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Visiting Writers Series: Slipping in a Little Knowledge

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Hawks Landing Audience Applaud Visiting Writers

Hawks Landing Audience Applaud Visiting Writers

Hawks Landing Audience Applaud Visiting Writers

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College students often dream of being a famous writer, but sitting in class reading the words of deceased authors doesn’t help completely with the practical aspects of being an author in this digital age. Thankfully Northeast Community College recognizes this, and brings award-winning authors to campus. Writer’s series coordinator Bonnie Johnson-Bartee says, “The Visiting Writers series bring a variety of both poets and storywriters to campus, to give students … the opportunity to learn and to grow from that. To give them a chance to explore a subject that was not always their strongest subject – the English aspect.”

Bonnie Johnson-Bartee - Visiting Writers Series

Bonnie Johnson-Bartee – Visiting Writers Series

The visiting writers series was started by Barb Schmitz, was taken over by Neil Harrison, and this fall, Bonnie Johnson-Bartee took control.  Johnson-Bartee, an English instructor, brings authors to campus three times a semester. The first of these authors was Marjorie Saiser on September 11th at Hawk’s landing. Saiser is an award winning poet and read excerpts from her most popular works including her recent book Losing the Ring in the River (University of New Mexico Press, 2013).

Poet Marjorie Saiser

Poet Marjorie Saiser

The next author that came to northeast was Mat Mason on October 23rd.He read from is new book The Baby that Ate Cincinnati” along with audience favorites like “Make Star Love, not Star Wars”.

Author Matt Mason

Author Matt Mason

Poets Barb Schmitz and Karen Wingett finished the fall series on November 14, reading from their works about spirituality, travel and aging parents.

Barb Schmitz to students during Visiting Writers Series

Barb Schmitz to students during Visiting Writers Series

Karen Wingett reading her poetry

Karen Wingett reading her poetry

Wednesday February 20th the visiting writers series hosts Fred Arroyo, still to come Charles Bowden and Molly Molloy on March 26th, and Karen Shoemaker on April 16th.

The Visiting Writers series indulges a students love of English, even if they learn something along the way. Johnson-Bartee quipped in her interview, “The fun thing to do is slip in a little knowledge without them knowing it.” All they know is that they are being entertained. Authors are selected based on a variety of features including travel distance, subject matter, and the ability to share the cost with other colleges in the area.  Johnson-Bartee mentioned that Fred Arroyo, Charles Bowden and Molly Molloy all have written a great deal about the cartels in Mexico.

VisitingWritersBonnieJohnsonBartee

Johnson- Bartee was an English major herself, and helped with the writers series long before she took the reigns. “When Neil said he was ready to retire I was very eager to take on the job of what I love so much. It is not a job if you love it. To take it on and see what I could do with it.” Said Johnson-Bartee.” Writers are booked a semester in advanced, so if you would like to suggest an author contact Bonnie Johnson-Bartee in AAH 245 or email at [email protected].

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The official student newspaper of Northeast Community College.
Visiting Writers Series: Slipping in a Little Knowledge