All posts tagged: Midwest

Adventures at AWP ’15

Back in January/February my friends and I decided we were going to drive to Minneapolis for AWP. Yes, drive all the way from Virginia to Minnesota. It went surprisingly well. On the way there we stopped in Dayton, Ohio, for Skyline Chili (Cincinnati chili represent!) and I always love driving past the windmill fields in Indiana. We arrived in Saint Paul around 3am the day of the conference. An alumna of my program was kind enough to let us stay with her, and she had tasty carrot/apple/ginger juice waiting for us. I reluctantly woke up a few hours later and headed off to the Graywolf Poetry Reading. Nick Flynn and Matthea Harvey were great, of course. I’d never read any of Mary Jo Bang’s or Katie Ford’s poetry before but I enjoyed them too. Then I got to see my wonderful professor Rita Dove sing poetry set to doo-wop. She performed with Sophie Cabot Black, Carol Muske-Dukes and Marilyn Nelson. My personal favorite was Plath’s “Daddy” sung to the tune of  “Dream Lover.” That night I saw Anne …

An Inside Look With Audrey Gradzewicz, Purdue University ’16

What is it like living in Lafayette? How far does your stipend go there living wise? Lafayette is a place that is distinctly alive and distinctly itself—and somehow, even, quintessentially American. In Lafayette, beautiful, old architecture and a palpable, even haunted history exist alongside the soullessly new and the dilapidated unto ruin. The Wabash River is simultaneously a sewer and a river Styx and the center of this place—a division between two distinct cities—West Lafayette, where the university is, and which is clean and kept up and is the public face, and Lafayette, which, if it were human, would be an old man sitting in his house after a hard day’s labor reading a book about chess strategy in his shiny red boxers. The two cities are separated by about a ten minute walk across a bridge—and flow into each other—like the Wabash would flow, if it indeed had any water in it. Lafayette is where most of the graduate students live, as it is cheaper than West Lafayette. In Lafayette, there are as many churches …

An Inside Look with Jake Russell, Wichita State University ’16

Jake Russell has a chapbook titled “Great Conversations, Greater Wasps” released through the Emerge Literary Journal. He also has poems published in the Open Window Review and The Weekenders Magazine. He studies poetry at Wichita State University and serves as poetry editor for Mojo and Mikrokosmos journals. What is it like living in Wichita? How far does your stipend go there living wise?

An Inside Look with Sarah Crossland, University of Wisconsin-Madison ’13

Sarah Crossland received a BA in storytelling from the University of Virginia and an MFA in poetry from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. The recipient of the 2012 Boston Review Poetry Prize, a 2013 AWP Intro Journals Award, and the 2013 Pablo Neruda Prize, she was invited to read her work at the Library of Congress for their Poetry at Noon series in the spring of 2011. Her manuscript, Tomorrowland, is currently under consideration at first book contests, and her work has appeared in or is forthcoming from Crazyhorse, Narrative, Shenandoah, FIELD, TriQuarterly, The Iowa Review, A Public Space, and others. Sarah currently lives in Charlottesville, VA, where she serves as the production editor for Devil’s Lake and the program assistant for WriterHouse, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting writing in the community. You can read more of her writing at Note: The current stipend at UW-Madison is 18,500 per year. What was it like living in Madison? How far did your stipend go there living wise?

An Inside Look with Justin Carter, Bowling Green State University ’14

Justin Carter is a graduate of the MFA program at Bowling Green State University & a current student in the PhD program at the University of North Texas. The winner of the 2014 Sonora Review Prize, his poems appear/ will appear in The Collagist, Hobart, The Journal, Ninth Letter, & Whiskey Island. Find him online at What was it like living in Bowling Green? How far did your stipend go there?