadline is July 1.

Magdalene Brandeis, Associate Director, said, "We were challenged to create an MFA program that best equipped a variety of students to stay true to their voices and their stories while keeping up with the ever-changing technological and financial landscapes of the film industry. We’ve pioneered an MFA in Film that’s as adaptive as the medium."

RSVP to MFAManhattan@stonybrook.edu to attend the upcoming Open House and learn more about courses, faculty, scholarships and financial aid.  

OPEN HOUSE

Thursday, February 12 (6-7pm)
STONY BROOK MANHATTAN
387 Park Avenue South, 3rd Floor

ONLINE OPEN HOUSE
Thursday, February 26 (7pm EST)

About Southampton Graduate Arts
Southampton Graduate Arts is a vibrant gathering of MFA programs in creative writing, theatre and film. Film classes are offered on campuses in Southampton and Manhattan. The programs attract a faculty of world renowned authors, playwrights, directors and filmmakers. The film program, added in 2012 and launched as an MFA in 2015, features the latest Canon cameras, state-of-the-art lighting equipment, and is supported by the prestigious Sklar Collection on the history of American cinema. For more information, visit www.stonybrook.edu/film or contact 631-632-5010/southamptonarts@stonybrook.edu.

 

julianne moore

Killer Films' Still Alice Nets Golden Globe Win with Julianne Moore

Still Alice, a movie co-produced by Stony Brook-connected Killer Films, picked up a Golden Globe for Best Lead Actress in a Motion Picture (Drama) in the annual awards ceremony televised Sunday evening.

The honor went to Julianne Moore, who portrays a woman afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease in the prime of her life.

Killer Films was co-founded by legendary producer and indie film powerhouse Christine Vachon, a Stony Brook faculty member who directs the graduate film program at Stony Brook Southampton.

Read more at Happenings HERE.