The 2015 Steel Pen Creative Writers’ Conference is only weeks away! While considering the various options the conference has to offer, keep in mind the onsite event at 8:30PM, Milwaukee’s Best: A reading, and the evening’s finale, the Red Ink Society After Party at 10 pm. Each will be filled with much excitement and Midwestern love amidst both the Miltown readers and Red Ink Society members!
Milwaukee’s Best: A Reading will galvanize the Miltown essence with readings by six poets linked to the city: Ching-in Chen, Ryder Collins, Freesia McKee, Soham Patel, Ann Stewart McBee, and Dawn Tefft. The poets each have a unique style, which peculiarly unites their commonality: living in Milwaukee.
Ching-in Chen: Most recently, Chen has written and published The Heart's Traffic (Arktoi/Red Hen Press, 2009). Other publications include her blog, Sunslick Starfish, and work in journals: Poemelon, Tea Party, Asian American Poetry, In Our Own Words, Asian American Movement Ezine (article), and Asian American Poetry and Writing (interview). Ching-in Chen’s poem-play "The Geisha Author Interviews," from The Heart's Traffic, was nominated for the John Cauble Short Play Award. Chen has also been awarded various fellowships and residencies at numerous fine and creative arts institutions.
Ryder Collins: Self-named “mama,” Ryder Collins was a Northerner who relocated in the south. Her most recent work is Home Girl (2011), and she also published poetry chapbook Orpheus on Toast. Other pieces have been published in DIAGRAM, >kill author, Fix It Broken, and Juked. She has been a finalist, won contests, received nominations, and more, but as her Honest Publishing Profile states, “mama doesn’t like to brag or kiss and tell.”
Freesia McKee: “Freesia McKee is one of Milwaukee's most distinctive emerging creative voices” according to Art in Milwaukee. Her work has been published in Huffington Post, Gertrude, Verse Wisconsin, Burdock 13, the Outrider Review, Stone Highway Review, The Boiler Journal, and Food Politic, among others. McKee has read alongside numerous Milwaukee poet laureates and also participates in writing and creative arts community organizations. Freesia McKee is a graduate of Warren Wilson College with a degree in Gender & Women's Studies and a minor in Creative Writing.
Soham Patel: Soham Patel's first poetry chapbook and nevermind the storm was published in 2013 by Portable Press at Yo-Yo Labs. Her other pieces have appeared in Copper Nickel, The Cortland Review, SHAMPOO, Foursquare, and many others. Patel has taught creative writing, composition, and literature at colleges in the United States and India and is a Kundiman Fellow.
Ann Stewart McBee: Ann Stewart McBee holds a Ph.D. in creative writing from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and is a lecturer in English at UWM and Concordia Wisconsin. She also served as Editor-in-Chief for UMW’s literary journal, cream city review. Her works have appeared in Ellipsis, Untamed Ink, Spittoon, Blue Earth Review, So to Speak, and At Length, among others.
Dawn Tefft: Dawn Tefft is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with a Ph. D. in creative writing. Her poetry has been published in Fourteen Hills, Sentence, and many other literary journals. Tefft’s chapbook, Field Trip to My Mother and Other Exotic Locations, can be found at Mudlark, an electronic journal of poetry and poetics. Forthcoming is Tefft’s chapbook Fist from Dancing Girl Press.
The Red Ink Society commenced in 2013, when Betty Villareal was a senior at Indiana University Northwest. She revealed, “With encouragement and approval from English professor, Bill Allegrezza, and several students in the Fiction Writing course I was taking at the time, the Red Ink Society was born.” Initially, the creative writing group met at IUN, “with the hope of encouraging creative writers to write more.” Eventually the Red Ink Society integrated the meetings into the local community. The society currently has twenty-five members and averages four writers who meet regularly to critique members’ work. For meeting information, contact the firstname.lastname@example.org. The Red Ink Society After Party will be from 10pm to midnight in the Green Room, following the final event of the conference.
The 2015 Steel Pen Writers’ Conference takes place October 10, 2015. For a full schedule and registration information, please visit http://www.indianawritersconsortium.org/IWC-creative-writing-conference.asp.