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Interview with Lisa Nikolidakis

We recently sat down with our wonderful faculty member Lisa Nikolidakis to discuss books, writing, and life. Where are you from and how do you use your surroundings to write? I’m currently in Houston, TX—I’ve been here a little over a year—but in 2021, I had twelve addresses, I think. My life has been a bit upside-down for a bit due to chronic illness, so I’m not precious about process. I can write anywhere, on any device. The constant in all of that flux is nature. No matter where I land, the first thing I do is pull up a map and look for the swaths of green and blue. When I was in north Florida, that meant a lot of time spent at St. Mark’s National Wildlife Refu. In Indiana, Wesselman Woods. And in Houston, I’ve been stalking a flock of roseate spoonbills at Anahuac Wildlife Refuge. Nature grounds and inspires me. It is my church. Where do you draw inspiration from when writing and how is writing implemented in your life? I’m blessed with a great problem for a writer: I am curious ab
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New Poetry Faculty

The Ashland University MFA program is very pleased to be able to report that we have three new poets joining our faculty team. Tess Taylor, Aria Aber, and Vanessa AngĂ©lica Villareal have agreed to join our  poetry  faculty. These are all wonderful  poets  and educators and we encourage you to get to know their work if you’re not already aware of it. Aria Aber Aria Aber was raised in Germany. Her debut book  Hard Damage  (University of Nebraska Press, 2019) won the 2018 Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry. Her poems are forthcoming or have appeared in  The New Yorker, Kenyon Review, The Yale Review, The New Republic,  and elsewhere. She was the 2018-2019 Ron Wallace Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Books by Aria Aber: Hard Damage  (University of Nebraska Press, 2019). Tess Taylor Tess Taylor is the author of five acclaimed collections of poetry, and her criticism and non-fiction appear widely. Critic Stephanie Burt called  Work & Days , her second book “our moment’s

2020 Virtual Summer Residency

Get excited! The Ashland University 2020 MFA Summer Residency is going virtual this year. From  July 13 - 31st , we’re hosting workshops, readings, panels, craft classes, open mics, and more--all from the safety and comfort of your home. Stay tuned for schedule updates and registration links! Students and faculty share a laugh at last year's residency Visiting Writers Jericho Brown , Visiting Writer in Poetry Poetry Reading:   Tuesday, July 21, 7:30pm EST Craft Class:  Wednesday, July 22, 5pm EST Jericho Brown is the recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award and fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Brown’s first book,  Please  (2008), won the American Book Award. His second book,  The New Testament  (2014), won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was named one of the best of the year by Library Journal, Coldfront, and the Academy of American Poets. He i

Black Fork Review, Issue 2

Black Fork Review, issue 2, was released this December -- check out the issue here: Issue 2 features work by   Lisa Dominguez Abraham, Scott Alumbaugh, Mary Biddinger, Bree-Anna Burick, Jason Gaidis, Kate Gale, Christian Kiefer, Arlena Lockard, Jay Robinson, J. L. Scott, Kelly Sundberg, Naomi Williams, and other lovely authors. Black Fork Review is a student-edited literary magazine featuring work by the AU writing community (MFA students, undergrads, faculty, and alumni), as well as work by established writers outside of AU. The magazine is edited by MFA students and undergraduates in the creative writing program at Ashland. Thanks to the MFA program, the English Department, and The Ashland Poetry Press for their support. El Craneo de la Muerte (fiction header) by Avery Braun 

All the Summer Fun: A Residency Recap

The 2019 Summer Residency was full & fulfilling — the love and support in this community was palpable, and we are so thankful for everyone who made it such a wonderful experience. In just shy of two weeks we experienced ten craft seminars by our stunning faculty and visiting writers; eight readings by graduating students, faculty, and visiting writers; a panel on life after the MFA with our amazing alumni; a publishing panel with some super star editors; impromptu open mics late into the night; a trip to the Cleveland Museum of Art; a tear-jerking graduation ceremony — oh, and workshops every morning! Thanks again to all of the students, faculty, visiting writers, visiting editors, alumni, all the community who participated in events, and the Ohio Arts Council for its generous support.  Check out some of the photos from our time together: Hanif Abdurraqib killing it in the Q&A  Bree-Anna Burick at a craft seminar Fic

Summer Residency Events Schedule

    Thanks to the Ohio Arts Council for making this public programming possible

2019 Summer Residency Updates!

The May 15th deadline to apply for the July residency as a new student is approaching! If you are planning to apply, please contact Paige Webb, the Administrative Director ( ), or Christian Kiefer, the Program Director ( ), if you have questions. The 2019 Summer Residency is July 22 - August 2, 2019. Visiting Editors For the summer residency, five visiting editors will come to Ashland to share their expertise in a publishing panel, as well as meet individually with graduating students about their manuscripts. Publishing panel: Saturday, July 27 at 1:30 p.m. in Ronk Lecture Hall Participating editors: Mary Biddinger, Kelly Caldwell, Cassie Donish, Eric Obenauf, Hilary Plum Mary Biddinger, Visiting Editor in Poetry Mary Biddinger is the author of five full-length poetry collections, including Small Enterprise and The Czar . Her sixth book, Partial Genius , will be published by Black Lawrence Press in August 2019. She teaches