Do you want to write stories that feel real but probe the innermost depths the imagination? Learn how from these three award-winning fiction writers. They will share their secrets for creating stunning imagery and powerful stories that linger in the readers’ mind. You’ll learn how these authors developed their unique literary styles and get advice on how to publish both short fiction and story collections.


Panelists: Ben Loory, Mary Otis, Amelia Gray
Thursday, April 18, 2013
8:00 – 9:30 p.m.


ben_loory_leftBen Loory’s fables and tales have appeared online and in print in journals and magazines of all shapes and sizes, ranging from literary to fantasy, humor to horror, young adult to SF to sports-related and more. His story “The TV” was featured in The New Yorker, and was named a Distinguished Story of the Year in The Best American Short Stories 2011. In 2012, his story “The Duck” was featured on the Valentine’s Day episode of NPR’s This American Life (“What I Did For Love”). His book “Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day” (Penguin) is now in its fourth printing. It was chosen as a selection of the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Program and the Starbucks Coffee Bookish Reading Club, and was named one of the 10 Best Fiction Books of the Year by the Hudson Booksellers retail chain. As a screenwriter, Ben Loory has worked for Jodie Foster, Alex Proyas (director of Dark City and The Crow), and Mark Johnson (Academy Award-winning producer of Rain Man). He holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Harvard College and an MFA from the American Film Institute.


450Mary Otis is an award-winning writer whose short story collection “Yes, Yes, Cherries” was published by Tin House Books. She has had stories and essays published in Best New American Voices (Harcourt), Los Angeles Times, Tin House, Electric Literature, Berkeley Literary Journal, Alaska Quarterly Review, Cincinnati Review, Santa Monica Review, The Rumpus, and Los Angeles Review of Books. The New York Times has said of her work, “Sadness and humor sidle up to each other, evocative of the delicate balance of melancholy and wit found in Lorrie Moore’s stories.” Her writing has been performed by WordTheatre and recorded for Electric Literature. Mary’s writing has been anthologized in “Do Me: Tales of Sex and Love” (Tin House) and “Woof: Fiction Writers on Dogs” (Viking). Her story “Pilgrim Girl” received an honorable mention for a Pushcart Prize, and her story “Unstruck” was cited in 100 Distinguished Stories in the Best American Short Stories. She was a Walter Dakin Fellow, and in 2009 was invited by the NEA to attend the Guadalajara Book Festival as a fiction writer. Mary attended Bennington College and is a fiction professor in the UC Riverside Low-Residency MFA Program.


gray-amelia-c-matt-chamberlain_custom-e518cc9f44e937ec427e690bec00ea86618826cf-s6-c30Amelia Gray is the author of “AM/PM” (Featherproof Books) and “Museum of the Weird” (FC2), for which she won the Ronald Sukenick Innovative Fiction Prize. Her first novel, “THREATS”, (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), was long listed for the University of Wales Dylan Thomas Prize. Her fiction, poetry and nonfiction has appeared in Tin House, Poets & Writers, American Short Fiction, GOOD, Guernica, Annalemma, Sonora Review, VICE, McSweeney’s, the LA Review of Books and DIAGRAM, among others. She received a BA from Arizona State University and an MFA from Texas State University. She has taught writing and composition at the University of Illinois, Bowling Green State University, Hamilton College, Austin Community College, and Roosevelt College, among others. She has served on the editorial board at Hayden’s Ferry Review and Front Porch. She is currently working on a collection of short stories and a novel.