New American Writing Festival to Feature Alumni, Regional Writers

October 20, 2011

Two Hartwick College alumni writers, Matthew F. Jones '77 and Brendan Walsh '10, return for this year's New American Writing Festival, and will be joined by poets Jay Rogoff and Emily Vogel for two evenings of readings. 

Jones, a novelist, and poet Vogel will read from their work at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, November 2, 2011.  Saratoga-based poet Rogoff will be joined by Walsh for a 7 p.m. reading the next evening, Thursday, November 3. Both events will be held in the Celebration Room, Shineman Chapel House, on the Hartwick campus. This event is free, and the public is invited to attend.

Jones is the author of six critically acclaimed novels as well as a number of screenplays, including adaptations of two of his novels, Boot Tracks, starring Michelle Monaghan, Willem Dafoe and Stephen Dorff, which wrapped filming in August 2011, and A Single Shot, scheduled to begin shooting this fall in British Columbia, Canada, featuring William H. Macy, Forrest Whitaker and Juno Temple. Another of his novels, Deepwater, named by critics as one of the best novels of 1999, was made into a film in 2005.  He was born in Boston and grew up in rural upstate New York in the town of Walton where from an early age he worked on dairy and horse farms in the area.  Following graduation from Hartwick College, Jones completed a law degree at the Syracuse University College of Law.  He currently lives with his wife and son in Charlottesville, VA.  He has taught writing at a number of colleges and universities as a visiting writer and/or guest lecturer, including at Randolph College, Lynchburg College and the University of Virginia.

Vogel's poetry has been published in numerous journals, most recently in The Paterson Literary Review and New York Quarterly. She has published three chapbooks: Footnotes for a Love Letter (Foothills, 2008), An Intimate Acquaintance (Pudding House, 2009), and Elucidation Through Darkness (Split Oak Press, 2010). The Philosopher's Wife, a full-length collection, was published in 2011. She has a forthcoming chapbook, Still Life with Man due to be released in December by Finishing Line.  She is the poetry editor of the online journal Ragazine, and resides in Vestal, NY with her husband, Joe Weil.  She is a lecturer in English at Hartwick College.

Rogoff is the author of four books of poetry, most recently The Art of Gravity (LSU Press, 2011), a work inspired by dance and its relationship to the complex rhythms of our lives and feelings. His previous books include The Long Fault (LSU, 2008), which addresses history, art, and mortality; How We Came to Stand on That Shore (River City, 2003), which deals with family history and immigrant experience; and The Cutoff (Word Works, 1995), a sequence set in the world of minor league baseball. He has also published two chapbooks, First Hand (Mica, 1997), and Twenty Danses Macabre (Spring Garden, 2010), which won the Robert Watson Poetry Award. Rogoff's poems appear in many journals, including The Georgia Review, The Hopkins Review, Literary Imagination, Salmagundi, and The Southern Review. He serves as dance critic for The Hopkins Review and is a contributor to Ballet Review. He teaches literature and writing at Skidmore College.

Walsh is pursuing the MFA program at Southern Connecticut State University. Obsessed with travel, his poetry focuses on the human relation to place, and how places define humans. At Hartwick, he traveled around the world by ship in the Semester at Sea program.  After graduation, he moved to Masan, South Korea to teach English for a year.  In 2010 he won the Anna Sonder Prize of the Academy of American Poets, as well as the Freedman Prize for a project in poetry and performance.

The New American Writing Festival is sponsored by Hartwick College's Writing Underground, Sigma Tau Delta, Department of English & Theatre Arts, Visiting Writers Series, and the Office of Academic Affairs.

For additional information on the New American Writing Festival, contact Hartwick College Professor of English Robert Bensen at or 607-431-4902.

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Hartwick College is a private liberal arts and sciences college of 1,500 students, located in Oneonta, NY, in the northern foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Hartwick's expansive curriculum emphasizes a uniquely experiential approach to the liberal arts. Through personalized teaching, collaborative research, a unique January Term, a wide range of internships, and vast study-abroad opportunities, Hartwick ensures that students are prepared for the world ahead. A Three-Year Bachelor's Degree Program and strong financial aid and scholarship offerings keep a Hartwick education affordable

Contact: Christopher Lott
Phone: 607-431-4030