Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Dr. Hada Reads Spare Parts on YouTube

At the "Two Southwests" reading at Oklahoma University, the Everett Poetry Series.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

24-Hour Play!

ECU Spring Arts Fesitval:  April 12-13, 2010

All interested students are invited to take part in the creation of a theatrical piece for the Spring Arts Festival
·       Write the Play
·       Compose Songs or Incidental Music
·       Design Sets or Lights
·       ACT
The catch? – the madness starts at 7:00 p.m, Monday night in the Chalmers Herman Theatre and must be performed for the public starting at 7:00 p.m. Tuesday night.

Your major doesn’t matter.
Sign up now on the ECU Theatre call board in the West Hall of the Hallie Brown Ford Fine Arts Center outside the Ataloa Theatre.
Excused absence from classes on the 13th.
Rules will also be posted on that board.

For additional information, contact Dr. Rick Groetzinger at ext. 600 or

Don't Forget: Spring Advising and Enrollment Party: Wednesday March 31st

The Department of English and Languages is pleased to announce
The Spring Advising and Enrollment Party
Wednesday 31 March
3:30 to 5:30 in Horace Mann 340

Free food!  Free prizes!  Free advice!  Free signatures!
Enroll soon for Summer or Fall.

Please note: if you’re unable to attend the party, schedule an appointment with your advisor; enrollment is the week of April 6. 

April 8, 7:30: "Intellectual Rock Star" Steven Pinker in Chickasha

Check out this promo from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma:

Emerson-Wier Symposium

Intellectual Rock Star Pinker to Keynote Spring Emerson-Wier Symposium

Steven Pinker asks audacious questions about the human mind -- then boldly sets out to answer them. Recently named one of TIME magazine's 100 Most Influential People in The World, he is enormously popular in the media and highly respected in scientific circles. On April 8, he takes center stage in Chickasha as the keynote speaker for the fourth annual Emerson-Wier Liberal Arts Symposium. The evening presentation is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. in Te Ata Memorial Auditorium on the campus of the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.
This is event is free and open to the public. If you are an ECU student and would be interested in making a road trip of this, talk to Drs. Benton ( and/or Murphy (
Click on this link to learn more (and check out some cool Pinker videos.)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Banquet! April 21

Mark your calendars for
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
6:00-8:00 p.m.
for the Annual English and Languages Banquet
 The image above is Francis Floris' painting "Banquet of the Gods" (1550),
owned by the Koninklijk Museum voor Schone Kunsten, Antwerp

Oak Hills Country Club
for $23 each and we will enjoy a buffet featuring
meaty and vegetarian entrees,
salads, and a dessert bar.

Drinks included
Cash bar for grown-ups

Sign up and make payment to
Dr. Mara Sukholutskaya- HM 320
Dr. John Yozzo- HM 319
Dr. Hugh Tribbey- HM 329B
By Tuesday, April 13

The department will award scholarships, announce the
winners of the writing prizes, pay off the Paul Hughes’
recipients, embarrass our Meritorious Students, and honor
our Graduating Seniors.
Join us for fun, food, and festivity.

Friday, March 26, 2010

2010 English Scholarships Competition

Scholarships: the Reed Loving Watt, the Daisy Moore Duvall, the Margaret Nims, and Young

Please submit a completed application form, an updated transcript, a short letter of reference from someone outside the Department of English and Languages

Dr. Yozzo, Horace Mann 319
inquiries or clarifications to

Application Forms available here: HM 301 (the chair’s office) and HM 319 (Dr. Yozzo’s office: “but he’s never there”)

Recipients announced at the April 21 Banquet

English Essay Awards

In four categories:
-- Upper Division (3000-4000) Literature
-- Lower Division (2000-level) Literature
-- Writing Courses: Advanced Essays, Technical & Professional Writing, Persuasive Writing, Composing Theories (excludes Creative courses)
-- Language Courses: Linguistics and Grammars

For essays composed between April 1, 2009, to the present.

Submit as many entries as you wish.

Remove your name from any inside pages, but print a copy of your essay with a cover sheet which includes your name, the class for which you composed the essay, the semester, and the professor.

Submit entries to Dr. John Yozzo, HM 319 by Tuesday, April 13

Winners announced April 21 at the English and Languages Banquet

Hada TV

This Saturday, March 27, at 5:30 p.m., a 10-minute interview primarily about the soon-to-be-here Scissortail Festival, featuring its director, our very own Ken Hada, will be broadcast by OETA on OKC Metro.

Or click here to get a sneak preview.  Featured Scissortail speaker, poet laureate Jim Barnes, is interviewed at the start of the program.  Dr. Hada and Scissortail reader Jeanetta Calhoun Mish come in at the 13:51 mark.

Road trip! (Mark these dates in your calendars.)

Poet Natasha Trethewey (see image at right and video below) @ OCU
4/7 @ 8 free?

Novelist Richard Russo (see image at right and video below) @ OSU-Tulsa
4/13 @ 7 $10

Ishmael Beah (from Sierra Leone via Oberlin;  see image at left and video above) @ OCU
4/14 @ 7:30 free

OCU documentary film festival Sundays (3/28, 4/11, 4/25) @ 2 free.
The opening film “Pete Seeger: The Power of Song” (see video below) is about the folk singer who advocated for peace. Seeger was accused of being a communist by members of the U.S. government for his views but he continued to spread his message. Some of his most popular songs include "Where Have All the Flowers Gone,” "Turn, Turn, Turn” and "If I Had a Hammer.

Thank you, Dr. Davis for passing these along.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Cash Prizes of up to $10,000 for Student Creative Nonfiction

The Norman Mailer Writers Colony and the National Council of Teachers of English are pleased to invite submissions for the 2010 Norman Mailer College Writing Awards for Creative Nonfiction.
(That' an image of young Norman at right.)

Cash prizes of up to $10,000 will be awarded to National Winners. Four finalists in each category will be awarded trophies. Sixteen semifinalists in each category will be awarded certificates.

Submission Guidelines
Norman Mailer produced extraordinary works in many genres, including the category of this year’s award: Creative Nonfiction. Students may submit work in any of the subgenres of creative nonfiction: memoir or autobiography, essay, literary journalism, profiles of people or places, and so on. Whatever its type, the best work will be true material presented with compelling literary merit.

Entries will be accepted online only and may include one or more pieces of writing. Winners receive travel and lodging to attend the Colony's National Award Ceremony. Entries accepted March 22 - April 29, 2010, Noon CST.
  • The Four-Year College Competition is open to current full-time students. Maximum 15 single-spaced pages. The college winner receives a scholarship to the Norman Mailer Writers Colony during the summer of 2011.

  • Students may submit one or more pieces of writing. Although there are page limits for these pieces, quality is far more important than quantity. No late entries will be accepted.

    Black out Poetry: Win an IPOD (or $100)

    The Oklahoman is having a blackout poetry contest.  All you need to enter is a copy of the Sunday, March 28 newspaper and a black marker.  For all the details, click here.

    Entries due April 12th.

    OSU Professor/Poet Ai Ogawa dies

    This update was forwarded to us by Dr. Davis:

    Oklahoma State University doctoral student Karen Sisk took a break from cataloging writing and research at her late-professor’s Stillwater home Tuesday to reflect about how her mentor has inspired her.

    Students and faculty are mourning the loss of a brilliant artist and a beloved friend, Ai Ogawa, who died unexpectedly Saturday. Ogawa was a prominent figure in contemporary poetry. She has won numerous awards for her work, including the American Book Award, the National Book Award and several National Endowment for the Arts Awards.

    'She was a force of nature,'” Sisk said. "She was probably one of the strongest, most stubborn, funniest and sweetest women I’ve known.”

    Tuesday, March 23, 2010

    Thursday is Game Night!

    Literati is sponsoring in game night in The Salon (Room 345) in Horace Mann. Games include Risk, Monopoly, Solarquest, Scrabble, Quelf and Partini, and  Mad Gab. The fun starts at 6:30 and lasts as long as you want it to. According to VP Ben Nicolls, "It's going to be a blasty-blast!"

    Sigma Tau Delta Meets Thursday the 24th at 3:30

    Your presence is requested at the next meeting of Sigma Tau Delta: Thursday, March 25th at 3:30.

    If you’re interested in discussing books, articles, poetry, films and related ideas and would like to make bold pronouncements about the wild success you expect to enjoy on Literati's game night, join Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honor Society, in the Tower Room on the 2nd floor of the University Center.

    ECU Alum to read from his novel tonight at 7 in the ESTEP!

    Christian Carvajal, an ECU alum, reads from his novel Lightfall tonight at 7 in the Estep Center.  Also, don't forget the March 29 Paul Hughes deadline. 

    Here's's description of Lightfall and its author:

    In Sugar Roses, Oklahoma, events tumble rapidly toward the End of the World. We're introduced to a cross-section of this fervently Baptist college town as it struggles to comprehend a series of supernatural phenomena: roadkill returned to life, a little girl who speaks classical Greek, an ominous shortwave signal, and a demonic voice that calls itself the Megatron. No less foreboding is the news from around the world, in which Christian fundamentalists and Muslim terrorists alike seem hellbent on hastening the Apocalypse. Who or what caused these mysterious events? And if they do presage the foretold Rapture, what on earth--or beyond--will come after? Lightfall is a secular, satirical thrill ride, in which all humanity's glories and vanities can be seen in one lyrical, hypocritical microcosm. The Lightfall is coming... 

    More from  About the Author

    Christian Carvajal was born in San Pedro, California but spent fifteen years in small-town Oklahoma. He holds an MFA in theatre directing and has acted and directed in four states. He spent seven years in the Los Angeles film and television industry, where he worked as an actor, extra, writer, and assistant for a major studio. His writing has appeared in newspapers, online, and in Cinefex magazine. He currently teaches mathematics at Olympic College in Bremerton and Shelton, Washington, where he's hard at work on his second novel.

    2010 R. Darryl Fisher Creative Writing Contest -- First Prize in Fiction

    by Nikki Peterson (Norman North)

    It was a bitter cold night, but my husband and I’d disposed of our blankets after those first few cases of pox appeared. Folk wouldn’t listen to us about it, though whenever they complained of the cold I’d remind them of the dreadful hot summer we spent in the camps, of the mosquitoes and the stench. People have forgotten a lot of things since our lives were all cast into disarray, and seemingly they’ve forgotten how to revere the advice of an old woman, too. But I didn’t live to this age by accident.

    The boy who’d interrupted my firelight sewing shifted from foot to foot, jaw tight as a snare. “I was told you have a knack with medicine and herbs. I want you to take a look at my mother.”

    “There are doctors with the wagon train, doctors with full equipment and medicines and such,” I pointed out, because I felt I ought to.

    He grimaced. He was tall enough to be around fifteen but his face didn’t have that angular gauntness that the men’s all have – he looked hungry in the way children do, big empty eyes eating up his face. “White doctors. I wouldn’t trust them with a dog. I want you to do it.”

    2010 R. Darryl Fisher Creative Writing Contest -- 2nd Prize in Fiction

    The Congregation
    by Liana Willis (Norman North)

    The paint wouldn’t come off of Michael’s fingers as he furiously tried to clean them, rubbing his forefingers together, spit laden and burning with tension. There was no telling what the deacon would say if he managed to get a glimpse of his blue tinted fingers. He could just picture it now. “Miguel! How dare you show up to this congregation unclean!” and all he would be able to do is shrug and offer a meek smile in his defense as the rest of the Spanish mass’s attendants ‘tsk’ed him, shaking their bronze faces back and forth like mechanical dolls.

    “God!” he yelled. The art room was empty and his voice reverberated off the stark white stone walls, echoing against the subtly cracked mirrors, no one in the room to berate him for his blasphemy. This constant frustration never left him. In his mind a never-ending ‘to do’ list was settled, one after the other, dense enough to irritate but not totally disable him. The only solace he could find was in the few brushstrokes he put to canvas; the tiny lines to which he confined his worries to. Giving up, he let his stained hands rest on the porcelain sink.

    2010 R. Darryl Fisher Creative Writing Contest -- 3rd Prize

    by Lydia Hall (Norman North)

    “Why won’t you just tell them that we’re together?” William asked Craig for the four-hundred-thirty-seventh time that week, not that Craig had been counting or anything. William gently traced patterns onto the back of Craig’s hand.

    Craig sighed and rubbed the ever-growing crease between his eyebrows with his free hand. “Will, they don’t even know that I’m…gay.” It was a struggle to get that word out even with his own boyfriend.

    Craig stood, somewhat frustrated. William stifled a giggle, and yanked on Craig’s arm, pulling him back beside him on the living room couch. “Well, you aren’t gay. You just like me, remember?” Craig smiled at the bittersweet, but pleasant, memory of asking out his best friend.

    Friday, March 12, 2010

    Sad news

    Dr. Bill Cole, sixth President of East Central University, passed away on Wednesday, March 10th. Dr. Cole was President of the University from 1989-2006. Many of the buildings on campus were erected during his presidency including the University Center, Linscheid Library, Physical and Environmental Science Building, and the Hallie Brown Ford Fine Arts Center.

    Tuesday, March 9, 2010

    Winners of the 6th Annual R. Darryl Fisher Creative Writing Contest

    Prizes for Oklahoma’s most prestigious high school writing competition will be awarded at the Scissortail Creative Writing Festival, April 1-3, 2010. (Winners are strongly encouraged to attend the awards ceremony at East Central University.)  Congratulations!

    Click on the links to read the works.
    First Place (prize $250)
    Nicki Peterson, Norman North, "Forsaken"
    Second Place ($150):
    Liana Willis, Norman North, "The Congregation"
    Third Place ($100):
    Lydia Hall, Norman North, "Out"
    Honorable Mentions ($25 each):
    Teddie Gwinn, Altus, "Because His Eyes"
    Joceyln Roberts, Norman North, "Letting Go"
    Keaira Woolfolk, Star Spencer, "My Story"
    Paige Warren, Norman North, "Fire Inside"
    Erin Fuller, Verdigris, "Job Anxiety"
    Abbie Vestal,Broken Bow, "Beautiful Destruction on Glory Road"

    First Place ($250):
    Katlynn Fife, Lawton High School, "Windmill or Wyvern?"
    Second Place ($150):
    Kayla Crego, Norman North High School, "They"
    Third Place ($100):
    Meghen Mann, Ada High School, "My Play On Words" &  "Human Fire"
    Honorable Mentions ($25 each):
    Anna Halverson, Lawton High School, "Drowned Out Flames"
    Angela Shen, Norman North High School, "What goes on behind closed doors" &  "Shanghai"
    KayLeigh Thomason, Pittsburg High School, "I know, I hear"
    Gage Few, Ada High School, "Dancing Sheet Music"
    Jamie Little, Durant High School, "Last Loves"
    Arthur Dixon, Ardmore High School, "Namesake" & "Sonnet for Amy"

    We congratulate all the winners and invite you to send us a digital copy of all or part of your winning works if you would like to see them posted on the
    ecuenglishtalk website where other authors, teachers and the general public may enjoy it. This is not a requirement--just an invitation. If you are interested, send an e-mail to and stipulate whether you want us to post all or part of your work (a teaser). If you want only part of it posted, you may also choose to send us an e-mail address we can use to contact you if interested readers write in to say that they would like to read the “rest of the story.” (We will not publish your e-mail address online.)

    Thank you!

    Contest Guidelines:

    * All Oklahoma high school students (9th - 12th grade) are eligible.
    * Poetry (up to 100 lines) or Short Fiction (up to 5,000 words) is acceptable.
    * Limit 5 poems and 1 short fiction piece per student.
    * All entries must be the original work of the student.
    * All entries must be neatly typed; please double-space fiction entries.
    * Entries will not be returned, so keep your originals.
    * No identifying marks should be on the manuscript itself, except for the title.
    * Provide cover page with contact information: 1) Student’s name; 2) Teacher’s name 3) School 4) Classification 5) Phone number, Email and mailing address.
    * Work may be submitted through conventional mail or email.
    Contest Information: Dr. Joshua Grasso (580-559-5430); Dr. Mark Walling (580-559-5440). Scissortail Creative Writing Festival Information: Dr. Ken Hada (580-559-5557)

    Sunday, March 7, 2010

    Page One Literary Art Gallery

    Submissions are now being accepted for the Page One Literary Art Gallery, which will be open for viewing on one night only: April 2nd, 2010, from 7:30 p.m. to 10 p. m. at the Ada Arts and Heritage Center at 400 S. Rennie Street in Ada, Oklahoma. (The image at right comes from October 2009 issue of Frieze.)


    · are welcomed from any writers--emerging or emerged--who would like to get in on the Scissortail vibe;

    · may be in any creative writing genre (poetry, flash fiction, graphic fiction, excerpt from a longer work, etc.);

    · must not be previously published;

    · must be limited to one submission per author;

    · must include authors name, school affiliation (if any) and status (student, teacher, etc., if applicable);

    · may be submitted via e-mail (as a Word attachment), snail mail (see addresses below) or dropped off in the door box in at ECU in the Horace Mann Building, room 336E;

    · must be submitted by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 31st;

    · will be displayed at the Ada Arts and Heritage Center and on ecus englishtalk website (;

    · must be limited to a single page. Submissions that run longer than a page may be displayed in full on ecus englishtalk website, but when determining awards, judges will only consider the first page of the entry and only the first page of the entry will be displayed at the Ada Arts and Heritage Center.

    The authors of outstanding submissions:

    · will be identified by our panel of faculty and student judges;

    · will be awarded with gift certificates designated for the purchase of books (authors scheduled to appear in the Scissortail reading program will not be in the running for these awards);

    · must be in attendance at the Scissortail Wrap when the awards are distributed, some time between 8:30 and 9 p.m. on Friday, April 2nd, 2010 at the Ada Arts and Heritage Center;

    · send your submissions to: (subject line: Page One Literary Art Festival) or mail to Steve Benton at 1100 E. 14th Street, PMB B-7, East Central University, Ada, Oklahoma 74820-6999.

    The image at left is a detail from Jacques-Louis David's Consecration of the Emperor Napoleon I and Coronation of the Empress Josephine (1805-07, Oil on canvas, 629 x 979 cm).

    This event enjoys the sponsorship and support of Literati (ECUs English Student Club), Originals (ECUs student-run creative writing journal), ECUs Sigma Tau Delta chapter(International English Honor Society), and Scissortail Creative Writing Festival. We look forward to seeing you soon!

    Click here if you have more questions.


    Answers to Your Questions about the Page One Literary Art Gallery

    Q: In general, I'm not quite sure I understand what exactly the Page One Literary Art Gallery is. What's the history here?
    A: To my knowledge, the Page One Literary Art Gallery will be the first of its kind, as we only recently came up with the concept!

    Q: What exactly is displayed/showcased in this exhibit and in what way?
    A: A single page of original creative writing in any genre, not previously published (this last bit was not mentioned in the contest rules when they were first sent out, but should have been--Oops). May be a single poem. May be the first page of a short story with a note that reads: "to read the rest of this story go to" (Or it might not have such a note if there's nothing else besides the first page.) Everything that goes on the page and how it gets there (font, design, etc.) is up to the author. That single piece of paper will be centered on a large black posterboard that will serve as its frame. The frames will be mounted on easels that will be scattered around the Ada Arts and Heritage Center in the way that paintings might be scattered around an art gallery.

    Q: What happens with the submissions?
    A: When we get the submissions, we mount them and display them at the Ada Arts and Heritage Gallery, where they may be seen on the night of the Scissortail Wrap Party. We also dedicate space to them on the ecuenglisthtalk website. Once all the submissions are in, our judges determine which ones are "outstanding." Awards will come in the form of book-buying gift certificates at the Scissortail book table.

    Q: I see that readers of the Scissortail Writing Fest are not eligible for the prizes or awards, but are we welcome/encouraged to submit material for this event anyway? Or is it meant to showcase a more specific target talent?
    A: The gift certificates are for authors who are not a part of the scheduled program, but everyone, including authors in the scheduled program, is very much welcome to submit something.

    Friday, March 5, 2010

    Wanna Mentor?

    Thursday, March 4, 2010

    2010 Paul Hughes Memorial Writing Award

    Where and When

    The Department of English and Languages announces the 2010 Paul Hughes Memorial Writing Award, an annual creative writing competition open to all East Central University students. Any form of creative writing, including poetry, fiction, drama, and creative nonfiction, is eligible for consideration. Submissions will be accepted in the English department, Horace Mann 301 or Horace Mann 317, until Monday, March 29, at midnight. Students may also email entries to This deadline will be strictly enforced. Students may submit a total of five individual works. Individual prose submissions may not exceed 10,000 words. Cash prizes will be awarded for first, second and third place. Last year, the awards were $200, $100, and $50.

    Paul Hughes

    Born in Roff, Paul Hughes attended Ada High School and earned his B.A. with honors from East Central in 1936. At ECU, Hughes served as president of the senior class, editor of the campus newspaper, and captain of the debate team. At age 27, Hughes published his first novel, Retreat From Rostov, with Random House. He went on to publish 15 other books, including Challenge at Changsa (Macmillan), Jeff (John Day), and The Salsbury Story (Univ. of Arizona Press), and numerous short stories in magazines such as Collier's, Seventeen, Woman's Home Companion, Vogue, and Liberty. After a brief term as night editor of the Ada Evening News, Hughes began a long career with KTAR Radio and Television, becoming one of the most recognizable air personalities in Arizona. In 1971, he gave the ECU commencement address and received the Distinguished Alumnus Award.


    Submitted manuscripts for the award should be neatly typed. Prose should be double-spaced. Poetry should be single-spaced except to separate stanzas. Each work should have a cover page listing the author's name, title of the work, classification (senior. . .), major, address, telephone number, and email address. Notification will be delivered to the email address. The author's name should not appear on the manuscript. Entries will not be returned.

    Wednesday, March 3, 2010

    Tribbey Reads in Norman on Tuesday, March 7th!

    Our very own Hugh Tribbey is reading in the Mark Allen Everett Poetry Reading Series in Norman at the Jacobson House this coming Tuesday at 7.

    Tuesday, March 2, 2010

    Hada Reads in Chickasha on Thursday, March 4th!

    Bring a Poem, or not — Hear the Featured Poet — Read Your Own or a Favorite

    Have some Fun! Downtown Chickasha!

    7:00 p.m. until the Fun Ends

    OddFellows Music Hall
    118 South 4th Street, Chickasha, OK

    (4th Street = Highway 81, between Kansas and Chickasha Avenues)

    (Located on the west side with the big red star on the front — Park behind, enter in front or in back)

    Featured Poet: Ken Hada

    Ken Hada is an Associate Professor in the Department of English and Languages at East Central University where he teaches courses in Humanities, American and Ethnic Literatures. In addition to teaching at ECU, he directs the annual Scissortail Creative Writing Festival held on the ECU campus the first weekend of each April.

    Ken’s has authored three collections of poetry, The Way of the Wind (Village Books Press 2008), Spare Parts (Mongrel Empire Press 2010) and a chapbook of link poems, April Meadows, (1995), that are translated in Japanese by Japanese students at Ogaki Women’s College.

    An avid fly-fisherman, canoe and kayak enthusiast, Ken’s research interests and creative writing both increasingly merge in the areas of nature writing and ecology concerns, regionalism and the American west.

    Also, Ken is the area chair for Literature: Eco-criticism and the Environment for the Southwest/Texas Popular Culture meeting held annually in Albuquerque. Some of his publications may be found in Southwestern American Literature, College Literature, Ethnic Studies Review, American Indian Culture and Research Journal and Journal of American Studies Association of Texas.

    Open mic reading also

    Read your own or bring a favorite or two

    Refreshments Available for Purchase

    Sponsored by the Chickasha Area Arts Council

    For more information, contact Rockford Johnson, 224-0160; 317-7506

    Directions to Chickasha Poetry Reading

    at the Oddfellows Music Hall (118 S. 4th Street = Highway 81)

    From OKC on I-44: Exit # 83/US 62, Right on Highway 62, Left on US 81 (= 4th Street),

    South 1 ½ blocks to the building with the star on the west side.

    From Lawton on I-44: Exit # 81, North on US 81 (= 4th Street) about 2 miles,

    3 ½ blocks north of the Sonic Drive-In