Opportunities Await!

The new year has taken a firm hold, and the semester has begun again. Now is the time to dust off last year’s works for publication, and to take a look at some of this year’s upcoming events. Not sure where to send or look? Try some of these:

SUNY Albany Graduate Student Conference

The 5th Annual Institutions & Societies Graduate Student Conference is organized to provide all graduate students in the capital region an open venue for sharing their work and promote cross-discipline dialogue to improve the overall quality of research.  The conference also seeks to allow graduate students to present their work and receive peer and faculty feedback in a “low threat” environment without the pressure of a major academic conference.

The theme of the conference has consistently been Institutions and Societies, leaving the definitions of these two concepts purposefully broad and vague to allow for the largest variation in the proposals.  We welcome proposals from all areas of the humanities and social science as well as any other work that fits with our theme including interdisciplinary scholarship.

We invite your graduate students to submit one paper per individual. Proposals may also be made to present a group of papers as a single panel.  When submitting an individual paper proposal, please submit an abstract of no more than 200 words.  If proposing a panel, please keep in mind that there must be a minimum of three and a maximum of five papers to form a panel.  The deadline for proposals to the 2017 conference is Friday, February 3rd, 2017.

The conference will take place on Friday, February 24, 2017 at the Downtown Campus of SUNY Albany, located at 135 Western Avenue, Albany, New York 12222. To submit a proposal or for more information please visit our 2017 Conference website (https://sites.google.com/site/institutionsandsocieties/home).

If you have any questions, please email us at institutions.society@gmail.com

Help Protect the NEA

Here is something that we can do as individuals to support the NEA, which is in danger. Please forward this to other artists and arts advocates. The number of names on the petition is still painfully small. To be noticed, it will need to make 100,000 names. The NEA and NEH will have a chance to defend their budgets in the next month or so, as I understand it, and anything we can do will help.

Check out the American for the Arts petition and send around to anyone you know to have people sign to preserve the NEA:


SUNY Albany Spring 2017 Reading Series

We kick off an exciting Spring 2017 season with major American author Robert Coover who will present Huck Out West.  The book is a rollicking adventure tale, an homage to Twain, and– at the same time– a scathing satire of American racism, greed and brutality.

Robert Coover, pioneer of experimental and electronic fiction, is celebrated for work that reinvents and reimagines the art of storytelling. The New York Times has called him “a one-man Big Bang of exploding creative force.” He is the author of more than 25 books including the novels The Origin of the Brunists (1966), which received the William Faulkner Award for best first novel; The Public Burning (1977), nominated for a National Book Award; and the story collection A Night at the Movies (1987), winner of the Rea Award. His new novel, Huck Out West (2017), picks up where Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn leaves off – on the eve of the Civil War. In a starred review Booklist described the book as “a near-masterpiece…a surprisingly tender, touching paean to the power of storytelling and the pains of growing up.”

Following Huck west as he rides shotgun with the Pony Express, mines for gold, and lives with the Lakota, the novel explores a formative period in American history, from the Civil War to the centennial year of 1876. In the West, it’s a time of grand adventure, but also one of greed, religious insanity, mass slaughter, virulent hatreds, widespread poverty and ignorance, ruthless military and civilian leadership, and huge disparities of wealth.

Seminar — 4:15 p.m., Recital Hall, Performing Arts Center
Reading — 8:00 p.m., Recital Hall, Performing Arts Center

Cosponsored by UAlbany’s English Department to inaugurate its new Creative Writing minor

For more information about the upcoming Spring Series, visit http://www.albany.edu/writers-inst/webpages4/programpages/vws.html or call 518 442 5620.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: Chicago Tribune’s Nelson Short Story Contest
Deadline: January 31, 2017

Story length: 8000 words
Prizes: $3,500 for winner, other amounts for four finalists, five runners-up.
Format: Double-spaced, without name or identifying information  on any pages.
Submission Limit: Two stories
No Submission fee


The Southeast Review’s 2017 Contests in Fiction, Poetry, and Nonfiction

World’s Best Short-Short Story Contest

In 1986, Jerome Stern, the then-director of Florida State University’s Creative Writing Program and renowned author of Making Shapely Fiction among other books, founded this contest to celebrate what he called “micro fiction” (submissions at that time were required to be under 250 words, and the winner received a crate of oranges as well as a check). Stern passed away from cancer in 1996 and though the guidelines and prize have changed since then, we are grateful to have a modern master of the short-short story judge the entries annually, and continue to hold the contest in memory of Stern.

Send up to three short-short stories per submission, accompanied by a $16 reading fee for mailed or online submissions. Each short-short story should be no more than 500 words. Include your name, contact information (email address preferred), and the title of each of your short-short stories in a very brief cover letter. Do not include personal identification information on the short-shorts themselves. Robert Olen Butler will judge. One winner (awarded $1,000) and up to five finalists will be announced in spring/summer 2017 and will appear in Volume 36.1 (Winter 2018).  For mailed submissions, label envelope: WBSSSC. Do not address your submission directly to the judge.

The Southeast Review Gearhart Poetry Contest

This contest was developed in 1996 to honor Michael Wm. Gearhart, a Ph.D. student in creative writing at FSU who died suddenly at the age of 39 as he was completing the final steps of his degree. The contest continues to support the production of SER (known by the name Sundog: The Southeast Review during Michael’s tenure) in his memory.

Send up to three poems, no more than 10 pages total, accompanied by a $16 reading fee for mailed or online submissions. Include no more than one poem per page. Include your name, contact information (email address preferred), and the title of each of your poems in a very brief cover letter. Do not include personal identification information on the poems themselves. Erin Belieu will judge. One winner (awarded $1,000) and up to five finalists will be announced in spring/summer 2017 and will appear in Volume 36.1 (Winter 2018). For mailed submissions label envelope: Gearhart Poetry Contest. Do not address your submission directly to the judge.

The Southeast Review Narrative Nonfiction Contest

Send one piece of nonfiction, no more than 6,000 words total, accompanied by a $16 reading fee for mailed or online submissions. Include your name, contact information (email address preferred), and the title of your submission, and the total word count of your piece in a very brief cover letter. Do not include personal identification or information, except word count, on the submission itself. Matthew Gavin Frank will judge. One winner (awarded $1,000) and up to two finalists will be announced in spring/summer 2017 and will appear in Volume 36.1 (Winter 2018). For mailed submissions, label envelope: SER Nonfiction Contest. Do not address your submission directly to the judge.


Best of luck in the new year!

Juniper Summer Writing Institute

Dear Writer,

Every summer, the Juniper Institute gathers a community of writers to explore the creative process and develop new approaches to the craft of writing. Hosted by the MFA Program for Poets & Writers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Juniper is a weeklong immersion in the writer’s life, June 18-25, 2017. It is time out for you and your writing, time for wild invention, and to become part of a diverse community of acclaimed and emerging writers from all walks of life. We hope you will join us this year.

We are pleased to announce our 2017 faculty: Timothy Donnelly, Dorothea Lasky, Harryette Mullen, and Dara Wier will lead workshops in poetry. Stephen Graham Jones, Sam Michel, and Joy Williams will guide workshops in fiction. Paul Lisickywill teach a workshop in creative non-fiction and memoir.

We’re delighted to welcome Arda Collins, Rachel B. Glaser, Nathan Hill, Amy Leach, Lydia Millet, Camille Rankine, Arisa White, and Tiphanie Yanique as writers in residence.

Complete program information can be found on our website.

A few dates to remember:

*   Applications will open online January 3, 2017.
*   We offer both full and partial scholarships and grants, as well as work study opportunities. Scholarship applications are due March 10, 2017.

With all best wishes,

The Juniper Team


Call for Submissions!



To all creative writers:


End the year right. Get all those words you’ve been working on out into the universe by submitting them for publication. Here’s just a taste of what is available to  you. Now get out there and submit!



  • Posted December 01, 2016 
  • Submissions now open for our Second Issue – ‘Dwell’

  • Deadline: December 31, 2016

The theme for our spring issue is “Dwell.” Where and how do we live? Don’t forget the Latin word domus stood for a large compound or mansion that might house multiple families and individuals: inter-generational, engendered. Submissions are open to emerging and established poets and fine art photographers. www.light-journal.com/submit



  • Posted December 01, 2016 
  • Call for Submissions: Storm Cellar

  • Deadline: December 30, 2016

Storm Cellar is a literary journal of safety and danger in print and ebook editions, and placed work in this year’s Pushcart anthology. We seek creative prose, poetry, and art for an issue featuring the work of women and genderqueer (broadly construed) creators. We encourage writers at the intersection of these and other under-represented groups to share their work. We also prize content/creators connected to the Midwest. Send us surprising, unbound, gripping, and innovative things. Full guidelines at stormcellarquarterly.com/submit and submission manager at stormcellar.submittable.com.


  • Posted December 01, 2016 
  • Call for Submissions: BLR’s Theme Issue on Family

  • Deadline: January 1, 2017

In Fall 2017, the Bellevue Literary Review will publish a special theme issue that explores the concept of family—the primary latticework and laboratory of human nature. We are now accepting submissions of poetry (3 poems max), fiction, and nonfiction (5,000 words max for prose).  Please visit our website for complete guidelines. www.BLReview.org

  • Posted November 30, 2016 
  • Belletrist Magazine Seeking Submissions

  • Deadline: January 31, 2017

“Grace to be born and live as variously as possible.”—Frank O’Hara
Belletrist Magazine is seeking submissions for our Spring 2017 print issue. Send your poetry, fiction, nonfiction, comics, art, and photography. Give us something to notice. Belletrist Magazines publishes out of Bellevue College. We also accept submissions for our website to be considered as featured online content; these submissions are accepted on a rolling basis and published year-round. Contact  for more information. belletristmagazine.com

  • Posted November 28, 2016 
  • Thrice Fiction Open Call

  • Deadline: December 31, 2016

Thrice Fiction announces an open call for fiction of all shapes and styles beginning on December 1st. Hit the Submittable button on our website and give it to us hard and fast. Please read the guidelines and free issues online. No coming-of-age or JohnBoy Walton stuff please. No yours isn’t good enough to make an exception. No fee/no pay. www.thricefiction.com

  • Posted November 28, 2016 
  • Second Hand Stories Podcast Call for Submissions

  • Deadline: Rolling

Second Hand Stories is a podcast that features short works of fiction, submitted and written by you, to be read aloud on our show. Listen to our episodes at secondhandpodcast.com/episodes to get a sense of what we’re looking for. We will accept any genre of fiction (no poetry) and our word limit is flexible (preferably between 1,500 and 6,000 words). Please practice reading your story aloud to ensure it flows as well verbally as it does on the page. Thanks for submitting!

  • Posted November 28, 2016 
  • Submit Your Personal Essays to The Artist Unleashed

  • Deadline: Rolling

Earn $0.015 per word to be published on our blog, The Artist Unleashed. We want articles based on your personal experience as a writer or artist to help fellow creatives. Articles for this website must be about an aspect of writing and/or art and must also inspire and/or motivate, encourage discussion, offer advice or argue an opinion, and be rich with informative/engaging content. We will tweet and Facebook your post to get it as much exposure as possible. Unique views on a single post have reached 1500+ within 24 hours. Please visit our website for guidelines: theartistunleashed.com/write-for-us.

  • Posted November 23, 2016 
  • All Genres are Created Equal at the GNU

  • Deadline: December 15, 2016

The motto of the GNU literary journal is “All Genres are Created Equal.” We accept traditional literary fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction; but we are also friendly to genre fiction, YA literature, short plays, comics, photography, and writing that defies classification. The GNU is an annual online literary journal run by the MFA students at National University. We never charge a submission fee. Please see our submission guidelines for details. gnujournal.com/submissions/. Deadline for submissions is December 15th, 2016.

MA/MFA Advanced Projects and Thesis Presentations, May 2, 2016

The College of Saint Rose MFA Program and MA in English present:
Advanced Project and Thesis Readings
Monday May 2nd 2016 at 6:00 pm
Carondelet Symposium – 3rd Floor of the Lally Building

“A City Divided” by Kimberly Daigle
What We Knew Then (Stories) by Josh Patrick Sheridan
“Disconnected” by Jackie Kirkpatrick
“Frame and Color as Narrative Structure: Rethinking Julie
Taymor’s The Tempest” by Rob Stoddard

Please join us for a reception in Dolan Hall immediately afterward.

Herman Melville House Visit in Troy – Sunday February 7

Scenes from Dr. Sweeney’s Herman Melville class visit to the Melville house, Sunday, February 7. Located at 2 114th Street, Troy, NY, Herman Melville completed his first two books-Typee (1846) and Omoo (1847)-while living in the house.

Students, faculty, and friends were treated to a presentation by Warren Broderick, Melville scholar and Emeritus Archivist at the NY State Archives, as well as a guided tour of the house.

For more information on the house, visit Lansingburgh Historical Society.


Warren Broderick, Melville scholar and Emeritus Archivist at the NY State Archives








This copy of Jane Eyre features an inscription to Fanny Melville by Augusta Melville (HM’s sisters)



Dr. Sweeney Herman Melville class on the front steps of the Melville house.

English Department Creative Writing Faculty Reading


Join the wonderful creative writers of the English Department for a reading on February 18th. Hear work by Rone Shavers, Hollis Seamon, Kenneth Krauss, Barbara Ungar, and Daniel Nester. The reading will take place at 7 p.m. in the Standish Rooms.

Hope to see you there!

Barbara Ungar’s “Immortal Medusa” Named One of the Best of the Year by Kirkus Reviews

immortalCongratulations to Barbara Ungar on her latest book, Immortal Medusa, being one out of only seven books of poetry named by Kirkus Reviews as the Best Indie Poetry of 2015!

You can read the review here and get a copy of Immortal Medusa for yourself here.