End of the World

Opportunities for MFA Alumni

"Returning to Bennington is like coming home." Time and again we hear this from our graduates so we've created post MFA opportunities for you to re-connect in a way that inspires and moves your work forward in a purposeful way.

Writing with Art: A Generative Workshop with Michael Dumanis

REGISTER HERE

In this intensive five-day generative workshop (June 14-18, 2018), held in conjunction with the Bennington Writing Seminars we will experiment with ekphrastic writing, that is, text that describes, is inspired by, or otherwise reacts to visual art. We will discuss various ways to capture the power of a visual artwork through language and how to use an existing visual artwork as a springboard for a writer's own literary imagination. To this end, we will consider passages from Donna Tartt's novel The Goldfinch, Michael White's Travels in Vermeer: A Memoir, and John Ruskin's stunning essays on the paintings of J.M.W. Turner, as well as individual ekphrastic poems by John Keats, Rainer Maria Rilke, W.H. Auden, William Carlos Williams, Mark Strand, Jorie Graham, Mary Jo Bang, Kevin Young, Rick Barot, Rickey Laurentiis, and Robin Coste Lewis. Each day we will attempt our own ekphrastic pieces, taking field trips to two world-class museums – MassMoCA in North Adams and the Clark Art Institute in Williamstown--as well as considering artwork in Bennington College's own collection.

Of interest to poets, nonfiction and prose/hybrid writers, as well as to visual artists who want to incorporate writing in their work, or wish to write about art.

REGISTER HERE

About Michael Dumanis:

Michael DumanisDumanis is the Director of Poetry at Bennington and editor of Bennington Review, which won CLMP’s 2017 Firecracker Award for Best Debut Magazine. He is the author of the poetry collection My Soviet Union (University of Massachusetts Press, 2007), winner of the Juniper Prize for Poetry, and coeditor (with poet Cate Marvin) of the younger poets’ anthology Legitimate Dangers: American Poets of the New Century (Sarabande, 2006). His poems have appeared in journals such as American Letters and Commentary, Black Warrior Review, Denver Quarterly, Epoch, New England Review, Ploughshares, and Verse. His writing has been recognized with residencies at Yaddo, Headlands Center for the Arts, and the Civitella Ranieri Center in Umbertide, Italy; a 2012 Creative Workforce Fellowship from the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture; fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation, the James Michener Foundation, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and the Wesleyan Writers’ Conference; and a grant from the Ohio Arts Council.

Born in Moscow, in the former Soviet Union, Dumanis emigrated with his family at the age of five and grew up in Western New York. Dumanis has taught creative writing at the University of Iowa, the University of Houston, and Nebraska Wesleyan University, and since 2007, has been a professor of English at Cleveland State University, where he also served as director of the Cleveland State University Poetry Center, a literary press, and taught in the consortial Northeast Ohio MFA Program. He holds a BA from the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University, an MFA from the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and a PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Houston. Dumanis joined the Bennington faculty in fall 2012.

DETAILS

Dates of Workshop: June 14-18, 2018

Location:  Bennington College campus

Cost: $1,200

  • Includes tuition, plus room and board for four nights/five days
  • Housing is dormitory-style, single room on the Bennington College campus
  • Dining is at the Student Center
  • Participants may attend all Writing Seminars events (except Master Classes)    
  • Quiet writing time or off-campus dinner/activities are on your own at your discretion
  • Lunches during museum visits are on your own

Workshop Schedule:

Thursday June 14

Noon – 3:00 pm

  • Registration – Barn 100
  • Pick up packets/keys/IDs

3:00–5:00 pm

First Workshop

On campus: Location TBD

  • Introductions with participants and teacher
  • Examples of ekphrastic writing, poems and nonfiction
  • Generative writing
  • Readings and homework

5:00 pm

  • BWS Happy Hour (cash bar)

6:00 pm

  • Dinner in the Student Center

7:00 pm

  • BWS Writers Reading Series in Carriage Barn

8:00 pm

  • Activities on your own or join BWS activities

Friday, June 15

At Mass MoCA

8:00 am 

Breakfast at the Student Center

10:00 am

  • Leave from campus circle to travel to museums
  • Lunch is on your own
  • Van transportation / carpooling

4:00-5:00 pm

  • Time for reflection/down time

5:00 pm

  • BWS Happy Hour (cash bar)

6:00 pm

  • Dinner in Student Center

7:00 pm

  • BWS Writers Reading Series in Carriage Barn

8:00 pm

  • Activities on your own or join BWS activities

Saturday, June 16

9:00 am to noon

On campus workshop: Location TBD

  • Generative writing and discussion
  • Possible visit to Usdan and “the vault,” Bennington’s art storage space
  • Possible guest, Anne Thompson, Director and curator, Usdan Gallery

Sunday, June 17

Day at the Clark, Williamstown, MA

8:00 am 

Breakfast at the Student Center

10:00 am

  • Leave from campus circle to travel to the Clark
  • Lunch is on your own
  • Van transportation / carpooling

4:00-5:00 pm

  • Time for reflection/down time

5:00 pm

  • BWS Happy Hour (cash bar)

6:00 pm

  • Dinner in the Student Center

7:00 pm

  • BWS Writers Reading Series in Carriage Barn

8:00 pm

  • Activities on your own or join BWS activities

Monday, June 18

8:00 am

  • Breakfast at the Student Center

9:00 am—noon 

  • On-campus workshop (location TBD)

Noon–1:00 pm

  • Lunch in Student Center

1:00-2:00 pm

  • Pack, return keys and IDs

2:00 pm

  • Participants must be moved out of dorms by 2 p.m.
  • Keys and IDs returned to BWS office by 2 p.m.

Transportation:                    

  • It is recommended participants provide their own transportation
  • Van service may be available for travel to/from museums

Enrollment deadline: Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Participation/Cancellation: This workshop will run with a minimum of five students and a maximum of 10. If enrollment is below five students by end of day on May 30, the workshop will be cancelled and refunds granted.

Payment: $200 non-refundable deposit to hold your spot when you register, balance owed by May 30, 2018

 

Post-MFA Term

Do you have a manuscript you’d like to polish, or a new book-length project that you’d like to finish? If so, return to Bennington Writing Seminars for Post-MFA Term. You’ll work with our acclaimed faculty, attend residency, and have the benefit of focused attention and mentorship.

Join us at the June 2018 residency which runs June 14-24, 2018 for five workshops, nightly readings, master classes, lectures plus room & board. You’ll work one-on-one with our acclaimed faculty mentors for six months through December 2018, exchanging packets and detailed feedback once per month. The Post-MFA Term is tailored to your needs, focused on your goals, and designed to take your manuscript to the next level.

Dates: June 14-24 (residency), then through December 2018

Tuition: $7,000 includes residency, room & board, and six months 1:1 faculty consultation

Deadline: May 30, 2018 to reserve your spot

Genres: Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry

Contact:        

Megan Culhane Galbraith, Associate Director
802-440-4454
megang@bennington.edu

 

Bennington Alumni Fellows

Each term we select three esteemed alumni from the genres of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry to return to residency as Alumni Fellows. The trio assist faculty members in workshop, conduct a master class each, and give a group reading. We select emerging writers who represent diverse voices and experiences. This ongoing fellowship program provides post-MFA teaching experience, cultivates talented graduates, and adds to our rich literary tradition. 

Meet the current and previous Alumni Fellows:

June 2018 Alumni Fellows

Jia Oak Baker headshot

Jia Oka Baker (Poetry, June ‘14) (pictured left)is a poet and photographer from Phoenix, Arizona. Her poetry chapbooks are Crash Landing in the Plaza of an Unknown City and Well Enough to Travel.  She is the recipient of the Tucson Festival of Books Literary Award and an artist grant from the Arizona Commission on the Arts.

Amber caron headshot

Amber Caron (Fiction, June ‘16) (pictured right) is a fiction writer whose work has appeared or is forthcoming in PEN America Best Debut Short Stories, Southwest Review, Kenyon Review Online, AGNI, and The Greensboro Review. She is the recipient of a PEN/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers, the McGinnis-Ritchie Award for fiction, and a grant from the Elizabeth George Foundation.

hugh ryan headshot Hugh Ryan (Nonfiction, January ‘09) (pictured left) is a writer based in Brooklyn, whose book, When Brooklyn Was Queer, is due out in March of 2019 from St. Martin's Press. He is the recipient of the 2016-2017 Martin Duberman Fellowship at the NYPL, a 2017 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Nonfiction Literature, and a 2018 residency at The Watermill Center

 

January 2017 Alumni Fellows

Christopher Frizzelle headshot

Christopher Frizzelle (Nonfiction, January ’17) (pictured right) has been a writer and editor at The Stranger for fourteen years, including nine years as editor-in-chief. He edited a feature story in 2012 that won a Pulitzer Prize. He is a co-author the book How to Be a Person, along with Dan Savage and Lindy West. He is the founder and host of the silent-reading party, a monthly event in Seattle that has been replicated in cities around the world.

Chelsea Hodson headshot

Chelsea Hodson (Nonfiction, January ‘17) (pictured left) is the author of the essay collection Tonight I'm Someone Else and the chapbook Pity the Animal. She teaches nonfiction at Catapult in New York and at the Mors Tua Vita Mea Workshop in Rome.

Tiffany Steward Melanson headshotTiffany Steward Melanson (Poetry, June ’15) is a poet and arts educator who teaches poetry workshops and oral interpretation at Douglas Anderson School of the Arts, where she is also the faculty sponsor of Élan, an international student literary magazine and co-director of the Douglas Anderson Writers’ Festival. She is the author of the audio chapbook What Happens (EAT Poems), and her work has recently appeared in Bridge Eight Magazine, Coda Quarterly and Compose Journal. Her poetry has also been featured on Swamp Radio, a live radio show and podcast, and as part of The Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens’ exhibit, Reflections: Artful Perspectives on the St. Johns River, as a self-produced video installation and oral interpretation. Her poem “Delivery” was nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2016 and she was awarded the Art Ventures Individual Artist Grant for her poetry project, “Burning Anna Kingsley” by the Community Foundation of Northeast Florida.

June 2017 Alumni Fellows

libby flores headshotLibby Flores (Fiction '14) was chosen as one of eight writers in the United States to receive the PEN Emerging Voices Fellowship in 2008. Her short fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in American Short Fiction, The Rattling WallPost Road Magazine, FLASH: The International Short-Short Story Magazine, Bridge Eight, Tin House/ Open Bar, Coda Quarterly, The Guardian Books and Paper Darts. Her short story "The Table," published by The Rattling Wall, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2012.  She teaches creative writing workshops at San Diego Writer's Ink and PEN Center USA. Libby was selected as a semi-finalist in the American Short Fiction Short(er) Contest judged by Stuart Dybek. She was a finalist in Glimmer Train’s Very Short Story Contest and a finalistGigantic Sequins 4th Annual Flash Fiction Contest.  She was selected in 2017 as Bennington Writing Seminars first  Fiction Fellow. She is the former Director of Literary Programs at PEN Center USA (PEN America's LA). Currently, she is the Director of the Believer Festival and the NYC Director of the Freya Project.

Morgan Jerkins headshotMorgan Jerkins (Nonfiction, '16) is the author of the New York Times bestselling book, This Will Be My Undoing. Her next two projects, Why We Get Out and Caul Baby, are forthcoming from Harper Books. She is a contributing editor at Catapult and a former Book of the Month judge. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York TimesThe AtlanticELLE, Lenny Letter, Rolling Stone, The New Republic, and BuzzFeed, among many others. She runs a TinyLetter called Meraki that you can subscribe to here

Safiya Sinclair headshotSafiya Sinclair (Bennington '10) is a poet, memoirist, and librettist whose other honours include a Pushcart Prize, a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation, fellowships from Yaddo, the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. Her poems have appeared in PoetryKenyon Review, Granta, The Nation, New England Review, Boston Review, Oxford Americanthe 2018 Forward Book of Poetry, and elsewhere. 

Tiffany Briere headshotTiffany Briere (Fiction, '11) has been awarded a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award and a Pushcart Prize. She holds a PhD in genetics from Yale University and an MFA in fiction from Bennington College. Her work has appeared in Best American EssaysTin HouseThe Cut, Virginia Quarterly Review, and elsewhere.