The Creativity of the Crowd

The Crowdsourced Poetry Project is under way! We have three lines so far and are excited to see more contributions to our sestina. Go to our Facebook page to submit your contribution for the next line. Our poem so far:

I began to ask myself the questions
With answers hanging in the air
What is here is noise, above which we can hear

For those of you who don’t already know, the Press is doing an experiment in creativity where we are hoping to harness the wisdom and imagination of the public to create a stunning poem. We have chosen to use the sestina for our form, mostly because it requires no rhyming or syllable counting, making it more accessible to contributors, while its use of repeated end-words gives it just enough complexity and structure so that it won’t spin off into a wild dervish. A sestina is a poem of six stanzas that are each six lines long and then a final, three line envoi. The stanzas all end with the same six words as the first stanza, though in a very specific order. In “Sestina: Altaforte” Ezra Pound uses these words at the ends of the first six lines: peace, music, clash, opposing, crimson, and rejoicing. According to the form they reappear in the second stanza in a new order as: rejoicing, peace, crimson, music, opposing, and clash, and so on throughout the next four stanzas. The repetition of these words both allows and forces the writer to use them in new ways and with new meaning imbued each time, creating a rich tapestry of language where the pattern continues to reveal itself throughout. Please join us in our quest to crowdsource a poem; the results are sure to be interesting and possibly very beautiful indeed.

Papers & Pubs Available for Purchase

A little over a month after the electronic launch of Papers and Publications: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Undergraduate Research, we are happy to announce the release of the hard copy version. You can now purchase a copy through our partner, Booklogix, by visiting this page: Copies are only $8.00, so show your support of Undergraduate Research and purchase one today! You can see what you’re getting before you purchase your copy. All of the articles are available to download for free from the official Papers and Pubs website.

During the 2011-2012 academic year, submissions from undergraduate students throughout the southeastern region were read and selected through a rigorous peer review process directed by the journal’s editors: Dr. Miriam Segura-Totten, Editor in Chief; Dr. Tanya Bennett, Humanities Editor; and Dr. Robb Sinn, STEM Editor.

The research topics of the finally-selected articles include eco-criticism, international economics, the Holocaust, African-American literature, sponge habitat, and elementary education. Their authors are undergraduates from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Davidson College, Hollins University, North Georgia College & State University, and Sewannee: The University of the South.

The mission of the journal is to promote student learning by disseminating undergraduate research and creative works that make an intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline or to applied practice. As Dr. Patricia L. Donat, NGCSU’s Vice President for Academic Affairs, writes in the first issue’s introductory Letter, “Papers and Pubs showcases some of the exceptional work of students who have conducted research as part of their undergraduate experience and who have benefitted from the mentorship and support of a dedicated group of advisors.”

The Keyhole by Tiffany McGrath

The premier issue’s cover image showcases original artwork, entitled The Keyhole, by NGCSU Visual Arts student Tiffany McGrath. This image represents one of the journal’s main goals: to open doors and offer students life-changing opportunities. As Miriam Segura-Totten writes in her Letter from the Editor, “research experiences can help undergraduates learn more about themselves, discover how they can contribute to society, and get initiated in what could become their future career.”

Papers and Pubs will begin accepting submissions for its second issue in early Fall 2012. Students in the southeastern region and their faculty mentors may submit original work that has been presented at a conference, showcase, or capstone course either on their own campus or at a regional/national conference site. Original research papers are welcome from all departments and disciplines, including fiction, creative non-fiction, and poetry (providing the creative work has been presented at a conference or in a class). Also welcome are original juried art works. All submissions will be reviewed by a faculty reviewer.

Submission guidelines and additional information about the journal and its scope can be found at:

Inquiries may be addressed to

Committed as a Teaching Press: Writing Reader’s and Editor’s Reports

The University Press of North Georgia is proud to be a teaching press and is committed to providing NGCSU college students with real-life instructions and internship experience in a variety of different arenas of publishing.  One of the ways this is accomplished is through the “Intro to Publishing” class offered by the English Department and taught by Dr. Bonnie Robinson, UPNG Director.

As an English major, I took the “Intro to Publishing” class in the Spring of 2011. I greatly enjoyed the class and ultimately decided to seek to intern with UPNG because of it. I know several other English majors that also still use the skills they learned in the class on a daily basis.

Each week over the next semester, I will be collaborating with one of the students in Dr. Robinson’s current “Intro to Publishing” class to share what we have learned throughout our respective courses, in hopes that you might also learn something about what occurs before you have a new book in your hands. This week, Cara Cunningham joins me to discuss what her class just finished discussing: Reader’s Reports and Editor’s Reports.

Cara writes,

“One day, I would like to work in a publishing house. This semester I am working towards that difficult-to-achieve goal by being in “Introduction to Publishing.” This week in this course, I am learning how to write a Reader’s Report and an Editor’s Report. A Reader’s Report is written when an editor desires help with reading and evaluating manuscripts which are sent to his publishing house. An assistant will read a manuscript and will write a Reader’s Report of typically a few paragraphs in length which summarizes and evaluates the manuscript. It will conclude with a recommendation of whether or not to publish the manuscript. An Editor’s Report is written by an editorial assistant about a manuscript that has already been approved for publication. This report is often directed to the author of the manuscript but may also be directed to the head editor depending on what is asked of the editorial assistant. The Editor’s Report is like the Reader’s Report in that it briefly evaluates the work, but it focuses only on what needs to be improved in the manuscript in its overall structure, i.e. if the subject needs additional or fewer details. The writer of an Editor’s Report needs to also provide sound logic to support the change.”

My own personal experiences learning about Reader’s Reports has allowed me to think more critically about my creative writing. I want to one day be a children’s author. Sometimes after writing a new children’s story, I will try to step back and write an imaginary Reader’s Report and Editorial Report for the work, asking myself these questions: If I were looking at this manuscript for the first time, what would make me think that it was worth publishing? Would anything hinder me from wanting to publish it? What could be changed? What absolutely has to stay no matter the revision? Where should details be added or removed? What is the logical and literary (not the emotional, I-like-this-because-it’s-my-own-work) reason that the publishing house I wish to submit to would spend time, effort, and money publishing my work?

Looking at Readers and Editorial Reports in this manner has helped me revise several manuscripts. What work do you currently have in-progress and how could asking these questions of your manuscripts benefit both you as a writer and your work?


Free Peek — Stonepile Writers’ Anthology: Wasabi Daydream

Wasabi Daydream
by Dara M. Bergmann

Sometimes I get a little to much wasabi.
At these times my ancestors remind me
that Northern Europe is not known for spice.

Had they ever tasted sushi though,
they would have sailed their dragon-headed boats
past bland-tasting Britain and all the way to Japan,

seeking nori and vinegared rice,
trading war axes for chopsticks
as they surged ashore, demanding tamari tribute.

Terrifying in their nakedness or bear skins
they would have warmed the sake
and shouted a Viking “kampai!”

Had they know of sushi,
the Mongols of my father’s blood
would have cut a swath East, not West.

The Khans would have women
and the spider rolls!
They’d ride off to
the next conquest on horses
heavy-laden with futomaki.

But, that never happened,
I eat pickled ginger to calm the fire
and attack
tiny little seaweed wrapped islands
for myself.

The Author invites you to send her any questions or comments. To contact Dara Bergmann, email her at

This poem was reprinted with the Authors permission.

Want to win your very own copy of the Stonepile Writers’ Anthology, which contains this and many other poems? Sign up for our newsletter. We’re giving away Vols 1 & 2 to two lucky people who sign up for our e-newsletter between now and Feb. 14th, 2012! Click here for more information.

Workshop, Contest, and ebrary!

Hello Faithful Followers and everyone else who may just be stopping by! The Staff here at the University Press of North Georgia have a goal to update our website at least three times a week. We encourage you to keep checking back for the latest and greatest updates, contests, events, and etc.

We have a full slate of things going on right now. We are eagerly planning out and customizing our “Bringing Appalachia to the World” workshop that’s happening on Feb 3rd from 4-5pm. This workshop will focus on blogging and ebooks and how they are allowing more and more people to get their voices heard, focusing on the under-heard Appalachian Voice. The workshop does have limited space and has already been filled. But if you’d like to be put on the waiting list, you can contact the Georgia Appalachian Studies Center at


But wait, even if you can’t get into the workshop, we’re hosting a reception afterwards that EVERYONE is invited to. There’s no space limit there. Drop by the Vickery House between 5:30 and 6:30pm on Friday, Feb 3rd and meet the Press. We’ll have information about the press available, as well as have an area set up with all of our available books. Free Refreshments will be provided. This is your chance to come pick the brains of our editors and maybe even see some of our authors!

In other exciting news, we’re holding a contest! We’ll be giving away the Stonepile Anthology Collection (Vol 1 & 2) to two lucky winners. Want to take part? All you have to do is sign up for our e-newsletter between now and Valentines Day. Winners will be announce at Noon on Feb. 14th. Already signed up for our e-newsletter? No problem, just fill in your email again to enter. We still get notified of the entry and we promise you won’t get sent double emails when newsletter time comes about!


The Stonepile Writers’ Anthology is a series of books that contain stories and poems from the writers of the North Georgia Mountains. Each entry is judged, juried, and executed — no wait, that’s not right. Anyway, each selection in both books were hand picked from lots and lots of entries. They are some of the best that North Georgia has to offer, and we’re offering you a chance to get them for free! So enter today!

Another exciting announce is UPNG’s new partnership with ebrary. The partnership itself was solidified last Fall; however, we are pleased to announce that The Military and the Monarchy: The Case and Career of the Duke of Cambridge in an Age of Reform by Kevin W. Farrell will soon be available through ebrary. It is the first book available through this format, though it certainly won’t be our last.


Win The Stonepile Anthology Collection!

Want to win free copies of both volumes of the Stonepile Anthology? Here’s your chance! Simply sign up for our e-Newsletter, and you’ll be entered to win The Stonepile Writers’ Anthology Volumes I & II.  It’s that easy! Follow the link below, put in your email (and make sure it’s typed correctly; we’ll contact the winners by this email).

Two winners will be chosen at random on February 14th, 2012. Chances of winning depend on how many entries are received. One entry per email address.

Note: If you’re already signed up for the newsletter, but want to enter the contest, just put your email in again. We’ll still get notified of your entry, and you will not receive double emails.