A Celebration of the Orlando Poet Laureate and Finalists

Excited to read Saturday at this celebration of the Orlando Poet Laureate and finalists.

Come hear incoming Poet Laureate Shawn Welcome, outgoing Poet Laureate Susan Lilley, and finalists Terry Thaxton, Martha Brenckle, and me at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts as part of UCF Celebrates the Arts.

This Saturday, April 9, 2022, 6-7:30 p.m. Free, but advance tickets required: https://arts.cah.ucf.edu/event/poetry-spoken-word/

With thanks to the University of Central Florida’s College of Arts and Humanities and the Department of English for organizing!

“Swimming for Shore” Film

About a year ago, I met with a filmmaker who wanted to adapt my story “Swimming for Shore” into a short film. Today, it’s out in the world, and it is BEAUTIFUL! What an honor to have someone make something so lovely and powerful and moving out of your work!
Thanks to Gabriel Connelly and the entire team of actors and production folks for this beautiful adaptation, to Crazyhorse Literary Journal for first giving this story a home, and to Robert Shapard and James Thomas and the good people at W. W. Norton & Company for giving the story a second life in their anthology New Sudden Fiction: Short-Short Stories from America and Beyond. Excited to have it appear again in an upcoming issue of Sequestrum Literary Journal.

If you’d like to read the story, you can check it out here, where it was first published under a slightly different title:

Science Novels, Lab Lit, and Nerd Novels!

Check out all of the amazing novels Charmed Particles got to rub elbows with this weekend at the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts conference!

If you’re interested in #sciencenovels, #lablit, and #nerdnovels, be sure to check out the amazing work of the Fiction Meets Science Program and the new book Under the Literary Microscope: Science and Society in the Contemporary Novel, Edited by Sina Farzin, Susan M. Gaines, and Roslynn D. Haynes

With contributions by Anna Auguscik, Jay Clayton, Carol Colatrella, Sonja Fücker, Raymond Haynes, Luz María Hernández Nieto, Emanuel Herold, Karin Hoepker, Anton Kirchhofer, Antje Kley, Natalie Roxburgh, Uwe Schimank, Sherryl Vint, and Peter Weingart.

 

 

Narrative Energy: Novelists on Why, When, and How They Write About Science

Excited to talk about Charmed Particles this weekend at the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts conference, as part of the “Narrative Energy: Novelists on Why, When, and How They Write About Science” panel, along with Laura Otis, Susan M. GainesCatherine Bush, and Edward Schwarzchild!

“Scholar and writer Laura Otis will lead a discussion with four accomplished novelists who write realistic, character-driven fiction about science. They’ll compare their inspirations and motivations, and describe doing the research for their science novels and how it differs from the research they’ve done for other novels. They will consider the unique challenges of writing such books: How do they create empathy for particularly nerdy scientist characters? Does the unfamiliarity of the scientific content influence their choices of narrative point of view? How do they construct plots that are comprised of both intellectual and emotional events? What different sorts of challenges do different fields of science present?

One of the attractions of realistic science novels is that they allow readers to experience and appreciate unfamiliar fields of scientific study. And yet, people read and value novels for their fictional stories, characters, and aesthetics. How do novelists negotiate this conundrum? In what ways do they fictionalize the science to fit their stories, and how do they rationalize this within the novels’ realistic framing? How do they create the narrative energy of their stories using abstruse scientific concepts and practices—and teach readers what they need to know to understand the story from within the story, without being didactic or condescending?”

“Swimming for Shore” Filming in Progress

A few months ago, I met with a filmmaker who wanted to adapt my story “Swimming for Shore” into a short film.

Today he sent me stills from the shoot, and I can’t believe how beautiful they are!

I’m so excited to see the whole project when it’s finished!

The actors playing the lead roles in the film.

 

Thank you to Gabriel Connelly for the beautiful adaptation, to Crazyhorse Literary Journal for first giving this story a home, and to Robert Shapard and James Thomas for giving the story a second life in their anthology New Sudden Fiction.

If you’d like to read the story, you can check it out here, where it was first published under a slightly different title

Talk on Charmed Particles for the Network of European Institutes for Advanced Study #NetIAS

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In this talk, originally delivered on Thursday, November 5, 2020,  I discuss the role of borders in “Big Science.” I’ll share excerpts from my novel Charmed Particles and discuss the research I conducted in preparation for writing it. As part of my background research for the book, I worked in the archives at Fermilab (one of the sites under consideration for the SSC), interviewed theoretical particle physicists working at Fermilab at the time of the SSC proposal, and combed through Environmental Impact Statements and transcripts of public hearings to bring voice to both sides of the conflict over the push, in the late 1980s, to find a location in the United States for the proposed (but never completed) Superconducting Super Collider (SSC).

Listen here.

A Quick update from Germany

Hi, friends,

A quick update from the Kolaya/Millers. We are still here in Germany, currently feeling as safe as possible and very well cared for by the remarkable staff of the Hanse-Wissenschaftskolleg (HWK).

Many things are closing, but for now, shops and transport are still in operation; however, it seems likely that within the week, the government will impose a lockdown similar to what we’re seeing in Italy, France, and Spain. For now, though, the grocery stores are still reasonably well stocked, and we have everything we think we might need in the coming weeks.

Brook and I are still working on our book projects, though it’s sometimes challenging to focus with the news changing by the minute and so many heartbreaking stories coming over the wire, but we’re enjoying time with our fellow fellows—smart and interesting and kind folks from all over the world. We’ve been painting together, watching movies, learning German, and experimenting with some creative writing prompts!

As many of you are now experiencing, schools have closed here for at least a month, but the fellow kids have gotten creative! Here’s a pic of the boys and their new friend Kathryn from this morning, ready for the first day of their kid-designed HWK school.

We are thinking of and missing you all—love from all four of us!