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Claire Harlan-Orsi's blog

"Good Creative Nonfiction Begins in Good Reporting"

A Conversation with Steven Barthelme

This interview is the sixth in the Crooked Letter Interview Series hosted by Prairie Schooner’s Southern Correspondent, James Madison Redd.


Steven Barthelme has two books of non-fiction, the memoir, Double Down, co-authored with his brother, and the essay collection The Early Posthumous Work. Earlier stories were collected in And He Tells the Little Horse the Whole Story, and a new collection titled Hush Hush appeared in October 2012.


Redd: You come from a family of writers, all of whom specialize in a different form, from advertisement to novel writing. You’re the most practiced at personal nonfiction writing. Do you see yourself as the family chronicler?

Of Red Soil, Ragas and Rides of Fancy

Sangam House Writing Residency

This is the tenth in a series of blog posts by guest contributor Nabina Das, who writes about Indian books and authors.


One of India’s most talked about writing residencies, Sangam House, is in full swing right now. Housed in Nrityagram (literally, the dance village), an Odissi training center 40 km from the “silicon valley” city of Bangalore, they say the red soil of the campus--which incidentally has also been used to plaster the walls of Sangam House’s residence--makes its imprint on clothes, flip flops, and even the soles of feet to remind you of the ambiance for a long time to follow. Nestled close to the village of Hesarghatta, Nrityagram was founded by Protima Bedi, the legendary danseuse. Sangam House moved in to the campus only recently after hosting fellows in and around Pondicherry.

Brian Turner Recap!

PS Intern Nisha Patel on the poet's visit

The final poet of Prairie Schooner’s Visiting Writer Series, Brian Turner, read selections from his books Here, Bullet and Phantom Noise in the Great Plains Museum last Wednesday. He began by encouraging the audience to add his phone number to their cell phones (so they could text him feedback) before diving into the first poem. The namesake of his first book, “Here, Bullet,” portrayed what PS Editor-in-Chief Kwame Dawes called a “disturbing urgency” in his introduction of the ex-Army poet.

"Everybody here will burn in hell when they die"

Evangelical Comics and the Mystery of Thanksgiving

This is the tenth installment of an ongoing series written for the blog by Richard Graham. Richard is an associate professor and media services librarian at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he studies the educational use of comics and serves as the film and art history liaison. His posts examine UNL’s, Nebraska’s, and the larger literary world’s connections with the comics medium.

Ekphrastic Pilfering: Art Museums as Literary Inspiration

Dispatches from Blog Editor Claire Harlan Orsi

I was recently going back through old journals under the guise of “getting ideas” (read: getting out of doing actual writing), when I realized how many of my entries have been inspired by trips to art museums. “Invented organs for invented bodily functions!” reads one note attached to a description of a trip to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Montreal. “Aluminum foil used to create illusion of depth,” and “floating terrariums” along with “character named Vaughn” accompany a Scotch taped-in ticket to Mass MoCA (5/24/08). I remember that trip: in one darkened gallery my friend Josh and I sprawled out on bean bags, illuminated phrases by Jenny Holzer rolling above us, and promptly fell asleep. When we woke up we felt refreshed, and not just by the 45-minute nap: it was as if in sleep those projected phrases had worked their way into our brains; we left the dark room blinking, the ordinary world newly transformed.

Where Literary Meets Binary

The Literary Substructures of Silent Hill 2 and Mass Effect

This is the ninth in a series of guest posts by Hali Sofala and Eric Jones on the connections between gaming (video and otherwise) and the literary.

If you’ve read our previous posts, we’ve been outlining how different game designs designate which paths players will choose throughout video games, and how those choices reflect the game’s literary relevance. As we've pointed out, whereas open moral game designs do not require the use of structured narratives, divergent path models depend on them.

Widening Empathy: Richard Ford

A Conversation with Richard Ford
Picture of Richard Ford

This interview is the fifth in the Crooked Letter Interview Series hosted by Prairie Schooner’s Southern Correspondent, James Madison Redd.


Sherman Alexie Visits UNL!

Acclaimed author Sherman Alexie will be the featured author at the launch event for Prairie Schooner's Winter 2012 Issue, for which he guest edited a portfolio of poetry and prose by contemporary Native American authors.

2012 Pushcart Prize Nominations

Congratulations to this year's Pushcart Prize Nominees! Best of luck to these contributors--stay tuned for the results!

"'The Killing State'/The Murdering State," a poem by John Kinsella from Summer 2012
"God, God," a poem by Fleda Brown from Summer 2012
"Choice," a poem by Sudeep Sen from Winter 2012 (forthcoming)
"It Takes Nine Lives to Cross Nebraska," a poem by Daniel Wideman from Winter 2012 (forthcoming)
"Wars of Attrition," a poem by Laura Da' from Winter 2012 (forthcoming)
"If Gold is Drilled in Bristol Bay," a poem by dg okpik from Winter 2012 (forthcoming)

Meet Your Senior Reader: Creative Nonfiction

This series introduces you to the people who are reading your stuff

Sarah Fawn Montgomery holds an MFA in creative nonfiction from California State University-Fresno and is currently a PhD student in creative writing at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her work has been listed as notable in Best American Essays and her poetry and prose have appeared or are forthcoming in various magazines including DIAGRAM, Fugue, The Los Angeles Review, New South, North Dakota Quarterly, The Pinch, Puerto del Sol, South Dakota Review and others.


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