Writers' Conference

May 7-9, 2019  |  Student Center Ballroom

WriterCon 2019 (Writers' Conference at UW-Parkside) is where names on projects meet faces, where great ideas are presented and flourish. Join us to see great projects and participate in workshops and panels. Engage with other Literatures and Languages majors as well as alumni and professionals who are active in the field that interests you!


All events are held in the Student Center Ballroom

Tuesday, May 7

5 PM   |  Welcome

Dr. Mary Lenard

5:15 PM  |  Teresa Peck Award Ceremony

The Teresa Peck Award is a monetary award given each year for the best gender-related paper, project, or creative work written or produced by a University of Wisconsin-Parkside male, female or gender non-conforming student during the 2018 calendar year as well as the Spring 2019 semester. The paper/creative work must have a feminist and/or gender, and/or sexuality studies objective and/or reflect a feminist/ gender/sexuality studies creative or theoretical approach or analysis.

6 PM  |  Sigma Tau Delta Initiation

Join the English Honors Society, Sigma Tau Delta, in celebrating the initiation of new members as well as honoring current ones! Besides embracing a sense of unity within the department, there will also be free food!

6:30 PM  |  Keynote with Tara Gilboy

  • Gilboy

    About Tara Gilboy

    Keynote Speaker

    Tara Gilboy holds a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia, where she specialized in writing for children and young adults. Her middle-grade novel, Unwritten, was published by Jolly Fish Press in October 2018. She teaches creative writing in San Diego Community College’s Continuing Education Program and for the PEN Writers in Prisons Program. She has also worked as a writing mentor through the program Booming Ground and served on the editorial board of PRISM International. Tara does freelance editing for the company Narrative Ink and is the former fiction editor of Straylight Literary Magazine. Her work has appeared in Word Riot, the Beloit Fiction Journal, Cricket, and other publications. Tara lives in San Diego.

Wednesday, May 8

9 AM  |  Pedagogy Panel

Vanessa Acuna, John Hugasian, Anna Klosky
Angelina Lopez, Danielle Perham, Tyler Steinsdorfer

Students in ENGL 488: Teaching English Language Arts will engage participants in simulated teaching-learning activities designed to strengthen middle and high school students’ skills in reading, writing, speaking, listening, viewing, and/or thinking.

Vanessa Acuna
Teaching Fiction through "The Tenth Man" by Ida Fink

Anna Kloskey
Teaching Speaking and Listening through Holocaust Survivor Eva Galler's "If Somebody Would Have Given Us a Chance"

Danielle Perham
Teaching Viewing through Holocaust Survivor Simon Jeruchim's Personal Testimony

John Hugasian
Teaching Poetry through “Written in Pencil in the Sealed Freightcar” by Dan Pagis

Angelina Lopez
Teaching Drama through "A Shayna Maidel" by Barbara Lebow

Tyler Steinsdorfer
Teaching Nonfiction through "The Diary of Anne Frank" 


10:20 AM  |  Skills Panels

Professionalization Panel
Featuring alumni professionals and local employers who focus on resume skills and finding a job

Straylight Panel
Advice for submitting writing for publication and development of cover letters

Newspaper Panel
Featuring Stephanie Jones, Managing Editor of The Journal Times

Professionalization Panel

Emily Alfano is the Social Media Content and Intelligence Specialist at Zebra Technologies. She manages her company’s employee advocacy program in all four regions of its operation (North America; Europe, the Middle East, and Africa; Asia-Pacific, and Latin America). She also writes all of the social media posts for the platform.

Drew Carmichael is the Director of Product Packaging and Innovation at Insinkerator.

Heidi Curtis is a former Peace Corps member and Claims Specialist for Social Security Income.

Brittany Deisenroth is an Employee Relationship Specialist for Walgreens Corporate. She does the majority of terminations at Walgreens, and she handles the harassment, discrimination, hostile work environment, and unfair treatment claims, among others. She also addressed things such as performance concerns, misconduct, theft, and falsification of records.

Trevor Henkel is a Personal Banking Representative II. For this job, he uses his skills in writing etiquette, critical thinking and analysis, persuasive argument, research and collaborative learning.

Ryan Hrnciar is a Geospatial Intelligence Specialist for the US military and a carpenter foreman.

Rose Lang is a Romance Author. She has 22 years of experience, three published works, and a fourth coming in November of 2019. She is currently writing a trilogy about three brothers.

Alexandria Binanti Robinson is the Downtown Kenosha Organization Coordinator and is hoping to soon be the Downtown Kenosha Executive Director.

Adrienne Niemi is the Human Resources Coordinator for an international freight forwarding company.

Jessica Wrobel is a Native Language Instructor with experience teaching English in Korea.

Brandon Wysocki is a Marketing Intern and is hoping to soon be a Marketing Specialist. His specialties are email marketing, social media marketing, public communication, and website management.

Newspaper Panel

Stephanie Jones is the managing editor of The Journal Times. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with a degree in journalism and economics, she started at the Racine paper in 2008 as the Racine City Hall reporter and in the following years also covered state and county politics and the police beat. About three years ago she became the editor, working with the reporters on where stories should go and what additional questions should be asked for a story.


12 PM  |  Skills Workshops

After sitting in on panels, take what you’ve learned and apply it with the help of our professionals in fields of writing and journalism! Break off into groups for individual attention and group work to make your cover letter, newspaper article, or resume skills the best that they can be!

1 PM  |  Hip Hop Lit

Presenters will situate old school, golden age, and contemporary rap songs within a historical context of traditional black cultural expressions, including but not limited to toasting, boasting, the dozens, and the Black Arts Movement.  


2:30 PM  |  Poetry Reading


4 PM   Beyond #MeToo

Emelye Bryniarski, Dr. Linda Crafton, Dr. Joe Benson
Dr. Dana Oswald, Professor Josh Hall (organizer)

This panel/round table seeks speakers who will offer short position pieces about how the #MeToo movement has changed or shifted the conversation. What is the aftermath of #MeToo? What does it mean for us now? These position pieces might focus on such ideas as CancelCulture, allegations against political figures, he whitewashing of #MeToo with respect to the originators of the movement and to the experiences of women and people of color, and endless other things! Although these position pieces do not need to be heavily researched, they should be informed by engagement with social trends, events, and conversations, and should offer your response or interpretation to these trends or events.


6 PM  |  Staged Screenplay Readings

Mason Bloom, Ken Holm, Mason Markee, Kyriin Richmond
Jessica Rivest, Hollace Villarreal, Josephine Ziemann

Josephine Ziemann
“Between the Rainbow”

Ken Holm
“I Bury the Living”

Hollace Villarreal
“The Cremation of Sam McGee”

Mason Bloom
“The Windy City Windmill”

Jessica Rivest

Mason Markee
“Disorderly Conduct”

Kyriin Richmond
“Greener Hills Estates”

Thursday, May 9

9:30 AM  |  Literary Analysis Public Forum

Literary theory is a lens that connects our own experiences in the world with those of characters in texts from today as well as from millennia ago. By thinking about the individual and social mechanisms that govern our lives and experiences, we can ask questions about the worlds and lives our characters occupy and transmit. Students in English 266 have spent the semester immersed in the medieval worlds of Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight--worlds filled with monsters and heroes, surprisingly bold women and precariously complex places, spaces, and ideas. They will present their interpretations of these texts through a variety of theoretical models, from gender studies to post-structuralism, linguistics to trauma theory.

11 AM  |  Senior Seminar Presentations

Vanessa Acuna, Maddie Bellow, Mason Bloom, Bailey Crawford, Destiny Crespo, Naomi Dornfield, Byron Dowse, Amy Frier, Adam Gadzala, Alyssa Goroski, Ken Holm, Marissa Johnson, Kimmy Kittelson, Ashley Pelczynski, Caleb Ramos, Sydney Schoone, Morgan Underhill, Hollace Villarreal, and Josie Ziemann

In conjunction with ENGL 416/469/495, Major British Authors/Women as Writers & Characters/Seminar in Literature, students will address novels written by the Bronte sisters and some "hot topics" that come with the novels. Should Jane Eyre have ended the way it did? What does Heathcliff's race have to do with his experiences? Should Helen have settled for her husband? This discussion panel will be highly interactive--encouraging arguments, opinions, and rage from the audience--as together you explore why the Bronte novels are still relevant today!

12:30 PM  |  Panel: Transitions and Translations

Kara Breidenbach, Alyssa Goroski, María Magdalena Rodríguez
Caleb Ramos, Tyler Steinsdorfer

Hear from writers whose papers and works deal with questions of the process of shifting between one state of being or another. Presentations on this panel consider acts or processes of translation in the literal linguistic sense, as well as in more figurative ways. These papers think about boundaries and the ways in which people transgress or shift those boundaries.

María Magdalena Rodríguez
“Las nuevas generaciones, la Coatlicue State, Latinx Female Agency: Anzaldúa's New Mestiza à la Cubanx”

Kara Breidenbach
“Lamenting Misogyny, Not Love in The Wife’s Lament”

Caleb Ramos
“Sociopolitics: Insight of Economics in Kendrick Lamar’s Discography”

Alyssa Goroski
“Translating The Odyssey: Exploring Sexuality Through Language”

Tyler Steinsdorfer
“The Postwar Identity: Struggling to Adapt to the World after WWII in Ayako”


2 PM  |  Panel: From “Coming of Age” to “Adulting”: Becoming an Adult in Literature since the Beginning of Time

Naomi Dornfield, Amy Hughes, Mary Scott, Kallie Shramek

Hear from writers whose papers address questions of development, education, and coming of age. These papers explore the concept of coming of age in YA or Children’s Literature, as well as other genres, including film and poetry, from The Odyssey to Fun Home. These papers also address adult bildungsroman (novels of development or education).

Kallie Shramek
“The Literature Canon of the Hidden Monsters Growth in Marvel Comics

Naomi Dornfeld
“Give Peace A Chance”

Amy Hughes
“The Long Journey of Self-Discovery Through Trials and Tribulations by Teaching The Odyssey”

Amy Hughes
“Breaking Barriers and Breaking Chains: Teaching Chains”

Mary Scott
“One Born Every Minute”


3:30 PM  |  Panel: Creative Projects

Jessica Cole, Kenneth Holm, Ashley Pelczynski, Caleb Ramos
Sydney Schoone, Kallie Shramek, Hollace Villareal

Experience creative projects, which can be anything from physical submissions, pictures, or creative writing, displayed in science fair style. There was no specific theme for this panel, so creators had the freedom to show off their awesome, creative works -- and you benefit from their vision.

Hollace Villarreal
Odyssey through Dungeons & Dragons Character Creation

Caleb Ramos
Romanticism: Music in America

Ashley Pelczynski
“Even You Can’t Escape” |  short story

Kallie Shramek
Classical “Guess Who” | playable game

Jessica Cole
“I Am Merely a Shadow” | art piece

Kenneth Holm
“Digital Requiem”  | short story

Sydney Schoone
“A Bird Comprehensive: A Guide to Medieval, Mythological, and Historic Concepts of Birds”  | poster

5 PM  |  Grad School Discussion/Breakout Session

Thinking about furthering your education beyond the undergrad level? Join us to hear from real graduate school graduates to hear about selecting a school and a program and the application process.

Holly Burgess
Ph.D. student, Diversity Fellow, Marquette University

Jessica Stricker
MA in Education, Library Media Specialist, Racine Unified

Shawn Houtsinger
M.Ed. with Writing Concentration, Carthage College


WriterCon 2019 invited current Parkside students and recent alumni to submit papers and projects that explore: 

  • Transitions and Translations Panel

  • From “Coming of Age” to “Adulting”: Becoming an Adult in Literature Since the Beginning of Time

  • Creative Project Panel

  • #MeToo: Where Are We Now?

One of the papers or projects presented at the conference will be awarded Best Paper of the Conference and $100!


The deadline to submit WriterCon 2019 proposals was Monday, April 22. Accepted pieces will be presented during panels on Thursday, May 9. Speakers whose position pieces have been accepted for the #MeToo panel will participate on Wednesday, May 8.

The deadline to submit to the Teresa Peck Award and the Holocaust Studies Award is April 30. More information about and submission guidelines for these awards can be found on the submissions page.


Learn more about Literatures and Languages at Parkside.

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