ALCHEMY PARTICIPANTSPosted: April 30, 2016
Lynn Pattison: Poet
Lynn Pattison’s poems have appeared in The Notre Dame Review, Slipstream, Rhino, Atlanta Review, Harpur Palate, Rattle, Smartish Pace, and Poetry East, among others, and been anthologized in several venues. Nominated twice for a Pushcart Prize, she is the author of three collections: tesla’s daughter (March St. Press); Walking Back the Cat (Bright Hill Press) and Light That Sounds Like Breaking (Mayapple Press).
Deborah Ann Percy: Writer
Deborah Ann Percy earned the MFA in Creative Writing at Western Michigan University. A book of her short fiction, Cool Front: Stories from Lake Michigan, appeared in 2010 from March Street Press; a full-length collection, Invisible Traffic, appeared in fall 2014 from One Wet Shoe Press, and has recently been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and a 2015 Independent Publishers Book Award. Her plays, and those written in collaboration with her husband, Arnold Johnston, have won awards, publication, and production nationwide, including recent recognition from Arts & Letters, the Pittsburgh New Works Festival, the St. Croix Festival Theatre, That Uppity Theatre, Outworks, Developing Acts, and Queer Theatre Kalamazoo. Their books include the following: their full-length plays Beyond Sex (recently broadcast in translation on Romanian national radio) and Rasputin in New York; their long one-act Radiation: 33 Days of Waiting, forthcoming from HP Publishing; a collection of their one-acts, Duets: Love Is Strange; and editions (translated with Dona Roşu) of plays by Romanian playwright Hristache Popescu: Night of the Passions, Sons of Cain, Epilogue, and the forthcoming The President. Their edited anthology The Art of the One Act appeared in 2007 from New Issues Press. Since 2003 they have written over twenty half-hour radio dramas for broadcast on Kalamazoo’s NPR-affiliate WMUK-FM as part of All Ears Theatre. They’ve adapted and expanded one of their All Ears dramas for the stage, and it appeared in 2013 from Eldridge Publishing as Rumpelstiltskin: The True Hero. From 2009-2012 they were joint Arts and Entertainment columnists for the award-winning national quarterly journal Phi Kappa Phi Forum. After a distinguished administrative career in the Kalamazoo Public Schools, Debby is now a full-time writer. Winner of major playwriting grants from the Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs and the Irving S. Gilmore Foundation, she is a member of the Dramatists Guild, The Playwrights’ Center, the Associated Writing Programs, and the American Literary Translators Association
Austin Peters: Artist, Musician, Graphics, ALCHEMY Branding
Sydnee Peters: Artist, ALCHEMY Project Director, Western Michigan University Educator
Sydnee Peters has been an instructor in the capacity of higher education since 1985. She has taught at Kendall College of Art and Design, Kalamazoo Valley Community College, and since 2005 exclusively in the Western Michigan University’s Frostic School of Art Foundation program. Sydnee also works for the College Board in numerous roles concerning Advance Placement learning. In 2014 Sydnee was awarded The Excellence in Teaching award from Western Michigan University. She has been awarded numerous grants including the Kalamazoo Artistic Development Initiative, for a community project of select regional artists and writers under the theme, HOURS, after The Book of Hours, a medieval monastic tradition of meditation at certain times of day. The project was multifaceted and included workshops, an exhibition, a reading, a suite of prints, and a book. HOURS was a great success in that it inspired another project culminating in 2015 called HOME: An Artist’s and Writer’s Project and coordinated by Mindi Bagnall. Currently, Sydnee, Project Director, with Friends of Poetry, are teamed on a new project, slated for 2017, fashioned after the others, and titled ALCHEMY: An Artist’s and Writer’s Initiative. The roots of this concept are based in early chemistry and Jung’s notion of the transformative self. Sydnee works in a variety of mediums including drawing, print, photo, book arts, installation, assemblage, carved wood, and/or metal, enamel, and poetry. The materials in which art can be made, and how they can affect idea is a lifelong interest that she brings to personal work and into the classroom through workshops for her students such as bookmaking or drawing machines. She has exhibited throughout Michigan; as well, New Mexico, Utah, Chicago, Iowa, Canada, and Tokyo. She received an MA in Lithography, and an MFA in Painting with an emphasis on Drawing, from WMU. Her BFA is in Multi-Media Drawing with exclusive study with Hans Breder from the University of Iowa; and a minor in Photography. She lives in the deciduous Michigan forest with her family, which includes a big dog, a little dog, and a bird.)
Robert Post: Writer, Kalamazoo Valley Community College Professor
A participant in Hours and Home, Robert Ed Post has published over 60 poems, prose poems, and flash fictions in various journals, including Kansas Quarterly, Passages North, Red Cedar Review, and Wayne Review. He has taught writing and literature at Kalamazoo Valley Community College since 1986.
Susan Ramsey: Poet, Author
Susan Blackwell Ramsey earned her MFA from Notre Dame, where she was given the Mitchell Award. Her book, A Mind Like This, won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize and her writing has appeared in journals including The Southern Review, The Alaska Quarterly Review, Poetry Northwest and The New Ohio Review.
Billy Reynolds: Poet
Billy Reynolds was born and raised in Huntsville, Alabama (“The Rocket City”). His awards include scholarships in poetry from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference and Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. His poems have been published in 32 Poems, Chattahoochee Review, Iron Horse Literary Review, Sewanee Theological Review, and Zone 3, among others. Currently, he lives in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
Linda Rzoska: Mixed Media Artist, Printmaker, ALCHEMY Facebook and Blog pages, Kalamazoo Valley Community College Professor Emeritus
Linda Rzoska is an artist and teacher. She was educated as a fine artist using traditional media for painting and drawing, later working as a graphic designer and illustrator, she became involved in digital media. She joined the faculty at Kalamazoo Valley Community College in 2000 as a founding member of KVCC’s academic unit the Center for New Media teaching design and illustration classes. In April 2016 she was granted the title of Professor Emeritus.
Rzoska has received a number of awards for her illustration and fine art; notable are two International Awards of Excellence from the Society of Technical Communications, Best of Show in the 2016 Carnegie Center for the Arts Juried Regional Fine Arts Competition and Second Place in the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts 2016 West Michigan Area Show. Rzoska’s artwork has been selected for numerous juried shows and is represented in many private collections in the U.S. and Europe. Two of her most prominent solo exhibitions were in It Skilderhuis Atelier in Leeuwardern, The Netherlands and the Burren College of Art, Ireland