June Newsletter

June 15, 2013

Below you will find information related to the program and writing in general. Please send your updates to me at theloftmtsu@gmail.com. –Karen Alea Ford


September 28thOur first public conference. Middle Tennessee Writer’s Conference: Bestselling/award-winning speakers: Kevin Wilson (fiction), Holly Tucker (creative non-fiction), Claudia Barnett (playwriting), and our own Bill Brown (poetry).

Current students—included in tuition

Alumni, faculty and MTSU students–$30


Includes dinner and snacks. Lunch on own.

*Please see attached flyer. Print and post where you can.

*Brochures are in. If you would like some to disperse, please send your snail mail address: theloftmtsu@gmail.com


Bill Brown—Two poems in the new journal Still: The Journal

http://www.stilljournal.net and two more accepted for Borderlands: The Texas Poetry Review.

Bill encourages everyone to take a look at the new publication Still: The Journal. There are some familiar names doing great things.

 River Jordan Publisher’s Marketplace:”Praying for Strangers River Jordan’s THE LABYRINTH PROJECT, exploring the historical and spiritual significance of the ancient path of labyrinths and why they are suddenly on the surge in America; drawing from both personal experience and collecting the stories of others who have designed, built and walked labyrinths around the world, to Wendy Grisham at Jericho Books, by Greg Daniel at Daniel Literary Group (World).”

Linda Busby Parker–continues to teach creative writing in the English Department at the University of South Alabama (Mobile) and enjoys serving as a mentor in The Writer’s Loft.  Recent publications include:  “An excerpt from The Fifth Season, a novel-in-process” in Oracle Fine Arts Review, Spring 2013, “The Purple Piano,” a short story in Literary Mobile, 10th anniversary edition, Negative Capability Press, February 2013, “Writing on Alabama’s Gulf Coast—the Pensters,” in 2nd & Church, a magazine for writers, summer 2013.  Recent speaking engagements include:  “Books that Changed Me” for the Baldwin Writers’ Group on March 16, 2013;

I read an excerpt from my novel-in-process, Shallow Graves, at the Gulf Coast Association of Creative Writing Teachers on April 16, 2013;  on July 12, 13, and 14, 2013, I will conduct a three-part workshop on creative non-fiction at the Alabama Writers Conclave (Fairhope, Alabama).  The sessions include:  “Personal Essays and Memoir: Stories From Our Lives,” “A Life Story Told in Vignettes,” and “Objectivity as a Narrative Strategy.”

Just for fun, I have formed a book club that meets once a month.  We began by reading and discussing memoir and now we are working our way through short story collections.  We celebrate good books over lunch and frequently noontime wine.  Noontime wine is a whole new experience!


Please send in your recent publications, what you are working on, and life news!

Lou Mindar – “was accepted into the MFA program in creative writing (fiction) at the University of Central Florida.  I was awarded a graduate teaching assistantship which provides full tuition remission and a stipend.  I was also accepted into the MFA program at the University of Memphis, but opted for the offer from UCF.

 The interesting thing about these offers is that both schools told me that my involvement in The Writer’s Loft factored into their decision to admit me into their programs.  The selection committees at both schools liked the fact that I had already been involved in a professionally run writing program at a well-respected university.

 Thanks to the Loft, I’m off to grad school in August!”

Michael Potts— my screenplay, *Obedience*, is an official selection of the Fright Night Film Festival, which will take place in Louisville, Kentucky from July 26-28. It is also a finalist in the Peachtree Village International Film Festival in Atlanta, which will take place August 23-25. I had a book signing for my novel, *End of Summer* at Hastings Books, Music, and Video in Murfreesboro on July 8.

Dana Smith— I was accepted and have begun an on-line MFA program at the University of Arkansas at Monticello. I’m in the first class of MFA students.


Ashley Loar


Leisa Hammet


Karen Alea Ford


Jennifer Chesak



Charlotte Dixon Rains


Melisa Cahnmann-Taylor


River Jordan


Kory Wells




 Candace White



Writers’ groups—I am compiling a list of groups in Middle TN. There are very good ones meeting at Books A Million Murfreesboro and in Spring Hill. Email me if you are interested in visiting them, and I will get you in touch. Also, if you have an open writers’ group, please send me your information. Thanks—Karen

Podcast—Some of my grad student colleagues have a fun podcast on books at http://www.literarydisco.com/author/literarydisco/. Tod runs the MFA at UCLA Riverside and Rider is that floppy-haired kid from “Boy Meets World.” –KarenSend in your favorite podcasts.

Barrelhouse has open submissions for novels and short story collections. http://www.barrelhousemag.com/barrelhouse-books/

*Morton Marr Poetry Prize                                                                                                    Sponsor:          Southwest Review

SYNOPSIS:  The prize is open to writers who have not yet
published a first book of poetry. Contestants may submit no more than
six, previously unpublished poems in a “traditional” form (e.g.
sonnet, sestina, villanelle, rhymed stanzas, blank verse, etc.). The
prize consists of $1,000 and publication in the Southwest Review.

Deadline(s):      09/30/2013

Address:    Morton Marr Poetry Prize
P.O. Box 750374
Dallas, TX 75275-0374
E-mail:          swr@mail.smu.edu
Web Site: http://smu.edu/southwestreview/
There is a $5.00 per poem entry/handling fee.

* 2014 Poetry Prize Contest is OPEN for submission through June 30
http://caseyshaypress.blogspot. com/2013/ 04/2014-poetry- prize-contest- is-open-for. html

We are pleased to announce that the 2014 Mary Ballard Poetry Chapbook Prize is
open for submissions April 1 through June 30, 2013. There is NO fee to enter
this contest.

The winner of the Mary Ballard Poetry Chapbook Prize will receive $500 and 25
printed copies of the chapbook. The chapbook will be sold in both physical and
electronic versions via a publishing contract with Casey Shay Press.

* Glimmer Train’s Fiction Open: Deadline June 30.
1st place has been increased to $2500 and includes publication in Glimmer Train. 2nd/3rd: $1000/$600 and consideration for publication. Results announced on September 1. Word count generally ranges 2000-8000, though up to 20,000 is fine. There are no theme restrictions. One of the most respected short-story journals in print, Glimmer Train is represented in recent editions of the Pushcart Prize, O. Henry, New Stories from the South, New Stories from the Midwest, and Best American Short Stories anthologies. Submit online: www.glimmertrain.org.

* Creative Writing Competition – Fiction
SYNOPSIS:  Aesthetica Magazine is inviting writers to submit
short fiction work into the Creative Writing Competition.

Deadline(s):      08/31/2013

Address:          PO Box 371
York YO23 1WL,
E-mail:          writing@aestheticamagazine.com
Program URL: http://www.aestheticamagazine.com/creativewriting
OBJECTIVES:  Fiction entries should be no more than 2,000 words
each and be written in English.

Aesthetica welcomes work from entrants of all ages and
nationalities. A $10 +VAT entry fee is required, which permits the
submission of two works into the short fiction category. Applicants
may enter as many times as they wish.

Each winner will receive $500. Each winner will receive a selection
of books from Aesthetica’s competition partners. Winners and finalists
will be published in the Aesthetica Creative Writing Annual. Winners
and shortlisted finalists will receive a complimentary copy of the
Aesthetica Creative Writing Annual.

*  Donald Barthelme Prize for Short Prose                                                                                                          Sponsor:          Gulf Coast

SYNOPSIS:  Gulf Coast is now accepting entries for the 2013
Barthelme Prize for Short Prose. The contest is open to pieces of
prose poetry, flash fiction, and micro-essays of 500 words or fewer.
Established in 2008, the contest awards its winner $1,000 and
publication in the journal. Two honorable mentions will also appear in
issue 26.2, due out in April 2014, and all entries will be considered
for paid publication on our website as Online Exclusives. All entrants
will receive a one-year subscription to Gulf Coast with their contest
Deadline(s):      08/31/2013
Address:          Department of English
University of Houston
Houston, TX 77204-3013
E-mail:          editors@gulfcoastmag.org
Web Site: http://www.gulfcoastmag.org
Program URL: http://www.gulfcoastmag.org/index.php?n=7
OBJECTIVES:  The contest is open to pieces of prose poetry, flash
fiction, and micro-essays of 500 words or fewer.
There is a required $17 reading fee.
The contest awards its winner $1,000 and publication in the
journal. Two honorable mentions will also appear in issue 26.2, due
out in April 2014, and all entries will be considered for paid
publication on our website as Online Exclusives. All entrants will
receive a one-year subscription to Gulf Coast with their contest fee.

Contests, calls for submissions, conferences, resources– http://www.newpages.com/

I have access to many more contests and grants, including teaching English overseas, etc. If you would like more information, please contact me. theloftmtsu@gmail.com –Karen


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