Our third annual gathering unites students from five Southland graduate writing programs—CalArts, Otis College, UC Irvine, UC Riverside, and USC—to share recent work and tune our ears to the future of language. What are the ideas, forms, questions, syntaxes, images, and narratives of our immediate future? Who better as our compass in the wilds of the now than emerging writers?
Click here for photos from the program.
Emily Ansara Baines is the author of The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook and The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook. She received her BA in Creative Writing from USC and her MFA from Otis College of Art and Design. Emily’s work has appeared in Narrative, Jezebel, The Huffington Post, The Independent, The Bold Italic, XOJane, Bird’s Thumb, and Hello Giggles. She currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband, who is very supportive while she works away on her collection of linked stories.
Bridget Chiao Clerkin lives in Irvine with her husband and three children.
Emily Dorff, originally from Florida, is a second-year poet in the MFA program at UC Riverside. She holds a BA from Georgetown University and is a poetry editor for the Santa Ana River Review.
Alex Dupree is a musician and third-year MFA student in poetry at UC Irvine. Before moving to LA, he lived all over Texas and in some parts of New Mexico. He’s now working on a collection of poems titled “Body & Repair.”
Howard Ho is a writer/composer. He studied Musicology and Communications at UCLA and earned his Master of Professional Writing at USC, where he was Stage and Screen Editor of the Southern California Review. This past year, he was a member of the Playground-LA Writers Pool and the Vagrancy Playwrights’ Group. His short works have been produced by Company of Angels and New Musicals, Inc. He has written and composed two musicals, which received readings through Kaya Press and East West Players. His articles have been published by the Los Angeles Times and YOMYOMF. He is a member of Cold Tofu Improv and Playwrights’ Arena.
Cecilia Latiolais is a 2nd-year fiction candidate in UC Riverside’s MFA program, and received her BA from the University of Michigan. She is working on a collection of short stories that center around controlling the mind, female body, and sexuality. She plans to continue exploring LA until it falls into the Pacific.
Niko Nelson is a poet from the San Francisco Bay Area. She received her BA in Literary Studies from The New School and her MFA from Otis College of Art and Design. Niko is the founder a literary skateboard magazine OUTLAWiNG, and her work has appeared in journals and magazines like Empty Mirror, Ms.Fabulous, JustGo and Art Nouveau. This June, Niko will embark on a tour of the US and Canada to read from her latest work, featuring poems about big cities and mental states.
Benjamin S. Sneyd is an Appalachian writer from Northeast Tennessee. He most frequently writes about place, culture, and identity. His work has appeared in Burningword Literary Journal, Spry Literary Review, and elsewhere. He has worked as an intern at The Oxford American, an editorial assistant for Toad Suck Review, a general reader for Spry Literary Review, an assistant editor at The Tusculum Review, and is the editor-in-chief of Fannin Street: a journal of brave writing. He received his BA in English from Tusculum College and is currently finishing an MFA in writing at California Institute of the Arts.
Casey Taylor is a prose writer who recently completed her Master of Professional Writing degree at the University of Southern California. She graduated with a degree in English from Stanford University, and has also studied at Oxford and the University of Salamanca. Originally from Oregon, she now lives in South LA with her husband and an overweight black cat.
Jacqueline Young is a poet from Apple Valley, CA. Her work is miniature and observational, descending from the Imagist and Objectivist movements from the early 20th century. She holds a BA in English and MA in Education from Mount Holyoke College and is currently completing her MFA in Creative Writing at California Institute of the Arts.