Upcoming Readings or Events
Gold Star Magazine and Traveling Exhibit Project
Central Connecticut State University Creative Nonfiction Workshop students interviewed Gold Star Families from Connecticut that lost a son or husband in the Vietnam War. They transformed the transcripts into powerful first-person co-authored essays that shed light, often for the first time, on what the various relatives and friends of the fallen soldiers endured at the time and in the 50 years since the war.
Professor Collins raised more than $10,000 from a range of sources, including a generous $5000 grant from the Trumbull Rotary Club and free printing from Fairfield University Press, to pay for the design and printing of more than 1000 copies of a four-color, 50-page magazine. The photographs and text in the publication will also serve as the framework for a traveling exhibit on Gold Star families in Connecticut, which will go on display in July 2015 at the New England Air Museum as part of a much larger event to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War.
The Gold Star Magazines will be available by November 1, 2014. Please contact Mary Collins at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com for more information about this project or hosting the travel exhibit at your school or library.
Mary Collins will read from a new essay at the UCONN Bookstore in Storrs, CT on Monday, November 3 at 7:00 p.m. The reading is sponsored by Elephant Rock Books.
Other Authors You Should Read
Books on my night table:
The Most of Nora Ephron
First Rate Madness by Nassir Ghaemi
Story Craft: The Complete Guide to Writing Narrative Nonfiction
University of Chicago, 2011
Writer * Professor * Public Speaker
PETRIFIED FOREST National Park Service Artists-in-Residence Project
Mary Collins and Susan McElhinney created a prose/photo profile project of people that work, volunteer and visit the Petrified Forest National Park and Painted Desert in Arizona. "Faces of the Petrified Forest" will be on permanent exhibit in the historic Painted Desert Inn this fall. The fuller version of the project with complete text will also be on the Park's website.
Nine Themed CT American Revolution Tours
Benedict Arnold, Ethan Allen, Nathan Hale, Israel Putnam--these are just a few of the CT characters who played complex roles in the Revolution. Our tours follow carefully crafted narrative threads that tell layered stories. Visit the website and discover Google Maps (access them from your cell phone!), cue sheets, biographies and more. It's all FREE.
Sample American Idle Chapter (238.8KB)
Sample Award-Winning Essay (598.8KB)
National Geographic Books
**Twenty year career as a writer and editor in Washington, DC for a range of clients, including National Geographic, the Smithsonian and Discovery Channel
**Associate Professor of Creative Nonfiction, Central Connecticut State University (2007 to present); Winner Teaching Award 2010; Director of Center for Teaching and Faculty Development
**Part-time professor at Johns Hopkins University MA in Writing Program, Washington, DC (1995-2007); Winner Teaching Award 2003; Winner Professional Achievement Award 2002; taught two graduate classes a term, ran the monthly reading series and helped oversee as many as 80 nonfiction advisees
**Veteran Guest Speaker for a range of clients, including Commencement Speaker, Boston University School of Public Health, 2010; Plenary Speaker, Annual Convention, National Center for Biking and Walking, 2010; Keynote speaker for a range of City Planning Annual Conventions and Bike/Walk advocacy groups across the country
**Workshop leader and Writing Advisor for a range of corporate clients, including town governments, insurance companies, law offices; panelist at several major writing conferences, including Cape Cod Writers Conference, Baltimore Writers Conference and the Stonecoast Program in Maine
**Award-winning book author and essayist: Winner Grand Prize for Nonfiction at the 2010 Indie Book Awards; Best Book of the Year, American Independent Writers Group, 2010; Best Essay of the Year, Amercian Independent Writers, 2009; Best Essay of the Year, American Society of Journalists and Authors, 2003; Top 10 best YA Biography of the Year on Booklist and NY Public Library, 2003 and others
Agent: Kathi Paton, Kathi Paton Literary Agency