The day began with a seminar from Erika Meitner and Mary Biddinger on literary taboos. Between the reading that was assigned beforehand and the handout for the seminar there was a lot of food for thought. One student was a bit concerned about “earnest Christianity” being among the taboos so I directed him to Robert Boswell’s The Half-Known World which has a good chapter on ideology and writing fiction.
We began workshop after that and I’m looking forward to working with Jennifer Vanderbes this term. She and I seem to have a lot of common ground on process which should lead to a good relationship as I work on my thesis.
After lunch, we had out first genre workshop, today with Kevin Moffett. There were some interesting notes on writing around objects and I turned out 134 words which might stand alone as a bit of microfiction.
Then we had the first round of graduating student readings. Some really excellent stuff from our first graduating class.
The day concluded with the opening reception which featured a conversation with Robert Olen Butler, who managed to almost exactly quote his book From Where You Dream in his answers. Afterwards we adjourned to the ninth floor of the Vaughn Center for a reading from Butler and dessert.