2019 Making Lit

William A. Fry Undergraduate Conference on Literature and Writing

February 28 – March 2, 2019

Click to register (all are welcome to join us) or submit work for consideration (undergrads–critical papers on any literary topic or creative writing in any genre).

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more information, discussions, and live updates during the conference! Use the hashtag #TUMakingLit on Twitter and Instagram.

(The full conference schedule follows the keynote bios.)

Keynote Presenters

(Emily Griesinger, Thom Caraway, Natasha Oladokun, Katherine James)

Emily Griesinger

PhD, Vanderbilt University

MA, Baylor University

BA, Baylor University

Emily Griesinger teaches courses in British literature, religion and literature, children’s literature, and autobiography and memoir at Asuza Pacific University. Her article on Toni Morrison’s Beloved in Christianity and Literature received the Lionel Basney “Best Essay” Award, while “Your Daughters Shall Prophesy: The Charismatic Spirituality of Hildegard of Bingen,” published in Christian Scholar’s Review, won the Charles J. Miller “Best Essay” Award. She has published in Books & Culture and Women’s Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal. She co-edited The Gift of Story: Narrating Hope in a Postmodern World.

Thom Caraway

PhD, University of North Dakota

MFA, Eastern Washington University

BA, Eastern Washington University

Thom Caraway is associate professor of English at Whitworth University, where he is the director of the editing and publishing program, and editor-in-chief for Rock & Sling. He is also publisher of Sage Hill Press. His work has appeared in Redivider, Sugar House Review, Relief, Ruminate, and elsewhere. His books include What the Sky Lacks, A Visitor’s Guide to North Dakota, and No Secrets to Sell. He served as poet laureate of Spokane, WA from 2013 – 2015.

Natasha Oladokun

MFA, Hollins University

BA, University of Virginia

Natasha Oladokun is a poet and essayist. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in the American Poetry Review, Harvard Review Online, Pleiades, Kenyon Review Online, The Adroit Journal, The RS 500, and elsewhere. She is Associate Poetry Editor at storySouth, and inaugural First Wave Poetry Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Katherine James

MFA, Columbia University

BA, Purchase College

Katherine James holds an MFA from Columbia, where she received the Felipe P. De Alba merit fellowship and taught undergraduate fiction. Her novel Can You See Anything Now? was a semi-finalist for the Doris Bakwin prize, and was published by Paraclete in 2017. Her memoir Notes on Orion is forthcoming. Her work has appeared in many journals and anthologies including St. Katherine Review and The Other Journal, and a recent short story was a finalist for a spring Narrative Prize.


Making Literature is proud to announce that the 2019 book fair will be anchored by Eighth Day Books. Eighth Day will carry titles by our keynote speakers, as well as their usual stellar selection.


If you’re not familiar with the iconic bookstore, here is an intriguing introduction from their website:

From the beginning, we have not been a typical independent bookstore; we eschew the trendy, and do not carry books solely based on their salability. Instead, we’re selective, offering an eccentric community of books based on this organizing principle: if a book—be it literary, scientific, historical, or theological—sheds light on ultimate questions in an excellent way, then it’s a worthy candidate for inclusion in our catalog.

For more about Eighth Day and proprietor Warren Farha, read Lauren Winner’s recap in Books & Culture, or the profile of Warren and the store in the New York Times.


Music by special guests Sister Sinjin!
Thursday, Feb 28 @ 8:30 PM
Euler Legacy Commons

Following the Friday evening keynote, close out the evening on the Legacy Commons for a meet and greet with music by Sister Sinjin. This event is co-sponsored by the Taylor University Honors Guild.

Click here to register (all are welcome). We hope you can join us! Follow on Facebook or Twitter for the latest.

THURSDAY, February 28

9:00-4:00        Registration (Book Fair – Euler Atrium)

10:30-10:45    Welcome (Euler Legacy Commons, 2nd floor)

11:00-12:00    Student Sessions

  1. Critical Essay Panel #1 – Disconnection and Consolation (Reade 240)

Moderator: Conner Flowe

Caleb Hoelscher (Taylor University)
“Degrees of Separation in Annie Baker’s The Flick

Tali Valentine (Taylor University)
“Coleridge as the Mariner—Disconnection and Redemption in Comparing ‘Dejection: An Ode’ and ‘The Rime of the Ancient Mariner’

Megan Herrema (Taylor University)
“Counterintuitive Comfort in the Consolation Tradition: The Deconstruction and Reconstruction of Ideological Frameworks in Pearl and Endo’s Silence

  • Creative Writing Panel #1 – Creative Nonfiction (Reade 143)

Moderator: Chrysa Keenon

Whitney Martin (Taylor University)

Breann Wong (Point Loma Nazarene University)
“More than the ‘Manapua Man’”

Chrishauna Curry (Taylor University)
“A Note to Self”

12:00              Lunch (Hodson Dining Commons or Boren Campus Center)

1:15-2:15        Student Sessions

  1. Critical Essay Panel #2 – Exploring Agency, Part 1 (Reade 240)

Moderator: Kelly Abraham

Madison Cash (Wheaton College)
“Garcia Marquez’s Afro-Columbian Literary Identity”

Hannah Funk (Taylor University)
“Female Agency: Standing Upon the Artificial Leg of Independence in Flannery O’Connor’s Good Country People

Alex Gergely (Indiana Wesleyan University)
“‘I have discovered that I am a woman’: Sinclair Lewis and the Female Character in ‘Moths in the Arc Light’”

  • Creative Writing Panel #2 – Prose (Reade 221)

Moderator: Whitney Martin

Oriana Barrett (Malone University)
“Nyctophobia: A Tale of the Girl Who Stayed Up Later Than Vampires”

Sarah Davis (Taylor University)
“black raspberry picking” and “paddington station”

Sarah Repp (Anderson University)
“Ships That Pass in the Night”

2:30-3:30        Student Sessions

  1. Creative Writing Panel #3Lament (Reade 240)

Moderator: Sarah Davis

Alexis Harris (Taylor University)
“The Fall of Adam”

Hannah Gears (Malone University)
“Writing as Lament”

Jamie Tews (Indiana Wesleyan University)
“The Whole Banana”

  • Creative Writing Panel #4Crime & Punishment (Reade 143)

Moderator: Conner Flowe

Sarah Wingert (Mount Vernon Nazarene University)
“The Case of Colonel Warburton’s Madness”

Ellie Zumbach (Malone University)
“Supersonic Man”

Jamie Hudalla (Bethel University)
“Saints of Little Odessa”

3:30-4:00        Break – Euler Atrium Book Fair

4:00-5:15        Parnassus release party, with readings

                        (Euler Legacy Commons—2nd floor, east end of building)

5:30                Dinner (Hodson Dining Commons or Boren Campus Center)

7:00-8:15        Keynote address: Dr. Emily Griesinger (Euler 109)

8:30                Meet and Greet, featuring music by Sister Sinjin (Euler Legacy Commons)

                        ** the Book Fair, anchored by Eighth Day Books, will be open!

FRIDAY, March 1

8:00-5:00        Registration (Book Fair, Euler Atrium)

8:55-9:55        Student Sessions

  1. Critical Essay Panel #3 – Storytelling Visions and Voices (Reade 240)

Moderator: Hannah Stumpf

Connor Salter (Taylor University)
“Frankenstein and Eston, Ransom and Van Helsing: Common Characters in the Works of Terence Fisher and C. S. Lewis”

Caleb Hoelscher (Taylor University)
“Holding onto Holding: An Exploration of Brian Doyle’s Storytelling Philosophy in ‘Leap’”

Hannah Perry (Taylor University)
“Stories to the Distant Reader: Shaping Cultural Narratives in Do Not Say We Have Nothing

  • Creative Writing Panel #5 – Fiction (Reade 119)

Moderator: Sarah Davis

Tali Valentine (Taylor University)
“Cold Stone”

Brady Miller (Malone University)
“On Fear, Fall, and Pagan Holidays”

Tyler Howell (Malone University)
“Poems and Short Prose”

10:00-10:50    Chapel (Rediger Chapel/Auditorium)

11:00-12:00    Student Sessions

  1. Critical Essay Panel #4 – Questioning Convention (Reade 212)

Moderator: Conner Flowe

Sarah Davis (Taylor University)

“Understanding Humanity through Negation in Crime and Punishment

Bri Carmichael (Indiana University South Bend)
“Deconstructing the Societal Conventions of Spring and Condemning Its Misrepresentation in Traditional Springtime Poetry”

Bella McGill (Ball State University)
“The Implications of Psychopathy and Sociopathy in Shakespeare”

  • Creative Writing Panel #6 – Poetry and Prose (Reade 220)

Moderator: Whitney Martin

Brady Miller (Malone University)
“A Family Venture”

Rinnah Shaw (Taylor University)

Shannon Moore (Houghton College)
“Questions That Only Mom Can Answer”

12:00              Lunch (Hodson Dining Commons or Boren Campus Center)

1:30-2:30        Student Sessions

  1. Critical Essay Panel #5 – Exploring Agency, Part 2 (Reade 240)

Moderator: Kelly Abraham

Jacob Cupps (Anderson University)
“David Kern Is the Arbiter of His Own Discontent”

Christian Mack (Trevecca Nazarene University)
“‘The Spirit of Perverseness’: Determinism in the Works of Edgar Allan Poe”

Raven Durben (Mount Vernon Nazarene University)
“Modernism to Postmodernism: Jack Gladney’s Transition in White Noise”

  • Creative Writing Panel #7 – Poetry (Reade 212)

Moderator: Chrysa Keenon

Brett Cortelletti (Malone University)
“My Best Poems”

Jessica Dundas (Taylor University)
“Various Poems”

Ellie Zumbach (Malone University)
“‘Moths’ and Other Selected Poems”

2:45-3:45         Student Sessions

  1. Critical Essay Panel #6 – Questions of Doubt (Reade 240)

Moderator: Sarah Davis

Steven Vermillion (Taylor University)
“Shelley’s Secularization of the Psalms”

Grace Seeman (Taylor University)
“A Passive Darkness: The Veil in ‘Cock-Crowing’ and Till We Have Faces

McKenzie Marsh (Anderson University)
“Contemporary Reactions to Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus

  • Creative Writing Panel #8 – Poetry (Reade 212)

Moderator: Whitey Martin

Amanda Jones (Indiana University South Bend)
“Away We Go”

Sarah Pruis (Seattle Pacific University)
“Direction to Water”

Genevieve Hartman (Houghton College)
“a place called home”

4:00-5:30        Keynote address/reading: Natasha Oladokun (Euler 109)

5:30                Dinner (Hodson Dining Commons or Boren Campus Center)

7:00-8:30        Keynote address/reading: Kate James (Boren Campus Center: Cornwall Auditorium)

                        ** conference awards will be announced

8:30                Late Nite with Lewis and Friends:

An Open House at the C. S. Lewis Center (Zondervan Library)


9:00-12:30      Book Fair; coffee and pastries (Euler Atrium)

Meet and mingle with our keynote speakers and representatives from:

Relief Journal
Ball State University Graduate English Department
The Cresset
Taylor University Department of English
Seattle Pacific University MFA program
Rock & Sling

10:30-12:00   Keynote address/reading: Dr. Thom Caraway (Euler 109)

Click here to register (all are welcome). We hope you can join us! Follow on Facebook or Twitter for the latest.