Study Break

Drop by the Avant Gardeners’ next event: a study break in the Writing Center in Andrews Library! The session will feature:

  • HOT chocolate (with marshmallows)
  • SINFUL candy canes
  • THRILLING books and company

It’ll be on Thursday, Dec. 4 from 4-5 p.m., the week before exams. Bring a friend or two, and get cozy!


Thanks to everyone who came to our last few events, including our Halloween reading in the Oak Grove and our screening of the student-produced “Dracula” musical. For those who saw (and loved) “Dracula”, don’t forget that you can still get copies! Just send Mitch Storar a blank DVD and he’ll make you your very own Gothic-horror musical DVD.

Next up is a faculty presentation, given by one of the newest members of the English department. Assistant Professor Leslie Wingard specializes in African-American literature, black visual art and religion, ethnic studies, and women’s and gender studies. She will be presenting on her own academic work next Thursday, Nov. 13 at 11 a.m. in Kauke 143. The event also signals the return of tea and scones—don’t miss it!

Blooming Lately

The Avant Garden is back for the 2008-09 school year! If you missed our first few events, don’t worry — there’s many more to come. We’ll keep you posted.

For now, grab your pea coat and gear up for the upcoming celebration of the Deborah P. Hilty Endowment Fund next week. On Thursday, October 23, four writers with Wooster connections will participate in a panel discussion on “Careers in Writing and the Independent Study Experience.” The event is free and open to the public, and will be held in the Lean Lecture Room of Wishart Hall (303 E. University St.) at 11 a.m.

Panel participants include:

  • Stephen Donaldson ’68, prolific author of science fiction novels
  • Susan Stranahan ’68, Pulitzer-prize winning former editor and staff writer for the Philadelphia Inquirer
  • Jerry Footlick ’56, an emeritus trustee of the College and former senior editor at Newsweek
  • Ceil Cleveland, formerly editor of Columbia Magazine and professor of English and writing at New York University.

Professor Larry Stewart will facilitate.

As a bit of background, Professor Hilty was a member of the Department of English from 1964 to 1967 and 1970 to 2003, where nonfictional writing was the hub of her academic interests. She was also Secretary of the College and served on the Board of Trustees from 1976 to 2001. Her Fund is used to support programs beyond the annual departmental budget, particularly those that support the teaching of writing.

2008 Writing Prize Winners

The Donaldson Prize for Fiction
1st: Molly Lehman, “Jamie and Rill”
2nd: John Boucher, “The Coyote and Cam”
3rd: Peter Gernsheimer, “The Empty Room”
Honorable Mention: Hannah LeGris, “En-er-gy. I Could Feel It.”
Honorable Mention: Cara Stoddard, “Knots”

The Donaldson Prize for a Personal Essay
1st: Danny Caine, “Photographing the Wildlife”
2nd: Cara Stoddard, “Looking at Infinity With My Eyes Closed”

The Donaldson Prize for a Critical Essay
1st: Molly Lehman, “Vladimir Nabokov’s Pale Fire and the Role of the Literary Annotation in Reading”

The Vonna Hicks Adrian Prize for Poetry
1st : Molly Lehman, “Family Album Pantoum”
2nd: Danny Caine, “Arse Poetica”
3rd: Mitch Storar, “Parable of Meiosis”
Honorable Mention: Hugh Brown, “God Save Mesabi”

The Vonna Hicks Adrian Prize for a Critical Essay on Poetry
Sarah Gerlach, “Poetical Form: A Vehicle of Meaning”

The Ralph L. Kinsey Poetry Award
Mitch Storar, for all poetry work submitted

The Academy of American Poets Award for Poetry
Mitch Storar, “Dmitri Mendeleev”


The English Department and the Avant Gardeners are proud to present…

The First Annual English Department Picnic

  • Food by English Faculty
  • Professor Tom Prendergast manning the grill (meat- and vegetarian-style)
  • Readings by English Department Writing Prize Winners

Sunday, April 27, 2008 | 4-7 pm | 1131 Quinby Avenue (The Prendergast residence)

A group of English Majors will be meeting at 3:45 in the Kauke Arch to walk over together.  This will alleviate the always already awkward situation of arriving at a party alone.  Also, you’ll be guaranteed not to be the first one there.

Karen Kovacik, author of Beyond the Velvet Curtain and Metropolis Burning, will give a reading of her poetry and Polish translations.   Sponsored by The Department of English, The Artful Dodge, and the Donaldson Fund.

Friday, April 18.  Kauke 244.  4:00 pm.

Michael Salinger will arrive on a storm of words next Wednesday, April 23. A five-time team captain at the National Poetry Slam, as well as a renowned “teaching artitst,” Salinger will showcase both of his specialties at Wooster.

Poetry Performance Master Class with Michael Salinger

April 23rd, 4:00-5:30 pm, Kauke 237: Salinger will help students with reading their work out loud. RSVP required; pick up a form from a professor or take one from the bulletin board across from Kathie Clyde’s office.

Poetry Performance: Michael Salinger and Students

April 23rd, 8:15 pm, Luce Formal Lounge: Salinger will join standout students from his master class in entertaining and enlightening a Wooster audience. Don’t miss this chance to hear a slam master.