In Memoriam: Robin Metz

I first met Robin Metz when I hitch-hiked to Knox College in the midst of a November blizzard. In typical Robin fashion, he took it all in stride, found me a place to stay on campus, and proceeded to sell me on transferring. It would have been hard to do anything else after being exposedContinue reading “In Memoriam: Robin Metz”

Eudora Welty Symposium at 30

The big day has finally arrived. The Eudora Welty Writers’ Symposium will begin its 30th iteration with the kickoff in Poindexter Hall tonight at 7:30pm. Steve Yarbrough wil read from his fabulous novel The Unmade World as we explore the place of Southern writing in the world through our theme “As if the Ear of theContinue reading “Eudora Welty Symposium at 30”

Life as Department Chair

This summer, I made the transition from faculty member and director of our low-res MFA program to faculty member, director of our MFA, and chair of the Department of Languages, Literature, and Philosophy. That may be misleading, since I’m sure the transition is far from over, but I have moved offices and begun work as chair,Continue reading “Life as Department Chair”

A Beautiful Day on the Capitol Lawn

Yesterday was another beautiful day at the #msbookfest! I spent the day, from 7am to 4pm on the lawn of the Mississippi capitol, talking with people who had been to the many panels of the book festival, and ran into a number of old friends, including authors Katie Pierce, Becky Hagenston, and Mike Smith andContinue reading “A Beautiful Day on the Capitol Lawn”

A Few Do’s for the MFA Applicant

A couple of years ago, I wrote a post titled 15 Things to Do Before a Low-Res MFA (plus 5 bonus things). That title was a little tongue in cheek because I’m not a big fan of numbered lists (since there’s no magic number), but they were some good things to at least consider before embarkingContinue reading “A Few Do’s for the MFA Applicant”

A Few Don’ts for the MFA Applicant

It’s getting to be that time of year again, when college seniors and graduates planning to go to grad school start thinking about their applications in earnest. I’ve written a fair amount about the process and even compiled some of my best advice in a Guide for Applicants for my MFA program in Creative WritingContinue reading “A Few Don’ts for the MFA Applicant”

A Writer’s Craft makes Poets & Writers

Okay, I’ll admit it. Sometimes I search on my name or the title of one of my books. It’s not just vanity. Some days it can be useful to see what’s online about me or my work, and today was one of those days. Since I’d given away some exam copies of A Writer’s Craft at theContinue reading “A Writer’s Craft makes Poets & Writers”

A Fitting Finale to #AWP18

What a great experience this AWP was! And what a fine ending. This evening, I went to an inspiring poetry reading, presented by the Academy of American Poets, featuring Layli Long Soldier, Khaled Matawa, and Mark Doty. In contrast to last night, there was no tension in the room and the poems were allowed toContinue reading “A Fitting Finale to #AWP18”

Heading to #AWP18

This week, I’ll be going to Tampa for the 2018 Association of Writers and Writing Programs conference. As always, it will be a very busy few days—inspiring and exhausting. This year, it will be a little different, since I’ll get to hang out with some of my students who are taking a Short Residency classContinue reading “Heading to #AWP18”