Chris Lynch,
MA '91


Chris Lynch

Q.    What are you currently working on?

I am currently working on the second of a four-book series for Scholastic. It is about four friends who grow up together and then all serve in the Vietnam War, one in each of the four services. If I were to give it a shorthand description, I would say it is Stand By Me meets The Deer Hunter. The first book is out next fall, and is titled I Pledge Allegiance.

Q.    Was there one person at Emerson who shifted the course of your career?

The Emerson experience that shifted the course of my career was the day I walked into [former WLP professor] Jack Gantos’s children’s writing class. I took the class in large part because it fit my schedule. But as soon as I got in, working with Jack and the students there I was transformed. I discovered the material that meant so much to me that I am still working on it today, and up until that moment I did not see it coming. This was in the final semester of my MA degree program, so I often think about how close I came to missing the boat entirely.

Q.    Are you professionally connected to other Emersonians? Could you share an example or two?

There is no instance of one fellow student aiding my career. I will, however, acknowledge the help of that entire children’s writing class. It was an incredible group: great readers, great listeners, generous spirits. I could not wait to get back to my desk every week and write more for these folks and that, combined with Jack’s deft hand at the wheel of this thing, changed everything in terms of progress that last semester and beyond.

I am still in contact with Jack, who has helped me immeasurably throughout my writing life. I also exchanged manuscripts with one of my Emerson peers, Matt Marinovich, MFA ’92, and once in awhile we get back in touch.

Q.    What’s the single most important piece of advice you’d like to give to prospective or current Emerson students about how to make the best use of what Emerson offers?

The advice I’d like to hand off to current Emersonians is, look around you; notice what you have got right there. Take advantage of what is probably the best population you will ever find in terms of fellow travelers. Get all you can from them, and give all you can to them, because you benefit both ways. And form your writing group (or whatever equivalent your discipline requires) as soon as you can and hold onto them.

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The Wilderness of RuinRoxane Gay visited campus on March 19 for a question-and-answer session with students followed by a reading of some of her essays. Both events are part of the Writing, Literature & Publishing Reading Series.

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The Wilderness of RuinMFA '98 Roseanne Montillo's article about 14-year old serial killer Jesse Pomeroy appeared on CBS News Crimsider. Montillo's latest book The Wilderness of Ruin explores the hunt for the child killer during Boston's Gilded Age and the Great Fire of 1872.

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All the Old KnivesMFA '99 Olen Steinhauer's new book, All the Old Knives was recently reviewed by The New York Times.

Lacy EyeProfessor Jessica Treadway is featured in the Boston Globe for her new novel  “Lacy Eye.” In the Q&A with the Globe, Treadway discusses her writing habits, including writing drafts in longhand.

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Columbian ArtistsA group of nine young, emerging artists from the Universidad Nacional de Colombia in Medellín recently presented their artwork at Emerson College Los Angeles and are visiting Emerson College in Boston this month.


Stephen ShaneCreative Writing MFA Stephen Shane (2015) and his colleague David Knight created a short documentary on Boston busing called Desegregated, Yet Unequal, and it was recently named an Editors' Pick by The Atlantic.

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Steve YarbroughProfessor Steve Yarbrough has been elected to the Fellowship of Southern Writers, and, in addition, will receive the 2015 Robert Penn Warren Award for Fiction this spring from the same organization.


Thomas McBeeWLP alum and writer Thomas Page McBee's memoir Man Alive: A True Story of Violence, Forgiveness and Becoming a Man was named on Publisher's Weekly's "Best Books of 2014."

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Ladette RandolphLadette Randolph's new memoir Leaving the Pink House was featured on as a suggested memoir. Randolph teaches in WLP and is Editor-in-Chief of Ploughshares literary magazine.

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Greg NicholsGreg Nichols (MFA '11) released his first book, Striking Gridiron, A Town's Pride and a Team's Shot at Glory During the Biggest Strike in American History. The book was named a Junior Library Guild Fall 2014 Selection.

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Marko TameraLecturer Tamera Marko's writing collective with Emerson maintenance workers from Latin America and undergraduates presented a bilingual presentation: "Proyecto Carrito II: When the Student Receives an 'A' and the Worker Gets Fired: Driving our Own Narrative" at the Conference on Rhetoric and Composition.

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Megan MarshallRecent MA in Publishing & Writing alumni collaborated to launch a new literary genre journal called Strangelet. Alumni include Executive Editor Casey Brown (MA ’13), Managing Editor Leah Thompson (MA ’12), Production Editor Franco Alvarado (MA ’13), and Creative Director Chandra Asar (MA ’12).

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Megan MarshallWLP Professor Megan Marshall and the emersonWRITES program participate in the launch and unveiling of Boston as the country's first Literary Cultural District.

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Michelle Bailat JonesMichelle Bailat-Jones (MFA '05) won the inaugral Christopher Doheny award for her novel Fog Island Mountains. The award recognizes a book-lenth work exploring the experience of serious illness and includes a $10,000 prize and publication and promotion of the book.

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