Sunday, January 29, 2012

2012 Scissortail: Author Biographies (Saturday's Readers)

Photo by Jason Poudrier
Rilla Askew divides her time between New York and Oklahoma. Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in a variety of journals and anthologies, including World Literature Today, Nimrod, and Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards. Askew’s first novel, The Mercy Seat, was a PEN/Faulkner finalist and received the Oklahoma Book Award in 1998. Her novel about the Tulsa Race Riot, Fire in Beulah, received the American Book Award in 2001 and was selected for Oklahoma's One Book One State program, in 2007. Her most recent novel, Harpsong, received the Western Heritage Award, the Oklahoma Book Award, the Violet Crown Award, and the Willa Cather Award from Women Writing the West. Askew received a 2009 Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She is currently serving as Artist in Residence in the MFA Creative Writing Program at the University of Central Oklahoma.

Nathan Brown is a musician, photographer, and award-winning poet from Norman, Oklahoma. He holds a PhD in Creative and Professional Writing from the University of Oklahoma and teaches there as well. Mostly he travels now, though, performing readings and concerts as well as speaking and leading workshops in high schools, universities, and community organizations on creativity, creative writing, and the need for readers to not give up on poetry. Nathan has published seven books: Letters to the One-Armed Poet: A Memoir of Friendship, Loss, and Butternut Squash Ravioli (2011), My Sideways Heart (2010), Two Tables Over (2008)—Winner of the 2009 Oklahoma Book Award, Not Exactly Job (2007)—a finalist for the Oklahoma Book Award, Ashes Over the Southwest (2005), Suffer the Little Voices (2005)—a finalist for the Oklahoma Book Award, and Hobson’s Choice (2002). His poem, “Little Jerusalems,” was recently nominated for the Pushcart Prize. And in 2010, he released an album of all-original songs, Gypsy Moon. Nathan’s work has appeared in: World Literature Today; Concho River Review; Blue Rock Review; Descant; Texas Poetry Calendar; Sugar Mule; Di-verse-city (anthology of the Austin International Poetry Festival); Wichita Falls Literature and Art Review; “Walt’s Corner” of The Long-Islander newspaper (a column started by Whitman in 1838); Langdon Review of the Arts in Texas; Oklahoma Today Magazine; Oklahoma Humanities Magazine; Blood and Thunder; Blueberry Rain and Chocolate Snow; Windhover; Byline Magazine; Blue Hole: Magazine of the Georgetown Poetry Festival; Christian Ethics Today; Crosstimbers; and Poetrybay.comas well as in five anthologies: Travelin’ Music: A Poetic Tribute to Woody Guthrie (Village Books Press, Cheyenne), Two Southwests (VAC, Chicago), Ain’t Nobody That Can Sing Like Me: New Oklahoma Writing (Mongrel Empire Press, Albuquerque), Wingbeats: Exercises & Practice in Poetry (Dos Gatos Press, Austin), New Poetry Appreciation (Yunnan University Press, Kunming, China).

James Brubaker is a PhD candidate in creative writing at Oklahoma State University. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Confrontation, Blue Mesa Review, The Cupboard, elimae, Rabbit Catastrophe Review, The Texas Review, Pear Noir! and Keyhole Magazine. James is currently finishing his dissertation, which is a collection of short stories revolving around music and musicians. 
Currently, when not gallivanting around the Middle East, LeAnne Howe, (enrolled citizen in the Choctaw Nation) is Professor of English, American Indian Studies at the University of Illinois, and, Director of the MFA program in Creative Writing. She makes her homes in Ada, Oklahoma; Urbana-Champaign, Illinois, and most recently Amman, Jordan. Author of three books, Howe’s fiction appears in Fiction International, Callaloo, Story, Yalobusha Review, Kenyon Review, Cimarron Review, and elsewhere. Her work has been translated in France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, and Denmark, and she’s held residencies at MacDowell Colony, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Ragdale Writers’ Residency, and the Atlantic Center for the Arts.
Haesong Kwon was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea, and emigrated to the United States with family when he was eight-years old. He received his MFA in poetry from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Currently, he is a Ph.D. Student in English at Oklahoma State University, where he teaches classes in composition and creative writing, and serves as an assistant editor at the Cimarron Review. His poems have appeared in New Orleans Review, Oxford Magazine, Quarterly West, Red Rock Review, Roger and others.   

Benjamin Myers won the 2011 Oklahoma Book Award for Poetry for his first book, Elegy for Trains (Village Books Press, 2010). His poems may be read in The New York Quarterly, Nimrod, Plainsongs, Borderlands, Measure, The Iron Horse Literary Review, and many other journals. His essays have appeared in academic publications such as Studies in Philology and English Literary History, and he frequently reviews books of contemporary poetry for several journals in print and online. With a Ph.D. from Washington University, he teaches literature and poetry writing at Oklahoma Baptist University.

Patrick Ocampo was born in the Philippines and raised in Brampton Ontario Canada. He began his writing career at the University of Toronto where he won the Ladoo Book Prize for Creative Writing. He took courses in Creative Writing while working on his Master’s Degree in Behavioral Science at Cameron University, and an appearance at the Scissortail Writer’s Festival resulted in the publication of his first collection of poems and short stories entitled Surface Tension, published by Mongrel Empire Press. Patrick currently resides in Bartlesville, Oklahoma and teaches at Tulsa Community College. His work has been anthologized in Aint Nobody Can Sing Like Me and Agave: A Celebration of Tequila. He is working on a new collection of poems tentatively titled “A Stranger Everywhere”.

In 2003, Jason Poudrier was deployed to Iraq, wounded in action, and awarded the Purple Heart. He advanced to the rank of sergeant before being honorably discharged in 2005. He then completed an English degree at Cameron University in Lawton, Oklahoma. His work has appeared in several journals including the New Mexico Poetry Review, Connecticut Review, Sugar Mule and The Goldmine and has been anthologized in a collection by Oklahoma writers titled Ain't Nobody that Can Sing Like Me. His first chapbook In the Rubble at Our Feet was published in 2010. His first full collection of war poems titled Red Fields was published in spring 2012.

The poems and essays of Carol Coffee Reposa have appeared or are forthcoming in The Atlanta Review, The Formalist, The Texas Observer, Southwestern American Literature, Coal City Review, The Valparaiso Review, and other journals. Author of three collections of poetry, she has received three Pushcart Prize nominations, as well as three Fulbright-Hays Fellowships for study in Russia, Peru, Ecuador, and Mexico. A professor emeritus of English at San Antonio College,  Reposa remains active in her profession through work as nonfiction editor of Concho River Review, adjunct instruction at St. Mary's University, and  free-lance editing. She has been twice a finalist for Texas State Poet Laureate. 

Greg Rodgers is a writer and Choctaw storyteller from Warr Acres, Oklahoma. He is the author of two books, The Ghost of Mingo Creek and other Spooky Oklahoma Legends and One Dark Night in Oklahoma. Both are collections of short-stories based on actual legends from around the state. Rodgers’ story contribution, “Giddy Up, Wolfy,” appears in the graphic-anthology Trickster, which is listed as a 2011 Children’s Notable Book from the American Library Association. Greg has presented and performed at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. and is an official Smithsonian Associate. As a storyteller and workshop presenter, he appears at schools, libraries, festivals, conferences, universities, and tribal events throughout the country. His performances are a public demonstration of his true passion, the collection and respectful preservation of his people’s memories----the foundation of the Choctaw oral narrative.

Andrew Terhune is originally from Memphis, Tennessee. He is the author of the poetry chapbooks Helen Mirren Picks Out My Clothes (Greying Ghost press, 2010) and Handle This Bludgeon and Run Me Through (Tilt Press, 2008). His manuscript No Tee Vee was named a finalist for the 2011 Augury Books Editors’ Prize. Poems from No Tee Vee have recently appeared in Rabbit Catastrophe Review, Court Green, 5AM, Meridian, DIAGRAM, and West Wind Review.  


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