Wilkes University

Revise This - September 2012

Revise This!   |   September 2012                                          Revise This Archives

Gale Martin Ranks #1 | Wilkes Panels, Readings, and More at AWP Boston 2013
Announcements | Faculty/Staff Notes | Student/Alumni Notes | Program Notes

Gale Martin Ranks #1

Recent graduate Gale Martin has been enjoying incredible success for not one, but two recent book releases. Her debut with Don Juan in Hankey, PA (Booktrope 2011) keeps climbing the sales ranks, but it’s her latest book Grace Unexpected that has drawn even more attention, recently rising to #1 on Amazon’s list of Movers and Shakers.

Grace Unexpected by Gale Martin

“Movers & Shakers allows readers to keep track of what books are popular on Amazon,” Martin explains. “It measures books that obtain the biggest gains in Amazon sales ranks over the past 24 hours.”

Grace Unexpected
by Gale Martin

As part of a marketing strategy, Grace Unexpected was offered for free Kindle download for a limited three day period. Martin’s publisher aimed for the freebie to attract readers and everything fell into place as planned. “It received loads more visibility,” Martin says. In fact, during those three days not only was Grace Unexpected downloaded more than 38,000 times, the book sold more than 400 copies in the following 36 hours when the book returned to its retail price. In turn, buyers have been adding Don Juan in Hankey, PA to their online shopping cart as well.

Martin credits the Wilkes writing program for steering her in the right direction. The author states that Wilkes helps “prepare authors to present their writing,” both through public reading experience and preparing for the publication market. This hands-on ‘training’ has helped Martin across the board. She says, “I would say my Wilkes preparation was invaluable to my feeling confident and projecting a professional writer’s image.”

Riding high on her past two releases, Martin is already at work on her next book.

Wilkes Panels, Readings, and More at AWP Boston 2013

If you plan on attending the annual AWP Conference and Bookfair, taking place in Boston MA, March 6-9, 2013, you’ll find ample Wilkes representation. Also, Jim Warner, alum and former assistant program director, will once again host the All-Collegiate Poetry Slam and Open Mic every night of the Boston conference.

Bonnie Culver, program director, is on the AWP national Board of Trustees and was a member of the Boston Conference committee. She noted, “There are more presentations this year than any other year in AWP history. It promises to be another fantastic conference.” Next year’s conference will be held in Seattle, Washington. Proposals for the Seattle conference are due no later than May 1, 2013. Watch the AWP website for more information.

The following panel discussions include members from the Wilkes community:

“The Ten-Minute Play: the Essential Ingredients”
Panelists: Gregory Fletcher, Jean Klein, and L. Elizabeth Powers

For both playwrights and non-playwrights who may want to try their hand at a shorter genre, the ingredients of the ten-minute play will be compared and contrasted to the full-length play and sketch writing. Also, exploration will be given to finding the right size of a story and cast, as well as to the art of economy, how it looks on paper, and the production and publishing opportunities that could follow.

“Second Sex, Second Shelf? Women, Writing, and the Literary Marketplace”
Panelists: Christine Gelineau, Erin Belieu, Julia Glass, Tayari Jones, and Meg Wolitzer

Statistics suggest a gap still exits but is there a problem and if there is, what is its nature? What changes/ remedies/ metamorphoses can/ should be imagined? Do you think about this issue differently in terms of your writing vs. in terms of your career? Accomplished writers, who happen to be women, theorize and report out of their own experiences and analysis of the current literary scene.

“International Women’s Day Reading from Becoming: What Makes a Woman”
Panelists: Jill McCabe Johnson, Dinah Lenney, Nancy McKinley, Bibi Wein, Nadine Pinede

Authors read from what Dinty W. Moore describes as an astonishing array of gifted writers who explore intimacy, doubt, love, joy, and sorrow to form this exhilarating anthology. Edited by Jill McCabe Johnson, Becoming: What Makes a Woman (University of Nebraska Gender Programs, 2012) features essays of pivotal life experience.

For more information about AWP and the conference schedule, visit www.awpwriter.org. And, don’t forget to stop by Wilkes/ Etruscan Press booth in the Bookfair!



Bonnie Culver, program director, is on a special job in Mesa, AZ for Wilkes that is starting a branch campus at the invitation of the city of Mesa. In mid-August, she drove the Winnebago and da boyz—Elkhounds Brody and Bernie—across country. She remains the program director and will return each residency and continue recruiting and advising. She leaves the program in the capable hands of Dawn Leas, Joyce Anzalone, Graduate assistants Dawn Zera and Erin Miele, and Etruscan Press editor Starr Troup. Of Mesa so far? “It’s hot!” On the creative writing front in the west? Students wishing to take CW 501 and begin the west in January should call Dr. Culver 570.408.4527.

The M.A./M.F.A. Wilkes programs are once again sponsors for the AWP (Association of Writers and Writing Programs) national conference to be held in Boston MA, March 6-9, 2013. That means Wilkes will have 45 FREE registrations for students and faculty wishing to attend the conference. As in years past, Wilkes will have a booth shared with Etruscan Press in the Book Fair. We need a handful of student volunteers to work the booth during the conference. Please call Dawn Leas to claim a registration and/or volunteer!

The 10th annual International Conference of the Norman Mailer Society takes place in Provincetown MA this October 10-13, 2012. From the Wilkes community, Michael Mailer is participating on a roundtable discussion, “Mailer and Boxing,” and J. Michael Lennon is moderating a discussion on “Mailer and Women.” And as in years past, the Wilkes M.A./M.F.A. program will present the Wilkes University Reader’s Theatre that is comprised of students and faculty. This year’s readers include Ross Klavan, Ken Vose, Bonnie Culver, and Dawn Zera. Other Wilkes alums and faculty presenters include Nicole DePolo. You must be a member of The Norman Mailer Society to attend the conference; however, student memberships are only $20. To attend or find out more about the society, visit www.normanmailersociety.com.

The M.A./M.F.A. Wilkes programs are currently working through the approval process to add a publishing track. Please check out this New York Times video about small presses that highlights Akashic Books and its founder and publisher, Johnny Temple, who is one of our publishing faculty members.


Faculty/Staff Notes

Gregory Fletcher’s play, Uploaded, was included in the Whitley-Mosier Foundation Summer Readings 2012 series in New York City. The lead roles were read by Michael Learned and June Gable. In September, Greg began a new job with CUNY - Kingsborough Community College as Director of Theatre Arts.  

Cecilia Galante’s sixth book, about a girl who unknowingly gets involved with an exorcism, was recently acquired by Random House. It is scheduled to be released in fall 2013.

Dawn Leas will have two poems, “Hibernia” and “East West” included in the anthology, Forever Families, being published by Mandinam Press in late 2012.

J. Michael Lennon reports that a book he edited was recently published by Taschen Books:Norman Mailer/Bert Stern: Marilyn Monroe. He edited and condensed the text of Mailer’s 1973 biography to accompany a new selection of photographs by fashion photographer Bert Stern. He is now working on a new edition of Mailer’s The Fight (1975), with new photographs of the Ali-Foreman 1974 championship bout in Zaire, also to be published by Taschen Books. He has also just submitted the manuscript of the authorized Mailer biography to be published next year by Simon and Schuster.

Kevin Oderman will have a new novel, White Vespa, available in November from Etruscan Press.

Neil Shepard has a new poetry chapbook, Vermont Exit Ramps, available from Big Table Publishing.

Student/Alumni Notes

M.F.A. alum Amye Archer’s first play is being produced as part of Dyonisia ‘12: Apocalypse.  This is a series of short plays written by local playwrights and is produced by the Jason Miller Playwright Project.

M.F.A. alum Tara Caimi’s short story “Chicken Divan” was published in Fire & Knives and her memoir excerpt “Sled Team” was published in Oh Comely magazine.

M.F.A. alum Craig Czury was featured in Reading Eagle recently, discussing his role as Berks County poet laureate.

M.F.A. alum Brian Fanelli recently signed a contract with the publisher Unbound Content to release his first full-length book of poems.

M.A. student Donna Ferrara has had an essay, “Wrestling with Rain Barrels,” accepted for publication by Green Prints. This is the second piece Donna has sold to the magazine.

M.F.A. student Tyler Grimm has signed with Union Literary Agency, won the 2012 Norris Church-Mailer Scholarship, and has just begun teaching undergraduate writing courses at Elizabethtown College. 

M.F.A. alumni Ginger Marcinkowski had her thesis, Run, River Currents (women’s fiction) published by Booktrope in August 2012. It was a semi-finalist in the ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writer’s) Genesis Contest as well. She is also a new adjunct professor for Ashland University.

M.A. student Lori A. May will be reading from her poetry collection at Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids MI. She will also be a panel guest at the Michigan College English Association this fall and a guest presenter at the Rochester Writers’ Conference at Oakland University. In addition to three new poetry journal acceptances, Lori has new reviews published in Los Angeles Review.

M.F.A. alum William Prystauk’s critical paper he worked on for his degree, “Home Is Where the Horror Is,” will be published by the end of this year, and will appear in the academic journal Studies in Gothic Fiction. Also, his short story “Food” will be published by Fantastic Horror in the fall.

M.F.A. alum MorowaYejidé’s novel manuscript, Time of the Locust, was a 2012 finalist for the PEN/Bellwether Prize and also received First Honorable mention in the 2011 Dana Awards.

M.A. alum and current M.F.A. student Dawn Zera’s one-act play, Contemporary Saints, was staged in September as part of the Second Annual Jason Miller Playwrights’ Invitational in Scranton PA.

Program Notes

The Write Life blog welcomes guest posts from faculty, students, and alumni. Email lori.may1@wilkes.edu for details. Weekly interviews, literary news, and calls for submissions are shared online at http://wilkeswritelife.wordpress.com.