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Kestrel Celebration Welcomes Writers and Poets Impact
Fairmont State News

Kestrel Celebration Welcomes Writers and Poets

Mar 26, 2012

Kestrel, Fairmont State University’s professional journal of literature and art, invites everyone to take part in the Kestrel Celebration Friday, March 30, and Saturday, March 31, to celebrate the release of their newest issue, Kestrel 27.  From a Poetry Making workshop on Friday to readings on Friday and Saturday, Kestrel Celebration offers the perfect event for you.

“During the last three years Kestrel has hosted more than thirty contributors to the journal," said Kestrel Editor and Professor of English, Dr. Donna Long. "Hailing from all over the United States and the region, they come to participate in events on the shared campus of Fairmont State University and Pierpont Community & Technical College  and in the community. We are especially pleased to have received the support of the West Virginia Humanities Council and local donors for this spring’s Celebration.”

This year’s Celebration will include eight contributors from the current issue and one contributor from Kestrel 26.

The activities begin on Friday, March 30, at 1 p.m. at the Marion County Public Library as four poets from around the country guide participants through a series of four 15-minute activities.

Rob Meritt, a poet and creative non-fiction writer from Bluefield, Va., will begin the afternoon by reading a short poem and speaking on imagery.

J.C. Elkin, a poet from Maryland, will then lead an imagery-generating activity, which will be followed by an introduction to poetic forms that Marion Brown, a poet from Bronx, N.Y., will use to guide participants in arranging their images. The last section of the workshop will be led by Mitchell Untch, a poet from Los Angeles, Calif., as he talks about revision and how drafts are transformed into finished pieces. Participants will then be invited to read their poems aloud.

“As fiction editor of Kestrel, my vision includes sharing the journal and a love of literature with others at Fairmont State and with the larger community. It’s especially exciting to have so many writers willing to come to Fairmont and participate in the Celebration,” said Dr. Suzanne Heagy, who organized the workshop.

At 5:30 p.m. on Friday, March 30, a reading and reception at the Frank & Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center will feature Marion Brown, J.C. Elkin, Sally Rosen Kindred (a poet from Maryland who will appear not only in Kestrel but also in this year’s Whetstone as the featured writer), Mark Lupinetti (a fiction writer from Oregon ), and Mitchell Untch.

Then on Saturday, March 31, at 2 p.m. at C.J. Maggie’s in downtown Fairmont, the Celebration will culminate in a reading and book signing which will include Holly Jensen, a poet from Ohio; Rob Meritt; Valerie Nieman, a poet and fiction writer currently based in North Carolina who was a co-founder of Kestrel in 1993; and Liane Ellison Norman, a poet from Pittsburgh, Pa.

All of these activities are made possible by a grant from the West Virginia Humanities Council and the  support of Joe Romeo’s Honda Mazda and the Department of Language & Literature at FSU.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information or questions on the events, contact Dr. Donna Long at

KestrelDonna LongValerie NiemanElizabeth SavageSuzanne HeagyMarion BrownJ.C. ElkinHolly JensenSally Rosen KindredMark LupinettiLiane Ellison NormanMitchell UntchRob MerrittWest Virginia Humanities CouncilJoe Romeo’s Honda MazdaLanguage & Literature