Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Thursday, May 26, 2022

18th Annual Scissortail: Featured Authors

ALLISON AMEND was born in Chicago, Illinois, on a day when the Cubs beat the Mets 2-0. In high school, Allison lived for a year with a Spanish family in Barcelona. She attended Stanford University, graduating with honors in Comparative Literature. After college, she lived in Lyon, France on a Fulbright Teaching Fellowship. Allison then attended the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop, receiving a Maytag and a Teaching/Writing Fellowship.

Allison’s debut short story collection, Things That Pass for Love (OV/Dzanc Books, 2008) won a bronze Independent Publisher’s award. Stations West, a historical novel, was published by Louisiana State University Press as part of its Yellow Shoe Fiction series in March 2010 and was a finalist for the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature and the Oklahoma Book Award.

Nan A. Talese/Doubleday published her most recent novels A Nearly Perfect Copy and Enchanted Islands.

Allison lives in New York City, where she teaches creative writing at Lehman College in the Bronx and at the Red Earth MFA.

Photo copyright by Erin Patrice O'Brien
MAJOR JACKSON is the author of five books of poetry, including The Absurd Man (2020), Roll Deep (2015), Holding Company (2010), Hoops (2006) and Leaving Saturn (2002), which won the Cave Canem Poetry Prize for a first book of poems. His edited volumes include: Best American Poetry 2019, Renga for Obama, and Library of America’s Countee Cullen: Collected Poems.

A recipient of fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Guggenheim Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, Major Jackson has been awarded a Pushcart Prize, a Whiting Writers’ Award, and has been honored by the Pew Fellowship in the Arts and the Witter Bynner Foundation in conjunction with the Library of Congress.

He has published poems and essays in American Poetry Review, The New Yorker, Orion Magazine, Paris Review, Ploughshares, Poetry, Poetry London, and Zyzzva.

Major Jackson lives in Nashville, Tennessee where he is the Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Chair in the Humanities at Vanderbilt University. He serves as the Poetry Editor of The Harvard Review.

Monday, March 21, 2022

From the Director – Welcome 2022

It is with great anticipation that I welcome you back to a live, in-person festival! We need to gather together to inspire and to be inspired. This year, we welcome 74 authors to the program, the most ever. Of that number, 15 are new to the festival.

Scissortail Festival has been described in various ways over the years. One of my favorite descriptions is that Scissortail is a “listening” festival. That is, we come together and listen to each other. As you are all-too aware, we are under siege all day long, every day of the week, by a barrage of distractions and interruptions, all designed to reduce us to thoughtless automatons. This festival offers a chance to free our mind and souls from that onslaught, and to hear one another. I know I look forward to hearing as many of you as possible; and more, I look forward to hearing about how each of you hear each other.

On behalf of so many gracious volunteers, outside of ECU, and of many members of the Department of English & Languages, and volunteers from the Department of Art, Media and Communication, student volunteers, and the administration of East Central University – Welcome!

Ken Hada

Sunday, March 20, 2022

2022: Schedule of Readings

17th Annual: Scissortail Creative Writing Festival
March 31 - April 2, 2022

East Central University
Ada, Oklahoma

Thursday, March 31

I. 9:30 – 10: 45 Estep Auditorium

Joey Brown: Missouri Southern State University
Feral Love in Skateland
Rilla Askew: University of Oklahoma
Dave Malone: West Plains, Missouri
Tornado Drills and Hitchhiking Skills

II. 11:00 – 12: 15 Estep Auditorium

Robin Carstensen: Texas A&M – Corpus Christi
Selected New Poems
Chris Murphy: Northeastern State University
from Burning All the Time
Molly Sizer: Lawton, Oklahoma
The World and the Refuge

III. 11:00 - 12:15 Regents Room

Jeffrey Alfier: Torrance, California
The Shadow Field, and other poems
Denise Tolan: San Antonio, Texas
Because You Are Dead, and other flash fiction
Gary Reddin: Duncan, Oklahoma
An Abridged History of American Violence

IV. 11:00 – 12:15 North Lounge

Ron Wallace: Southeastern Oklahoma State U.
from Sanctuary
Leah Chaffins: Cameron University
Mountain Kings & other poems
Clarence Wolfshohl: Toledo, Missouri
Family Resemblance

*** Lunch ***

Saturday, March 12, 2022

17th Annual Scissortail: The Poster


Winners of the 18th Annual Daryl Fisher Creative Writing Contest

Poetry Winners:

First Place: Vivianna “Morphie” Pflaum, “Life Letters.” Edmond Memorial High School (Ms. Kelly Bristow)
Second Place: Lenna Abouzahr, “Sand Thoughts.” Stillwater High School (Jennifer White)
Third Place: Emily Spotts, “Uncastled.” Lawton High School (Dr. Terence Freeman)

Honorable Mentions:
Katrina Snyder, “Jobless.” Mount Saint Mary’s High School (Ms. Strah)
Billie Parker, “The Lazy Man.” Lawton High School (Dr. Terence Freeman)
Brayden Johnson, “The Modern Child Slave.” Lawton High School (Dr. Terence Freeman)
Jacy Pruitt, “Failure.” Edmond Memorial High School (Ms. Kelly Bristow)
Rachel Van Osdol, “Dolls Aren’t Puppets.” Edmond Memorial High School (Ms. Kelly Bristow)
Elaine Gao, “The Interrupted Serenade.” Jenks High School (Mrs. Lindsey Taylor)
Krisinda Sevenstar, “Her Smile, Her Heart.” Leedey High School (Morgan Lady)
Katelynn Robertson, “Dreaming.” Bixby High School (Jennifer Phenicie)
Yunsu Kim, “After the Fall of Eden.” Norman High School (Sara Doolittle)
Jessiekah Cook, “We Don’t Talk About Bruno?” Weatherford High School (Traci Sanders)

Fiction Winners:

First Place: Emily Runyan. “Set in Clay.” Norman High School. (Instructor: Dr. Sara Doolittle)
Second Place: Elaine Gao. “Coding Van Gogh.” Jenks High School. (Lindsey Taylor)
Third Place: Helena Todd. “Life after Tuesday.” Shawnee High School. (Lynda Thompson)

Honorable Mentions:
Olivia Norman. “Subject 13.” Skiatook High School. (Katrina Morrison)
Mary Ann Livingood. “Winter Suns and Wooden Cats.” Norman High School. (Dr. Sara Doolittle)
Liberty Rogers. “The Realworld.” Dale High School. (Taylor Chesser)
Madelyn Harjo. “Until Sunset.” Shawnee High School. (Lynda Thompson)
Mylee Moore. “Icarus.” Jenks High School. (Emily Stewart)
Camryn Pizano. “Know My Name.“ McAlester High School. (Katie Burgess)
Katelynn Robertson. “The Memory of Snow.” Bixby High School. (Jennifer Phenicie)
Elissa Marks. “The Kitchen Maid and the Sleeping Beauty.” Edmond Memorial High School. (Kelly Bristow)
Macie ‘Ciel’ Moon. “Night of All Things Dark.” Edmond Memorial High School. (Beth Lewis)
Elizabeth Brown. “Hades’ Daughter.” Elmore City-Pernell High School. (Tina Casey)

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

2022 Scissortail Biographies

Dorothy Alexander is a poet, memoirist, storyteller, author of five poetry collections, two multi-genre memoirs, and two volumes of oral history. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Malpais Review; Sugar Mule Literary Review; Blood & Thunder: Musings on the Art of Medicine; Oklahoma Humanities Journal; Missing Persons, (Beatlick Press of Albuquerque); Weaving the Terrain (Dos Gatos Press of ABQ). She curated poetry readings at the annual Woody Guthrie Folk Festival in Oklahoma for 15 years, and is a recipient of the Carlile Award for Distinguished Service to the Oklahoma literary community. She currently curates a monthly poetry reading at the Santa Fe, NM Community Convention Center under the auspices of the City of Santa Fe Bureau of Tourism. She co-owner with Devey Napier of Village Books Press, Santa Fe, NM. In two other lives, Dorothy was a tornado chaser for the National Weather Service, and then a lawyer and municipal judge for 45 years in Oklahoma and Texas Panhandle.

Jeffrey Alfier was a finalist for the Missouri Laureate Prize in 2021. In 2018, he won the Angela Consolo Manckiewick Poetry Prize, awarded from Lummox Press. In 2014, he won the Kithara Book Prize, judged by Dennis Maloney. Publication credits include Arkansas Review, Atlanta Review, The Carolina Quarterly, Columbia College Literary Review, Copper Nickel, Emerson Review, Iron Horse Literary Review, Kestrel, Gargoyle, Hotel Amerika, Los Angeles Review, Louisville Review, The Midwest Quarterly, New York Quarterly, Permafrost, Poetry Ireland Review, South Carolina Review, Southern Poetry Review, Southwestern American Literature, and Texas Review. His latest collection of poems is The Shadow Field (Louisiana Literature Journal & Press, 2020). He is also author of Gone This Long: Southern Poems, The Wolf Yearling, Idyll for a Vanishing River, Fugue for a Desert Mountain, Anthem for Pacific Avenue: California Poems, Southbound Express to Bayhead: New Jersey Poems, The Red Stag at Carrbridge: Scotland Poems, Bleak Music: A Photo and Poetry collaboration with poet Larry D. Thomas, The Storm Petrel: Poems of Ireland. He and his wife, Tobi, are founders of Blue Horse Press and San Pedro River Review, a print publication of poetry and art (since 2009).

Rilla Askew is the author of four novels, a book of stories, and a collection of creative nonfiction. She’s a PEN/Faulkner Finalist and recipient of three Oklahoma Book Awards, two Western Heritage Awards, and the American Book Award for her novel about the Tulsa Race Massace, Fire in Beulah. Her collection of nonfiction, Most American: Notes from a Wounded Place, was longlisted for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay. She received a 2009 Arts and Letters Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and her essays and short fiction have appeared in AGNI, Tin House, World Literature Today, Translatlantica, Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards, and elsewhere. She teaches creative writing at the University of Oklahoma.