image by Jill Salahub

image by Jill Salahub

Creative and Performing Arts Scholarship Competition Deadline: Friday, October 3rd by 4:00 p.m. Find out more about this scholarship here:

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image by Tim Mahoney

Gary Snyder reading, image by Tim Mahoney

Poet Gary Snyder read on September 17, 2014 at the University Art Center. This event was attended by English Department Communications intern Tim Mahoney, who had this to share:

Last week, CSU’s English Department invited renowned author, Gary Snyder, to campus for a reading of his latest work. While I was annoyed that I had missed the turn for the University Center for the Arts, instinctively heading towards the library (where I spend many of my nights), I was excited that this visit was not strictly for business.

I’ve always enjoyed attending the readings sponsored by the English Department. Our reading series draws many talented authors to campus to share their fiction, non-fiction, or poetry with students, faculty, and the Fort Collins community. This semester, we were lucky enough to have Gary Snyder come and read from his new volume of poetry, beautifully entitled, This Present Moment. Before he began his reading, we were told that the event was to be moved to a larger auditorium to accommodate the large number of people in attendance. There was a slight delay as the ushers clambered to set up the new venue, and move the audience row by row to the new location, but the move was quick and seamless. Although I heard a few groans from some of the patrons, as they gathered their things and prepared to move down the hall, it was amazing to see so many people come out and show their support for the English Department’s reading series. Soon after everyone was settled, Snyder was welcomed to an uproarious applause and the reading was underway.

Gary Snyder reading, image by Tim Mahoney

Gary Snyder reading, image by Tim Mahoney

Snyder, who was immortalized in Jack Kerouac’s novel The Dharma Bums, and who participated in the historic Six Gallery Reading — which launched the Beat Generation Movement — took the stage to read selections from his latest volume including poems about his college sweetheart, his late wife, the beauty and destructive nature of forest fires, Indian marital arrangements, relaxation, and life’s many paths.

He opened with the poem dedicated to his college sweetheart, reminiscing about the time he spent with her, perfectly capturing the wonderful power of nostalgia and past love. His next poem, “Off the Trail,” dedicated to his late wife Carole, took us even deeper into that strangely wonderful feeling of remembrance. His ability to look back at his life with such clarity and grace moved me in ways that might have been missed had I only read his poems in print.

No path will get you there, we’re off the trail,
You and I, and we chose it!
~Gary Snyder, “Off the Trail”

Gary Snyder reading, image by Sarah Sloane

Gary Snyder reading, image by Sarah Sloane

Hearing poetry read has a completely different feel; the author’s voice and tone enhance the words. To fully experience a poem, I need to hear it performed. Snyder’s performance of his work was spectacular to say the least; his voice, breaths, and personality all contributed to an experience that cannot be contained on paper. I left the auditorium that night a true enthusiast of his work.

I recommend that every English major should attend these readings. It was incredible to hear Snyder’s work, and to see him perform his poetry. Sitting there with friends, classmates, and professors, as well members of the larger community, I couldn’t help but be moved by Snyder’s poetry and his passion for life, nature, and love of living in the present moment.

Gary Snyder singing books, image by Tim Mahoney

Gary Snyder singing books, image by Tim Mahoney

Next reading in the Creative Writing Reading Series: Writers’ Harvest with Ira Sukrungruang and Sasha Steensen, Poetry and Prose, University Center for the Arts, Museum, Thursday October 23rd at 7:30 p.m.

Sponsors of the Reading Series include the English Department and Creative Writing Program at Colorado State University, Organization of Graduate Student Writers through ASCSU, Mike Liggett, Tae Nosaka, and the Poudre River Library District.

All events are free and open to the public. For additional information e-mail For a full listing of 2014-2015 Creative Writing Reading series events, please visit:

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Flashback: Eddy courtyard, Fall 2013 (image by Jill Salahub)

Flashback: Eddy courtyard, Fall 2013 (image by Jill Salahub)

  • Leslee Becker’s story, “The Twilight Club,” has been accepted for publication in Alaska Quarterly Review. Another story, “If You Lived Here,” received an Honorable Mention in The New Millennium Fiction Contest.
  • John Calderazzo will give several science and literature talks at the south rim of the Grand Canyon, at the only public school in a U.S. national park. He will be in residence there for two weeks.
  • Sue Doe’s co-authored article with Psychology faculty member Karla Gingerich, Washington University (St. Louis) faculty member Julie Bugg, and several others, was recently published in Teaching of Psychology. It is titled “Active Processing via Write-to-Learn Assignments: Learning and Retention Benefits in Introductory Psychology.”
  • Leif Sorensen will present at the Latina(o)/Latin American Studies Scholars Colloquium at CSU on Monday September 22. His paper is titled “Region and Ethnicity on the Air: Reconstructing Américo Paredes’s Radio Career.” The event is part of a series of brown bag talks by CSU scholars working on topics in Latina(o)/Latin American Studies and it will take place in the Morgan Library Event Hall from noon until 1:00 p.m. Coffee and tea will be provided and the event is free and open to all.
  • Debby Thompson’s personal essay “Scavenger Love” was listed as a “notable” in the 2014 Best American Essays.
  • Kristin George Bagdanov’s poem “Purge Body” was accepted for publication in Mid American Review.
  • Maura Smith’s personal essay “Omphalos,” which was part of her 2012 Creative Nonfiction thesis and published in the Bellevue Literary Review, has been named a “Notable” in the 2014 Best American Essays list.

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Zambia Info Session Flyer
English Department Students,

There’s talk about an exciting opportunity to go to the lovely and quiet town of Livingstone, Zambia, right next to the world-famous Victoria Falls…for three-weeks…and with the possibility of earning up to three undergraduate or graduate internship credits! Would you be interested in such a thing? If so, keep reading…

Dr. Ellen Brinks will be taking students to Livingstone, Zambia over Summer 2015 to do experiential learning and internships through our Colorado State University Study Abroad program (and African Impact).

“I don’t know. What would I be doing?!?”

The course would run for three weeks and center on a personalized project within the Livingstone community that fits your own interests. There are lots of internship projects – such as working one-on-one or in small groups with children in the classroom, leading a reading club, math club, or adult literacy club, helping with afterschool activities at school or at a youth community training center, as well as offering HIV education – that would be suitable for any concentration or area of study in English and for which you could gain three internship credits. Additional projects in the areas of health care, sports, community development, conservation, wildlife care, and reforestation initiatives are available, though you would not be eligible for English internship credit if you elected to design your stay in Zambia round these activities. (Click here to check out project descriptions.)

“Why would I want to go to Africa?”

This experiential course would count for E487 or E687 credit. It gives you a very unique international internship opportunity in a stable and beautiful country, Zambia. You will be residing and working in the town of Livingstone, right at Victoria Falls, a center of African eco-tourism and safari tours. (Livingstone is the size of Fort Collins). The program likely ties in to coursework you have done in the areas of world literature in English, literacy, and teacher training. And most of all, it enables you to use your skills to give back to underprivileged and wonderful children in this friendly and welcoming community.

“How much would it cost?”

Projected expenses run around $5000, which includes airfare, tuition, vaccinations, and a bunch of other stuff, for three weeks in Africa, including three internship credits. A real bargain!

“I think I’d be down for that!”

If this sounds like an important opportunity that you might want to take advantage of come summer 2015, please come to our informational meeting on Thursday, October 9th, from 4-5pm in Lory Student Center 372. There will be time to address all your questions, along with a PowerPoint presentation with pictures of the program.

**NOTE: By coming to the October 9 meeting you are not committing yourself to taking part. If you’re at all curious or interested, come by simply for more information on this opportunity.**

Nancy Henke, English Department Internship Coordinator,



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Department Chair Louann Reid and Office Manager Amparo Jeffrey recently took a tour of Eddy Hall, which is currently being remodeled.


Safety first!

Here are some pictures Amparo took, as well as a few “before” pictures Jill Salahub took in the weeks before the big move.

Third floor of Eddy hallway, before

Third floor of Eddy hallway, before

Third floor of Eddy hallway, now

Third floor of Eddy hallway, now

Third floor Eddy back hall, before

Third floor Eddy back hall, before

Third floor Eddy, back hall, now ADA compliant with added office space

Third floor Eddy, back hall, now ADA compliant with added office space

The Writing Center, now

The Writing Center, now

The center courtyard, before

The center courtyard, before

The center courtyard, now

The center courtyard, now

Eddy first floor Lounge in North Hallway, now

Eddy first floor Lounge in North Hallway, now, (also, Louann in a hard hat)

Third floor Eddy Computer Lab, before

Eddy 300 Computer Lab, before

Eddy 300 Computer Lab, now

Eddy 300 Computer Lab, now

Louann contemplating the new lounge space in front of the Eddy 300 Computer Lab

Louann contemplating the new lounge space in front of the Eddy 300 Computer Lab

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image by Jill Salahub

image by Jill Salahub


Position: The Department of English at Colorado State University invites applications for the position of Assistant Professor of Creative Writing specializing in Fiction. The successful candidate will be appointed untenured and at the rank of Assistant Professor. This entry-level position is a tenure-track, nine-month appointment, beginning August 16, 2015.

Required Qualifications
• MFA or PhD in Creative Writing and/or English at time of appointment
• A promising record of scholarship/creative activity/teaching
• At least one book in Fiction

Desired Qualifications
• An application will be enhanced by experience teaching and writing about literature at the college level
• Applicants are encouraged to describe any additional teaching or scholarly interests and experiences.

Responsibilities: Teaching responsibilities include four courses a year (typically two per semester) in the graduate and undergraduate programs. The successful candidate will also be expected to establish a scholarly and creative agenda, mentor students, and provide service to the department, university, and community. Candidates who can advance the Department’s commitment to diversity through scholarship, creative activity, and teaching are encouraged to apply.

Salary: Will be commensurate with entry-level assistant professor rank and experience.

Application Procedures and Deadlines: Please submit a letter of interest, current curriculum vitae, graduate transcripts, a statement of teaching philosophy, evidence of teaching effectiveness, a 35-page writing sample, and three letters of recommendation. Semifinalists will have the opportunity to send in more extensive writing samples.

Submit applications electronically through Interfolio by clicking on this link: The Department will conduct interviews of semifinalists at the MLA convention in Vancouver, January 8-11, 2015. Based on those interviews, we will then bring finalists onto campus beginning in January, 2015.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled; however, for full consideration, applications must be submitted by October 31, 2014 11:59pm MST. Routine inquiries should be directed to Sue Russell at (970) 491-1898 or

See job listing here:

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The Creative and Performing Arts Scholarship Competition in Creative Writing – Deadline: Friday, October 3, 20143 by 4:00pm.

  • The Creative Writing Program is conducting its annual university-wide creative writing competition for Creative & Performing Arts scholarships.
  • Undergraduate students may submit three to five poems OR one short story OR one creative essay.
  • Awards are typically $500 per academic year in the form of tuition waivers; awards of $1,000 – $5,000 are sometimes given for special merit.
  • Multiple awards are available.

Submission Guidelines:

  1. Student may submit 3 to 5 poems OR 1 short story OR 1 creative nonfiction essay (not an academic paper).
  2. DO NOT PUT NAME OR ADDRESS ON THE MANUSCRIPT. Include only page numbers and title on manuscript.
  3. Attach a cover letter stating name, address, phone number, CSU I.D. number (not ssn number), and genre.
  4. Address manuscripts to: Professor Dan Beachy-Quick, Director, Creative Writing Program, Behavioral Sciences Building, Room, A104, CSU Campus Delivery 1772.
  5. Please be sure to either mail OR Hand-Deliver submissions by Friday, October 3, 2014 at 4:00pm.

Criteria for Award:

  1. A recipient must have a minimum 2.4 GPA.
  2. Recipients must be undergraduates (working on first bachelor’s degree).
  3. Enrolled full-time (12+ credits).
  4. CSU students should be making satisfactory progress toward degree, i.e., must have satisfactorily completed 75% of CSU courses attempted and must not have accumulated excessive credits. (See Office of Financial Aid for further details.)
  5. U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident.

The Creative Writing Faculty cannot comment on the writing; manuscripts will not be returned unless accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed envelope.


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Pulitzer Prize-winning Beat poet & eco-activist Gary Snyder will be reading at the Organ Recital Hall this Wednesday, Sept. 17th, at 7:30 p.m. NO TICKETS ARE REQUIRED. It is first come, first served, so people should arrive early.

In other news:

  • This summer, Jacket2 released a feature on the second-wave Objectivist poet John Taggart, edited by Matthew Cooperman. A collection of 17 essays, appreciations, reviews, poems and career appraisals, the 200 page feature included, among other things, a group poem, “Seeds Sown for John Taggart,” composed by Matthew and recent MFAs, including Joanna Doxey, Lincoln Greenhaw, Anamika Dugger, Kaelyn Riley, Hannah Holler Blair, Sarah Louise Pieplow, Rachel Linnea Brown and Mickey Kenney. The poem (and the feature) evolved out of a Graduate Poetry Workshop back in 2011, where they read Taggart’s new and selected poems, Is Music. More information can be found at:
  • EJ Levy gave a reading at Politics & Prose in DC last weekend; she will read at DePauw, give the Beck lecture at Denison, and read at the Kenyon Literary Festival next month as winner of the 2014 GLCA New Writers Award in Fiction. Her essay on marriage appeared in Salon this summer:
  • Sasha Steensen and Dan Beachy-Quick have published essays in the Taos Journal of International Poetry and Art.  Sasha’s essay, “With Pleasure: Gertrude Stein and the Sentence Diagram” can be found at, and Dan’s essay,  “Of Time and Timelessness in the Poetic Sentence,” can be found at
  • Debby Thompson’s essay “The Four Stages of Cancer,” which was published in Upstreet, has been nominated by that journal for a Pushcart Prize.
  • Kristina Quynn taught a TILT seminar this week, “Reading Closely: Harnessing the Power of Literary Studies to Boost Student Learning.” In attendance were CSU faculty and graduate students from a range of departments, including Veterinary Science, Economics, Sociology, Computer Science, and many more.
  • Poems by Mary Crow have been accepted for publication in several literary magazines: “And Then” by Illuminations, “Blown Away” by Mojave River Review, “Full Circle” by Big Muddy, and “Double Agent” by Driftwood Press Literary Review.

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Camille Dungy is author of Smith Blue (Southern Illinois University Press, 2011), winner of the 2010 Crab Orchard Open Book Prize, Suck on the Marrow (Red Hen Press, 2010), and What to Eat, What to Drink, What to Leave for Poison (Red Hen Press, 2006).

Dungy is editor of Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry (UGA, 2009), co-editor of From the Fishouse: An Anthology of Poems that Sing, Rhyme, Resound, Syncopate, Alliterate, and Just Plain Sound Great (Persea, 2009), and assistant editor of Gathering Ground: A Reader Celebrating Cave Canem’s First Decade (University of Michigan Press, 2006). Dungy has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, Cave Canem, the Dana Award, and Bread Loaf.

She is a two-time recipient of the Northern California Book Award (2010 and 2011), a Silver Medal Winner in the California Book Award (2011), and a two-time NAACP Image Award nominee (2010 and 2011). She was a 2011 finalist for the Balcones Prize, and her books have been shortlisted for the 2011 Foreword Magazine Book of the Year Award, the PEN Center USA 2007 Literary Award, and the Library of Virginia 2007 Literary Award. Recently a Professor in the Creative Writing Department at San Francisco State University, Dungy is now a Professor in the English Department at Colorado State University. Her poems and essays have been published widely in anthologies and print and online journals.

~Bio excerpted from Camille Dungy’s website


Faculty Profile: Camille Dungy
by Denise Jarrott

How would you describe your work in the English Department?
I teach creative writing and literature classes, mostly focusing on poetry. Right now I’m teaching a poetry writing workshop and a course on Recent US Poetry. Over the course of the semester, seven poets will visit our class either in person or via teleconference. We’re all looking forward to the chance to speak directly with some of today’s hottest authors.

What brought you to CSU?
I am excited about the university’s commitment to serving the students of the state of Colorado. I’ve been away a long time, but I’m actually a Colorado native, and I am happy to be a part of keeping this a vibrant place. I am also thrilled by the engagement of so many of my colleagues in questions directly related to the environment and sustainability as well as history, family, and great literature.

What do you enjoy most about your work?
I am happy every day that I am able to wake up and think about what I love best: good writing.

Why do you think English and the Humanities are important?  English and the Humanities teach us to think critically, to read carefully (and not only text on the page), and engage empathy. In short, English and the Humanities help form the rudimentary components of engaged citizenship.

What inspired you to pursue a degree in English and teaching?
Why not do what I love?

What had the greatest influence on your career path?
I was raised in a house that valued books, that valued education, and that valued compassion. My education also supported these interests, and so here I am, passing those values along.

What did you want to be when you were a kid?
A writer. (And also a doctor and a piano player and an athlete and probably a lot of other things. Good thing all those pursuits, which require focus and practice and attention to detail, supported my main goal of learning how to be a better writer).

Describe your experience on your recent sabbatical and how you will bring what you learned during that time to CSU.
I did take a leave last semester to write, and I traveled to Alaska, California, London, Paris, and Seattle in pursuit of my subjects. The love of travel, the engagement with a world that is larger than our neighborhoods (but also amazingly smaller: I met a woman in Barrow, Alaska who had met her husband at restaurant 2 blocks from the restaurant where I met my husband, and when I was in Paris I had lunch with a friend from the States) helps me to read the world better. Reading the world better helps me read books better. Reading books better helps me write and teach books better.

What moment in the classroom stands out as most memorable?
I have been teaching full time since 1997. If I had one most memorable moment it would diminish the many other wonderful (and sometime challenging) moments I’ve had in all those years in the classroom.

What is your favorite thing about teaching?
I love talking about what I love to people who are open to the possibility of learning new things about themselves and the world.

What advice would you give a student taking classes in the English department?  Be open to the possibility of learning new things about yourself and the world.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
As a person who is open to learning new things about myself and the world, I get advice all the time. I’ve to categorize this advice in terms of its relevance to me, but I’ve also learned to revisit advice because things that don’t seem relevant on Day 1 might be really useful on Day 121.


What accomplishments are you most proud of?
I’m raising a daughter who is smart and self assured and kind to others, and that makes me quite proud. I also have published several of my own books and edited anthologies that represent a wide range of voices, and that these words are out of my head (where so many of our ideas linger) and in the world makes me quite proud. But, I don’t tend to dwell too much in pride. Every day is a new day, and each new day requires more writing, more parenting, more living actively in the world.

What is the last great piece of writing you read? What are you currently reading?
I read for a living. I read all the time. Two days ago I would have told you the best book I’ve read recently was the book I read two days ago (The White Pages, by Martha Collins), but yesterday I taught and so reread portions of The Apple Trees at Olema by Robert Hass, which is a book I adore, and tonight I have a stack of books on my desk including Yona Harvey’s Hemming the Water and Brilliant: The Evolution of Artificial Light by Jane Brox, both of which I am really excited about.

When you’re not working, what do you like to do?
I love to cook. I love to be outside, hiking or walking or just being. I love to be with my family. I love to read, which is and is not work for me. I am also turning into a bit of a DIY gal, and have a long list of projects for the house (which may or may not ever get done), including building a cold frame and hanging barn doors in a room that needs a divider.

What is your favorite word and why?
Lathe. Just listen to it. A gorgeous word. It’s round and cylindrical, a word that sounds like what it does. Lathe. I love that word.

Which three people, living or dead, would you invite to dinner?
I just had this conversation with someone! I invited Octavia Butler, one of my all time favorite writers (Parable of the Sower and Kindred are my two favorite books). Also Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley because I am amazed by the mind that invented Frankenstein while pregnant (which, I think, is fascinating enough even without the fact that the book itself is a marvel). And maybe…the third person is always the tricky one…perhaps my maternal grandmother, who I believe would get a kick out of meeting those women and who would be glad to teach them a thing or two and maybe recite some poems.

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image by Jill Salahub

image by Jill Salahub

Gary Snyder Bio
by Denise Jarrott

The relentless complexity of the world is off to the side of the trail. For hunters and herders trails weren’t always so useful. For a forager, the path is not where you walk for long. Wild herbs, camas bulbs, quail, dye plants, are away from the path. The whole range of items that fulfill your needs is out there. We must wander through it to learn and memorize the field-rolling, crinkled, eroded, gullied, ridged (wrinkled like the brain) – holding the map in mind. ~From the essay “On the Path, Off the Trail” by Gary Snyder

Very few poets capture and engage with their landscape, both their physical and spiritual homes, like Gary Snyder. From the fog-shrouded Cascade Mountains of his home landscape of the Pacific Rim to the mysterious resonance of Japan, Snyder inhabits and converses with his world, and invites the reader to make a home in the world he both reflects and creates.

Gary Snyder is known among the Beat-generation and San Francisco Renaissance poets of the 1950s and 60s, alongside Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and other voices of their time. Those familiar with Jack Kerouac’s novel The Dharma Bums will recognize Snyder as one of the characters, according to Kerouac, an “old-fashioned saint of the desert”, but also an anarchist, a poet steeped in the natural world of his native Pacific Northwest and adopted Far East.

Born in San Francisco and raised in and around Portland and Seattle, Snyder was immersed in the natural world from a very young age. Following a severe burn accident as a child that involved a significant time in bed and unable to work on his family farm, Snyder’s mother a “very high-strung, neurotic person with literary ambitions” brought him books from the Seattle library, and from that early literary influence, Snyder continued to read and write and question the influence of white society on the local native cultures and subsequently, the natural world he had, and would, come to know.

Snyder later attended Reed College in Portland, Oregon, but did not venture far from his beloved wilderness. He held jobs as a logger, seaman, and fire lookout for the U.S. Forest Service. In addition to degrees in literature and anthropology, Snyder also studied linguistics at Indiana University and Oriental languages at the University of California at Berkeley. It was in Bay Area that Snyder became involved with the poets who would define Beat poetry.

Flowing from his work on the trail crew at Yosemite National Park and involvement and practice in Zen Buddhism in Japan and India, Snyder began to write the poems he would be known for. His first book, Riprap and his translation of the poems of Han Shan, or Cold Mountain, were his first notable works in poetry. He is currently the author of sixteen collections of poetry including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Turtle Island.

In addition to being an award-winning poet and translator, Snyder has also written several books nonfiction and essays such as Earth House Hold and The Old Ways. Currently, he teaches at the University of California at Davis, where he has been on faculty since 1985. He has also held positions as a visiting lecturer at several universities and facilitated several writing workshops and was the former chair of the California Arts Council.


Gary Snyder will read from his poems at the University Center for the Arts on Wednesday September 17 at 7:30 pm.



Bio Bibliography:

Aronowitz, Al, Everyday Beat, excepted from Chapter 14: The Dharma Bum accessed online, September 8, 2014.

Gary Snyder biography: The Poetry Foundation

Snyder, Gary, “On the Path, Off the Trail” from The Practice of the Wild North Point Press, 1990.

Weinberger, Eliot, “The Art of Poetry No. 74”, Gary Snyder interviewed by Eliot Weinberger,

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