Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Carr Reading Series: Hannah Tinti

Hannah Tinti, author of The Good Thief and Animal Crackers, will read from her work as part of the Carr Reading Series on Thursday, November 6 at 4:30pm at the Illini Union Bookstore.

Junot Diaz has this to say about The Good Thief:

“Hannah Tinti has written a lightning strike of a novel—beautiful and haunting and ever so bright. She is a 21st century Robert Louis Stevenson, an adventuress who lays bare her characters' hearts with a precision and a fearlessness that will leave you shaken."

The Cleveland Plain Dealer's review of Animal Crackers mentioned:

"Like Edgar Allan Poe and Patricia Highsmith, Tinti has a brilliant feel for the uncanny, how it can turn situations inside out and drape our lives in mystery."

Hope to see you at the reading.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Comics (etc.) at Krannert Art Museum

Last week, the exhibition Out of Sequence: Underrepresented Voices in American Comics opened at Krannert Art Museum to a crowd of nearly 500 folks. The exhibition seeks to showcase American sequential art that steps outside the traditional bounds of the medium by focusing on historical and contemporary women and minority comic creators as well as work created with nontraditional techniques.

Events of interest related to the exhibition include a gallery conversation with co-curators Damian Duffy and John Jennings (Thursday, October 30, 5:30 pm),

and a talk entitled, "Emerging Out of Sequence: Examining the Past and Charting the Future of American Comics" with exhibitors Nancy Goldstein, Andrei Molotiu, Trina Robbins, and Ashley A. Woods (Saturday, November 8, 1-4 pm).

Other upcoming events at the museum for October/November:

Thursday, October 30
IPRH Film Series
Ed Wood (1994), directed by Tim Burton
KAM Auditorium, 5:30 pm

Friday, November 7
VOICE Reading Series
MFA Creative Writing reading series, featuring guest readers Mike Alber, Gina Ventre, and Claire Watkins from Ohio State. UIUC poets Matt Minicucci and Dana Burchfield will also be reading.
KAM 20th century gallery, 3:30 pm

Thursday, November 13
IPRH Film Series
Singin' in the Rain (1952), directed by Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly
KAM Auditorium, 5:30 pm

Open-mic for hip-hop and Black power expression
Palette Cafe, 7-9 pm

Friday, November 14
A Call to Arts
Open art critiques with Jerry Savage and Peter Bodnar
Jerry Savage's studio (2137 County Road, 1100 North, Sidney, IL), 7:00 pm

As always, events are free and open to the public, and held @ Krannert Art Museum, 500 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign, IL unless otherwise noted.

Find out more by visiting KAM's website, signing up for e-news (email, or by joining the museum's facebook group.

Whiting Awards announced

Congratulations to 9L contributor Douglas Kearney, who was named one of the recipients of the 2008 Whiting Writers' Awards. The awards are bestowed annually on writers "of exceptional talent and promise in early career" and come with a cash prize of $50,000. A selection of Doug Kearney's poems appeared in our Fall/Winter 2007-8 issue.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Philip Graham's latest dispatch at McSweeney's

Check out "Three Churches" at, wherein Philip Graham describes some of the weird and wonderful things he saw while exploring some of Portugal's churches.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Keith Lee Morris

9L contributor, Keith Lee Morris will be a featured reader on Wednesday, October 22, at The Happy Ending Music and Reading Series in NYC. The show starts at 8pm and is free and open to the public.

In other Keith Lee Morris news, his new novel,The Dart League King, is now available from Tin House Books.

Literary Translation: A View from the Pacific

The University of Illinois's new Center for Translation Studies is hosting their first Translation Colloquium on Monday October 27th, at 4:00 in the Lucy Ellis Lounge of the Foreign Languages Building, 707 S. Mathews, Urbana.

Jean Anderson, Director of the New Zealand Center for Literary Translation, and Senior Lecturer in the Department of French at Victoria University of Wellington, will be giving a lecture entitled “Literary Translation: A View from the Pacific.” She herself is a translator of francophone texts of the Pacific (Tahiti, New Caledonia) and works to get New Zealand writers translated into French.

Monday, October 13, 2008

New Review at NewPages

The literary review site has a very nice review of our Spring/Summer 2008 issue. Singled out for praise are prose writers Ron Carlson, Steve Tomasula, Tom Whalen, and Dave King, and poets Francine J. Harris and Twilight Greenaway.

Bonus: The review of the spring issue of Monkey Bicycle, which appears immediately before our review, makes special mention of 9L friend and UI grad student Aaron Burch, so check that out as well!

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Iron Horse Novella Competition

Iron Horse Literary Review is hosting a novella competition, judged by Ron Carlson. Carlson is the author of Five Skies, At the Jim Bridger, Plan B for the Middle Class, and numerous other novels and short story collections. He currently teaches in the creative writing program at University of California, Irvine.

The winning novella will be published in 2009 as a separate issue. Full-color cover art will reflect the novella’s content and emphasize the novella’s title, not the name of Iron Horse. The published novella will look like the single-author book that it is. The winner also receives a $1,000 honorarium.

Formatting Instructions:

Entries must be between 15,000 and 21,000 words.

Manuscripts must be typed, double-spaced, with one-inch margins.

Manuscripts must be previously unpublished.

The author’s name and contact information must appear on a cover sheet, but it must NOT appear anywhere else on the manuscript.

Pages must be numbered.

Entries must include the $15 reading fee, which also purchases a subscription to Iron Horse.

Entries must also include an email address for results notification.

Mail entries to Iron Horse Literary Review, Texas Tech University, English Department, Mail Stop 43091, Lubbock, TX 79409-3091.

Postmark deadline for entries is November 15, 2008.

Entries failing to meet formatting instructions will be automatically disqualified.

Additional questions should be directed to the editors at

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

More neat stuff to do

Wednesday, October 8
Knight Auditorium, Spurlock Museum
600 S. Gregory St., Urbana, IL
4:00 pm

"The Old New Media of Comics Art: Comics and Graphic Novels in the 21st Century"

Talk by Damian Duffy and John Jennings, curators of the upcoming KAM exhibition Out of Sequence: Underrepresented Voices in American Comics

Jazz concerts, film, open mic: oh my!

What's upcoming at Krannert Art Museum...

Thursday, October 2
Tea ceremonies conducted by Kimiko Gunji, director of Japan House, in conjunction with the Kyoko Ibe exhibit
Krannert Art Museum, 5:30-6:30 pm

A Taste of Art Lecture Series
Collecting Art, Locally and Internationally, Ian Wang, associate curator, Spurlock Museum
KAM Auditorium, 6:00 pm

Sudden Sound Concert
MIYUMI Trio, featuring Tatsu Aoki and Hide Yoshihasi: Chicago-based musicians performing unique blends of traditional Japanese music/taiko (drumming), jazz, and improvisation
Contemporary Gallery, 7:30 pm

VOICE MFA student reading
featuring Lillian Bertram, Arley McNeney, Micah Riecker
Link Gallery, 7:30 pm

Saturday, October 4
Kids@Krannert family festival
Krannert Art Museum, 10:00 am-12:00 pm

Thursday, October 9
Dance performance by contact improvisation dancer and assistant professor of Dance Kirstie Simson
Krannert Art Museum, 5:30-6:30 pm

IPRH Film Series
Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse (1991), Fax Bahr and George Hickenlooper, directors
KAM Auditorium, 5:30 pm

Open-mic for hip-hop and Black Power expression
Palette Cafe, 7:00-9:00 pm

All events @ Krannert Art Museum, 500 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign, IL. FREE and open to the public.

Find out more by visiting KAM's website, signing up for e-news (email, or by joining the museum's facebook group.

Monday, September 29, 2008

VOICE Begins

The first VOICE reading of the semester is on Thursday, Oct. 2.
Time: 7:30 pm.
Location: Krannert Museum of Art - Link Gallery

Featured Readers:

Lillian Bertram
Arley McNeney
Micah Riecker

This event is free and open to the public.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Philip Graham Interviews David Jauss

Check out Philip Graham's interview with author David Jauss on UI's NPR affiliate station WILL. Jauss was visiting our campus as part of our Carr Reading Series and gave a wonderful reading of his fiction later in the day.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Steve Davenport on Verse Daily

Get your daily poetry fix at Verse Daily, today featuring 9L nonfiction editor Steve Davenport and his killer poem "Popular Science" (originally published in The Literary Review).

New American Press Chapbook Contest Opens

Poets and prose writers, gather together 20-30 pages of your most awesome work for New American Press's Fall 2008 Chapbook Contest! Fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction entries are welcome. This year's judge is poet and editor Allison Joseph.

Philip Graham Interview

Listen to 9L Fiction Editor Philip Graham discuss writing in an interview with Shelagh C. Shapiro for "Write the Book," a regular radio show on Burlington, Vermont's WOMM-LP 105.9 FM.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Pygmalion Music Festival and more at Krannert Art Museum

Tuesday, September 16
A Call to Arts: Open Critique with exhibiting artist Kyoko Ibe and assistant professor of Dance Kirstie Simson
Krannert Art Museum, 7:00 pm

Thursday, September 18
Pygmalion Music Festival featuring Oceans, Catfish Haven, Oxford Collapse, Evangelicals, and Murder By Death
KAM Link Gallery, 6:00 pm
(Admission is still free, but you may need a wristband to get in due to capacity limitations. Purchase one here.)

Friday, September 19
Pygmalion Music Festival featuring Casados, Caleb Engstrom, Owen, Thao with the Get Down Stay Down, and Santa
KAM Link Gallery, 6:00 pm
(Admission is still free, but you may need a wristband to get in due to capacity limitations. Purchase one here.)

Thursday, September 25
Dance performance by contact improvisation dancer and assistant professor of Dance Kirstie Simson
Krannert Art Museum, 5:30-6:30 pm

Thursday, September 04, 2008

The Gown from Mother's Stomach

A brief review of Blake Butler’s story “The Gown from Mother’s Stomach,” from the current issue of 9L, is up at Matt Bell's blog. Bell says Butler's story, “is something you have to read immediately.”

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Upcoming at Krannert Art Museum

Thursday, September 4
A Taste of Art Lecture Series
Birds as Art, Ernesto Scott, associate professor of Art + Design
KAM Auditorium, 6:00 pm, wine & cheese following

Thursday, September 11
IPRH Film Series
8 1/2 (1963), Federico Fellini, director
KAM Auditorium, 5:30 pm

Open-mic for hip-hop and Black Power expression
Palette Cafe, 7:00-9:00 pm

All events @ Krannert Art Museum, 500 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign, IL. FREE and open to the public.

Find out more by visiting KAM's website, signing up for e-news (email, or by joining the museum's facebook group.

Open for business

Ninth Letter is now officially accepting new submissions for the 2008-9 reading period. You can submit via U.S. mail or by going to our submission guidelines page at our website. Please review our submission guidelines before sending work.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Best Creative Nonfiction Vol. 2

9L contributors, Ander Monson (Fall/Winter 2004) and K.G. Schneider (forthcoming in Fall/Winter 2008), are featured in the recently released The Best Creative Nonfiction Vol. 2.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Enid Baxter Blader's Work on Exhibit

The Link Contemporary Art gallery in Claremont, CA, will feature an exhibit of work by 9L Featured Artist Enid Baxter Blader. The show opens Sept. 13 and runs through October 25.

Link Contemporary Art
532 West First Street Loft # 205
Claremont, Ca 91711

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Breadloaf’s Wait Staff aka Future Literary Stars

The Washington Post has an AP article about the wait staff at the Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference. 9L staffer and Bread Loaf attendee, Lillian Bertram is quoted in the article.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Kick off the semester at Krannert

Opening Reception for Five Exhibitions
Thursday, August 28; 5–7 pm

School of Art + Design Faculty Exhibition
The World of Yugen: Japanese Paper Artworks by Kyoko Ibe
The Rise of Abstraction in Post-War Japan: Sosaku Hanga Woodblock Prints
Collecting East Asia: The Lee Wonsik Collection
New Installation of the Asian Gallery

@ Krannert Art Museum, 500 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign, IL
FREE and open to the public
Find out more by visiting, signing up for e-news (email, or by joining the museum's facebook group.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Printer's Ball this Friday

If you're in the Chicago area, you won't want to miss the 4th Annual Printer's Ball, behind held this Friday, August 22, at the Museum of Contemporary Art. It's a night of readings, music, and FREE samples of literary publications from many fine Chicago area publications. Ninth Letter will be there, so you should be too!

Printer's Ball
5:30 - 10:00 p.m.
Friday, August 22
Museum of Contemporary Art
220 E. Chicago Ave, Chicago

(21+ only)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

9L brings home the silver!

Ninth Letter's Spring/Summer 08 issue was awarded a Silver Award in the UCDA's 38th Annual Design Competition, in the category "Magazine-Complete Unit." Also representing in this category was 9L's Fall/Winter 07-8 issue, which received an Excellence Award.

Monday, August 04, 2008

9L in Harper's

The Readings section of the August 2008 issue of Harper's Magazine features "In Dreams I Kiss Your Hands, Madam," the previously unpublished story by William Gaddis that first appeared in the Fall/Winter 2007-8 issue of Ninth Letter.

Yeah, we've been AWOL

Okay, so the 9L bloggers took a vacation...hey, it's summer. But now it's time to get this blog back in action. Start checking us regularly again for updates and news about 9L, our friends and colleagues and anything arty, literary, and/or cool. And pick up a copy of the new issue if you haven't already!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Printers Row, June 7-8

If you're in the Chicago area, check out this weekend's big literary event Printers Row, a two-day extravaganza of books, author signings, readings, panels, and more! Ninth Letter will be there with bells on, table 148 at the bookfair, so stop by and say hi.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Illinois Literary Awards

Recent 9L contributors Jill Summers and Kathleen Rooney received 2008 Literary Awards from the Illinois Arts Council for their work appearing in our most recent issue. Summers's story "Cohabitation" and Rooney's essay "Natural Is Not In It" both appeared in the Fall/Winter 2007-8 edition of 9L. Previous 9L contributor Joe Meno also received an IAC Literary Award for his story "Frances the Ghost" which appeared in Triquarterly. Congrats!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Design Awards

Ninth Letter Vol. 4, No. 2 was selected for the "365: AIGA Annual Design Competitions 29" for outstanding design produced in 2007.

Ninth Letter will become a part of a permanent historical record of graphic design — the AIGA Design Archives. The physical artifact will become a part of the AIGA Design Archives housed at the Denver Art Museum. In 2008, Ninth Letter will be part of a public exhibition at the AIGA National Design Center in New York.


Three issues of Ninth Letter--Vol. 3, No. 2 and Vol. 4, No. 1 and--received awards of excellence (Gold Communicator Awards) from the International Academy of Visual Arts and the Communicator Awards out of over 8500 entries for outstanding overall design.

Congrats to our fabulous designers!

New Novel from John Domini

A Tomb on the Periphery, a new novel by 9L contributor John Domini, is now available from Gival Press. A Tomb on the Periphery was a finalist in the 2005 Gival Press Novel Award, and has been called "an edgy, richly peopled and thoroughly absorbing novel" (Margot Livesey) and named by the Emerging Writers Network as "one of the books we're looking forward to in '08."

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Note for Subscribers and Other Fans...

Are you wondering where the latest issue of 9L is hiding? Never fear, we got a little behind schedule during production time, but the Spring/Summer 08 issue is at the printer as we speak, and should be shipped in a couple of weeks. It will be worth the wait, we promise!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Pilcrow Literary Fest

Guess what you don't want to miss this weekend in Chicago? If you said, the Pilcrow Lit Fest, you were right. Pilcrow is four days (May 22-25), that brings authors, writers, poets, librarians, booksellers, and publishers from around the country together in support of small presses and independent media through small workshops, panel discussions, lectures and author readings.

All events are free and open to the public. Check out the events schedule and join us in the Windy City.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Audacity of Desperation Exhibit in Urbana

The Audacity of Desperation is an art exhibition, political action, and on-going dialogue. This show confronts, expresses and unravels states of desperation. Artworks by activists, artists, enthusiasts, and very concerned people, are made in editions of 100 with the intention of free distribution to audiences. In this way, these artworks will be activated outside of the exhibition space and in domestic spaces, on bodies, clothes, bags, and in public spaces.

The exhibit is housed at the Independent Media Center (202 S. Broadway, Suite 100, Urbana, Illinois), and runs May 7th through June 15, 2008.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Dave Eggers Ted Prize Wish 2008

Check out this clip of UIUC alumni, Dave Eggers, speaking about his project 826 Valencia.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Fiction and Film Panel This Monday

You Can't Read in the Dark : A panel discussion about film and writing fiction will take place this Monday, April 28 on the UIUC campus - English Building, Room 115, 4:30 p.m.
The panel features Ramona Curry, Philip Graham, LeAnne Howe and John Rubins. Don't miss this opportunity to hear a great discussion.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Portuguese Jazz/Art Improvisation

Check out this video of the Jazz Fest at the Sâo Luiz Theatre in Lisbon, Portugal on April 5, 2008. The Portuguese jazz pianist Mário Laginha and the artist António Jorge Gonçalves collaborate here in a live performance, mixing jazz improvisation with art improvisation. The video comes in three parts, and is lovely to watch.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Writing Latino/a Lives Lecture

The Rolando Hinojosa-Smith, Jr. Lecture Series presents: "Writing Latino/a Lives: A Conversation with Helena Maria Viramontes and Manuel Munoz this Thursday, April 24, 4:00-6:00pm, at the Illini Union Bookstore, Author's Corner, 2nd floor. Don't miss this opportunity to hear two incredible writers.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Poem in Your Pocket--Today!

Celebrate National Poetry Month and the first nation-wide Poem in Your Pocket Day today! Bring a poem along to work, school, lunch, or just around town to share with friends, co-workers, or strangers. If you're a 9L subscriber you've already got a ready-made pocket poem we sent out earlier this month, and today's the day to open it.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Adam Clay Reading

Poet Adam Clay will give a reading at the Illini Union Bookstore on Friday, April 18, 4:30 p.m. Adam is the author of The Wash (Parlor Press, 2006). His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Ninth Letter, Denver Quarterly, The Iowa Review, Barrow Street, Black Warrior Review, Fascicle, CutBank, New Orleans Review, Conduit, Octopus Magazine, Free Verse, and elsewhere. A chapbook, Canoe, is available from horse less press. With Matt Henriksen, he edits TYPO Magazine.

VOICE Reading Series

This Friday, April 18th at 7:30pm - the MFA Voice Reading Series features Ted Sanders, Russ Evatt, and special guests the Purdue University MFA students.

The reading will be held at Espresso Royale on Oregon Street in Urbana. Come out to hear some great fiction and poetry.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Reading for Award Winners

Join the 2008 UIUC Creative Writing Award recipients for a ceremony and reading this Friday, April 11 at the Illini Union Bookstore, 4:30 p.m. The honorees will read from their work following a short award presentation.

Winners of the 2008 Creative Writing Awards are Caleb Curtiss (undergraduate poetry), Rafael Ibay (undergraduate fiction), Dana Burchfield (graduate poetry), and Micah Riecker (graduate fiction).


Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Submit Work to Short Story Podcasts

Beginning in September 2008, one story a week will be chosen and read on the Short Story website. The reading period is April-June 2008. The review is now accepting stories of 3000 words or less.

Send stories to: Short Story, P.O. Box 50567, Columbia, SC 29250. Check out more about this interesting opportunity by visiting

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Patrick Rosal Reading

The Roberts J. and Catherine Carr Visiting Writing Series presents Patrick Rosal on Thursday April 3, 4:30 pm at the Illini Union Bookstore, Author's Corner/2nd Floor.

Patrick Rosal is the author of Uprock Headspin Scramble and Dive (Persea Books, 2004), finalist for the Asian-American Writers' Workshop Literary Awards and winner of the AAWW Member's Choice Award. His chapbook Uncommon Denominators won the Palanquin Poetry Series Award. His work has appeared in journals such as North American Review, Columbia, Folio, and many anthologies including The NuyorAsian Anthology, Pinoy Poetics, and The Beacon Best. He has been a featured reader at many venues around the country, in Buenos Aires, London, and on the BBC radio program "The World Today". His second full-length collection, My American Kundiman, was published by Persea Books in fall 2006.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Check your water bill

If you loved Eric Vrooman's story "Water Bill" in the Fall/Winter 07-8 issue of 9L, continue the virtual utilities experience here at

Monday, March 24, 2008

Congratulations to Lytton Smith

a former Ninth Letter contributor recently selected as a Poetry Society of American Chapbook Fellow. Lytton's chapbook Monster Theory will be published by PSA in April.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Music Feature Submissions closed

FYI, poets, the March 15 deadline for submitting to our forthcoming Music Feature has passed, so we are no longer accepting submissions for that. We are, however, still accepting general submissions of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction, until April 30, right here:

or through the mail at Ninth Letter, Dept. of English, University of Illinois, 608 S. Wright St., Urbana, IL 61801.

Thanks to everybody who submitted to the music feature--we should have final selections made by early May.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

SAFE house/MFA reading in Urbana

Ninth Letter staffers/creative writing grad students Matt Minicucci and Arley McNeney will join writers from the SAFEhouse Writers' Workshop in a public reading of their original works of poetry and fiction. The SAFEhouse Writer's Workshop are a group of adult students currently enrolled in live-in drug/alcohol rehabilitation center in Urbana, Illinois. SAFEhouse is a program run by the Canaan Baptist Church and housed on their campus. The writer's workshop is accompanied by a literary reading group, all made possible by the Office of the Provost, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a grant from the Illinois Humanities Council.

Tonight (March 13), 7:30, Espresso Royale coffee shop, corner of Goodwin and Oregon, Urbana

Ninth Letter honored for design

Ninth Letter designers have received recent accolades from the Society of Publication Designers, which named our volume 4 nos. 1 and 2 as Merit Winners in their 43rd Annual Competition.

Ninth Letter was also named a Merit Winner in the editorial category in How Magazine's International Design Annual , available on newsstands now.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Congratulations to Arley McNeney

for being nominated for the CommonWealth Foundations Best First Book (Canada & the Caribbean) with her novel POST. The finalists for the prize will be announced on Thursday, March 13th.

The accomplished Ms. McNeney hails from New Westminster, British Columbia. She is a second year MFA graduate student, a member of the Fighting Illini women's wheelchair basketball team, and a former Paralympic Games medalist.

Good-luck Arley.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

UIUC Alumna Publishes Poetry Collection

Congratulations to Erin Elizabeth Smith, UIUC MFA poetry alumna and former Ninth Letter staffer, on the publication of her poetry collection, The Fear of Being Found, available now from Three Candles Press.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Mariko Nagai Reading

The Carr Series is proud to host a reading by poet Mariko Nagai on Monday, March 3, 4:30pm at Illini Union Bookstore, Author's Corner, 2nd floor.
Born in Tokyo, Japan, Mariko Nagai has lived in Europe and America most of her life, earning a Master of Arts degree in Creative Writing with a concentration in poetry from New York University, where she was the Erich Maria Remarque Poetry Fellow. She has been the recipient of the prestigious Pushcart Award twice, in both poetry and short story, and has received numerous fellowships and scholarships from art foundations and writers’ conferences. Her poems have appeared in journals such as The Gettysburg Review, New Letters, Prairie Schooner, among others. She also translates modern and contemporary Japanese poems and fiction into English. Currently, she teaches creative writing and literature at Temple University Japan Campus, where she also directs the Writing Programs.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Get Your Fixx Tonight

Fixx Reading Series

Thursday, February 28 - The Fixx Coffee Bar, 7:30pm

Ninth Letter editorial staff members Adam Deutsch, Micah Riecker, and Brian Kornell will read selections of work from the journal.

The Fixx Coffee Bar
3053 N Sheffield Ave.
Chicago, IL,

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Tournament of Books Approaches

so you may want to start reading now! The Morning News just announced their fourth annual Tournament of Books. The event begins on March 7th, but judges and brackets will be posted a week or so before that. Powells Books has delightfully reduced the list by 30%, so you have nothing to lose and everything to gain in the gamble of great literature. And since this is a contest that proudly displays its bias - we'll predict a smashing victory by nominee Brock Clark's The Arsonist's Guide to Writers' Homes in New England, photo finish by a nose, slam dunk, hail mary pass in the last few seconds of the fourth quarter...and the crowd goes wild.

Friday, February 22, 2008

VOICE reading series TONIGHT

Brave the cold and warm up to a night of great readings! Guest faculty reader John Rubins and Creative Writing grad students Brian Kornell, Lillian Bertram, and Dana Birchfield will read from their prose and poetry.

The Channing Murray Foundation
1209 West Oregon St.
Urbana, IL

Thursday, February 21, 2008

CAA in Dallas

If you happen to be attending the College Art Association Conference in Dallas now through Saturday, stop by the 9L table at the bookfair--say hi to Adam #1 and Adam #2 and pick up a cheap subscription if you don't already have one.

The Emancipation of Oronte Churm

Dear readers,
Get the who, what, and why of Oronte Churm right here. All your questions are finally answered. Then click on over to McSweeney's for his latest Dispatch. Big news and great writing all brought to you by your favorite blog!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Love You Some Leo? Look No Further...

Join the Champaign-Urbana community in taking part in the BIG READ, a community wide initiative encouraging people to discover the joy of reading classic literature. The program kicks off with the work of Leo Tolstoy. Watch for the phrase "Ivan Ilyich is dead, but you' re not," to appear on local billboards. In the meantime, dust off your copy of War and Peace, there's more to those crazy kids, Boris & Natasha, than "moose and squirrel".

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Lost that Loving Feeling?

If you have no love for Valentines Day, then the Museum of Broken Relationships might just be the place you want to virtual visit! Check out Spiegel's online article here. Or you might try the mysterious Dead Cupid Society. As St. Valentines was once famously quoted (and we agree) "Forget Roses, Buy Books!"
Happy Valentines Day!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Help Celebrate the Publication of Vol. 4

Join with Ninth Letter staff and friends this Friday, February 15th, 6:30-9:00pm at Krannert Art Museum Auditorium to celebrate our latest volume. The night commences with readings and presentations followed by a reception with complimentary wine and hors d'oeuvres.

Guest Readers:
Brock Clarke, author of four books, including the critically acclaimed novel An Arsonist's Guide to Writers' Homes in New England;
Douglas Kearney, poet and performance artist, author of Fear, Some; and
Nicole Walker, award-winning poet and creative nonfiction writer.

The evening will also include a special screening of "The Girl Detective," a video interpretation of the acclaimed short story by Kelly Link (currently available at

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Call for Submissions

Quiddity Literary Journal, along with its companion public-radio program WUIS 91.9/WIPA 89.3 announce a call for submissions for their second print issue. Quiddity is seeking short fiction and poetry from emerging and established writers. International submissions are encouraged. Quiddity is published biannually by Springfield College-Benedictine University (inaugral issue available spring 2008). Submissions are read year-round. Contributors may be invited to read their work for Quiddity's companion public-radio program on WUIS/WIPA NPR member and PRI affiliate.

Ted Morrissey, Managing and Production Editor
Joanna Beth Tweedy, Founding and Acquisitions Editor

Friday, February 08, 2008

A Poem for the Day

Past Ninth Letter contributor Benjamin S. Grossberg has a poem, "One Last Thought" posted today on Verse Daily. Give it a click and read. The poem is from his book, Underwater Lengths in a Single Breath.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Mark Costello Reading

The Robert J. and Katherine Carr visiting writing series brings author Mark Costello to the University of Illinois on Wednesday, February 13, 4:30pm at Illini Union Bookstore, Author's Corner (2nd Floor).

Mark Costello is the author of The Murphy Stories and Middle Murphy. His work has appeared in many literary magazines and anthologies. He is the recipient of two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and five grants from the Illinois Arts Council. He is presently a professor emeritus here at the University of Illinois.

His work is described by Richard Yates as, "Nobody else in America writes like Mark Costello, and imitators had better not try. These brilliant stories are intimate, haunting, funny and sad, with the author fully in control of every sound and silence."

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Audrey Niffenegger Lecture

The Center for Advance Study Miller Comm 2008 presents author Audrey Niffenegger on Wednesday, February 6th 4:00 pm at Knight Auditorium, Spurlock Museum. Her lecture is entitled, "Mr. Death's Ephemeral Pageant: The Work of Audrey Niffenegger."

Audrey Niffenegger gained international recognition in 2003 with her first novel, The Time Traveler's Wife. In addition to her writing, she is a visual artist who has published several narrative visual novels created in traditional aquatint. She is currently working on a novel about identical twins.

Spurlock Museum is located at 600 S. Gregory in Urbana, Illinois. The museum strictly limits seating to 215. No one will be admitted after that limit has been reached.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Best Bite Out of the Big Apple

Start spreading the news, Ninth Letter is coming to AWP!

You can find us at table #418 American Hall II. We will have the current issue of the magazine for sale, back issues, a goodie with purchase, and friendly & knowledgeable graduate students to answer your questions. Our editor, Jodee Stanley, will also be in the house. Could you ask for anything more?

Get your literature on and come see us at AWP/NYC.

Friday, January 25, 2008

MFA Alumna Publishes Collection

Congratulations to UIUC creative writing alumna Kim Chinquee who recently published a collection of flash fiction, Oh Baby. Ravenna Press describes the book as follows:

A wonderful debut collection of prose poems and flash fictions, short short stories of beautiful precisions and understated passions. While the bricks with which Chinquee constructs her fictions—failed or failing relationships, childhood friendships, the intricacies of family life—are not uncommon, the architecture she creates with them is rare indeed: stories now full of light, now somber, now opening the reader’s eyes to an utterly new space.

Thursday, January 24, 2008


Our current issue came back from the printer with a couple of rather serious errors, I'm sorry to say. Travis Kurowski's essay "Basquiat and Six Uses of Space" and Frankie Drayus's poem "Dear Mr. Denby (Film Collage)" both appeared incorrectly in our pages. Visit the current issue's web page to find correct versions of these pieces.

We can't express enough how sorry we are for these errors.

We also printed the URL for Travis's new literary magazine review, Luna Park Review, incorrectly in our Contributors' Notes, and we're sorry for that, too. Luna Park launches next week and you should bookmark it--it will be your favorite new site for all things literary.

Music Feature Update, part deux

Are you planning to submit poetry for our upcoming music feature? Take note: we've imposed a new deadline on submissions. March 15 (postmark date) will be the last day we accept submissions for this feature. Regular submissions of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction will continue to be read through the end of our reading period, which is April 30.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Carr Reading Series for Spring 2008

In keeping with their tradition of excellence, the Carr Reading Series once again brings amazing poets and fiction writers to campus this semester. Be sure to save these dates on your calendar to hear featured artists (Mark Costello, Mariko Nagai, Patrick Rosal, and David Foster Wallace) read and discuss their work.

All readings are held at the Illini Union Bookstore Author's Corner, 2nd floor.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Never Too Old for Great Books

I don't know about you, but a number of my favorite books count among the imaginative tales I read as a child. On that note, check out the 2008 Newbery and Caldecott Award winners either for the child in your life or the one that's still in all of us.

Monday, January 14, 2008

An Author Remembered

We mourn the passing of essayist Arthur Saltzman, who died suddenly in his home on January 8, 2008. Saltzman, a professor at Missouri Southern State University, was the author of 10 books, most recently Solve for X (Univ. of South Carolina Press, 2007), a collection of essays, and his essay "Squaring the Circle" is forthcoming in the Spring/Summer 2008 issue of 9L.

Monday, January 07, 2008

from Series A

Click over here to experience last month's Series A reading in Hyde Park, Chicago featuring poetry & creative nonfiction by Ninth Letter's own Juan Manuel Sanchez and Steve Davenport.

You can check their schedule, right here, for upcoming events, including the appearance of contributor Adam Clay, on April 22nd, 2008

Happy New Year!