Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Last Reading...Until Next Year!

The Fall 2008 RopeWalk Reading Series has successfully come to an end, and if I may say so myself, it went out with a BAM! this year. Gary Fincke shared his techniques, ideas, stories, and his life with a rapt audience last night (October 14). I personally, along with a fellow creative writing student, had the privilege of picking him up from the airport and bringing him to USI to attend a couple classes before his reading. He joined my Child Narrative Techniques class and as a group we discussed his style and technique and his process in developing a story, most frequently beginning with character and voice. I’m impressed by his multi-genre capabilities and his success in all areas. I could see his characters. I believed their lives. I felt their shame and desire.

It was interesting to pick at his brain as he did not hesitate to share everything with the class. He read Piecework for the open reading, but I also had the chance to read his Rip His Head Off and Sorry I Worried You. His reading was wonderful and left the audience wanting more.

I lucky enough to join our guest and his wife, along with the creative writing faculty, for dinner, where I learned that Fincke’s son is a member of one of my favorite bands, Breaking Benjamin. So it was exciting to talk to him about the band, an experience which Fincke wrote about in his nonfiction piece, Amp’d. After dinner, my classmate and I dropped our guests off at their hotel, thanked them for sharing an eventful evening with us, and bid them a safe drive home.

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