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Blood Orange Partners with Washington State University

blushWe are pleased to announce that a selection of exceptional students from the Washington State University English Department have joined the Blood Orange Review team as editorial interns. In order to qualify for this internship, candidates were required to go through a rigorous editing and interview process. We selected the top five of these candidates: Grace Carlson, Deven Tokuno, Maddie Starkovich, Caitlin Woelfel, and Simmone Quesnell

The interns will spend the semester reading submissions and writing blogs, and meeting once a week with WSU instructor and co-editor, Bryan Fry to discuss possible pieces for upcoming issues. The Washington State University English Department has been a strong supporter of Blood Orange Review and we are grateful for this opportunity to work with WSU students.

We’d like to thank our interns for their hard work and commitment to publishing high quality writing!

Visit the Blood Orange Review Website


English Club

blushThe English Club hosts events of interest to English Majors to encourage professional development and to explore all aspects of being a language geek. It has hosted talks with faculty and graduate students on publishing, graduate school, and jobs for English majors; poetry and prose workshops and readings featuring students' creative works; and movie nights and trivia nights. This semester, along with readings and workshops, the club is planning a "Game Night with Grad Students" and working on collaborating with students in Fine Arts and Music to put together a Fine Arts Festival this spring.

The English Club is lucky to have two dynamite advisors: poet Jacqueline Lyons and poet/critic Linda Russo. English Club President, Cayla Lambier, has graciously let us publish the poem she read before a crowd of English faculty and students from the wooden steps of an old house one evening before she stepped down and moved to Seattle upon graduation.


Why I’m a Writer
by Cayla Lambier

One clear, sunny morning in the majestic desert landscape of the Tri Cities,
My father gazed over his glasses and Alaska fishing magazine and coffee and posed an inquiry:

“Why do you want to be a writer?"

I promptly lifted my bowl of Marshmallow Mateys to my breast and deftly answered:

“Because DAD, I’m not a MAN, dad, and I can’t just scatter my SEED to the WINDS. I’m a creator, OKAY? An artist of higher calling, OKAY? I’m building a legacy here, DAD, a legacy of words, OKAY DAD?”

My father, with his razor wit and wizened articulation, parried with:

“Why don’t you just have babies?”

“’Cuz babies are freakin’ gross.”

You’re laughing! There, see!
You’re laughing and that conversation never actually happened,
I made it up,
right here
right here,
in this breathtakingly gorgeous head of mine.
I lied to you,
to all of you,
and you laughed.
It wasn’t even hard!
Writers are liars and we get away with it every day.

But that’s not the half of it.

It is my excuse for having a box of Legos in my closet and owning a book called “How to Stay Alive in the Woods.”

It is my ammunition against Twilight, Cosmopolitan and Clive Cussler.

It is a control freak’s paradise, it’s what enraged passive-aggressive people did before The Sims.

It is a haven for crazies!
Hemingway best of all loved the fall;
Blake hallucinated angels outside his windows;
Plath couldn’t get out from under her bell jar;
Bradbury has no hope for any of us;
Burgess wrote A Clockwork Orange;
Bukowski collected women, cats and black eyes;
Hunter S. Thompson was, well, Hunter S. Thompson
And I feel a kinship with every single one of them.

Comparatively, I make everyone else in my family look good.
Writing is a
low-expectation career:
as long as I’m not
shooting up,
trying to kill myself,
or living on the street,
I’m doing pretty good.
Hell, it’ll blow them all out of the water
if I live with my parents for only a year.

Writing is also a low-responsibility profession.
I will never be on a plane ride
where a morbidly obese woman carrying septuplets goes into labor
and someone runs into coach
with blood, sweat and fecal matter on their hands
“Please, is anyone here a writer?”

Better yet, the economic crisis does not affect writers!
We are versatile, educated and verbose!
We can do anything!
Work at Starbucks, groom dogs, flag construction, hold signs and smuggle drugs.
We are the chameleons of the employment world – resilient and bug-eyed.

Socially, writing is my get-out-of-jail-free card that works every time
and never expires.
I can say the
most paranoid,
and be acknowledged as a genius
as long as there is at least one person in the room
who I can trust to lean over to any and all
horrified parties and say
“she’s a writer.”

With the mystique of my art,
I can legitimize any expenditure or activity:
Yes, I did need to buy that $14 slip-n-slide from Rite-Aid
Yes, I did need to play Fallout 3 for 72 hours straight
Yes, I did need to use the internet to become a legally ordained minister
And God Yes, did I need to take a 12-gauge double-barrel shotgun to a platter of rainbow chip cupcakes –
I’m writing a novel.


Fall 2009 English Department Colloquia


Sept. 11: Graduate Placement Issues & the Job Market (Kirk McAuley, with Kristin Arola, Todd Butler and Augusta Rohrbach)

Sept. 18: "Sexuality and Censorship in Florio’s Montaigne" (Will Hamlin)

Oct. 2: Readings in New Poetry and Fiction (Jacqueline Lyons and Larry Mayer)

Oct. 16: "Technical and Scientific Work as Rhetorical Activity" (David Menchaca)

Oct. 30: The Spirit of Isabell Binnington: Murder, Texts, and Law in Early Modern England” (Todd Butler)

Nov. 13: "Engaging Ideas: The Relationship between Student Engagement and Writing Ability" (Diane Kelly-Riley)

Dec. 4: "Going Feral: A Radical New Approach to Ecocriticism" (Chris Arigo)



Vision for LandEscapes

Landescapesby Madeline Starkovich

It is the vision of the 2009-2010 editorial staff that this year’s edition of LandEscapes be as diverse and well-rounded as possible. That is, we want to know what moves people, what inspires them in the biggest way. We are planning on including a wider variety of art and literary forms than ever before, including fiction, non-fiction, poetry, graphic novels, original artwork, photography, and anything else that falls under the artistic or literary umbrella. That said, there is no topic that is off-limits. We accept all manners of creative expression: dangerous, traditional, absurd, intimate, offensive; we want it all. Life is full of things that fall within these categories, and more than anything we want to see how honestly people are able to interpret the world around them.




Continuing Initiatives

Rural Education Community Outreach

Vantage Road

We continue to look for partners (an endowment or a program grant) to fund a visiting writer or scholar on a semester-long appointment. The writer woud teach innovative courses in the department and to help organize a rural education outreach program in the small towns surrounding Pullman (i.e., Colfax and Uniontown, Washington; Deary and Troy, Idaho). The outreach program would involve undergraduate and graduate students and faculty with rural communities through the mediums of teaching, creative writing and reading. The position would be sustainable and rotate among writers and scholars of note with an interest in northwest landscape.

Dissertation Fellowships

Plane lakeWe are looking for endowments to attract the finest graduate students. Currently, the English Department has no fellowships to support graduate students writing dissertations. These funds would help students have resources for books, Xeroxing, and research. A dissertation fellowship would also offer doctoral students more time to pursue publication venues for their completed work.





Washington State University
English Department Newsletter
Volume 2, Number 2,
Spring 2010