This year I am once again hosting the CCP Poets & Writers Festival. We have great events of interest to filmmakers, poets, novelists and bibliophiles. First up is local filmmaker Ben Hickernell! Read more below.–Kelly
2014 Poets & Writers Festival – Community College of Philadelphia
Welcome to the annual Poets & Writers Festival. Events are free and open to the public. The Winnet Great Hall is located on the 2nd Floor of the Winnet Building, on 17th Street between Spring Garden and Callowhill. A public parking lot is located on 18th Street. (Campus map at: http://path.ccp.edu/site/about/locations/pdfs/CampusMap.pdf
Tues., Feb. 18, 2014. 1:00 – 2:30 pm. The Winnet Great Hall. Filmmaker Ben Hickernell: The Do’s and Don’ts of Scriptwriting and Working with Actors. Join Philadelphia-based writer and director Ben Hickernell for a discussion about making theatrical films for today’s market. Hickernell’s credits include Lebanon, PA, a film about adolescence, family secrets and abortion, and Backwards, a movie about competitive rowing teams set on the Schuylkill River and starring James van der Beek. Hickernell runs Philadelphia based production company Reconstruction Pictures, where he is actively developing new projects. His newest film, now in post-production, is called Hell of a View and stars: Hunter Parrish (Weeds), Ashley Hinshaw (Chronicle), Tim Daly (Wings, Private Practice), Jon Togo (CSI: Miami), Nana Visitor (Star Trek: DS9) and Victor Slezak (Treme). See film clips, ask questions, and gain insights from one of Philly’s hardest working professional filmmakers.
Thurs, March 13, 2014 9:40-4:10. The Winnet Great Hall. Poetry Symposium: Workshops and Readings.
- 9:40-11:10—Workshop with Valerie Fox and Lynn Levin, authors of Poems for the Writing: “Writing the Cameo Cinquain and the Unanswerable Letter Poem.”
- 11:20-12:50—Workshop with David Groff, author of Clay: “The Turn of the Poem: Taking Your Poetry Past Its Comfort Zone.”
- 1:00-2:30—Lunch and a Reading by the Poets. Valerie Fox, Lynn Levin, David Groff, Suzanne Parker.
- 2:40-4:10—Workshop with Suzanne Parker, author of Viral: “Pushing the Poetic Metaphor.”
Wed, March 19, 2014, 9:00 – 10:30 a.m. Winnet Great Hall. Kevin Powers, The Yellow Birds. One Book, One Philadelphia Author Series presents veteran and novelist Kevin, who will read from his National Book Award-nominated novel, The Yellow Birds, and will speak on his personal journey as a soldier and writer, as well as his perspectives of the physical and psychological paths navigated by today’s veterans. A book-signing will follow.
Wed, March 19, 2014, 11:30 – 1:00 p.m. Winnet Great Hall. Panel Discussion: Returning Home: The Challenges Faced by Today’s Veterans. How do the issues raised in The Yellow Birds resonate with student veterans at CCP? From experiencing PTSD to attaining an education and finding a job, what kind of obstacles do veterans face as they transition to life at home? Join a panel that will discuss these issues as well as answer audience questions. Panelists include Connie Watson, Psychology Department; Stephen Bachovin, Coordinator of Veterans Programming; Jason Mays, Iraq War veteran and CCP Student Government President; Dr. Howard J. Cohen, Psychologist; and moderator Kelly McQuain, English Department. Part of the Diversity Dialogue Series and co-sponsored by the Office of Diversity and Equity, who will provide lunch for the first fifteen people at the event.
Mon, April 7, 2014 6:00-9:00 p.m.: The Cube. Faculty Showcase of Writers, featuring: Alan Elyshevitz, Jeff Markovitz, Nick Moudry, Marissa Johnson-Valenzuela, Elizabeth Catanese, Diane McManus, Jonathan Pappas, Kate Brady. Thierry Saintine, and Thomas Rush.
MORE ABOUT THE VISITING GUESTS:
KEVIN POWERS is the author of The Yellow Birds. Winner of the 2013 PEN/Hemingway Award for First Fiction and a finalist for the 2012 National Book Award, The Yellow Birds has been compared to Tim O’Brien’s classic war novel, The Things They Carried, for its powerful depiction of the truth and tragedy of war. Poet/novelist Powers vividly tells the story of a young soldier struggling to find meaning in his harrowing experiences in Iraq, while suffering profound guilt over his friend and fellow soldier’s death, as well as alienation from community and family upon his return home. According to The New York Times, “Kevin Powers has something to say, something deeply moving about the frailty of man and the brutality of war, and we should all lean closer and listen.”
DAVID GROFF is a poet, writer, independent book editor, literary scout, and teacher. His book of poems, Clay (Trio House Press, 2013) was chosen by Michael Waters as winner of the Louise Bogan Award. His previous collection, Theory of Devolution (University of Illinois Press, 2002) was selected by Mark Doty for the National Poetry Series and was a finalist for the Lambda Literary and Publishing Triangle awards. He has co-edited two anthologies, Who’s Yer Daddy?: Gay Writers Celebrate Their Mentors and Forerunners, and Persistent Voices: Poetry by Writers Lost to AIDS. David has received residencies from the Anderson Center, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center, Ragdale, the Santa Fe Art Institute, the Saltonstall Foundation, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation. A graduate of Princeton and the Iowa Writers Workshop, he teaches in the M.F.A. creative writing program of the City College of New York.SUZANNE PARKER is a winner of the Kinereth Gensler Book Award; her collection of poetry, Viral, was published by Alice James Books in Sept. 2013. Her poetry has appeared in Drunken Boat, Hunger Mountain, Barrow Street, Cimarron Review, Rattapallax, and numerous other journals, and she is a winner of the Alice M. Sellars Award from the Academy of American Poets and was a Poetry Fellow at the Prague Summer Seminars. Of Viral, poet Carol Muske-Dukes writes, “These are relentlessly tender, impossibly empathetic poems— which echo and clarify the body of grief— ‘…the need to pass/through the impassable and land/in a space I fill, exactly.’ The emotional tension is unbearable, but sustained, just as the human heart goes on, after unimaginable loss.”
VALERIE FOX‘s books include The Rorschach Factory (Straw Gate Books) and The Glass Book (Texture Press). She recently published Poems for the Writing: Prompts for Poets, with Lynn Levin. She has published writing in Hanging Loose, West Branch, Admit2, Feminist Studies, Ping Pong, qarrtsiluni, Sentence, Apiary, Juked, Bridge Review and other journals. She has taught writing and literature at numerous universities and colleges including Sophia University (in Tokyo) and, most recently, at Drexel University.
LYNN LEVIN is the author of four collections of poems: Miss Plastique (Ragged Sky, 2013); Fair Creatures of an Hour (Loonfeather, 2009), a Next Generation Indie Book Awards finalist in poetry; Imaginarium (Loonfeather, 2005), a finalist for ForeWord Magazine’s Book of the Year Award; and A Few Questions about Paradise (Loonfeather, 2000). She is, with Valerie Fox, the author of the craft-of-poetry book, Poems for the Writing: Prompts for Poets (Texture, 2013). Lynn Levin’s poems have appeared in Ploughshares, Boulevard, Washington Square Review, Verse Daily, and on Garrison Keillor’s radio show The Writer’s Almanac. She is currently involved in translating the work of Odi Gonzales, a Peruvian Andean poet. Lynn Levin teaches at Drexel University and the University of Pennsylvania.
BEN HICKERNELL is a screenwriter and director whose independent films include Lebanon, PA, a film about adolescence, family secrets and abortion, which Philadelphia Inquirer critic Steven Rea named best Philadelphia film of 2011, and which Michael Moore called one of the best indie films of that year. He also directed Backwards, a movie about competitive rowing teams set on the Schuylkill River and starring James van der Beek. He is in post-production on a new movie, Hell of a View, set at the Jersey shore. An inspirational story of redemption, Hell of a View tells the tale of a young chef, Sam Rama (Hunter Parrish). After the destruction of his family’s well-established Atlantic City restaurant during Hurricane Sandy. When Sam comes to the aid of a wealthy patron (Tim Daly) and then falls for the newly separated Sarah Bell (Ashley Hinshaw), a chain of unexpected events unfolds for all of them, as they discover the only way to achieve their dreams may be to acknowledge what they owe to others, and realize that the greatest investments take more than cash.