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Spring 2017

English Department


27 April 2017



MA graduate Shaun Clarkson has received his PhD from Purdue University. 

A photo by Susan Hanson has been selected as the cover for Ecocritical Aesthetics:  Language, Beauty, and the Environment, edited by Scott Slovic and Peter Quigley, and soon to be released by Indiana University Press.

Dan Lochman co-organized three panels titled “Cognitive/Affective Cultures” for the Chicago meeting of the Renaissance Society of America, March 30-April 1 and presented “’The troublous passion of my pensiue mind’: Britomart, Mind, and Memory”; and presented on April 22 the paper “Mastering ‘mazy paths’: William Scott’s Model of Poesy on Heroic Narrative” at the South Central Renaissance Conference, held in Austin.

Alan Schaefer was named a favorite professor by the undergraduate inductees to Alpha Chi Honor Society.

Incoming MARC students Tiffany Rainey and A.R. Rogers have both received Graduate Merit Fellowships recognizing academic excellence.

MARC graduate Shaun Ford has been accepted into the PhD program in Theory and Cultural Studies at Purdue University for this coming fall, supported by a Doctoral Fellowship providing 5 years full funding, a tuition waiver, and medical insurance supplement.

Amelia Gray (fiction, 2007) won the 2016 New York City Public Library’s ‘Young Lion’ Award: Her second novel, Isadora, will be published on May 23rd: "Historical novels about artists abound, but few attain the psychological intricacy, fluency of imagination, lacerating wit, or intoxicating beauty of Gray’s tale of Isadora Duncan” ―Donna Seaman, Booklist (starred review).

James Knippen is the recipient of a 2017 Discovery/Boston Review prize; he will travel to New York City in May to give a reading. Also, two poems, "Poem" and "Portents," appear in the current issue of Kenyon Review Online:

Cecily Parks was selected as Outstanding English Professor of the Year by the Texas State chapter of Sigma Tau Delta.

A book that features a chapter written by Kitty Ledbetter, The Routledge Handbook to Nineteenth-Century British Periodicals and Newspapers, has won the prestigious Robert L. Colby Book Prize from the Research Society for Victorian Periodicals. Her chapter is entitled "Women's Periodicals."


English Department


14 April 2017



MFA student Ashton Kamburoff was selected for a space in the Lighthouse Writer's Workshop in Denver, Colorado by Ada Limón. Limón will lead the week-long workshop from June 12th-16th. Ashton also was named the 2017-18 Clark House Writer-In-Residence by the MFA faculty. 


Mark Busby attended the Conference of College Teachers Association Conference, held at Tarrant County Community College from March 3-5, serving as a CCTE Council member as well as presenting “The Slave Narrative from Frederick Douglass to William Styron's The Confessions of Nat Turner to Nate Parker's Birth of a Nation at the Texas College English Association affiliated meeting.


MFA fiction student Graham Oliver interviewed recent Whiting Award-winner Tony Tulathimutte for Electric Literature. They talked about the complex relationship between literature and video games:


Cecily Parks was named Outstanding English Professor of the Year by students in Texas State’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honor Society.


Rob Tally’s article "The Southern Phoenix Triumphant: Richard Weaver, or, the Origins of Contemporary U.S. Conservatism" appears in b2o: An Online Journal (the peer-reviewed online journal of the boundary 2 editorial collective):


MFA poetry graduate Jonathan Hobratsch conducted an interview with Cyrus Cassells for the Huffington Post:


Steve Wilson has new poems in the latest issues of Texas Observer, Beloit Poetry Journal, Cimarron Review and Noon: Journal of the Short Poem.


Tomás Q. Morín's new collection of poetry Patient Zero was released on April 11th by Copper Canyon Press. The libretto he translated, Pancho Villa from a Safe Distance, will have its Austin premiere at the Paramount Theater as part of the Fusebox Festival on April 14th and 15th. More details can be found here:


MARC graduate Sonia Arellano earned her PhD from the University of Arizona this semester.



English Department


March 18, 2017



Ms. Emily Chammah, who was named Emily Smith while at Texas State, spent a year in the MFA Fiction program a couple of years ago before moving to New York. She has just been named one of the 12 winners of the 2016 PEN/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers. She is listed at this PEN America site:

Eric Leake’s interviews with Doug Hesse and Nancy Sommers have been re-published in the collection Teachers on the Edge: The Writing on the Edge Interviews 1989–2017 (Routledge).

Kitty Ledbetter attended the Texas State Historical Association's 121st Annual Meeting in Houston March 2-4, where she presented "Textiles, Text, and Media Replication During the Mexican War."

Miriam Williams has been named a Fellow of the Association for Teachers of Technical Writers. You can read the announcement of Miriam’s achievement here:

Susan Morrison’s A Medieval Woman's Companion: Women's Lives in the European Middle Ages has just been named a 2016 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award Finalist in three categories: Adult Nonfiction; Women’s Studies; and Young Adult Nonfiction:

Suparno Banerjee and Graeme Wend-Walker represented Texas State at the International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts, held in Orlando. Suparno presented "Communism and Soviet Utopias: From Aelita to Andromeda," and Graeme presented "Virtual Celebrity: Exploring Identity in The Ziggurat, Watkin Tudor Jones's Pre-Die Antwoord Sci-Fi Opus." Graeme also read his short story "The Pale Evacuation" in an author's panel.

Ben Reed’s flash fiction piece, "Brothers,” appears in the March 2017 issue of Ghost Parachute. His essay "Trigger Warnings" appears in the Fall/Winter issue of The Texas Review.

Dorothy Lawrenson will begin pursuit of her PhD in Creative Writing this fall at the University of Edinburgh, supported by a College Research Award to cover fees and provide a stipend.

Rob Tally’s “Giving Shape to Gloom; or, Keeping it Real in The House of the Seven Gables” appears in Nathaniel Hawthorne in the College Classroom (AMS Press, 2017). In addition, Rob will be the keynote speaker for "Turning Point(s)," the 30th Annual Graduate Association of French and Italian Students (GAFIS) symposium at the University of Wisconsin, March 31, 2017. His talk is titled "Swerves, Tropes, Peripeties: Toward a Theory of the Turning Point."




English Department


March 6, 2017



Manny Pina, MARC graduate and current instructor at St. Edward's University, has been accepted into the PhD program in Technical Communication and Rhetoric at Texas Tech University.

MFA fiction student Ramiro G. Hinojosa's short story, "Rest & Relaxation," will be published in the Fall 2017 issue of Huizache

MA Literature student Thais Rutledge attended the Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture in mid-February, presenting "Navigating Social Spaces: Ideology, Sexuality, and Memory in Mrs. Dalloway.

Mark Busby attended the Southwest Popular/American Culture Association meeting in Albuquerque Feb 15-18 and read from his new poetry collection, Through Our Years, at a creative writing session.

MATC alumna Jennifer Cleveland has accepted a position as Business Analysis Coordinator with Sprint Accessibility. She will provide communication support for deaf and hard-of-hearing employees, and assist with proposal management and RFP (request  for proposal) processes.

MFA poetry student Ashton Kamburoff has accepted the position of poetry editor for Profane Journal. Profane publishes a print issue yearly in the winter and accepts poetry, fiction, flash, essays and interviews. 

"Orientation," a story by MFA fiction student Shannon Perri, will be published next month in fields magazine.

Octavio Pimentel has been invited to serve as a symposium scholar for the September 2017 Watson pre-conference symposium, and as a keynote speaker for the 2018 Thomas Watson Conference on Rhetoric and Composition. The conference and symposium, whose theme will be “Making Future Matter,” will both to be held at Louisville, Kentucky. The Thomas Watson conference is considered one of the top tier rhetoric and composition conferences.

Steve Wilson and Vanessa Couto Johnson took part in a reading sponsored by the Center for the Study of the Southwest this March.  The event, moderated by Will Jensen, celebrated the recent publication of the anthology Texas Weather, in which Steve and Vanessa’s poetry appears.



English Department


February 21, 2017



Two stories by William Jensen were nominated by a member of the Board of Contributing Editors for Pushcart Prize XLII: Best of the Small Presses: "A Quiet Place to Hide" appeared in North Dakota Quarterly and "Come Again Another Day" appeared in the anthology, Texas Weather.


Rob Tally participated in The Society for Critical Exchange's Winter Theory Institute, held Feb 9-12 at the University of Houston-Victoria. The topic of the 2017 Institute was "Antitheory," and Rob’s talk was titled "Anti-Antitheory”:


Stephen Harmon’s poem, "Dawn," has been accepted by Volt.


MFA poetry student Ashton Kamburoff’s will present “Blue Class / Working Collar: An Examination of the Poetics of Phil Levine” at the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment at Wayne State University in Detroit, taking place this June.


Natasha Tretheway has chosen Cyrus Cassell’s poem, "Elegy with a Gold Cradle," for Best American Poetry 2017, which will be published by Scribners in September. In Spring 2018 the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry (Southern Illinois University Press) will publish his sixth book, The Gospel According to Wild Indigo.


MATC alumni now hold the following positions in Texas State's IT and University Marketing departments: Jennifer Small (User Service Consultant II, IT Assistance Center), Jenny Joy Van De Walle (Program Specialist – Technical Writer, IT Assistance Center), Jennifer Johnson (Coordinator, IT Projects – Technology Resources Administration), Jen LaGrange (Coordinator, IT Projects – IT Assistance Center), and Chase Rogers (Web Content Strategist - University Marketing).


Kate McClancy presented "‘It Doesn’t Have to Match’: Cold War Style and Masculinity in The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” at the Southwest Popular Culture / American Culture Association conference in Albuquerque this month.


MATC alumnus Jael Perales has been hired as an Academic Editor for the American Journal Experts Division of Research Square, a for-benefit company that helps researchers around the world get their work effectively communicated and published.


English Department


6 February 2017



MFA fiction student Ramiro G. Hinojosa's short story, "Field Manual," has been accepted for publication in War, Literature & the Arts.


In early February, Scott Mogull will present research entitled, “Intersection of Technical Communication and Marketing Genres: Spanning Silos through Product Documentation” at the Fifth Colloquium Technical Communication in the Field, hosted by the Université Paris Diderot.


MA Literature student Thais Rutledge has been accepted into The University of Texas at Austin's PhD program in Comparative Literature, and will receive full funding.


Aimee Kendall Roundtree was interviewed on the “10 Minute Tech Comm” podcast about her article, "Social Health Content and Activity on Facebook: A Survey Study." The episode is available at the following link: Aimee also received a $20K grant from State Farm to research and design an intervention for improving fire incident reporting strategies. She will use text mining and qualitative research methods to characterize best practices and identify barriers that hinder report accuracy, consistency, and quality. The project will help San Marcos and College Station Fire Departments set reporting guidelines, create reporting templates, and train firefighters.


Miles Wilson’s new and selected stories 1977-2017 will be published by the University of New Mexico Press.  His literary papers have been acquired by the Southwestern Writers Collection.


Sections 1-20 of Kathleen Peirce's book-length poem Vault will appear in the next issue of Poetry International, and the book will be published in its entirety by New Michigan Press, available in the fall of this year. 


Rob Tally’s edited collection of essays, The Routledge Handbook of Literature and Space (Routledge 2017), has just been published:


Mark Busby's collection of poetry, Through Our Times: Occasional Poems 1960-2017, is now out from Lamar University Literary Press.


English Department


20 January 2017



Leah Schwebel co-edited and contributed to a special issue of The Chaucer Review on “The Legend of Good Women”: Leah’s article is entitled "Livy and Augustine as Negative Models in The Legend of Lucrece"; she also co-wrote the Introduction, "Looking Forward, Looking Back on the Legend of Good Women." This past fall, Leah was recognized as an Alpha Chi favorite professor.


Flore Chevaillier presented "Machine, Body, and Text in Eduardo Kac’s Non-human Poetry” at the 2017 MLA meeting in Philadelphia this January.


MFA fiction student Graham Oliver has been rehired for 2017 as a Ploughshares blogger. Last year he interviewed translators for the site, and you can read his end-of-the-year round-up at this link: His 2017 series will focus on newly released books with rural settings; his first entry looked at prize-winning novels from 2016:


Cecily Parks has three poems in the latest issue of Terrain.org


Alan Schaefer served as guest editor of the fall 2016 issue of Southwestern American Literature. The issue focuses on writing about and by musicians of the Southwest:


Aimee Kendall Roundtree won a teaching grant along with Dr. Hunter Close (Physics), Dr. Kristina Collins (Education), Dr. Grayson Lawrence (Art and Design), and Dr. Ziliang Zong (Computer Science). She will serve as Project Director on “Coding Across the Disciplines,” a $100K project to teach computer programming skills to middle and high school teachers from all disciplines. The project was funded by WeTeach_CS, a program of The University of Texas at Austin’s Center for STEM Education.  


Gabriella Corales – who graduated with a degree in English a few years ago, received a Rockefeller Fellowship and then completed her Masters degree at Stanford – currently teaches at the Impact Academy in California.  She recently published an essay on her experiences in Education Week Teacher


"In Summer 2017 the College of Liberal Arts will present a bilingual adaptation of William Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors. Performances will be August 3 - 10 in Centennial Hall G02 on the Texas State Campus. Professional actors from Austin will collaborate with Texas State Spanish and Theatre majors to present this adaptation to the public. This production is made possible by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.


Rob Tally’s essay "The Novel and the Map: Spatiotemporal Form and Discourse in Literary Cartography" appears in Space, Time, and the Limits of Human Understanding, edited by Shyam Wuppuluri and Giancarlo Ghiradri (Springer 2017).


English Department


9 January 2017



MFA fiction graduate and Senior Lecturer Eric Blankenburg’s "The Devil Doesn't Care: Choice and Chance in Cormac McCarthy's No Country for Old Men” was accepted for the Southwest Popular/American Culture Association conference, to be held February 2017 in Albuquerque, NM. The paper was written as part of Mark Busby's graduate seminar on Cormac McCarthy.


Rebecca Bell-Metereau’s “An Actor’s Director: Kubrick and Star Performances” appears in Critical Insights: Stanley Kubrick, published by Salem Press (2016).


Rob Tally’s essay “Tolkien’s Geopolitical Fantasy: Spatial Narrative in The Lord of the Rings” appears in Popular Fiction and Spatiality: Reading Genre Settings (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016). Also recently published is "'A Utopia of the In-Between,' or, Limning the Liminal,” Rob’s foreword to Landscapes of Liminality: Between Space and Place, published this year by London: Rowman & Littlefield International.


Katie Kapurch, Jon Marc Smith and Suparno Banerjee have received Texas State Research Enhancement Program grants for 2017.


Aimee Roundtree was named an Alphi Chi Favorite Professor for Fall 2016.


Last spring and summer, Doug Dorst worked on the writing staff of the new TV show, Z: The Beginning of Everything, a half-hour drama starring Christina Ricci as Zelda Fitzgerald. Amazon Prime will release all ten episodes of the first season simultaneously on January 27. Doug received Writers’ Guild credit for Episode 7 (“Where There Are Friends, There Are Riches”). A trailer for the show can be seen here, along with an early version of the pilot episode:


MFA fiction alumna Christine Granados’s second short story collection, Fight Like a Man and Other Stories We Tell Our Children, will be published in March and was reviewed recently in Kirkus Reviews:

Fall 2016

English Department


November 28, 2016



Susan Morrison was in Las Vegas recently to accept the Top Honors Book Award for Young Adult Fiction from Literary Classics, for her novel Grendel’s Mother: The Saga of the Wyrd-Wife Susan also received a $1,000 UT Center for European Studies: MSI Faculty Travel Grant for her current project called A Wall Newspaper: A U.S.-East German University Exchange Program During the Cold War. The grant will support her travel for research next summer.


MATC student Jonathan Prichard has accepted a Peace Corps assignment in Ecuador, beginning in May. He will serve as a health extension volunteer, a position similar to a community health organizer.  


Octavio Pimentel’s essay “Changing Discourse: Giving a New Voice to Latinos” has been accepted for the 51st annual meeting of the Southwest Council of Latin American Studies, to be held at the Universidad Autónoma de Campeche in Campeche, México next March.


MFA fiction graduate and Lecturer Daniel Keltner signed a publishing contract for his first book, Into That Good Night, which will be published by Skyhorse in early 2018.


"Formed by Place: Spatiality, Irony, and Empire in Conrad's 'An Outpost of Progress,'" co-authored by Rob Tally and MA Literature student Thais Rutledge, appears in the latest issue of Transnational Literature


MFA poetry student Ashton Kamburoff’s poem "Tagging Up" is a finalist for the Earl Weaver Baseball Writing Prize, sponsored by Cobalt Review. The winner will be announced during the World Series. His poem "Elegy for Bob Kaufman" will appear in the December issue of Rappahannock Review.


MFA poetry student Meg Griffitts’ "Not Missing a Beat[ing]: Reconstructing Violence within a Feminist Economy," was accepted for the Southwest Popular/American Culture Association conference, to be held February 2017 in Albuquerque, NM.


Kitty Ledbetter attended the North American Victorian Studies Association (NAVSA) conference in Phoenix, AZ, where she presented “Over the Teacups' and The Woman at Home."



English Department


October 19, 2016



In September, Mark Busby presented "Satireshot/Scattershot: Targets in Ben Fountain’s Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk” at the Western Literature Association conference in Big Sky, MT.  Mark read poetry at the Texas Association of Creative Writing Teachers conference, held in San Antonio in early October.


"Éxito (Success),” written by Octavio Pimentel and Nancy Wilson, appears in Decolonizing Rhetoric and Composition Studies: New Latinx Keywords for Theory and Pedagogy


Recent MARC graduate Edward Santos Garza has accepted a position as a Rhetoric Assessment Affiliate for the University of Texas at Austin's OnRamps program, which brings rigorous, dual-enrollment writing courses to thousands of students in underprivileged high schools across the state. In addition, Edward is in his first semester as an adjunct English professor at St. Edward's University, where fellow MARC graduate Clare Murray is a new faculty member, as well.


Two poems by MFA poetry student Meg Griffitts appear in the latest issue of Luna Luna Magazine


The Houston Public Poetry recently invited MFA poetry graduate and current lecturer Autumn Hayes to perform her poems with alt-country band Charlie and the Regrets at the inaugural “PM Show: Poets and Musicians at Night.” The show will take place on Saturday, October 22 at Rudyard's Pub in Houston and is the first in a series of intentional collaborations between poets and musicians: Autumn is one of three poets specifically selected by the Public Poetry board; poets who wish to participate in future performances must audition. Four of Autumn’s poems – "No. 1: Color," "No. 2: Textures," "No. 3: Lengths," and "What to Do with Silence?" – have been accepted for publication in African American Review.


Twister Marquiss, Director of Texas State University’s Common Reading Program and a faculty member in the English Department and Honors College, was presented with a “Foundations of Excellence” award during the Texas State Student Foundation's annual dinner ceremony on Wednesday, Oct. 12. He was one of ten award recipients, and one of only three recipients from the university's faculty. The award was presented by Honors student Haley Tucker. The Foundations of Excellence award is the Student Foundation’s annual recognition event that provides Student Foundation members with the opportunity to honor ten faculty and staff members who have made an extraordinary impact on the lives of Student Foundation members and the Texas State University community as a whole.


Eric Leake's article "The Dinner Table Debate and the Uses of Hospitality" has been published in the latest issue of Present Tense



English Department


October 12, 2016



“The Myth of the Colorblind Composition Classroom: White Instructors Confront White Privilege in Their Classrooms,” authored by Octavio Pimentel, Charise Pimentel and MFA fiction graduate Dean, appears in Performing Anti-Racist Pedagogy in Rhetoric, Writing, and Communication, published by The WAC Clearinghouse.


On October 9, MFA Faculty Doug Dost, Jennifer DuBois, Roger Jones and Steve Wilson read their work at Malvern Books in Austin.


Debra Monroe has published a researched essay in The Rumpus, titled “Trouble in Mind.” An essay by Debra has been cited by Houghton Mifflin’s annual anthology, Best American Essays (her 4th BAE “Notable” citation in 4 years); the essay, “The Wild Life,” was originally published in Texas Monthly and, in part, details the shambolic state of the Texas State campus when she arrived in 1992. Debra’s lyric essay (originally published in Hobart), titled “Transit, 1986,” is forthcoming in the Norton Anthology of Flash Fiction.


MARC student Nathaniel Hagemaster will present "De/Composing & Re/Visioning the Writing Center Frontier: Exploring Access in Writing Center Spaces" on a panel with MARC alumni Megan Boeshart and Shaun Bryan at the International Writing Centers Association conference in Denver, CO, in October.


Lecturer and MFA fiction graduate Ben Reed’s story “My Neighbor the Pilot” is winner of the 2016 Texas Observer Short Story Contest: In addition, his flash fiction piece, "Bull & Finches," was recently published on The Open Bar, the blog for Tin House; and his essay "Trigger Warning: Reflections on Politeness, Dystopia, and Concealed Firearms in the College Classroom" was recently accepted for publication by The Texas Review.


Two poems by Steve Wilson (“May Cold Front” and “Burrow”), along with his audio recordings of the poems, appear in the latest issue of Bluestem



English Department


September 12, 2016



At the Fall 2016 College of Liberal Arts Convocation, the following English Department faculty received awards: Stephanie Noll and Steve Wilson received Golden Apple and Presidential Distinction Awards for Teaching, Paul Cohen received a Presidential Distinction Award for Service, Katie Kapurch received a College Achievement Award for Scholarly / Creative Activity, and Chad Hammett received a College Achievement Award for Service.


Chad Hammett’s book 2 Prospectors: The Letters of Sam Shepard and Johnny Dark will be released by UT Press in a new paperback edition in the spring of 2017.


MFA fiction graduate Melissa Henderson (formerly Melissa Stephenson) has sold her memoir, Driven, to Harcourt.


“A String Between Two Tin Cans,” an essay by recent MFA fiction graduate Samantha Tanner, appears in the latest issue of Electric Lit:


MFA Fiction student Allison Grace Myers' essay "Perfume Poured Out" was published in the summer issue of Image:


MATC student Rachel Berryhill will present "Sex Symbols and Subject Matter Experts: The Role of Females in a Military Comic Book” at the Southwest Popular/American Culture Association’s 38th Annual Conference, held February 15-18 2017 in Albuquerque, NM. In this presentation Rachel will describe the changing representations of civilian and soldier females in comic books.


Kitty Ledbetter presented a paper titled "'Gnat-like Swarms of Aborigines': King Arthur, Paddy, and Other Unknown Places in Dinah Mulock Craik's Travel Narratives" at the annual conference of the Research Society for Victorian Periodicals, held at the University of Missouri-Kansas City in early September.


Eric Leake's essay "The Promise and Practice of Cosmopolitan Empathy" appears in Countertransference in Perspective, published by Sussex Academic Press. His article "Writing Pedagogies of Empathy: As Rhetoric and Disposition" appears in the latest issue of Composition Forum:


Shannon Perri (MFA fiction) will present “The Battle of Gender Norms, Violence, and Social Conscience: A Close Look at Form in ‘The Girl on the Plane’ by Mary Gaitskill” at the Southwest Popular/American Culture Association Annual Conference, to be held in Albuquerque, New Mexico next February. The paper was written for Debra Monroe’s Form and Theory of Fiction class.



English Department


August 30, 2016



Rebecca Jackson's article (written with Jackie Grutsch McKinney and Nicole Caswell), "Writing Center Administration as/and Emotional Labor," will appear in the fall 2016 issue of Composition Forum. Her article, also written with Jackie Grutsch McKinney and Nicole Caswell, "Metaphors We Work By: New Writing Center Directors' Labor and Identities" will appear in the collection, WPAs in Transition, to be published by Utah State UP in 2017.


Katie Kapurch's co-edited collection with Kenneth Womack, New Critical Perspectives on the Beatles: Things We Said Today, is out from Palgrave Macmillan's Pop Culture, Music and Identity series. The book includes Katie's chapter "Crying, Waiting, Hoping: The Beatles, Girl Culture, and the Melodramatic Mode"; as well as a chapter co-authored by Katie and Jon Marc Smith, "Blackbird Singing: Paul McCartney’s Romance of Racial Harmony and Post-Racial America."


Steve Wilson has new poems forthcoming in San Pedro River Review and Beloit Poetry Journal.


MFA fiction student Graham Oliver interviewed the founder of Dallas-based, translation-focused publisher Deep Vellum, Will Evans, for The Rumpus


MATC alumna Susan Rauch graduated from Texas Tech University with a PhD in Technical Communication & Rhetoric this month. Her dissertation title is "“Rhetoric and Economics of User Attention in e-Health: How Technology Influences Clinicians’ Decision Making in EHR Clinical Documentation." Susan will begin work as a full-time instructor in Texas Tech University's English Department this fall.


The first excerpt of Tom Grimes’s new novel appears in the current issue of Narrative


Stephanie Noll's organization, Old Books for New Teachers, which helps first-year teachers build classroom libraries, was the spotlighted organization at Backyard Story Night on Sunday, August 29. Backyard Story Night is a monthly storytelling event in Austin that collects donations for a different nonprofit each month. An article about the event, with a mention of Stephanie's work, can be found here: Also, thanks to a successful social media fundraising campaign, Stephanie was able to provide Texas State MFA graduate Abby Minde (who now teaches at KIPP Austin Collegiate) with 20 copies of All American Boys, a young adult novel about police brutality. For this project, Stephanie is collaborating with Badgerdog Literary Publishing, Inc., an Austin-area program that places writers in schools. Abby's students will read All American Boys and then participate in several writing workshops with prompts and activities connected to the text. 



English Department


August 15, 2016



The Office of Equity and Access has selected Geneva Gano’s proposal, "Emily Hobson Public Lecture and Classroom Visits on ’Lavender/Red: Liberation/Solidarity in the Gay/Lesbian Left’” to receive funding in the amount of $1,100.00. In October, Ms. Hobson will visit Professor Gano’s fall grad class to talk about the Women’s liberation movement and women’s literature, and will also give a public talk.  


Susan Morrison’s Grendel's Mother: The Saga of the Wyrd-Wife won the Words on Wings Book Award for young adult fiction, a Literary Classics Top Honors Award 2016:


MARC graduate student Kristin Milligan, who completed her degree this August, has been hired as the Associate Director of the Learning Center at East Central College in Union, Missouri. 


English majors Bianco Beronio, Devin Baumann, Thomas Gresham (who graduated Spring 2016), Michael Salinas, and Julia Whitmore each presented talks on Tolkien at Mythcon 47, the annual meeting of the Mythopoeic Society, held in San Antonio this August. Rob Tally also presented at the convention, discussing "Tolkien's Red Dragons: Fantasy and Marxist Literary Criticism," as well as taking part in a roundtable on teaching Tolkien.


Aimee Roundtree’s research on how the autism community uses Twitter for advocacy was accepted for presentation at the Center for Disease Control’s National Conference on Health Communication, Marketing and Media, taking place this August in Atlanta. Her work, "#TweetLikeANeurotyical: Understanding Diagnosis Attitudes and Experiences of the Autism Community Online," situates hashtags used by the community as a form of linguistic reclamation similar to other minority groups.  


William Jensen’s debut novel, Cities of Men, was sold to Turner Publishing. The book should be published in either summer or fall of 2017.


In April 2016, Joe Falocco was invited to deliver a presentation on teaching Shakespeare in the twenty-first century at the Universidad Autonoma de Hidalgo in Pachuca, Mexico as part of the 2016 Festival Internacional del Imagen. He spoke to an audience comprised of hundreds of undergraduates and Festival attendees. While in Pachuca, Joe was also interviewed by a local radio station.


MFA poetry student Meg Griffitts’ poem "How To Return Home" will be featured in the fall issue of Hypertrophic, which comes out in September.


Rob Tally’s essay "The Geopolitical Aesthetic of Middle-earth: Tolkien, Cinema, and Literary Cartography" appears in the collection Topographies of Popular Culture, edited by Maarit Piipponen and Markku Salmela.

Summer 2016

English Department


27 June 2016



Emelia Rae Salzmann was born on June 9th at 7:13 p.m., weighing 7 lbs. 14 oz. and measuring 20 inches long. Mother Alicia Salzmann and baby are both doing well.


Kitty Ledbetter's article titled "Periodicals for Women" has been published in the Routledge Companion to Victorian Periodicals. She recently attended a book launch at the University of Greenwich for contributors to the volume. While in the UK she also conducted research at the British Library and presented a paper titled "Cultural Value and Essay Competitions in Victorian Women’s Periodicals" at a conference held by Plymouth University Nineteenth-Century Studies on The Operation and Representation of 'Judgement' in 19th-Century Cultures.


Marilynn Olson gave a talk entitled "Billy Whiskers (1902-1930): Nation-Building in an Age of Change" to the graduate students in children's literature at Beijing Normal University on June 3rd.  BNU is a major center for children's literature in China, and the visit included a round-table discussion and significant interaction with thesis students.  On June 4th she attended the 3rd biennial US-China Symposium in Qingdao (also the first international children's literature symposium, since representatives from Japan, Taiwan, and Australia were invited), giving another presentation "Some examples of the use of theories about cognition and cognitive distribution in The Rules of Summer by Shaun Tan (2013).  


A committee comprised of Children's Lit. scholars Marilynn Olson, Teya Rosenberg, Katie Kapurch, and Graeme Wend-Walker has been successful in its bid for Texas State to host the 2018 annual Children's Literature Association Conference. The conference, which draws scholars from around the world, will be held in San Antonio in June 2018. It will be themed around "springs and rivers."


Katie Kapurch's article, "Something Else Besides a Daughter?: Maternal Melodrama Meets Postfeminist Girlhood in Tangled and Brave," appears in the latest issue of The Lion and the Unicorn.


Mark Busby’s “McMurtry’s Best,” which appears in the July 2016 Texas monthly, is a companion piece to Skip Hollandsworth’s profile of Larry McMurtry at 80. Mark discusses his list of McMurtry’s six best books in addition to Lonesome Dove


Enkay Iguh (B.A. in English, Texas State, 2013; MFA in Creative Writing, NYU, 2015) has been named a 2016 NYC Emerging Writers Fellow by The Center for Fiction:


English Department


16 June 2016




The following English faculty were promoted / granted tenure this year: Suparno Banerjee, Joseph Falocco and Scott Mogull were tenured and promoted to Associate Professor; Pinfan Zhu and Octavio Pimentel were promoted to Professor.


Teya Rosenberg represented the department and university at the 43rd Annual Children’s Literature Conference in Columbus, OH, June 9-11, 2016. She presented a paper, “The Mythical, the Magical, the Racial: Considering Structure and Genre in American Born Chinese” and began her duties as Vice-President/President-Elect of the Association. Also in attendance and presenting were Texas State English department alumni Beth Pearce, currently visiting assistant professor at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga; and Elissa Myers, currently working on her doctorate at CUNY Graduate Center.


John Blair’s short story manuscript White Sands was selected by judge Amy Hempel as the one finalist for this year’s AWP Grace Paley Prize. In praising the collection, Hempel wrote "Dusty, venom-soaked lives, relying on motorcycles and trucks to speed them towards fates as welcoming as a cinderblock wall at eighty miles per hour.  The reckless couple who connect some of these stories rely on ‘hard cash, hard-earned’ and, whether hiding or chasing, have a close and uncomfortable relationship with the natural world.  Even ‘love bugs’ arrive as a plague.  Risks are taken throughout, starting with the opening story—a harsh beauty—that sets the tone for a collection of stories as lyrical as they are deadly." The prize’s winner and finalist will be announced on the AWP website soon and in the September issue of the Writer’s Chronicle.


Steve Wilson and MFA poetry student Meg Griffitts took part in a discussion of the Beat Generation sponsored by KUT radio and recorded live for the “Views & Brews” series:


Thanks to the following faculty who served on Honor’s thesis committees this past year: Twister Marquiss, Jon Marc Smith, Susan Morrison, Deborah Balzhiser, Anne Winchell, Victoria Smith, Lindy Kosmitis, Elvin Holt, and Stephanie Noll.


Recent MARC graduate Edward Santos Garza has published a book review, "Celebrating the Hyphen," in Enculturation: A Journal of Rhetoric, Writing, and Culture. Discussing Latinx icons such as Selena and Ritchie Valens, Garza's review concerns Reclaiming Poch@ Pop: Examining the Rhetoric of Cultural Deficiency, by Cruz Medina:


Jo Jarl – one of the first two graduates of the MATC program, in 2001 – has retired after 13 years as a tech writer and editor for IBM and IBM Tivoli.



English Department


June 6, 2016



MFA poetry student Autumn Hayes’ poem "Sieges" has been accepted by The Seattle Review.


Graeme Wend-Walker has graduated from the Texas State PD Citizen Police Academy. This semester-long program involved extensive training in police procedures, including criminal law and the penal code; emergency management and first responder training, including response to active shooter events; campus mental health; certification in CPR; crime scene investigation; personal defense and krav maga; and the use of firearms and tasers.


MATC alumna Susan Rauch successfully defensed her dissertation last month.  Susan completed doctoral studies in Texas Tech University's Technical Communication & Rhetoric Program. Her dissertation title is "Rhetoric and Economics of User Attention in e-Health: How Technology Influences Clinicians’ Decision Making in EHR Clinical Documentation."


Chris Margrave recently presented his paper “Curators of the Absurd: Contemporary Comedians as Prophets of Confrontation and Jesters of Delight” at the American Literature Association Conference, held in San Francisco on May 27.


Susan's Morrison article on "Six trailblazing medieval women" appears in the latest issue of the BBC’s History Extra


MFA fiction student Allison Grace Myers presented her paper "A Liberated Religion: The Black Church in Beloved" at the American Literature Association Conference, held in San Francisco this past May. 


MATC alumnus David Hernandez has accepted a position with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission's Office of Social Services, in Austin. David will help implement a Leadership and Professional Development Program, analyze federal and state policies to determine changes to the Electronic Benefit Transfer program, and propose revisions to the Texas Administrative Code.

Spring 2016

English Department


11 May 2016




The following candidates from the Department of English for tenure and/or promotion in 2015-2016 have received letters of approval from the Provost, subject to final approval by the Board of Regents at a meeting later this spring: Suparno Banerjee, Joe Falocco, and Scott Mogull have received the Provost’s approval for tenure and promotion to associate professor; Octavio Pimentel and Pinfan Zhu have received the Provost’s approval for promotion from associate to full professor. 


William Jensen’s latest story, “Come Again Another Day,” will be included in the anthology Texas Weather, to be published by Lamar University Press.


“El Ensayo: Latin@s Writing About Writing,” an essay by Nancy Wilson, Rebecca Jackson and recent English graduate Valerie Vera, will appear in Next Steps: New Directions for / in Writing About Writing, due out early next year from Utah State University Press. 


Cecily Parks' poem "Hurricane Song" has been selected for the Pushcart Prize, and will appear in The Pushcart Prize XLI: Best of the Small Presses this fall.


Congratulations to the faculty hired for the department’s five new Senior Lecturer positions. Their duties will include teaching undergraduate Technical Communication classes and offering service to the department and university: Laura Ellis-Lai, Chris Margrave, Sean Rose, Alan Schaefer, and Lauren Schiely.


Karen Wood writes that her daughter Rosalie Evelyn Wood, newest member of the Wood family, was born on April 16th.



English Department


26 April 2016




MFA student Graham Oliver interviewed former Austin Bat Cave director Manuel Gonzales about his new book The Regional Office is Under Attack! for The Rumpus:


Tiwi Retnaningdyah, who earned her MA in Literature at Texas State a few years ago, received her Ph.D. in Cultural Studies from the University of Melbourne last month. She is now back in Indonesia, teaching at the State University of Surabaya.


Tina Zigon, who traveled from Slovenia to pursue an MA in Literature at Texas State, today defended her PhD dissertation at the University of Buffalo. Dr. Zigon currently resides in Kuwait City.


A poem by MFA poetry graduate and current Lecturer Amanda North, “Bloodline,” has been published on The Open Bar at Tin House


Sigma Tau Delta named Vicki Smith as 2016 Outstanding Professor of English.


Two poems by Steve Wilson, “The Beauty of the Village” and “Of April,” are featured on the Maier Museum of Art at Randolph College website, as part of their series on ekphrastic poetry:


The Society for Technical Communication (STC) Board of Directors passed a motion to create a Texas State University student chapter of STC.  MATC student and Graduate Assistant David Hernandez submitted the application, recruited student members, and serves as President of the Texas State University Student Chapter of STC. 



English Department


April 7, 2016



Graduating MFA fiction student Josh Lopez has been selected as the 2016-17 L.D. Clark and LaVerne Harrell Clark Writer-in-Residence. Josh will live and write in the Clarks’ historic home in Smithville and also teach classes in the Department of English.


John Blair's new prize-winning collection of poems Playful Song Called Beautiful has just been released and is now available from the University of Iowa Press, online at and elsewhere. 


In July 2015, Teya Rosenberg gave the keynote lecture for “Child, Youth, and Place in Atlantic Canadian Literature,” a symposium that included scholars from across Canada and the US. Her lecture, “We Do Have Jack: Considering Contexts for the Jack Series by Andy Jones and Darka Erdelji,” plus other highlights of the symposium (including a wonderful puppet show), are now available online on YouTube and through Sea Stacks, a website for Atlantic Canadian books for young readers:


Haley Stuart, senior English major, has won Sigma Tau Delta’s national Herbert Hughes Short Story Award for her story, “Semblance.” The story appears in the 2016 issue of The Sigma Tau Delta Rectangle, the honor society’s national journal of creative writing. This is her first publication. The 2016 issue is available online as a PDF:


Rob Tally’s article “Lukács’s Literary Cartography: Spatiality, Cognitive Mapping, and The Theory of the Novel” appears in the current issue of Mediations (Spring 2016).


MFA poetry student James Deitz’s poem "After the Iraqi Sun" will appear in the Austin International Poetry Festival anthology, di-verse-city. Anamesa Interdisciplinary Journal is publishing "Check Fire in Tikrit, Iraq" in its Spring 2016 issue.


MATC student Amanda Scott presented "Sense and Sexuality: Using Creative Nonfiction Flash to Examine Memory, Trauma, and Identity" at the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association (PCA/ACA) conference, which recently took place in Seattle. She will present "Reconciling Hybridity: Towards a More Inclusive Understanding of Biracial Identity in Technical Communication" at the Association for Teachers of Technical Writing Conference, to be held April 6 in Houston.



English Department


March 24, 2016



The Echoing Green: Poems of Fields, Meadows, and Grasses, edited by Cecily Parks, was published by Everyman's Library in March.


Kitty Ledbetter organized a panel and presented her paper entitled "Technology Revolutionizes the History of Women's Needlework" at the Interdisciplinary Nineteenth-Century Studies conference, held in Asheville, NC on March 12.


Miles Wilson’s story “Tough” (The Georgia Review, Spring 2015) is one of three finalists for awards from Western Writers of America and the Texas Institute of Letters.  “Bang,’ a piece of creative nonfiction, is forthcoming in the first volume of the second hundred years of Southwest Review.  His poems “You, Theordore Roethke” and “Keeping Track” will appear in The Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume  VIII: Texas.  Last fall he was a featured reader at the South Dakota Festival of Books where he presented with Pete Dexter, winner of the National Book Award for Paris Trout.


Michael Noll has accepted a position as Program Director for the Writers' League of Texas. The Austin-based nonprofit offers one-day writing classes, a week-long writing retreat, and the annual Agents & Editors Conference every June. 


Rob Tally presented "Literary Cartography, Marxism, and Form" at the American Comparative Literature Association's annual meeting, held in Cambridge, MA.


Mark Busby’s essay, “The Polychotomous Southwest,” appears in Critical Insights: Southwestern Literature, edited by Will Brannon (Hackensack, NJ:  Salem/Grey House Publishing, 2016): 2-19.  At the March Conference of College Teachers of English in San Antonio, Mark presented "Moving Targets:  Geography in Ben Fountain’s Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk”; and as a member of the CCTE Advisory Council, he chaired three Rhetoric sessions.


Logan Fry’s two poems, "Gershwin's Wash Room" and "Essential Isles," will appear in New American Writing, and the poems "Gesticulation Overture" and "The Master and Margarita" will be in Volt. Both issues are slated for release this spring. 


In March, Graeme Wend-Walker presented "Gormenghast and Brakebills: Wonderment in Collapse" at the International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts, held in Orlando, Florida.



English Department


March 17, 2016



Miles Wilson, who retired last August after a career of 35 years at Texas State, has been approved to receive the title of Distinguished Faculty Emeritus. He will be invited to attend the fall convocation ceremony to receive an acknowledgment from President Trauth. Only three faculty from across the university are selected for this honor each year.


Dorothy Lawrenson, a 3rd-year poetry student in the MFA program in Creative Writing, has been named the 2016 Outstanding Master’s Student in the College of Liberal Arts. She will receive an award at this year’s Liberal Arts Awards Day celebration on April 20th, 6 pm, Alkek Teaching Theatre.


Through the Veil, the first book by Colleen (Booker) Halverson, who received her degree in English from Texas State, has just been published by Entangled. The story draws from Colleen's participation in the Texas State in Ireland program, sponsored by the English Department each summer.


Susan Morrison’s novel, Grendel's Mother: The Saga of the Wyrd-Wife, is a finalist for Foreward Reviews' 2015 Indiefab Book of the Year Award: Historical (Adult Fiction).


Vanessa Johnson’s poem "Render Billow" will appear in Field.


In “The Ripple Effect in Faculty-Driven Internationalization,” appearing on pages 36-37 of the IIE Networker (published by the Institute for International Education), author Daris Hale discusses Steve Wilson’s influence on the Fulbright program at Texas State.


Texas State University graduate Enkay Iguh (B.A. in English, 2013), who completed her MFA in fiction at NYU last year, has won the Disquiet International Literary Prize. She will receive a full fellowship to the Disquiet International Literary Program in Lisbon, Portugal, and her story “House Girl” will appear in Guernica Magazine.


Scott Mogull will present research on the accuracy of cited claims in the medical literature at the 42nd Conference of the European Medical Writers Association, which will be held in Munich, Germany this May.


Joyland Magazine has published "The Resurrection Act," a short story by MFA fiction student Shannon Perri:



English Department


February 25, 2016




Paul and Robin Cohen gave an invited talk on Shakespeare and Postmodernism for Philosophy Department students and faculty.


Three English Department faculty members presented at the 35th Annual Conference on the First-Year Experience (FYE), held in Orlando, Florida in mid-February: Dr. Nancy Wilson, Director of Lower-Division Studies; MARC graduate student and teaching assistant Edward Garza; and Twister Marquiss, Director of Texas State's Common Reading Program. The presentation, entitled “From Common Reading to a Common Experience: Fostering a Campus-wide Conversation,” recounted the success of the 2015-2016 Common Reading book — Tomás Rivera’s …y no se lo tragó la tierra / …And the Earth Did not Devour Him — including the book’s use for the diagnostic essay in English 1310 classes.


MA Literature student Thais Rutledge presented "Displacing Septimus: Spatial Narrative and the Medical Gaze in Mrs. Dalloway" at the Louisville meeting of the International Virginia Woolf Society.


In Story Circle Book Reviews, Susan Wittig Albert reviews Susan Morrison’s book, A Medieval Woman’s Companion: Women’s Lives in the European Middle Ages (Oxford: Oxbow Books, 2016): "A Medieval Woman's Companion is—I'm not exaggerating here—the best introduction I know of to the widely varied lives of medieval women." Read the complete review here: Susan guest-blogged for medieval mystery writer Candace Robb, on “A Medieval Woman’s Companion as Inspiration for Novelists”: Finally, Susan was interviewed by Madeline Barnes on Waste Studies and medieval liminality. Barnes, who was Outstanding Senior in English 2014, is currently a Masters student in Medieval Studies at Western Michigan University. You can see the interview here:


Recent MFA fiction graduate Sarah Rafael Garcia had a story, “Selling Happiness,” published in Lumen An interview regarding her work with the writing program she founded, Barrio Writers, appears in The Fem


Eric Leake's co-authored chapter "Composing Place, Composing Las Vegas" has been published in the collection Rhetorics of Names and Naming, part of the Routledge Studies in Rhetoric and Composition series. His article "Empathizer-in-Chief: The Promotion and Performance of Empathy in the Speeches of Barack Obama" has been published in the Journal of Contemporary Rhetoric


Michael Noll's story, "The Tank Yard," has been selected for The Best American Mystery Stories 2016. It first appeared in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine.



English Department


11 February 2016




Doug Dorst and co-author J.J. Abrams were the recipients of the Bronze Medal for the 2015 Leserpreis, an annual prize voted on by German readers, for his their recent book, S. (German edition).


Susan Morrison published “Five things you might not know about medieval women – the life of St. Margaret” at Celebrate Scotland:


Lecturer Anne Winchell presented "Female or Male: A Not So Simple Choice" at the Southwest Popular Culture/American Culture Conference in Albuquerque, NM; along with her undergraduate student Natalie Hays, who presented "No One Expects a Female Inquisition: A Study on Gender Representation in Video Games."


On February 14, Kitty Ledbetter will perform with her husband Alan Munde as part of Texas State’s Supple Music Series:


Tomas Morin’s second poetry collection, Patient Zero, will be published by Copper Canyon Press in spring 2017. Also, Tomas will participate in a panel entitled "Paying It Forward: Literary Mentorship" at the Associated Writing Programs Conference next month, as well as taking part in some off-site readings.


Tom Grimes’s new novel will be excerpted in the next issue of Narrative magazine.


Sean Trolinder (MFA fiction graduate - 2012) recently had a short story, "City of Crushed Dreams," accepted for publication in a future issue of Louisiana Literature. A draft of this story began in one of Debra Monroe's fiction workshops.



English Department


29 January 2016



Two poems by MFA poetry student Ashton Kamburoff, "Understand James Brown" and "Benching: A Note on Passing Boxcars," will appear in Toad Literary Journal.


Rob Tally’s "Spatiality's Mirrors: Reflections on Literary Cartography" appears in the current issue of The Journal of English Language and Literature. It is an expanded version of the keynote address Rob gave at the English Language and Literature Association of Korea's (ELLAK) annual conference in Busan this past December.


Alan Schaefer is now a co-editor for the Journal of Texas Music History. Alan also contributed to the journal a follow-up article on HOMEGROWN: AUSTIN MUSIC POSTERS 1967 TO 1982, the exhibition I co-curated for the Wittliff Collections in 2015 and the accompanying book he edited that was published by University of Texas Press.


MFA Fiction student Graham Oliver has joined Emerson College's Ploughshares as a contributing blogger for 2016.  He will be doing a series of interviews with translators.  The first, with London-based Korean translator Deborah Smith, can be found at this link:


Steve Wilson has poems in New American Writing, San Pedro River Review and The Beatest State in the Union: An Anthology of Beat Texas Writers (Lamar University Press).


A Strange Object will publish Michael Noll's book on writing, In the Beginning, Middle, and End: A Field Guide for Writing Fiction. It’s based on his craft-of-writing blog, Read to Write Stories, and will feature all-new essays and exercises built around one-page excerpts from recent and forthcoming novels and stories. The book was the focus of Michael's Non-tenure Line Faculty Workload Release in the fall.


Kitty Ledbetter presented her essay, "Commodifying Patriotism: Textiles and the Mexican War," at the MLA Convention in Austin, in January.


Lecturer and recent MFA in poetry graduate Vanessa Couto Johnson is the winner of Slope Editions' Chapbook Contest for her manuscript speech rinse.


MATC student Kristen Sacky has accepted a position on the Order Management team at Google Inc., in Austin, Texas. Kristen will be responsible for helping clients implement Google software applications in business environments. 


William Jensen’s newest story, “A Quiet Place to Hide,” will be in the upcoming issue of North Dakota Quarterly.  William previously read a draft of this story at the Western Literature Association conference in Reno last October.


MFA fiction graduate and current English Department Lecturer Cedric Synnestvedt’s short story "What the Birds Do" will appear in the next issue of The Sonora Review.



English Department


15 January 2016




Debra Monroe’s latest book, My Unsentimental Education, which was widely reviewed, was named on three “Best Ten Books of 2015” lists: in The Dallas Morning News (a national list); The San Antonio-Express News (a national list with a regional emphasis): and the Austin Chronicle (a Texas-centric list).


Roger Jones’ chapbook Familial was published in December by Finishing Line Press. Five of his haibun poems will appear later this year in Journeys 2016, an international anthology of haibun.


The Conference on College Composition and Communication has selected Miriam Williams and Octavio Pimentel’s Communicating Race, Ethnicity, and Identity in Technical Communication as the winner of the 2016 CCCC Technical and Scientific Communication Award in the category of Best Original Collection of Essays in Technical or Scientific Communication. Octavio and Miriam will be presented with the award at the Awards Session of the 2016 CCCC Convention in Houston this coming April.


Rob Tally’s essay "Adventures in Literary Cartography: Explorations, Representations, Projections" appears in Literature and Geography: The Writing of Space throughout History (Cambridge Scholars, 2016).  His collection of essays, Ecocriticism and Geocriticism: Overlapping Territories in Environmental and Spatial Literary Studies, co-edited with Christine M. Battista, has just been published by Palgrave Macmillan.


MATC alumnus Derek Holden accepted a position as Content Administrator at Game Stop Inc.  Derek's duties will include creating and managing web content for Game Stop's international ThinkGeek brand.


At the 2016 Association for Teachers of Technical Writing (ATTW), to be held in Houston this April, Aimee Roundtree, Deb Balzhiser, and Miriam Williams will present research in a panel discussion titled, "Social Justice on Social Media: The Impact of Digital Technology on Political and Health Communication and Advocacy.” The focus of this year's ATTW conference is citizenship and advocacy in technical communication.


Susan Morrison’s novel, Grendel's Mother: The Saga of the Wyrd-Wife, has been shortlisted for the 2014-2015 Sarton Literary Award for Historical Fiction:



English Department


6 January 2016




Becky Jackson's book (written with Jackie Grutsch McKinney and Nicole Caswell), The Working Lives of New Writing Center Directors, will be published by Utah State University Press in Fall 2016. Utah State UP is the foremost publisher of writing center research and scholarship.


Aimee Roundtree’s "Social Health Content and Activity on Facebook: A Survey Study,” was accepted for publication in the Journal of Technical Writing and Communication.


MFA poetry graduate and current Lecturer Vanessa Couto Johnson, along with recent MFA poetry graduates John Fry and Luisa Muradyan, has work in the latest issue of Blackbird:


The Personal Academic and Career Exploration Mentoring and Coaching Office (PACE-MAC) named Keith Needham its 2015 “Best Instructor as Part of a Team” for his work with an assigned peer mentor in his US 1100 classes. The award was announced after Needham assigned his students to work with their peer mentor in writing narratives in the fashion of the Tomas Rivera Common Experience text, . . . And The Earth Did Not Devour Him. Needham then taped the students’ presentations and produced a video of the best four narratives. The video is entitled Bridged Through Stories: . . . And Neither Did the Earth Devour Them. Keith's strategies became part of the nominating process for PACE-MAC's statewide recognition for use of classroom mentors. In December, The University of Texas at San Antonio named Texas State’s PACE-MAC team a recipient of the Outstanding Mentoring Program in Texas.


Octavio Pimentel will present “Too Mexican: Facing Racist Rhetoric,” at the Southwest Council of Latin American Studies conference, to be held February 2016 in New Orleans. Beginning next year, Octavio will serve a three-year term on the Editorial Board of College Composition and Communication, which is one of the top journals in composition.


Susan Morrison received a Research Enhancement Grant award of $6,560 for next year. She was one of 11 receiving awards in Liberal Arts this year.


The following non-tenure-line faculty in English have received a Faculty Senate Nontenure Faculty Workload Release Award for fall or spring 2016-2017: Jason Coates, Daniel Keltner, Lindy Kosmitis, and Jon Marc Smith.


MFA Fiction student Graham Oliver interviewed Debra Monroe about her new memoir and the genre of memoir at large for The Rumpus:

Fall 2015

English Department


November 17, 2015



The following faculty were named "Favorite Professors" by Fall 2015 graduate student inductees to the Texas State chapter of Alpha Chi National Honor Society: Jennifer duBois, Nancy Grayson, Chad Hammett, Rebecca Jackson, Lindy Kosmitis, Jaime Mejia, Cecily Parks, Aimee Roundtree, Robert Tally, and Steve Wilson.


MA Literature student Matthew Hudson presented "Illuminators of the Multitude: Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s Populist Critique of the French Revolution” at the 40th annual conference for Society for Utopian Studies, held recently in Pittsburgh.


Michael Noll moderated the panel, "Jogging Memories," at the Texas Book Festival. The panel featured Jill Alexander Essbaum and Keija Parssinen. He also moderated two panels at the Austin Film Festival: "Script-to-Screen: Saving Mr. Banks" with the film's writer, Kelly Marcel, and director, John Lee Hancock; and "A Conversation with Chris Cooper," featuring Cooper, who won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Adaptation. Both AFF panels will be turned into episodes of the PBS show On Story.


Miriam Williams has accepted an invitation to serve as guest speaker during Texas Tech University's Ph.D. in Technical Communication & Rhetoric Program's May Seminar, to be held May 22nd through June 4th, 2015.


MATC alumnus Dr. Travis Irby serves as Instructional Designer in Texas State University's Office of Distance and Extended Learning. His areas of emphasis include self-paced studies and course production. 


Several Texas State faculty and graduate students presented at the South Central Modern Language Association conference held in Nashville this past October: MFA fiction students Michaela Hansen, Josh Lopez and Graham Oliver; and faculty members Victoria Smith, Ross Feeler and Anne Shepherd.


One of Susan Hanson's underwater photos, taken at Jacob's Well in Wimberley, has been selected for an exhibition at the Darkroom Gallery in Essex Junction, Vermont. Her photograph was among 54 selected from approximately 600 entries. Judge for the event was Gary Braasch, an environmental photojournalist and writer who documents nature, environment, biodiversity, and climate change around the world.



English Department


November 9, 2015




Mark Busby presented “My Night with Ken Kesey” at the Western Literature Association in Reno, NV on Oct. 17.  The talk is based upon Kesey’s visit to San Marcos and Wimberley in 1994.


Rob Tally’s article "An American Bakhtin: Jonathan Arac, or, the Critic in the Age of the Novel" will appear in the next issue of symplokē.


Roger Jones’ poem "Government Bridge" has been accepted by Town Creek Poetry Journal

At the upcoming Seventh International Research Conference for Graduate Students, sponsored by Texas State’s Graduate College, the following graduate students will present their work: Danielle McEwen will present “Connecting Past to Present: Using New Media Theory in Museum Website Development”; Edward Garza, “Renovating the House on Mango Street: Expanding Latinx Literature in First-Year Composition Classes”; Amanda Scott, The Subject is the Matter: Towards a More Inclusive Understanding of Hybrid Racial Identity in Technical Communication”; and Tyler Dukes, Coleridge and the Hypnagogic State: Blending Folklore and Fairy Tale to Create the Unconscious in “Christabel.”

MATC Alumna Alex Podwalny is Communications Executive with Mercom Capital Group in Austin.  Alex writes that Mercom is a hybrid communications and research firm with clients in the clean tech space.

MFA fiction student Stanislav Rivkin’s story, "How To Survive a Non-Funeral," will appear in the next issue of Glimmer Train.

Vanessa Couto Johnson’s chapbook manuscript rotoscoping collage in Cork City (a sequence of poems that include quotes from the film Waking Life) will be published in 2016 by dancing girl press.

Dr. Jaime Mejia and MARC students Edward Garza and Clare Murray delivered papers on the panel “Strategies for Teaching Argument and Persuasion in Relation to Latin@ Literary and Cultural Spheres” at the Third Annual Trends in Teaching College Composition conference held this past October in McKinney, TX.



English Department


October 29, 2015




MFA poetry student Jason Duncan’s poems "The Botany of Absence," "The Creation of Loneliness," "Ghazal of Burning Silk," "Neurology," and "Pica" have been accepted for publication in Lamar University's New Writers Series anthology.


Stephanie Noll's essay, "The Myth of Gender," can be found at Graceless: On October 18, Stephanie moderated "Behind the Barrel," a conversation with authors Elliot Ackerman (Green on Blue) and Texas State graduate Brandon Caro (Old Silk Road) at the Texas Book Festival. 


Susan Morrison published a blog post on the recent Texas Medieval Association conference, held at Texas State in October: A number of faculty and graduate students from the English Department participated.  MFA poetry student Dorothy Lawrenson received the award for the best essay by a Graduate Student presented at the conference.


On October 22, Alan Schaefer moderated a conversation with documentary filmmaker Pawel Wysoczanski on truth in documentary cinema. Mr. Wysoczanski visited Texas for the Austin Polish Film Festival. His most recent film, JUREK, a documentary about the famous Polish alpine climber Jerzy Kukuczka, was screened at the festival.


MFA fiction graduate Sarah Rafael Garcia’s short story "Little Secrets" ("Mentirillas" in Spanish), which she wrote during a workshop class with author Cristina Garcia, was recently published in English and translated in Spanish in Contrapuntos:


Cecily Parks and Susan Morrison will be reading from their latest books at the Travis Heights Art Trail in Austin on Saturday and Sunday November 7th & 8th.  For more information and the schedule of their readings, please check out this website:


On Thursday, 11/5, at 3:30 p.m. in FH 230, Dr. Mark Bracher will give a public talk titled “Developing Compassionate Identities through Literary Study.” The talk is part of the Therese Kayser Lindsey Visiting Scholar Series. Dr. Bracher is a leading figure in the cognitive humanities and literary study. His most recent book is Literature and Social Justice: Protest Novels, Cognitive Politics, and Schema Criticism (Univ. of Texas Press, 2013). He is Professor of English at Kent State University.



English Department


October 14, 2015




MFA fiction student and MARC alumnus Graham Oliver interviewed the writer David Lipsky for The Rumpus. Lipsky's 2010 book about David Foster Wallace, Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, was recently adapted into the film The End of the Tour, starring Jason Segel and Jesse Eisenberg.  You can read the interview here:


Debra Monroe will be launching her new book, My Unsentimental Education, on Saturday, October 24 at 4 p.m. at BookPeople in Austin, on 6th & Lamar. At the event, there will be introductory remarks by Scott Blackwood, Texas State MFA program alumnus and award-winning author. Two chapters from the book have previously been cited as “Notable” in Best American Essays. Recent excerpts and essays she’s written about it include an essay in Salon; an essay titled “The Memoir of Discovery, Not Recovery” in Kirkus Reviews (widely shared on social media); an excerpt published by Longreads on Oct. 1, reposted by the Internet aggregator, Digg on Oct. 4. Enthusiastic reviews and feature stories have appeared in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution; The Dallas Morning News; the Minneapolis Star Tribune; the Houston Chronicle; the San Francisco Review of Books; the Wisconsin State Journal; and Amazon’s recommended books column, Omnivoracious. The review that best captures the unconventional spirit of the book appeared in the Chicago Tribune:


One of Susan Hanson’s photos, taken at Jacob's Well, received first place in this year's Texas Photographic Society Members Only Show, judged by Keith Carter. It was one of 50 images selected out of 1020 submissions. The show will open Dec. 10 at the TCC Photo Gallery in Longview:


MFA poetry graduate and current Lecturer James Knippen will have two poems, "Beggars" and "Lilies," published in an upcoming issue of Gulf Coast. His poem "Kitchen," previously published in Hayden's Ferry Review, will be included in The Great American Wise Ass Poetry Anthology, forthcoming from Lamar University Press.


MFA poetry student Ashton Kamburoff’s poem "For the Love of a Cadillac and a Cousin" has been accepted by Rose Red Review


The Katherine Anne Porter House hosted an interview between Texas authors Mary Helen Specht and Nan Cuba.  The interview is featured in the October issue of Texas Monthly and can be found online:



English Department


September 17, 2015




Kathleen McClancy's “Iron Curtain Man versus Captain American Exceptionalism: World War II and Cold War Nostalgia in Marvel’s War on Super-Terror” just came out in Marvel Comics’ Civil War and the Age of Terror: Critical Essays on the Comic Saga, from McFarland. Earlier this summer, “Atomic Housewives: *Shutter Island* and the Domestication of Nuclear Holocaust” came out in the June issue of the Journal of Popular Film and Television.

"No Dancing in Waco" and "Once, and Again After Midnight,” two poems by MFA poetry student Ashton Kamburoff, have been accepted by Shadowgraph Quarterly.

Becky Jackson will participate in the panel "The Extracurriculum Within Our Walls" at the 2016 Conference on College Composition and Communication Convention. She will also co-chair (with Eric Leake) the annual meeting of the Master's Degree Consortium of Writing Studies Specialists at the conference.

Edna Rehbein, a Lecturer in the English Department and also an Assistant Vice Presdient for Academic Affairs, has been selected for an Alumnae Achievement Award by her alma mater, know formerly as Randolph-Macon Woman’s College in Virginia but now coed and is simply Randolph College. She will receive the award in Virginia on September 19th and will have an opportunity to teach a class while there. She attended Randolph-Macon in the 1970s and earned an AB degree with a double major in Spanish and Latin American Studies, graduating with Honors and Magna Cum Laude. Upon graduation she received a Danforth Fellowship for graduate students to study in doctoral programs with the purpose of becoming university professors. Randolph College has a very strong history as a liberal arts college and many of its graduates continue with graduate and professional programs.

Miriam Williams and Octavio Pimentel’s Communicating Race, Ethnicity, and Identity in Technical Communication, published in 2015 by Baywood Publishing Company, has been nominated for the 2016 Technical and Scientific Communication Awards sponsored by the Conference on College Composition & Communication.

MFA fiction graduate Sarah Rafael Garcia has been granted an artist-in-residence position at the Grand Central Arts Center in Santa Ana, California from March of 2016 through March of 2017, with which she will develop her of proposed Santana's Fairy Tales, a collection is inspired by and including one of the feminist fairytales submitted in her MFA thesis. *Santana’s Fairy Tales* is an oral history, storytelling project that integrates community-based interviews to create contemporary fairytales and fables that represent the history and real stories of Mexican/Mexican-American residents of Santa Ana (inspired by the Grimms’ Fairy Tales). The exhibit will present a mixed media installation that will be curated in collaboration with local visual, musical, and performance artists. The exhibit will showcase a fully illustrated published book; an 'open book' performance with a narrator and actors; along with the band “Viento Callejero,” who will compose and play a score for a featured story out of the collection. The artist-in-residence position includes a $10,000 honorarium and an apartment in the downtown artist district (near the art center), as well as funds for the artists participating in the project and for all curating expenses. Santana's Fairy Tales is supported in part by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, through a grant supporting the Artist-in-Residence initiative at Grand Central Art Center.


English Department


4 September 2015




Allan Chavkin published “Looking at Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman through the Lens of Interpersonal Acceptance and Rejection Theory and Family Systems Theory” in the Spring 2015 issue of the Arthur Miller Journal. He presented “Bellow’s Death Comedy in an Early Draft of Henderson the Rain King at the American Literature Association Annual Conference, held this past May in Boston.


Octavio Pimentel’s book, Historias De ‘Exito within Mexican Comunities: Silenced Voices, in now out from Palgrave Macmillan. His paper "Opening the Gateway: The Power of Dual Language Composition Courses” has been accepted for presentation at the CCCC conference in Houston next spring; and “#RacistTweets: A Critical Analysis of the Ongoing Racism in Social Media” has been accepted for presentation at AESA 2015, to be held in San Antonio. In addition, he has agreed to a one-year term as a member of the 2016 National CCCC Technical and Scientific Communication Awards Selection Committee, which recognizes outstanding books and articles in technical and scientific communication in six categories (best book, best original collection of essays, best article reporting qualitative or quantitative research, best article reporting historical research or textual studies, best article on philosophy or theory, and best article on pedagogy or curriculum).


Alan Schaefer’s essay "Reframing a Portrait: Flann O’Brien’s Interrogation of the Artist in ‘Cruiskeen Lawn’" will appear this winter in New Critical Perspectives on Franco-Irish Relations, volume 68 of the Reimagining Ireland series (Peter Lang International Academic Publisher).


In June, Susan Hanson presented "From Matagorda to Mad Island" at the Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment conference, held at the University of Idaho. In July, her photograph "At the Koi Pond" was one of 60, out of more than 750 submissions, chosen for a juried exhibit at A Smith Gallery in Johnson City. Also in June, two of her underwater photos from the San Marcos River were selected for the 11th Annual Naturescapes Exhibition at the San Marcos Activity Center Walkers' Gallery. The exhibit will remain up until Sept. 11.


Rob Tally’s article, "The Geopolitical Aesthetic of Middle-earth: Tolkien, Cinema, and Literary Cartography," translated into Russian by Arja Rosenholm, has now come out in her edited collection of essays, Topographies of Popular Culture (Moscow: New Literary Observer Books, 2015). In Russian, his article is titled “Геополитическая эстетика Средиземья: Толкиен, кино и литературная картография,” and the book information is here:


MATC faculty Scott Mogull and Deb Balzhiser co-authored "Pharmaceutical Companies are Writing the Script for Health Consumerism," published in the August 2015 issue of Communication Design Quarterly as part of a special issue on medical rhetoric.


Marilynn Olson’s “John Ruskin and the Mutual Influences of Children’s Literature and the Avant-Garde” appears in Children’s Literature and the European Avant-Garde. She also presented at two summer conferences:  “Without Names: Defining Childhood as Audience for Pirate Tales,” at the International Research Society in Children's Literature conference, held in Worcester, England this past August; and in June, “Billy Whiskers: Mrs. Montgomery Defines Freedom for Young America,” at the Children’s Literature Association International Meeting, held in Richmond, VA.


English Department


August 28, 2015




At the 2015 College of Liberal Arts Convocation, the following English faculty were recognized with awards: Kitty Ledbetter received a Presidential Distinction Award for Teaching, Rob Tally received a Presidential Distinction Award for Scholarly/Creative Activity, Steve Wilson received a Presidential Distinction Award for Service, and Kathleen McClancy received a College Achievement Award for Teaching.


Wendy Shan Wen, Professor and Vice Dean in the College of Foreign Studies at South China Agricultural University, is spending the 2015-16 academic year as a Visiting Research Scholar. Professor Wen will work with Steve Wilson.


On Wednesday, August 12, Stephanie Noll raised over $500 and collected several boxes of books for Old Books for New Teachers, her project that supports first-year teachers by helping them build classroom libraries. The fundraiser was a part of Five Things, a reading series that takes place every other month in Austin.


Benjamin Reed’s essay, “Technologies of Instant Amnesia: Teaching Kurt Vonnegut's ‘Harrison Bergeron’ to the Millennial Generation,” was published in the Spring 2015 issue of Teaching American Literature: A Journal of Theory and Practice:


Kitty Ledbetter presented her paper,“'Five O’Clock Tea' and Dickens’ Young Man: Edmund Yates as Columnist for The Queen," at the annual conference of the Research Society for Victorian Periodicals, held in Ghent, Belgium on July 10. In addition, she has been appointed Assistant Director of Faculty Development for Texas State: her duties will be to coordinate the New Tenure Track Faculty Orientation each fall and the Program for Excellence in Teaching and Learning events throughout the academic year.


Katie Kapurch's article, "Rapunzel Loves Merida: Melodramatic Expressions of Lesbian Girlhood and Teen Romance in Tangled, Brave, and Femslash," appears in the Journal of Lesbian Studies.


Steve Wilson’s poem “Selections from a Sketchbook of Birds” will appear in the fall issue of Borderlands.

Summer 2015

English Department


August 10, 2015



Texas State was represented at the annual Children's Literature Association conference, held this year in Richmond, Virginia, by Marilynn Olson and Graeme Wend-Walker. Marilynn presented “Billy Whiskers (1902-1930):  Mrs. Montgomery Defines Freedom for Young America,” and Graeme presented “The Excluded Middle in Political Criticism: How Did ‘Liberty’ and ‘Death’ Become the Only Options?”


Keith Needham’s former student teacher and English major, Jonathan Sixtos, has been named Texas Region III Teacher of the Year. He now will advance to compete at the state level.


The 2015 Iowa Poetry Prize has been awarded to John Blair’s Playful Song Called Beautiful. This year’s judge was University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop visiting professor Craig Morgan Teicher, who wrote of the book that “… rolling tercets become the unlikely medium for all manner of slippery, expansive, and emotive thinking. For Blair, poetry’s shifting, mutable meaning is ‘all the comfort you need, all/ thecomfort you get.’” Playful Song Called Beautiful is Blair’s third book of poetry. His work has appeared in literary journals such as Poetry, The New York Quarterly, The Sewanee Review, The Antioch Review, and New Letters. His poetry collection The Green Girls won the 2003 Lena-Miles WeverTodd Poetry Prize; and his short story collection American Standard was awarded the 2002 Drue-Heinz Literature Prize.


MFA Fiction graduate 2012 Evan McMurry has been working as a writer for the small, feisty, always intelligent and well-written political blog Mediaite. He’s just accepted a position as Political Editor for ABC News.


Amanda Scott’s nonfiction piece “Cherry Blossom appears in the latest issue of Word Riot Amanda is graduate student (currently MATC, formerly MFA) in the English Department at Texas State.


Alan Schaefer presented “Comic Art and the Music Posters of Austin, Texas” on July 3 at the Amsterdam Comics Conference at the University of Amsterdam.


Annie Shepherd's essay "Life Outside the Straw" appears in the North Dakota Quarterly.



English Department


17 June 2015




Recent graduate Nathan Machart, winner of the 2013 and 2014 Gates Thomas Award from Persona, has a story, "Poor, Bleeding Country," forthcoming in Carolina Quarterly.


Cecily Parks’ poem “Morning Instructions for the Doctor’s Wife” appears in the June 22 issue of The New Yorker.


Graduate student Katherine Stingley has been awarded one of only 17 Celebrity Classic Scholarships. The award is a highly competitive multi-year scholarship from Texas State, providing up to $1,500 per semester for the student’s remaining hours in the degree. This year, over 400 students applied for the scholarship.


MATC alumna Whitney Lacey has accepted a position as a Content Specialist at Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) in Austin, Texas.  EA develops and publishes EA Sports titles, The Sims, and many other popular videos games. Whitney will write HELP articles and documentation to support EA games.   


Susan Morrison's latest book, The Literature of Waste, is out from Palgrave Macmillan.


MA Literature student Tyler Dukes presented "Sacred Time and Ritualistic Behavior at Harry Potter Book Releases and Film Premieres," at the June 2015 Fandom and Neomedia Studies (FANS) Conference, hosted by A-Kon in Dallas. The same article will be published in the July edition of The Phoenix Papers, an online peer-reviewed journal.


Michel Conroy, Chair of the Faculty Senate, sent the following note to Dr. Lochman, Chair of the English Department: “To encourage recognition of faculty service on the Faculty Senate and its sixteen committees, as well as the twenty-one university level committees to which the Faculty Senate makes appointments, I am forwarding a list of English faculty serving on these committees for the 2014-2015 academic year: Dr. Rebecca Bell-Metereau:  Faculty Senate, Supplemental Award Review Committee, University Council; Dr. Roger Jones:  Faculty Handbook Committee; Ms. Amanda Meyer:  Adjunct Faculty Committee Liaison; Dr. Victoria Smith:  Honor Code Council; Dr. Miriam Williams:  Library Committee; Mr. Steve Wilson:  University Arts Committee; Ms. Sarah Youree:  Budget Committee. Thank you for serving on the Academic Governance Committee this year.  Although there are additional university committees on which faculty may serve, in 2014-2015, thirty-eight College of Liberal Arts faculty served on these thirty-seven committees, eight (including you) from the Department of English.”

Spring 2015

English Department


May 8, 2015




MARC graduate Cheyenne Riggs has accepted a full-time lecturer position in the Department of English at the University of Oklahoma.


Nancy Wilson's article, "Coming in from the (Binary) Code," will appear in the Spring 2015 issue of Writing on the Edge.


Trey Moody's poem, "What Needs To Be Done," is in the current issue of Puerto del Sol.


The following English faculty were name Alpha Chi Favorite Professors by students graduating Spring 2015: John Blair, Chad Hammett, Susan Hanson, Elvin Holt, Rebecca Jackson, Katie Kapurch, Lindy Kosmitis, Twister Marquiss, Stephanie Motz, Stephanie Noll, and Anne Winchell.  Alpha Chi is a National College Honor Society that recognizes “academic excellence and exemplary character” in students.


MATC student Emily Clark, this year’s Outstanding Graduate Student in English, has accepted a position at Schneider Electric as a technical writer. Emily will write documentation for tollway system software and hardware. 


MFA poetry student Laura Kraay’s comic-poetry hybrid, “Notes to My Ex,” appears in the latest issue of Hobart:


Our Visiting Fulbright Scholar, Dr. Komi Begedou, and a colleague currently at New York University have been awarded a $10,000 grant from NYU and D-Prize for their "Jeunes Braves" project to expand classes helping teenage girls in Togo avoid unwanted pregnancy. In late April, Komi was guest speaker at the Togo Independence Day celebration held by the Togo Association of Central Texas, in Austin.


Steve Wilson has poems forthcoming in Southwestern American Literature, Midwest Quarterly, and Beloit Poetry Journal.



English Department


April 27, 2015




Susan Hanson, Elvin Holt and Twister Marquiss have been named Alpha Chi Favorite Professors for spring 2015.


MARC graduate Megan Boeshart has been accepted into the PhD program in English at Old Dominion University, where she will focus on program emphases in writing & rhetoric and technology & media studies.


MFA poetry student Sarah Howze’s poem "Scene I: Stuck in the House of Tiny Deaths, Somewhere in Texas" will be published in the Spring 2015 edition of Anamesa


A Texas State University team competed at the International Business Ethics Case Competition in New Orleans, LA in late April. The graduate student team, including English Department Administrative Assistant Shaula Rocha, along with Travis Stockton and David Tamez, won 1st place in the 90-second presentation division, and runner-up in the 25-minute presentation division.


Mary McCulley, a 2008 graduate of the MARC program, has accepted a tenure-track Assistant Professor position in the English Department at Cedarville University in Ohio. Mary is currently completing her dissertation on 19th-century women's rhetoric and literature at Texas Christian University. She will start her new position in the fall.


Mark Busby was the featured author for the launch of the 2015 volume of The Mayo Review at Texas A&M University-Commerce on April 23.   As part of the launch, Mark conducted a morning writing workshop; presented a paper in the afternoon entitled “The Scholar as Novelist, the Novelist as Scholar”; and offered a reading from his novel Cedar Crossing in the evening. Two of his stories are featured in the new volume of The Mayo Review.


Students in Laura Ellis-Lai's fall 2014 Honors writing course presented their work at the National Conference for Undergraduate Research last week at Eastern Washington University. Congratulations to undergraduate researchers Marcela Zuniga Arteaga, Brian Woods, Lindsey Robertson, Amber Cabading, and Glen Stevenson. Laura’s talk at the NCUR Faculty and Administrator Network, about the research she did as a result of participating in Texas State’s Faculty Learning Community on Globalization this year, was titled: “Supporting International Independent Research for Undergraduates.”


Octavio Pimentel has agreed to serve as Second Stage Reviewer for the 2016 Conference on College Composition and Communication.


Graduating MARC student Shaun Bryan has been accepted into the M.A. in Applied Philosophy and Ethics (MAAPE) program at Texas State for fall 2015. He plans to study the philosophy of cognition, logic, the philosophy of language and its connection to cognition, the philosophy of education, and the mind/body connection in continuation of his research into disability studies.



English Department


April 21, 2015




After hearing about Dr. Komi Begedou's research interests and the lack of American Literature available at his home institution in Togo, Sigma Tau Delta organized a book drive for the University of Lome. For the past academic year, Sigma Tau Delta has been collecting books in the English Department as well as at all Sigma functions. As a result, they will be sending 269 books to Dr. Begedou’s university this May.


Cecily Parks's second poetry collection, O'Nights, was published this month by Alice James Books.


Pinfan Zhu's article "Against Cultural Influence on Structuring a Discourse for Cross-Cultural Communication" was published as the lead article in the March 2015 issues of International Journal of Liberal Arts and Social Science. “The Impact of Business Cultural Values on Homepage Design That May Affect International Business" has been accepted by the Journal of Technical Writing & Communication.


Marilynn Olson presented "Billy Whiskers: Frances Trego Montgomery's Primer for Two-Legged Kids (1902-1930)" at the Child and Citizenship symposium of the Critical Childhood Studies Seminar, held at Texas A&M, March 27th.


Rob Tally was named Outstanding Professor of the Year by Sigma Tau Delta.


Gabriel Schnell, graduating MFA fiction student, has accepted a position as an 11th grade Writing teacher at Gestalt Community Schools in Memphis, TN. 


On April 15, several former student teachers participated in a panel organized by Stephanie Noll, Lindy Kosmitis, Sarah Youree, Keith Needham, and Laura Sims. The panelists – Kylie Cooper, Zach Soto, and Michele Benage – spoke to current student teachers in English about their experiences as new teachers. The panelists were given books for their classrooms thanks to Stephanie's project, Old Books for New Teachers, which helps recent Texas State graduates build their classroom libraries.


2007 fiction graduate Amelia Gray’s third story collection, Gutshot, has just been published by FSG. To read its NPR review, click on this link:


Lindy Kosmitis has been name 2014-15 Honors Professor of the Year.


Susan Morrison has been awarded the title of Honorary Professor of International Studies for a three-year term, beginning in the 2015-16 budget cycle. This is a renewal; Susan was also an Honorary Professor of International Studies for the 2012-15 cycle.



English Department


April 7, 2014




Rachel Snow, an undergraduate English major who will begin the MARC program this summer, has been awarded a Graduate Merit Fellowship of $2,500 for the 2015-2016 academic year. The fellowship is designed to help recruit students of the "highest quality' to master's programs at Texas State.


Miles Wilson's story, "Tough," appears in the current issue of The Georgia Review. An interview with Miles appears in The Georgia Review Online:


On March 27th, MA-Literature graduate and current Lecturer Amanda Sabo, MFA poetry graduate Jeremy Bauer, and MA-Literature student Christine Zabala presented the panel “From Virginia Woolf to Batgirl: The Failure of Democracy's Promise" at the Women and Gender Symposium, held at Texas State.


Rob Tally’s essay "Beyond the Flaming Walls of the World: Fantasy, Alterity, and the Postnational Constellation" appears in The Planetary Turn: Relationality and Geoaesthetics in the Twenty-First Century, edited by Amy J. Elias and Christian Moraru (Northwestern Univ. Press, 2015).


Libby Allison has been invited to participate in Multicultural Curriculum Transformation Institute, sponsored by Texas State’s Center for Diversity and Gender Studies.


MARC student Clare Murray presented "'Suppose there were a Narnian World': C.S. Lewis's Rhetorical Use of Supposals" at the 18th Annual C.S. Lewis and Inkling Society Conference, held recently at Grove City College. Her essay received Honorable Mention in the competition for best Graduate student paper presented at the conference, for which Clare was awarded a small cash prize. On April 11 she will present "'Well, That's Your Opinion' - Truth, Morality, and Religion in the Composition and Rhetoric Classroom" at the Texas State conference on "Religious Studies, the Liberal Arts, and the Public University."


The English Department was well represented at the national Pop Culture Association / American Culture Association meeting held recently in New Orleans. MARC student Collin Couey presented "You and Your Crew: A Critical History of Rap Groups"; MFA fiction student Theresa Holden read her short story, "What Are the Vitals?"; MFA fiction student Graham Oliver presented "Renegade or Paragon: Narrative Choice in Contemporary Video Games"; and MATC student Amanda Scott presented "'Shorty Wanna Be a Thug': The Dynamics of Gender in Rap Groups."



English Department


March 25, 2014




MFA poetry student Ashton Kamburoff’s poem "Russet County" has been published in Portage Magazine: A Review of Upper Midwest Writing, Art, and Culture.


The Many Cinemas of Michael Curtiz, a collection edited by Murray Pomerance and Barton Palmer, will be published by the University of Texas Press in 2016 and includes a chapter written by Rebecca Bell-Metereau.


Annie Shepherd presented "Accepting the Inexplicable: the Relationship Between Style and Content in Tony Earley's 'The Prophet from Jupiter'" at the American Literature Association's "God and the American Writer" conference in late February.


John Blair has won the 2014 Dana Award, awarded for a group of poems.  He will receive $1,000 as winner.


MFA fiction student Emily Smith has been awarded a scholarship to attend the New York State Summer Writers Institute, to be held at Skidmore College.  Only 51 out of 300 applicants received an award.


Texas State was well represented at the 36th International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts, held recently in Orlando. Brandy Eileen Allatt presented "Herbert and Jodorowsky: The Unintentional Meta-Messiah in Jodorowsky's Dune"; Suparno Banerjee presented "Ghosts, Aliens, and Machines: Epistemic Continuity and Assemblage in Shirshendu Mukherjee’s Science Fiction"; and Graeme Wend-Walker presented "The Scientific Imagination and the Imaginary Science."


Trey Moody's short short story, "Permission," appears in the current issue of NANO Fiction, and two of his poems are in the newest OmniVerse


MFA fiction student Shannon Perri’s story, "You're Never Alone Until There's Nothing," has been published in Queen Mob's Teahouse:


MFA fiction graduate Marc Watkins’ first book, Middle West, will be published by Queen’s Ferry Press this June:



English Department


March 4, 2015




The College of Liberal Arts has nominated the following English faculty for 2015 Presidential Excellence Awards: Kitty Ledbetter, for teaching; Rob Tally, for scholarly / creative activity; and Steve Wilson, for service.


Octavio Pimentel’s latest book, Racial Shorthand: Coded Discrimination Contested in Social Media, has been accepted for publication by Computers and Composition Digital Press.


Columnist Ken Herman of the Austin American-Statesman featured Texas State University’s Common Experience and the Common Reading Program in his Metro/State commentary column on Wednesday, February 25th: He discussed the 50th anniversary of Texas State’s integration, as well as the history of the school. In addition, the piece highlighted Common Reading Program director Twister Marquiss, who is a lecturer in the Department of English.


Komi Begedou will present "Navigating the Intersections of a Christian Organization and a West African Public University" at the Texas State University conference, “Religious Studies, Liberal Arts and the Public University,” taking place this coming April.


Scott Mogull’s article “Direct-to-Consumer Advertising and Health Consumerism” has been accepted for publication in Fall 2015 as part of a special issue of Communication Design Quarterly exploring health and medical discourses. CDQ is the peer-reviewed journal of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Special Interest Group on Design of Communication. 


Michael Noll’s story, "The Tank Yard," was accepted by Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine for the June/July issue. In addition, Michael was invited by the journal American Short Fiction to write an essay about a text that portrays poor parenting. His essay, discussing Murray Farish's story "Inappropriate Behavior," was published along with essays by other writers at ASF's blog series, Bourbon & Milk:



English Department


February 20, 2015




Scott Mogull's presentation, "Practices of Visual Inscriptions in Science and Engineering Discourse: Implications for Teaching," has been accepted at ProComm 2015, the annual conference of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Professional Communication Societ, to be held in Limerick, Ireland on July 12-15, 2015.


Steve Wilson's poem "Six Storms" will be among the texts used by visual artists to create new work during a series of spring workshops sponsored by the renowned Kinsale Pottery & Arts Centre (Kinsale, Ireland). The project will culminate in an exhibition entitled "Trading Words: An exploration of the relationship between visual arts and creative writing”:


MA-Literature student Tyler Dukes presented "The Searchers and Dallas Buyers Club: Social Upheaval on Two Frontiers" at the Southwest Popular/American Culture Association (SWPCA) Conference, held recently in Albuquerque, NM.


Cyrus Cassells has been named a "Guest Director" for the Drama Department's current production of A Streetcar Named Desire.


Mark Busby has been selected as the “featured author” for Texas A&M-Commerce's launch of its annual literary magazine, The Mayo Review.  Two of his stories will appear in the issue, and he will do readings and workshops as part of the event. Mark presented “Leavening Humor in Cormac McCarthy’s Cities of the Plain” at the Texas/Southwest Popular Culture Association meeting in Albuquerque, February 11, 2015.


The 19 February 2015 issue of the Austin American-Statesman featured on the first page of "Austin 360" "Homegrown," the collection of posters celebrating the Austin music culture that is on view at the Wittliff Gallery through July 3. Alan Schaefer, lecturer in the Department of English, has curated the exhibit and authored the related book, Homegrown: Austin Music Posters 1967 to 1982 (Austin: UT Press, 2015), which features essays by Joe Nick Patoski and Nels Jacobson.



English Department


February 13, 2015




On January 30, Rachel and Matt Greengold welcomed their new son Sebastian Scott Greengold. He was born 8lbs and 19 inches long.


MATC alumna Alexandra Podwalny has accepted the Communications Executive position at Mercom Capital Group in Austin, Texas. Alexandra graduated from the MATC program in fall 2014.


MFA fiction student Allison Grace Myers will present "Idiosyncrasy and Isolation: The Pleasures of Language in Lorrie Moore's 'Which Is More Than I Can Say About Some People'" at the University of Wisconsin - Madison's conference, "Dirty Talk: The Forms and Language of Pleasure." 


MFA fiction student Jane Hawley had a story published by Day One, Amazon’s literary journal for emerging authors. “The Suitcases of San Leon” is available at


At this year's Southwest Popular Culture Association / American Culture Association Conference in Albuquerque, Lecturer Anne Winchell will present "Female Representation and Sexualization in Tabletop Gaming": Lecturer Laura Sims will present "Gender, Gamergate, and the Middle Ages: Second Verse, Same as the First”; and Undergraduate English Major Brittany Mari Landgrebe, "Healing Potions: Video Games as a Tool for Coping with Loss and Trauma.” Anne Winchell's article "Video Games as a New Form of Interactive Literature" appears in a special issue of Syllabus Journal:


Lecturer and MFA graduate Logan Fry has a poem forthcoming in Fence.


Deb Balzhiser's article, “Participatory Media & Culture: The Spirit of the Human," written with Caroline Jones and former MATC students Julie Good and Tate English, appears in the latest issue of Technoculture.


2007 MFA fiction graduate Amelia Gray has a story in the February 9 issue of The New Yorker. It is from her story collection, Gutshot, which will be published by Farrar, Strauss & Giroux in April.



English Department


January 30, 2014




MFA fiction student Heather Lefebvre’s story's "Baby" appears online at Story|Houston:


Pinfan Zhu’s article "On the Right Strategy for Translating Technical and Business Information" was published in the latest issue of the International Journal of Education and Social Science. His "Translation Criteria: How They May Affect International Business" was accepted by the Journal of Technical Writing and Communication for a forthcoming issue.


MARC graduate and MFA fiction student Graham Oliver has an essay entitled "How to Write Like George R. R. Martin" at Fiction Advocate:


MFA fiction student Anabel Graff was named one of three winners of the 2014 Prada-Feltrinelli Prize, which celebrates emerging writers.  The ceremony was held on January 19 at Prada headquarters in Milan. Her story, “The Prom at the End of the World,” released by Italian publishing house Giangiacomo Feltrinelli Editore, is available at


Eric Leake's interview with Nancy Sommers, "Enter the Process in Uncertainty," written with David Masiel, appears in the latest issue of Writing on the Edge.


MFA fiction graduate Katie Angermeier Haab is the new Executive Director of the Austin Bat Cave, which offers guidance to young creative writers:


MFA poetry student Autumn Hayes has been invited to read at Houston's Public Poetry reading series this spring and fall.


MFA fiction student Allison Myers’ short story "Conditions" has won the John Steinbeck Award. The prize is sponsored by Reed Magazine, which will publish the story later this spring.



English Department


January 19, 2014




Roger Jones’ poetry chapbook Familial has been accepted by the Finishing Line Press, with publication set for 2015. 


MARC graduate Amanda (Rice) Rawlinson is the new Human Resources Manager for the International American University-College of Medicine, in Dallas, TX.


MFA fiction graduate and current Lecturer Chris Margrave’s "Covington is the Non-Place for Me: Walker Percy's Topophilia in the Deserts of Theory and Consumption" appears in Reconstruction:


Octavio Pimentel has signed a contract with Palgrave Macmillan for his book Historias de Éxito with Mexican Communities: Silenced Voices, which is scheduled to be out in print by June 2015. He also has agreed to serve as a “Featured Panelist” on a panel entitled "Dialog about Language,” to be offered at the Conference on College Composition and Communication in Tampa, Florida this spring.


Deb Balzhiser's article, "Community Guides: Disrupting Oppression in Comment Threads on Social Sites," written with Stephanie Vie (University of Central Florida) and Devon Fitzgerald Ralston (Miami University, Ohio), appears in the latest issue of Technoculture.


Rob Tally has been elected to the Executive Committee of the MLA's Division on Literary Criticism. His book Poe and the Subversion of American Literature: Satire, Fantasy, Critique (Bloomsbury) was named a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title 2014. He recently published "Song of Saruman" in the Los Angeles Review of Books (December 27, 2014), a critique of the representation of the wizard in the Peter Jackson films: "Topophrenia: The Place of the Subject" appears in Reconstruction 14.4 (2014):


The MARC program will be well-represented at the 2015 South Central Writing Centers Association Conference (“What Starts Here Writes The World”), taking place at the University of Texas-Austin this February. Presenters include current students, graduates, and faculty: Cresta Bayley, Collin Couey: Shaun Ford, Nancy Wilson, Rachel Snow, Rebecca Jackson, and Kristin Riggs.


Trey Moody's poem "My Sound Story" appears in the current issue of Pleiades


Eric Leake's chapter "The (Un)Knowable Self and Others: Critical Empathy and Expressivism" has been published in the collection Critical Expressivism: Theory and Practice in the Composition Classroom:



English Department


January 8, 2014




Administrative Assistant Danielle McEwen and her husband Ross are new parents. Emma was born January 6.


MFA fiction student Patrick Cline's story, "Maybe a Calamity," will appear in the upcoming winter issue of Zoetrope: All Story


The Department received the good news recently that the estate of the late L. D. and Laverne Clark has bequeathed to the Department of English municipal bonds in the amount almost of $659,000 that the university will convert and add to the L.D. and Laverne Clark Literary Endowment. This bequest is in addition to the more than $800,000 the endowment received at its inception. In 2012, L. D. Clark authorized a revised memorandum of understanding that provided for an endowment dedicated to the creation of a writer-in-residence for the MFA program and a fiction-writing contest. The department will be working this spring to honor the terms of this MOU. Years ago, Mark Busby made contact with L. D. and Laverne Clark and fostered their interest in Texas State, the Southwest Writers Collection, and our MFA program. Since then, Mike Hennessy and Tom Grimes helped to maintain contact with the Clarks, at one time inviting L.D. to talk about writing to students bussed to campus from a nearby public school. More recently, we had occasions to be in contact with L.D. and, after Laverne's death, his niece, Mrs. Colleen Clark Carri. The Department is very grateful to Mrs. Carri, who served as the executor of her uncle's will, and we look forward to honoring the wishes and memory of L. D. and Laverne.


Miriam Williams and Octavio Pimentel’s edited book collection, Communicating Race, Ethnicity, and Identity in Technical Communication, was favorably reviewed in the December 2014 issue of the Society for Technical Communication Journal.  The reviewer noted, "Communicating Race, Ethnicity, and Identity in Technical Communication has wide-reaching potential for readers and uses. Possible readers include scholars in technical communication and intercultural communication, practicing technical writers, and graduate students. Numerous possibilities exist for using this book in graduate courses, such as introduction to technical communication, intercultural rhetoric, proposal and grant writing, and courses that incorporate discussion about social justice."


MATC alumna Emmelyn Wang has accepted a position as Director of Web Product Marketing at Mouser Electronics in Mansfield, Texas. Mouser Electronics is an authorized distributor of semiconductor and electronic components for over 500 industry-leading suppliers.


Miriam Williams accepted an invitation to serve on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Technical Writing and Communication.

Fall 2014

English Department


December 17, 2014





Alan Schaefer is now a co-editor for Texas State's Journal of Texas Music History.


Eric Leake's short essay "Neon Letters: Writing of Sin City" appears in the latest issue of College Composition and Communication.


Octavio Pimentel’s paper, “Understanding Racism in the Age of Social Media: A Racial Analysis of Sebastien de la Cruz Singing the National Anthem,” has been accepted for the Southwest Council of Latin American Studies conference, to be held in San José, Costa Rica this coming spring.  In addition, Octavio again has been invited to serve on the Gates Millennium Scholarship Program committee, which is scheduled to meet in February 2015 in Los Angeles; since its inception (2000) it has awarded over 17,000 scholarships at a value of over $845,713,056.


MFA fiction student Shannon Perri’s story, "My Sister's Maid of Honor," appears in Buffalo Almanack: Her story "To Be for Something" was published in the second Fiddleblack print anthology, Nights Like These. In addition, her paper “The Rhetoric of Guilt and Violence in Stories by Maile Meloy and William Gay” was accepted for presentation at McGill University's conference, “Violation: Representations in Literature and Culture.”


MARC student Kristin Milligan will present “Trust in Communities: Latin@ Cultural Norms in the Classroom” at the 2015 meeting of the Southwest Council of Latin American Studies, to be held in Coast Rica next March.


Welcome to our new Administrative Assistant Shaula Rocha, and good luck to departing Administrative Assistant Melody Edwards.



English Department


December 5, 2014




Rebecca Bell-Metereau has contracted as editor for publication of a volume of essays entitled Star Bodies and the Erotics of Suffering, to come out Fall 2015 from Wayne State University Press. In addition to an introduction co-authored with Colleen Glenn, Rebecca has a chapter in the collection entitled "Baby, It’s Cold Out in Hollywood: Rock Hudson’s Multiple Masculinities."


Teya Rosenberg received a Research Enhancement grant of $8000 from Texas State to undertake archival research in the UK, London and Newcastle. The research is in support of her ongoing book project, An Invisible Magical Realism:  Children's Literature and the Development of a Form.


Joe Falocco’s “Kyd-ding Around in Austin: The Spanish Tragedy at the Curtain” will appear in a 2015 issue of the Texas Theatre Journal.


MATC alumnus Tate English has been promoted to Staff Technical Writer at National Instruments in Austin, Texas.


Rob Tally’s edited collection The Geocritical Legacies of Edward W. Said: Spatiality, Critical Humanism, and Comparative Literature will be published this coming January by Palgrave Macmillan.


Leah Schwebel has been elected a faculty board member of the Society of Medieval Feminist Scholarship (SMFS), an international organization promoting the study of the Patristic Age, the Middle Ages, and the Early Modern Era from the perspective of gender studies, women’s studies, and feminist studies,


The panel “Cuentos Exitosos: Success Stories of Hispanic Developmental Students,” comprised of Octavio Pimentel and MARC students Melina Ingersoll and Edward Garza, has been accepted for the Student Success Symposium: Research to Practice, to be held at the Embassy Suites Hotel in San Marcos, TX, January 2015.



English Department


November 21, 2014




Two of the English Department’s student workers, Sarah Pollok and Dillon Raad, are graduating this December.


The following faculty are the Department’s nominees for 2015 Presidential Excellence Awards: for teaching, Kitty Ledbetter and Kate McClancy; for scholarly / creative activity, Rob Tally and Joe Falocco; and for service, Steve Wilson and Caitlin McCrory.


All four proposals submitted by English faculty to the Faculty Senate for the 2015-2016 Adjunct Faculty Workload Release have been approved. Next fall, Robin Cohen, Michael Noll, and Sarah Youree will each have a release from two courses to complete projects aimed at development of teaching through research and/or publication. Next fall and spring, Laura Ellis-Lai will have a one-course release to investigate ways to develop and support undergraduate research.


The local chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honor Society, has hosted a number of events this semester: two Poetry and Prose Open Mic Nights, a guest lecture from Fulbright professor Dr. Begedou of the University of Lomé in Togo, a Book Sale, the Nightmare Fuel Scary Story/Poetry Event, a Halloween Film Night, and a Women in Academia Panel featuring Professors Nancy Wilson, Katie Kapurch, Susan Morrison, and Leah Schwebel. In addition, the chapter is sponsoring an ongoing project of collecting literature books to send to the University of Lomé.  Congratulations to the members and faculty advisors Lindy Kosmitis and Sarah Youree for a productive semester.


Octavio Pimentel’s article "The Myth of the Colorblind Writing Classroom: White Instructors Confront White Privilege in Their Classrooms" was accepted as a book chapter for Performing Anti-Racist Pedagogy in Rhetoric, Writing, and Communication (WAC Clearinghouse and Parlor Press), which is scheduled to be published in Spring 2015.  Octavio has accepted an invitation to be an “Invited Speaker” at the 2015 Conference on College Composition and Communication, to be held in Tampa, FL.; his talk is entitled “Conversaciones entre el uso de lenguages in the Composition Classroom.”


Two sections from MFA poetry graduate Tomas Morin’s translation of Pablo Neruda’s The Heights of Machu Picchu appear in the latest issue of American Poetry Review.


Twister Marquiss, Director of the Common Reading Program at Texas State, will present a session titled “Selling the Buy-In: Marketing a Common Reading Program” at the 34th Annual Conference on the First-Year Experience (FYE), to be held in Dallas next February. He will be accompanied by Mass Communication student Q’Anteria Roberson, who serves as social media specialist for Common Reading at Texas State.



English Department


November 11, 2014




Anabel Graff's story, “Ghosts in God's Lungs,” was published by Amazon's literary journal, Day One.  It has now become a stand-alone Kindle Single:


Rob Tally’s essay "World Literature and Its Discontents" appears in the Journal of English Language and Literature, the publication of the English Language and Literature Association of Korea (ELLAK).


MFA fiction student Amanda Scott will present "'Shorty Wanna Be Thug': The Dynamics of Gender in Rap Groups," at the Popular Culture Association / American Culture Association meeting in April, in New Orleans.


After a competitive interview process, Aja Brooks (double major: English and Mass Communication) has been invited to join Teach for America.


Joe Falocco has been named honorary Guest Director of the Texas State Theatre Department’s 2014 production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.


Leah Schwebel’s “The Legend of Thebes and Literary Patricide in Chaucer, Boccaccio, and Statius” appears in the latest issue of Studies in the Age of Chaucer.


Eric Blankenburg, a student in MFA fiction program, presented “Experiencing the Sublime in Nature: Incongruous Styles in Rick Bass’ “The Hermit’s Story” at the recent South Atlantic Modern Language Association (SAMLA) Conference.


Elizabeth Skerpan-Wheeler has been elected Discipline Representative for Rhetoric for the Renaissance Society of America (2015-2017).


On September 23, Tim O'Brien was featured as one of nineteen "Boomers" on PBS's American Masters TV series, a program that told the story of the Baby Boom generation "through the lives of 19 iconic boomers – one born each year of the baby boom": Others featured on the program included Deepak Chopra, Billy Joel, Steve Wozniak, Amy Tan, Tommy Hilfiger, Erin Brockovich, and Rosie O'Donnell.



English Department


October 27, 2014




Pinfan Zhu attended the International Organization of Social Sciences and Behavioral Research conference in Las Vegas on October 13-14, presenting "Translation Criteria: How They Affect International Business."

Eric Leake’s contributed the entry on postmodernism to the new SAGE Encyclopedia of Action Research.

Rob Tally’s article, "In the Suburbs of Amaurotum: Fantasy, Utopia, and Literary Cartography," appears in the current issue of English Language Notes 52.1, a special issue on Imaginary Cartographies.

Chris Margrave recently presented his short story “Boom Fruit” at the South Central Modern Language Association Conference (SCMLA), held recently in Austin.

MA Literature students Stephanie Childress and Whitney May presented at the Texas Medieval Association conference in early October. Stephanie's paper was "Going all-digital: A Usability Study for Medieval Manuscripts"; and Whitney’s, "The Natural Features of the Natural Other: An Ecocritical Analysis of the Skraelings in the Vinland Sagas.”  Ms. May will also present a paper entitled “Wildness and Wilderness: Eco-Empowering the Earth Mother in Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon, Beloved, and Home,” at the South Central MLA meeting in Austin, in late October.


Dan Lochman’s two co-edited books, Discourses and Representations of Friendship in Early Modern Europe (2011) and John Colet on the Ecclesiastical Hierarchy of Dionysius: A New Edition and Translation (2013) were reviewed in the same issue of Renaissance Quarterly: 67.3 (2014). Of the first, Daniel Juan Gil at TCU writes that it is "a collection of very strong essays that exemplify current trends and debates," and of the second Jonathan Arnold of Oxford University writes "this new translation of Colet's commentary. . . with introduction and notes, . . . deserves to become the standard edition." On October 17, Dan read the paper "Energeia in Melancthon's Liber de anima and Philip Sidney's Apology" at the Sixteenth Century Studies Conference in New Orleans.

Dr. Komi Begedou, Visiting Fulbright Scholar at Texas State, will present “Decolonizing the Mind and Fostering Self-esteem: Fanon and Morrison on Skin Lightening Practices in the African Diaspora” at the November "African Diaspora Symposium," sponsored by Claflin University and the National Association of African American Studies.


English Department


October 16, 2014



Rob Tally edited a special issue of Reconstruction on "Spatial Literary Studies," which also includes his introduction entitled "Textual Geographies: The Real-and-Imagined Spaces of Literature, Criticism, and Theory”:

New poems by Steve Wilson are forthcoming in Blue Unicorn, The Midwest Quarterly, Thought & Action, Borderlands, and the soon-to-be-published anthology Poetry of the Grand Canyon.

Leah Schwebel presented “Who or What is Chaucer’s ‘Trophee’?” at the recent meeting of The Texas Medieval Association, held in Denton.

James Knippen's poem "Thistle" has been accepted for publication in Denver Quarterly. Additionally, his poem "Bedroom (In the Ear)" will appear in the upcoming issue of Blackbird.

Debra Monroe’s book, My Unsentimental Education, will be the debut title in the University of Georgia Press’s new creative nonfiction series, appearing in October 2015. Excerpts of this book have appeared in Atlantic Monthly’s blog,, The American Scholar, The Southern Review, and The Morning News; and two were listed as “Notable” in Best American Essays.

Mark Busby attended the Texas Association of Creative Writing Teachers at the Adolphus Hotel in Dallas in September.  He read a story titled “Morning Ferry to Puntarenas." On September 26, Busby made presentations to 45 Texas high school teachers who attended a day-long workshop on “Literature of the American Southwest.”  The workshop was sponsored by Humanities Texas and the Center for the Study of the Southwest and took place in the Wittliff Collections in Alkek Library.  In the morning Mark spoke on “Elements of Southwestern Literature,” and in the afternoon he met with four small groups in rotation on teaching Stephen Crane’s “The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky” and Ralph Ellison’s “Battle Royal.” The other presenters were Steve Davis, Rolando Hinojosa, and Carmen Tafolla.


English Department


October 6, 2014




Aimee Roundtree has accepted an invitation to serve on Texas State University's Institutional Review Board (IRB) Committee, which is the committee responsible for ensuring the ethical treatment of human research subjects. Aimee's book, Computer Simulation, Rhetoric, and the Scientific Imagination: How virtual evidence shapes science in the making and in the news, was favorably reviewed in the fall issue of Business and Professional Communication Quarterly.

Scott Mogull's research article entitled "Integrating Online Informative Videos into Technical Communication Courses," has been accepted for publication in the December issue of IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication. The case study describes the development and assessment of online informative videos integrated into introductory technical communication courses.

The current issue of The Writer's Chronicle (October/November 2014, 16-27) features Cyrus Cassells in an extended interview with poet Christopher Hennessy. The article is illustrated with a photo of Cyrus and the cover his book The Crossed-Out Swastika, and includes two poems selected from it.

Susan Hanson recently presented her essay "River Time," accompanied by a PowerPoint of her underwater photography, at the 11th Colloquium on Ecology and Literature: "Words on Water." Sponsored by the University of South Africa, the event was held at Hartbeespoort, not far from Pretoria. Presentation topics ranged from fracking in the Karoo (a semi-desert region occupying much of south central South Africa), to crocodiles, to the perils of exploration of Lake Turkana in Kenya, to rain in the work of South African poet Arthur Nortje, to water as a motif in Bushman rock art and myth, to the San Marcos River.

Fiction MFA graduate Sean Trolinder’s short story, "Candy Cane Man," will appear in the Winter 2015 issue of Midwestern Gothic.

Michelle Detorie, a 2004 graduate of the MFA Program, has had her first collection of poems published: After-Cave (

MFA fiction student Jane Hawley published a graphic memoir in The Pinch Journal, which is the literary magazine of the University of Memphis's MFA Program:


English Department


September 22, 2014



Libby Allison will present  “The Risk of Teaching Writing in Context: The Lost Rewards of Writing about Difference” at the 2015 Conference on College Composition and Communication in Tampa, FL. Her presentation is part of a panel entitled “Twenty-Five Years after the 'Troubles at Texas’: Learning from Linda Brodkey and the Risks of Writing Pedagogy.”

MARC student Shaun Bryan has received a Celebrity Classic Scholarship from the Texas State Graduate College.

MA Literature student Christine Zabala has been awarded a Registration & Grub Grant to attend the 2014 International Writing Centers Association / National Conference on Peer Tutoring in Writing conference by the National Conference on Peer Tutoring in Writing Travel Grant Committee. The Committee shared that this year’s competition was greater than any year in the past, with around 130 applications submitted and only 28 tutors being chosen for funding.

Dr. Komi Begedou, Visiting Fulbright Scholar from Togo, recently presented in an Anthropology class taught by Dr. Augustine Agwuele.  Dr. Agwuele noted that Dr. Begedou “gave to us a very insightful, interactive and eye-opening lecture that covered the history of Togo, its political system and division, its ethnic and linguistic diversity, contemporary social institutions including education, marriage and divorce, religion and music. His lecture and participation make invaluable contributions to our curriculum as it enhances our semester quest, the goal of which is to become familiar with the different peoples and cultures of Africa.”

A University Star story on the Common Experience theme of integration featured Keith Needham:

Wittliff Collections literary curator and MA Literature graduate Steven L. Davis, along with co-author and Wittliff archives donor Bill Minutalgio, have recently won the 2014 PEN Award for Research Nonfiction, awarded by PEN Center USA, for their critically acclaimed book, Dallas 1963. They will be presented with the award at The 24th Annual Literary Awards Festival in Beverly Hills, California.



English Department


September 10, 2014



Melba J. T. Vasquez ('72), who graduated from Texas State with a bachelor's as an English major and went on to receive a PhD in Psychology, is being honored this fall as one of the university's Distinguished Alumni.

Octavio Pimentel’s paper “Buena Gente, Buen Trabajador, and Bien Educado: Giving Voice to the Mexican Counter Story” has been accepted for presentation at the 2015 Conference on College Composition and Communication, to be held in Tampa, FL.

Chad Hammett is featured on the Texas State homepage as the university's current “Rising Star”: His work with Sam Shepard’s archives in the Wittliff Collections culminated in the publication of Two Prospectors: The Letters of Sam Shepard and Johnny Dark (UT Press, 2013), which he edited. That book, along with other highlights of Shepard’s career, are part of the university’s spotlight feature: “Rewards of a Restless Journey: Sam Shepard.” Shepard is the subject of the new Texas State advertisement in Texas Monthly, as well as the homepage video feature, narrated by Chad.

The new Children’s Literature Mentoring Award, which this year celebrated its debut presentation, was given to Marilynn Olson at the 2014 Children’s Literature Association Conference. According to the organization, “The award recognizes excellence in mentoring taking place within the field of children’s literature and extending beyond the boundaries of the mentor’s institution; in other words, it seeks to recognize not outstanding mentoring of one’s departmental colleagues or one’s own undergraduate or graduate students, which many colleges and universities already have mechanisms to reward, but rather the kind of mentoring upon which our organization has long prided itself: the generous outreach designed to help scholars within our children’s literature community who are not bound to all the nominators by institutional kinship ties.”

Aimee Roundtree will present her paper, "Computer Simulation as Rhetoric," at the National Communication Association Conference in Chicago, in November. Her book, Computer Simulation, Rhetoric, and the Scientific Imagination, was a finalist in the Foreword Book of the year award, in the Science category.

Rob Tally’s new book, an edited collection of essays entitled Literary Cartographies: Spatiality, Representation, and Narrative (Palgrave Macmillan) comes out next week.  It appears in a book series he proposed and now edits: Geocriticism and Spatial Literary Studies.