VIRTUAL HOMECOMING: A First Look

 Thursday, May 28 – Saturday, May 30, 2020

#SpaldingWriting

Some events take place on the Spalding MFA in Writing Alumni Association Facebook Group. If you’re not already a member, ask to join at https://www.facebook.com/groups/SpaldingMFAalumni/

Have an idea for a session YOU’d like to host? Contact Marjetta Geerling at marjettag@gmail.com.

Thursday, May 28

Noon Eastern / 11 Central / 10 Mountain / 9 Pacific: Homecoming kicks off!

Today’s Asynchronous Events

Homecoming gets underway at noon!
View a kickoff video from School of Writing Chair Kathleen Driskell and a welcome and intro from Terry Price (F ’06), Marjetta Geerling (W4CYA ’11), and Katy Yocom (F ’03). Links TBA.

Faculty Lecture Spotlights
Fiction
, hosted by Cris Trapani-Scott (F/P ’09). Poetry, hosted by Nancy Chen Long (P ’13). Writing for Children & Young Adults, hosted by Ann Simmons Schwarz (W4CYA ’17).
Our hosts kick off discussions of faculty lectures in their area over the course of Homecoming. Listen to lectures on your own via the Spalding portal (we’ll supply login information), then join the discussion in our Facebook alumni group! Chosen faculty lectures and links TBA. No sign-up needed.

Literary Chat: Why We Like It!
Hosts Kendra Juskus (P ’14), Barbara Sabol (P ’10), Melissa Hamilton (W4CYA ’18) and Nancy Chen Long (P ’13) have each recorded a short video discussing a poem, lyric essay, or work for young readers that they particularly like. The videos and handouts will be available on Google Docs throughout Homecoming. You’ll be able to view and comment on your own schedule. (You’ll need a Google account to access the videos.) Link TBA. No sign-up needed.

Community Story
Let’s tell a story together, sentence by sentence, person by person, and see what happens! Sign up here, and before Homecoming begins, host Kimm Stammen (F ‘19) will send you a time window when you can enter the Community Story document, read what’s been written so far, and add one sentence. At the end of Homecoming the completed story will be emailed to all participants. From a collection of sentences, a story; from a gathering (no matter how virtual) of writers, a community. Link TBA.

Today’s Live Events

12:15 – 1:15 p.m. Mixer with Faculty and Graduating Students!
Meet the graduating students and say hello to faculty and each other! No sign-up needed. Link TBA.

2:00 – 3:30 p.m. Eastern / 1 – 2:30 Central / 12 – 1:30 Mountain / 11 – 12:30 Pacific
Book club discussion: Olive Kitteridge.
Hosted by Kim Shaver (P ’18). In Olive Kitteridge we meet Olive’s neighbors, acquaintances, former students, and family—who are somehow vaguely familiar. For me, this book captures the bittersweet, quirky ways relationships collide, making ordinary life pretty extraordinary. It’s also a book of innovation, beauty, and fine craftsmanship. So, let’s have a pandemic party book club and talk about the amazing Olive Kitteridge. Sign up here! Link TBA.

7:00 – 8:30 p.m. Eastern / 6 – 7: 30 Central / 5 – 6:30 Mountain / 4 – 5:30 Pacific
LOBBY TIME!
Come hang out in the (virtual) Brown Hotel lobby with friends old and new. Drop in anytime and stay as long as you want. Link TBA. Sign up here!

  • Marjetta Geerling (W4CYA ’11), host. “Bring Your Pet to the Lobby! Stop by and introduce us to your furry friend.”
  • Charlotte Rains Dixon (F ’03), host
  • Joseph Myers (CNF ’19) and Meghan Holsclaw (SW ’19), hosts

9:00 – 10:15 p.m. Eastern / 8 – 9:15 Central / 7 – 8:30 Mountain / 6 – 7:30 Pacific
Café MFA.
Alumni open-mic readings via Zoom. Hosted by Lia Eastep (CNF ’08). Link TBA. Sign up to read!

Friday, May 29

Today’s Asynchronous Events

Faculty Lecture Spotlights
Fiction
, hosted by Cris Trapani-Scott (F/P ’09). Poetry, hosted by Nancy Chen Long (P ’13). Writing for Children & Young Adults, hosted by Ann Simmons Schwarz (W4CYA ’17).
Our hosts kick off discussions of faculty lectures in their area over the course of Homecoming. Listen to lectures on your own via the Spalding portal (we’ll supply login information), then join the discussion in our Facebook alumni group! Chosen faculty lectures and links TBA. No sign-up needed.

Literary Chat: Why We Like It!
Hosts Kendra Juskus (P ’14), Barbara Sabol (P ’10), Melissa Hamilton (W4CYA ’18) and Nancy Chen Long (P ’13) have each recorded a short video discussing a poem, lyric essay, or work for young readers that they particularly like. The videos and handouts will be available on Google Docs throughout Homecoming. You’ll be able to view and comment on your own schedule. (You’ll need a Google account to access the videos.) Link TBA. No sign-up needed.

Today’s Live Events

Three Sessions of Writing Sprints
2:00 – 2:30 p.m. Eastern
/ 1 – 1:30 Central / 12 – 12:30 Mountain / 11 – 11:30 Pacific
4:00 – 4:30 p.m. Eastern / 3 – 3:30 Central / 2 – 2:30 Mountain / 1 – 1:30 Pacific
6:00 – 6:30 p.m. Eastern / 5 – 5:30 Central / 4 – 4:30 Mountain / 3 – 3:30 Pacific
Writing Sprints with hosts Kait Ballenger (W4CYA ’13) and Jon Ballenger (SW ’14). A writing sprint is a short burst of focused writing. Come participate as a virtual group (separate but together) along with fellow Spalding MFA alums and current students in our community. Join us as we support each other while adding new words to our current works-in-progress! Come for one session, all six Friday and Saturday, or anywhere in between. Check in at the beginning and end of each sprint in our private Facebook group! #productivity #youvegotthis #accountability. Link TBA. No sign-up needed.

5:30 – 6:30 p.m. Eastern / 4:30 – 5:30 Central / 3:30 – 4:30 Mountain / 2:30 – 3:30 Pacific
Faculty Reading.
Readings by Silas House (fiction), Lesléa Newman (writing for children & YA), Sam Zalutsky (screenwriting), Douglas Manuel (poetry), and Kathleen Driskell (poetry). No sign-up needed. Link TBA.

7:00 – 8:30 p.m. Eastern / 6 – 7: 30 Central / 5 – 6:30 Mountain / 4 – 5:30 Pacific
LOBBY TIME!
Come hang out in the (virtual) Brown Hotel lobby. Link TBA. Sign up here!

  • Omar Figueras (F/CNF ’13), host. “Guilty Pleasures & Innocent Fun: Revealing the Trashy Reads, Movies, & TV Shows We Secretly Love.”
  • Lia Eastep (CNF ’08), host. “Under the Influences: Incorporating Cross-genre Influences into Your Work (and Life).”
  • Terry Price (F ’06), host. “What Do You Need as a Writer?”

9:00 – 10:15 p.m. Eastern / 8 – 9:15 Central / 7 – 8:30 Mountain / 6 – 7:30 Pacific
Café MFA.
Alumni open-mic readings via Zoom. Hosted by Katerina Stoykova (P/CNF ’09). Link TBA. Sign up to read!

Saturday, May 30

Today’s Asynchronous Events

Faculty Lecture Spotlights
Fiction, hosted by Cris Trapani-Scott (F/P ’09). Poetry, hosted by Nancy Chen Long (P ’13). Writing for Children & Young Adults, hosted by Ann Simmons Schwarz (W4CYA ’17).
Our hosts kick off discussions of faculty lectures in their area over the course of Homecoming. Listen to lectures on your own via the Spalding portal (we’ll supply login information), then join the discussion in our Facebook alumni group! Chosen faculty lectures and links TBA. No sign-up needed.

Literary Chat: Why We Like It!
Hosts Kendra Juskus (P ’14), Barbara Sabol (P ’10), Melissa Hamilton (W4CYA ’18) and Nancy Chen Long (P ’13) have each recorded a short video discussing a poem, lyric essay, or work for young readers that they particularly like. The videos and handouts will be available on Google Docs throughout Homecoming. You’ll be able to view and comment on your own schedule. (You’ll need a Google account to access the videos.) Link TBA. No sign-up needed.

Today’s Live Events

Three Sessions of Writing Sprints
2:00 – 2:30 p.m. Eastern
/ 1 – 1:30 Central / 12 – 12:30 Mountain / 11 – 11:30 Pacific
4:00 – 4:30 p.m. Eastern / 3 – 3:30 Central / 2 – 2:30 Mountain / 1 – 1:30 Pacific
6:00 – 6:30 p.m. Eastern / 5 – 5:30 Central / 4 – 4:30 Mountain / 3 – 3:30 Pacific
Writing Sprints with hosts Kait Ballenger (W4CYA ’13) and Jon Ballenger (SW ’14). Come participate along with fellow Spalding MFA alums and current students as we support each other while adding new words to our current works-in-progress! Join one session, all six, or anywhere in between. Check in at the beginning and end of each sprint in our private Facebook group! Link TBA. No sign-up needed.

3:00 – 3:45 p.m. Eastern / 2 – 2:45 Central / 1 – 1:45 Mountain / Noon – 12:45 Pacific
Alumni Association Wish List, with Marjetta Geerling.
What would you like to see the MFA Alumni Association offer in the next year or two? Come share your ideas. Link TBA. No sign-up needed.

4:30 – 5:30 p.m. Eastern / 3:30 – 4:30 Central / 2:30 – 3:30 Mountain / 1:30 – 2:30 Pacific
Commencement Ceremony.
If you’d like attend the commencement ceremony of the Class of Spring 2020, please email Katy at kyocom@spalding.edu.

5:45 – 6:45 p.m. Eastern / 4:45 – 5:45 Central / 3:45 – 4:45 Mountain / 2:45 – 3:45 Pacific
Graduation Celebration.
Drop into our small-group “celebration rooms” and congratulate the brand- new graduates! No sign-up needed. Links TBA.

6:45 – 7:00 p.m. Eastern / 5:45 – 6 Central / 4:45 – 5 Mountain / 3:45 – 4 Pacific
Graduation Toast.
Come together with the whole group and raise a glass to the graduates! Link TBA. No sign-up needed.

7:00 – 8:30 p.m. Eastern / 6 – 7: 30 Central / 5 – 6:30 Mountain / 4 – 5:30 Pacific
LOBBY TIME!
Come hang out in the (virtual) Brown Hotel lobby with friends old and new. Drop in anytime and stay as long as you want. Link TBA. Sign up here!

  • Claudia Love Mair (CNF ’17), host. “Love Writing in the Time of Covid.”
  • DOC Krueger (P ’18), host. “Wine and Words.”
  • Joe Baillargeon (F ’14) and Liza Mattison (F ’14), hosts. “Quarantine Couture (Qu’outure). Folks may show up decked in their finest or funnest frippery for these pandemic times.”

9:00 – 10:15 p.m. Eastern / 8 – 9:15 Central / 7 – 8:30 Mountain / 6 – 7:30 Pacific
Literary After Party: A Ten-Year Celebration!
Hosted by Teneice Durrant (P ’06). An alumni reading, now in its tenth year. At the end of the evening, we’ll say a few words to close out Homecoming. Link TBA. Sign up to read!

Looking forward to seeing you at our Virtual Homecoming!

This Virtual Homecoming is brought to you by the MFA Alumni Association Steering Committee:
Donna Gay Anderson (PW ’18)
Kristin Dennis (F ’10)
Lia Eastep (CNF ’08)
Jeffrey Fischer Smith (PW ’17)
Annie Frazier Crandell (F ’17)
Marjetta Geerling (W4CYA ’11)
Meghan Holsclaw (SW ’19)
Jane Jones (PW ’17)
Andrea Kilpatrick (W4CYA ’18)
Nancy Chen Long (P ’13)
Joseph Myers (CNF ’19)
Terry Price (F ’06)
Cappy Rush (PW ’12)
Katy Yocom (F ’03)

With thanks to the directors and staff of the School of Creative and Professional Writing.