ASFA-CW Senior Profile: Emma Camp

Memory Lane

Emma’s Cadence bios through the years:

  • Emma Camp has saved the world seven times, wears glasses, goes to magic school, and loves snakes. She is not to be confused with the high and mighty Harry Potter. (2013)
  • Emma Camp is looking for Alaska. (2014)
  • Emma Camp curses thee and all of thy descendants. (2015)
  • Emma Camp is what makes a Subaru, a Subaru. (2016)
  • Emma Camp’s entire life is just the setup for one big Shakespeare joke. (2017)
  • Emma Camp loves Twitter . . . It’s like owning your own newspaper—without the losses. (2018)

Seven Questions: Past, Present, Future

What is your first creative memory?

My first creative memories are probably from when I was around four or five, when I would constantly perform skits/songs/long nonsensical monologues to just about anyone who would listen. I was constantly making up stories and acting them out with the begrudging help of my little brother — at least until he grew old enough to be a sentient being who could resist my tyranny. Continue reading

ASFA-CW Senior Profile: Avery Brooks

Memory Lane

Avery’s Cadence bios through the years:

  • Avery Brooks just looks at memes all day. He is not happy with his chair. His favorite book is Oliver Twist. (2013)
  • Avery Brooks refuses to submit a bio because he is rebellious and stubborn. (2014)
  • Avery Brooks wants to believe. (2015)
  • Avery Brooks has that minty fresh Brooklyn flavor in his teeth. (2016)
  • Avery Brooks would kidnap a thousand children before he let this company die! (2017)
  • While Avery Brooks is a joke, not very bright and totally overrated, some losers and haters will miss him & his dumb clown humor. Too bad! (2018)

Seven Questions: Past, Present, Future

What is your first creative memory?

I remember pretending to run an episode of American Idol when I was a very young kid, and putting my own twists on the format of the show. Continue reading

Writers on the Mic: Sheree Renée Thomas, Jenny Sadre-Orafai, and Robert Collins in the Magic City — This Thursday (7 PM) @discobirmingham!

We’re pleased to again join forces with the Nitty Gritty Magic City Reading Series and the Desert Island Supply Company (with an able culinary assist from the good folks at Church Street) to host “Writers on the Mic” this month. Here’s the deets:

  • Who: Sheree Renée Thomas | Jenny Sadre-Orafai | Robert Collins [Scroll down below the break for more about these fine writers, including bio material and related links…]
  • What: Poetry! Fiction (speculative and otherwise)! Hybridity! Books! (And music and food and drink, oh my!)
  • When: Thursday – Feb 8 |Doors – 7 pm | Show starts at 7:30 pm
  • Where: DISCO | 5500 1st Ave N, Birmingham, AL 35212
  • Why: Because art saves the world. Every time. But don’t take our word for it: just ask the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the Alabama Humanities Foundation, who have generously supported this program for precisely that reason.

Continue reading

ASFA-CW’s Kwoya Maples: History in the Making

FullSizeRender (1)Here at ASFA-CW, we have some impressive faculty members (if we do say so ourselves). They teach, they write, they engage the world in interesting ways.

Case in point: Kwoya Fagin Maples.

Among many other contributions to our department, Kwoya’s been the driving force behind our 3-D Poetry initiative — a project that allows our students to blend poetry and visual art, and to exhibit their work in local art galleries. It’s been a boon to our students’ understanding of their own creative processes, and the work they’ve produced has been a big hit with gallery-goers.

Kwoya’s own creative projects are really taking off right now, as well. She recently organized a successful poetry marathon and protest at the monument to J. Marion Sims outside the Columbia, S.C., capitol building. Sims — known as the “father of modern gynecology” — conducted experimental surgeries on enslaved women in the antebellum South, without anesthesia or their consent. Kwoya’s new manuscript, a collection of poems that seeks to give voice to the women themselves, was recently a finalist for the prestigious AWP Prize (among other accolades its already received prior to its publication) and will be published in the fall of 2018 by the University Press of Kentucky!

We recently volleyed a few questions back and forth (cuz that’s what poets do) — about Kwoya’s work and her creative process, about the role of poetry in contemporary society, and about how the personal always seems to find its roundabout way into the poetical (political, historical…). Here’s the transcript: Continue reading

Fiction Writer Cate O’Toole Chooses Her Own ASFA-CW Interview Adventure!

74Cate O’Toole was awarded a Rachel Carson Fellowship and earned her MFA in fiction from Chatham University. She is the author of the chapbook Big Women, Big Girls (Stamped Books, 2011) and her stories have appeared in Six Sentences and the 6S Vol. 1 anthology, Wanderlust Review, The Linnet’s Wings, shady side review, and elsewhere. Cate was the 2012 recipient of the Poetry & Prose Winter Getaway’s Jan-Ai Scholarship. She lives and writes in Seattle, WA.

Her collection of flash fictions, Oh My Darling!, re-imagines the folk ballad “Oh My Darling, Clementine” into a haunting choose-your-own-adventure (CYA) narrative, of which Harmony Neal writes: “All roads lead to death — it’s the choices along the journey that make the life. Cate O’Toole has masterfully created the parallel stories of Clementine, letting the reader choose her path, which, while not pretty, is made of choices, as all lives are. Grim, sure, but choose your own adventure never goes out of style, especially when the language sings and the setting gets dirt in your teeth.”

After reading (and loving) Oh My Darling! for this past year’s Senior Thesis seminar, ASFA-CW Seniors (’17) Norah Madden-Lunsford and Willow Tucker devised their own CYA adventure for Cate to navigate. Here’s the path she took:  Continue reading

ASFA-CW’s “Iris Rinke-Hammer pushes her students to find their voice.”

IrisCWroom

Click here to read Erin Edgemon’s excellent al.com feature profile of award-winning master teacher, Iris Rinke-Hammer! The best news of all? “Though, she is in her 60s now,” Edgemon writes, “Rinke-Hammer isn’t thinking of retiring anytime soon. ‘I love it too much,’ she said, of teaching. ‘This is brain food and heart food for me. It is very fulfilling.'” As the article clearly indicates, Iris is one big reason why ASFA-CW is the place to be for Alabama’s best young writers!