Literary Festival

Connections: The 46th Annual ODU Literary Festival

October 1 - 5, 2023

“After all, I absorb the world around me, and that’s changing all the time. Just as all the water that was in my body last time we met has now been replaced with new water, the things that make up me have changed too.”
— Sayaka Murata

In a time of technological advancements that seem to challenge the very nature of writing and art, we come together to reconnect and reaffirm the transformational and profoundly human act of making and experiencing the written word. Writing or reading, performing or viewing, we reach beyond ourselves and in that process are forever changed. Join us for the 46th Annual ODU Literary Festival, as we celebrate poets, novelists, memoirists, actors, directors and all those who tell the stories that link us together and change the way we understand ourselves and our world.

Dr. Luisa A. Igloria and Kent Wascom
2023 Festival Co-directors

All events are free and open to the community!

Free parking available in Constant Center/45th Street Garage for events in University Theatre.

For more information, please contact the Old Dominion University English Department at (757) 683-3991 or email mfagpdassistant@immortalmindset.com.

Follow the Literary Festival on Facebook @ODULitFest and on Instagram @olddominionmfa

46th Annual ODU Literary Festival Schedule

All events are in University Theatre unless indicated otherwise. Follow the Literary Festival on Facebook: @ODULitFest

4 p.m., Opening Reception

The Green Onion Restaurant, 1603 Colley Avenue

 

12:00 p.m. Chauna Craig & Jerri Dickseski Prize Presentation
 

Chauna Craig has published her stories and essays in numerous anthologies and literary journals, including Ploughshares, Prairie Schooner, Fourth Genre, Sou’wester and Flash Fiction America (forthcoming 2023). She’s been awarded fellowships and scholarships to Vermont Studio Center, Hedgebrook, and Bread Loaf Writers' Conference. A Montana native, she currently lives in western Pennsylvania. The Widow’s Guide to Edible Mushrooms was her debut story collection, and Wings & Other Things is her second, both with Press 53.

 

4:00 p.m. Faculty Readings
 

 

Jane Alberdeston’s work has been published in various anthologies and journals, such as Step into a World, Bum Rush the Page, Paterson Literary Review, Sargasso: A Journal of Caribbean Literature, The Acentos Review, Rock and Sling: A Journal of Witness, Manteca! An Anthology of AfroBoricua Poets, and Caribbean Vistas. She is the co-author of the YA novel Sister Chicas, and the novel Colony 51, coming in December 2023. She is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Old Dominion University. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marianne Chan grew up in Stuttgart, Germany, and Lansing, Michigan. After she earned her B.A. in English from Michigan State University, she went on to study poetry at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where she earned her MFA. 

Marianne is the author of All Heathens, which was the winner of the 2021 GLCA New Writers Award in Poetry, the 2021 Ohioana Book Award in Poetry, and the 2022 Association for Asian American Studies Book Award for Outstanding Achievement. Her poems have appeared in Poetry Magazine, New England Review, Kenyon Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, and elsewhere. Between 2017-2019, she served as poetry editor for Split Lip Magazine. She is a Kundiman fellow.

She lives in Norfolk, Virginia . She is married to the fiction writer Clancy McGilligan. 

 

 

7:00 p.m. Brian Turner

 

Brian Turner is the author of five collections of poetry, most recently: The Wild Delight of Wild Things (2023), The Goodbye World Poem (2023), and The Dead Peasant’s Handbook (2023), all forthcoming with Alice James Books. His other collections include Here, Bullet to Phantom Noise, and the memoir My Life as a Foreign Country. He is the editor of The Kiss and co-editor of The Strangest of Theatres anthologies. A musician, he has also written and recorded several albums with The Interplanetary Acoustic Team, including 11 11 (Me Smiling) and The Retro Legion’s American Undertow. His poems and essays have been published in The New York Times, The Guardian, National Geographic, Harper’s, among other fine journals, and he was featured in the documentary film Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience, which was nominated for an Academy Award. A Guggenheim Fellow, he has received a USA Hillcrest Fellowship in Literature, the Amy Lowell Traveling Fellowship, the Poets’ Prize, and a Fellowship from the Lannan Foundation. He lives in Orlando, Florida, with his dog, Dene, the world’s sweetest golden retriever.

12:00 p.m. Virginie Beauregard D., with Peter Schulman

 

Virginie Beauregard D. is the author of three acclaimed books of poetry: Les heures se trompent de but (The hours miss their mark) in 2010; in 2014 she published D’une main sauvage (From a Savage Hand) which was a finalist for the Emile Nelligan Prize in 2015 and a winner of the Jean Lafrenière Prize at the International Poetry Festival of Trois-Rivières in 2016. Les derniers coureurs (The Last Runners) in 2018 and was a finalist for the prestigious Prix des Libraires in 2019. All three volumes were published by Les Editions de l’Ecrou. In 2019, she published a children’s book, Perruche (Parakeet) at La Courte Echelle. She is very active in the contemporary Quebecois poetry world and one of her earliest poems, “Vous êtes tous des petits garçons qui rêvez de lilas en fleurs” (“You are all little boys who dream of flowery lilacs) was performed by the theater company Thêatre de Quatre Sous in Montreal in 2009.

6:00 p.m. Peter Weller

 

headshot of Peter Weller

Dr. Peter Weller is a noted actor, director and Italian Renaissance art historian. He is most known as the star of the iconic films Robocop (1987) and Robocop 2 (1990), The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai (1984), and Naked Lunch (1991). His more recent appearances (roles and guest roles) include, Star Trek Into Darkness (2013), the TV series Dexter (2010) and 24 (2006). Dr. Weller is also an acclaimed director, having directed numerous episodes of Sons of Anarchy (2011-2014), Longmire (2012-2017), and most recently Hawaii Five-O (2013-2019). In addition to his long and successful career in theatre, film, and television, Dr. Weller is an art historian. He received his PhD in Art History with a specialization in Italian Renaissance Art from UCLA. He is the author of an important peer-reviewed article on the Italian Renaissance sculptor Donatello (“Donatello’s Bronze David in the Twenty-First Century,” 2012), and an essay contribution on the Italian Renaissance painter Antonello da Messina (in Visualizing Sensuous Suffering and Affective Pain in Early Modern Europe and the Spanish Americas, Brill, 2018).

7:30 p.m. From Naro Video at ODU Libraries: THE NEW AGE (1994) with Peter Weller

12:00 p.m. Michael Patrick Pearson

 

Michael Patrick Pearson, for many years a professor of creative writing and literature at Old Dominion University, has published essays and reviews in The Boston Globe, The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Southern Literary Journal, Shenandoah Review, Chautauqua, The Morning News, Creative Nonfiction, The New York Journal of Books, and others.  He is the author of many books – among them Imagined Places: Journeys into Literary America (1991 –a NYT Notable Book), Dreaming of Columbus: A Boyhood in the Bronx (1999),Innocents Abroad Too (2008 -- a narrative about two journeys around the world by ship), Reading Life -- On Books, Memory, and Travel (2015), and Shohola Falls (2003 -- a coming-of-age novel that imagines the hidden life of Mark Twain and the journal of Thomas Blankenship (the real-life Huck Finn).  His new book, The Road to Dungannon (2023), is a narrative about his maternal grandfather, Irish history and literature, and the writer's travels around the island.  Willie Morris, the former editor of Harper's, said, "Michael Pearson is one of our nation's finest memoirists."
 

4:00 p.m. Alumni Readings
 

Amanda Galvan Huynh (she/her) is a Xicana writer and educator from Texas. She is the author of a chapbook, Songs of Brujería (Big Lucks September 2019) and Co-Editor of Of Color: Poets’ Ways of Making: An Anthology of Essays on Transformative Poetics (The Operating System 2019). Her debut poetry collection, Where My Umbilical is Buried, is forthcoming in March 2023 with Sundress Publications. Amanda has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, Best New Poets, and Sundress Publications’ Best of the Net. She was a 2016 AWP Intro Journal Project Award Winner, 2018 Best of the Net Winner, a finalist for the 2015 Gloria Anzaldúa Poetry Prize, and a finalist for the 2017 Poetry Society of America Chapbook Fellowship. Her poetry can be read in print and online journals such as Hayden’s Ferry Review, Puerto del Sol, The Southampton Review, and others. 

Amanda earned her MFA in Poetry at Old Dominion University, BA in English at the University of Texas at Arlington, and BA in Biology at the University of Texas at Dallas. Currently, she is a doctoral student in English at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

 

 

 

Richard Leise writes and teaches outside Ithaca, NY.  A Perry Morgan Fellow from Old Dominion University’s MFA program, his fiction and poetry is featured in numerous publications.  His debut novel, Being Dead, will be available from Brigids Gate Press fall, 2023.
 

Bob Kunzinger is a non-fiction writer whose work has appeared in the Southern Humanities Review, WW2 History, The Chronicle of Higher Education, St Anthony Messenger, Ilanot Review, Kestrel, the Washington Post and many others. He has authored ten books of essays including Penance, still very popular in Prague, and Borderline Crazy, a collection of essays which includes several noted by Best American Essays. His next book is the narrative memoir, The Iron Scar: A Father and Son in Siberia, from Madville Publishing, who did his previous collection of essays, A Third Place: Notes in Nature.

 

 

Tracy Rice Weber  is a longtime educator who currently teaches as an adjunct at Christopher Newport University in Newport News, VA and at The Muse Writing Center in Norfolk. A graduate of the ODU MFA Program, her work can be found in River River, The Bangalore Review, on Poets.org as a recipient of the Academy of American Poets College Poetry Prize, and forthcoming in the 2024 winter/spring issue of CALYX. In 2021, her chapbook, All That Keeps Me was published by Finishing Line Press. Tools & Ornaments, her first full-length collection of poems, will be released by St. Julian Press in fall 2023. She lives with her husband and two of her three sons in Hampton, VA.

Van Vaneendenburg served as an analyst during her 30-plus-year naval career, retiring as a captain, and holds a master’s from the University of Southern California. She is the inaugural S.C.R.Y. Fellow in Literature (Scry Creative Residencies; scrymagazine.com) and a National Endowment for the Arts Military Veteran Fellow at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.  A graduate of the ODU MFA program, Van’s work has appeared  in Navy Blues, a collection of personal essays pushing against individual and bureaucratic identities of the post-Vietnam Navy, and Sisters in Arms: Lessons We’ve Learned (2023). 
 

7:00 p.m. S.A. Cosby
 

S. A. Cosby is an Anthony Award-winning writer from Southeastern Virginia. He is the author of the New York Times bestsellers All the Sinners Bleed, Razorblade Tears, and Blacktop Wasteland, which won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, was a New York Times Notable Book, and was named a best book of the year by NPR, The Guardian, and Library Journal, among others. When not writing, he is an avid hiker and chess player.

 

7:00 p.m. Andrew Joseph White
 

Andrew Joseph White is a queer, trans, New York Times bestselling author from Virginia, where he grew up falling in love with monsters and wishing he could be one too. He received his MFA in creative writing from George Mason University in 2022. Find him at AndrewJosephWhite.com or on Twitter @AJWhiteAuthor.

4 p.m., Opening Reception

The Green Onion Restaurant, 1603 Colley Avenue

 

12:00 p.m. Chauna Craig & Jerri Dickseski Prize Presentation
 

Chauna Craig has published her stories and essays in numerous anthologies and literary journals, including Ploughshares, Prairie Schooner, Fourth Genre, Sou’wester and Flash Fiction America (forthcoming 2023). She’s been awarded fellowships and scholarships to Vermont Studio Center, Hedgebrook, and Bread Loaf Writers' Conference. A Montana native, she currently lives in western Pennsylvania. The Widow’s Guide to Edible Mushrooms was her debut story collection, and Wings & Other Things is her second, both with Press 53.

 

4:00 p.m. Faculty Readings
 

 

Jane Alberdeston’s work has been published in various anthologies and journals, such as Step into a World, Bum Rush the Page, Paterson Literary Review, Sargasso: A Journal of Caribbean Literature, The Acentos Review, Rock and Sling: A Journal of Witness, Manteca! An Anthology of AfroBoricua Poets, and Caribbean Vistas. She is the co-author of the YA novel Sister Chicas, and the novel Colony 51, coming in December 2023. She is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Old Dominion University. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marianne Chan grew up in Stuttgart, Germany, and Lansing, Michigan. After she earned her B.A. in English from Michigan State University, she went on to study poetry at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where she earned her MFA. 

Marianne is the author of All Heathens, which was the winner of the 2021 GLCA New Writers Award in Poetry, the 2021 Ohioana Book Award in Poetry, and the 2022 Association for Asian American Studies Book Award for Outstanding Achievement. Her poems have appeared in Poetry Magazine, New England Review, Kenyon Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, and elsewhere. Between 2017-2019, she served as poetry editor for Split Lip Magazine. She is a Kundiman fellow.

She lives in Norfolk, Virginia . She is married to the fiction writer Clancy McGilligan. 

 

 

7:00 p.m. Brian Turner

 

Brian Turner is the author of five collections of poetry, most recently: The Wild Delight of Wild Things (2023), The Goodbye World Poem (2023), and The Dead Peasant’s Handbook (2023), all forthcoming with Alice James Books. His other collections include Here, Bullet to Phantom Noise, and the memoir My Life as a Foreign Country. He is the editor of The Kiss and co-editor of The Strangest of Theatres anthologies. A musician, he has also written and recorded several albums with The Interplanetary Acoustic Team, including 11 11 (Me Smiling) and The Retro Legion’s American Undertow. His poems and essays have been published in The New York Times, The Guardian, National Geographic, Harper’s, among other fine journals, and he was featured in the documentary film Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience, which was nominated for an Academy Award. A Guggenheim Fellow, he has received a USA Hillcrest Fellowship in Literature, the Amy Lowell Traveling Fellowship, the Poets’ Prize, and a Fellowship from the Lannan Foundation. He lives in Orlando, Florida, with his dog, Dene, the world’s sweetest golden retriever.

12:00 p.m. Virginie Beauregard D., with Peter Schulman

 

Virginie Beauregard D. is the author of three acclaimed books of poetry: Les heures se trompent de but (The hours miss their mark) in 2010; in 2014 she published D’une main sauvage (From a Savage Hand) which was a finalist for the Emile Nelligan Prize in 2015 and a winner of the Jean Lafrenière Prize at the International Poetry Festival of Trois-Rivières in 2016. Les derniers coureurs (The Last Runners) in 2018 and was a finalist for the prestigious Prix des Libraires in 2019. All three volumes were published by Les Editions de l’Ecrou. In 2019, she published a children’s book, Perruche (Parakeet) at La Courte Echelle. She is very active in the contemporary Quebecois poetry world and one of her earliest poems, “Vous êtes tous des petits garçons qui rêvez de lilas en fleurs” (“You are all little boys who dream of flowery lilacs) was performed by the theater company Thêatre de Quatre Sous in Montreal in 2009.

6:00 p.m. Peter Weller

 

headshot of Peter Weller

Dr. Peter Weller is a noted actor, director and Italian Renaissance art historian. He is most known as the star of the iconic films Robocop (1987) and Robocop 2 (1990), The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai (1984), and Naked Lunch (1991). His more recent appearances (roles and guest roles) include, Star Trek Into Darkness (2013), the TV series Dexter (2010) and 24 (2006). Dr. Weller is also an acclaimed director, having directed numerous episodes of Sons of Anarchy (2011-2014), Longmire (2012-2017), and most recently Hawaii Five-O (2013-2019). In addition to his long and successful career in theatre, film, and television, Dr. Weller is an art historian. He received his PhD in Art History with a specialization in Italian Renaissance Art from UCLA. He is the author of an important peer-reviewed article on the Italian Renaissance sculptor Donatello (“Donatello’s Bronze David in the Twenty-First Century,” 2012), and an essay contribution on the Italian Renaissance painter Antonello da Messina (in Visualizing Sensuous Suffering and Affective Pain in Early Modern Europe and the Spanish Americas, Brill, 2018).

7:30 p.m. From Naro Video at ODU Libraries: THE NEW AGE (1994) with Peter Weller

12:00 p.m. Michael Patrick Pearson

 

Michael Patrick Pearson, for many years a professor of creative writing and literature at Old Dominion University, has published essays and reviews in The Boston Globe, The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Southern Literary Journal, Shenandoah Review, Chautauqua, The Morning News, Creative Nonfiction, The New York Journal of Books, and others.  He is the author of many books – among them Imagined Places: Journeys into Literary America (1991 –a NYT Notable Book), Dreaming of Columbus: A Boyhood in the Bronx (1999),Innocents Abroad Too (2008 -- a narrative about two journeys around the world by ship), Reading Life -- On Books, Memory, and Travel (2015), and Shohola Falls (2003 -- a coming-of-age novel that imagines the hidden life of Mark Twain and the journal of Thomas Blankenship (the real-life Huck Finn).  His new book, The Road to Dungannon (2023), is a narrative about his maternal grandfather, Irish history and literature, and the writer's travels around the island.  Willie Morris, the former editor of Harper's, said, "Michael Pearson is one of our nation's finest memoirists."
 

4:00 p.m. Alumni Readings
 

Amanda Galvan Huynh (she/her) is a Xicana writer and educator from Texas. She is the author of a chapbook, Songs of Brujería (Big Lucks September 2019) and Co-Editor of Of Color: Poets’ Ways of Making: An Anthology of Essays on Transformative Poetics (The Operating System 2019). Her debut poetry collection, Where My Umbilical is Buried, is forthcoming in March 2023 with Sundress Publications. Amanda has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, Best New Poets, and Sundress Publications’ Best of the Net. She was a 2016 AWP Intro Journal Project Award Winner, 2018 Best of the Net Winner, a finalist for the 2015 Gloria Anzaldúa Poetry Prize, and a finalist for the 2017 Poetry Society of America Chapbook Fellowship. Her poetry can be read in print and online journals such as Hayden’s Ferry Review, Puerto del Sol, The Southampton Review, and others. 

Amanda earned her MFA in Poetry at Old Dominion University, BA in English at the University of Texas at Arlington, and BA in Biology at the University of Texas at Dallas. Currently, she is a doctoral student in English at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

 

 

 

Richard Leise writes and teaches outside Ithaca, NY.  A Perry Morgan Fellow from Old Dominion University’s MFA program, his fiction and poetry is featured in numerous publications.  His debut novel, Being Dead, will be available from Brigids Gate Press fall, 2023.
 

Bob Kunzinger is a non-fiction writer whose work has appeared in the Southern Humanities Review, WW2 History, The Chronicle of Higher Education, St Anthony Messenger, Ilanot Review, Kestrel, the Washington Post and many others. He has authored ten books of essays including Penance, still very popular in Prague, and Borderline Crazy, a collection of essays which includes several noted by Best American Essays. His next book is the narrative memoir, The Iron Scar: A Father and Son in Siberia, from Madville Publishing, who did his previous collection of essays, A Third Place: Notes in Nature.

 

 

Tracy Rice Weber  is a longtime educator who currently teaches as an adjunct at Christopher Newport University in Newport News, VA and at The Muse Writing Center in Norfolk. A graduate of the ODU MFA Program, her work can be found in River River, The Bangalore Review, on Poets.org as a recipient of the Academy of American Poets College Poetry Prize, and forthcoming in the 2024 winter/spring issue of CALYX. In 2021, her chapbook, All That Keeps Me was published by Finishing Line Press. Tools & Ornaments, her first full-length collection of poems, will be released by St. Julian Press in fall 2023. She lives with her husband and two of her three sons in Hampton, VA.

Van Vaneendenburg served as an analyst during her 30-plus-year naval career, retiring as a captain, and holds a master’s from the University of Southern California. She is the inaugural S.C.R.Y. Fellow in Literature (Scry Creative Residencies; scrymagazine.com) and a National Endowment for the Arts Military Veteran Fellow at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.  A graduate of the ODU MFA program, Van’s work has appeared  in Navy Blues, a collection of personal essays pushing against individual and bureaucratic identities of the post-Vietnam Navy, and Sisters in Arms: Lessons We’ve Learned (2023). 
 

7:00 p.m. S.A. Cosby
 

S. A. Cosby is an Anthony Award-winning writer from Southeastern Virginia. He is the author of the New York Times bestsellers All the Sinners Bleed, Razorblade Tears, and Blacktop Wasteland, which won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, was a New York Times Notable Book, and was named a best book of the year by NPR, The Guardian, and Library Journal, among others. When not writing, he is an avid hiker and chess player.

 

7:00 p.m. Andrew Joseph White
 

Andrew Joseph White is a queer, trans, New York Times bestselling author from Virginia, where he grew up falling in love with monsters and wishing he could be one too. He received his MFA in creative writing from George Mason University in 2022. Find him at AndrewJosephWhite.com or on Twitter @AJWhiteAuthor.

All events are free and open to the community!

Free parking available in Constant Center/45th Street Garage for events in University Theatre and in the 43rd Street Garage for the Barry Art Museum.

For more information, please contact the Old Dominion University English Department at (757) 683-3991 or email mfagpdassistant@immortalmindset.com.

Follow the Literary Festival on Facebook @ODULitFest and on Instagram @olddominionmfa

Special Thanks

  • President Brian Hemphill, Ph.D. and the Office of the President
  • Cullen Strawn, Ph.D, Sarah Glaser, and Arts@ODU
  • Michael Khandelwal and The Muse Writers Center
  • Edith White and the Forrest P. White Endowment
  • Kris King and the Naro Expanded Video Collection
  • Sarah Pishko and Prince Books
  • Dean Dr. Laura Delbrugge and the Office of the Dean, College of Arts and Letters
  • SuperCompStudios, logo design
  • Erin Dougherty and Eleanor's Norfolk
  • Jerri Dickseski
  • Kenneth FitzGerald, Graphic Design
  • Dr. Anne H. Muraoka and the Institute for the Humanities

Where great writers of the future connect with the great writers of our time

The Old Dominion University Annual Literary Festival is the premier event of our MFA Program in Creative Writing and one of the many reasons to study the writer's craft with us at ODU.

Visit the University Libraries' Annual Literary Festival Digital Archives to view materials from past festivals.