Stellar Alumni Reading Series

Stellar Alumni Reading Series

Jacqueline Balderrama | Venita Blackburn

Join the Creative Writing Program in the Department of English at ASU in welcoming poet Jacqueline Balderrama and fiction writer Venita Blackburn at the Stellar Alumni Reading Series event on Thursday, March 3, 2022, at 7 p.m. This event is free of charge, in-person, and open to the public.

It will be held at Tempe Campus in the Pima Auditorium Room 230. The location is Memorial Union (MU) 301 E. Orange St.

This is a great opportunity to hear the works of some of ASU’s star graduates. Learn more about them below to see just how awesome they are!

Jacqueline Balderrama is the author of “Now in Color” (Perugia Press, 2020) and the chapbook “Nectar and Small” (Finishing Line Press, 2019). She serves as a poetry editor for Iron City Magazine, has been involved in the Letras Latinas literary initiative, and the ASU Prison Education Program. Currently, she’s a Virginia G. Piper Fellow-in-Residence and Clinical Assistant Professor at ASU.

Works by Venita Blackburn have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s, Ploughshares, McSweeney’s, the Paris Review and others. She received the Prairie Schooner book prize in fiction for her collected stories, “Black Jesus and Other Superheroes” in 2017. She is the founder of the literary nonprofit Live, Write (, which provides free creative writing workshops for communities of color. Blackburn’s second collection of stories, “How to Wrestle a Girl,” was published in the fall of 2021. She is an Assistant Professor of creative writing at California State University, Fresno.

#ArtLitPhx: Phoenix Poetry Series presents Live, Write: Writers of Color

Phoenix Poetry Series Writers of Color

The Phoenix Poetry Series showcases some of the best poets in our community. The newest installment of the series will feature a performance by Live, Write: Writers of Color, founded by award-winning fiction writer, Venita Blackburn! The event will take place at Fillmore Coffee Co. (600 North 4th Street, Phoenix, Arizona 85004) on Friday, November 17 from 6pm to 8pm.

The night will feature prose readings by Venita Blackburn, Greg Moore, Rosalyn Leigh (VanAmburg), and Nova Baize (whose piece will be co-read by actor Lamar Overton). Accompanying music will be spun by DJ Mygodcomplex from 6-8pm.

For more information, please visit the Facebook page.

#ArtLitPhx: Piper Writers Studio Fall 2017 Courses

Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing

The Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing at ASU is proud to offer creative writing classes through the Piper Writers Studio. Classes are taught by acclaimed and award-winning writers from the community, and they cover topics such as memoir writing, the relationship between art and writing, contemporary poetry, the relationship between politics and poetry, the reveal of information, inspiration, writer’s block, intimacy, flash fiction, and fairy tales.

The classes and workshops offered in Fall 2017 are the following:

Classes are open to individuals of all backgrounds, skill levels, and experiences, and are designed to fit around the schedules of working adults (taking place weekday evenings or weekend afternoons). Most classes are held at the Piper Writers House, the historic President’s Cottage on the ASU Tempe Campus. 
Class sizes range between 8 and 12 students in order to ensure an intimate, individualized educational experience, and fees range from $50 to  $250 (with discounts for students and individuals who are members of the Piper Circle of Friends). Classes can also qualify for professional development credit with the Arizona Department of Education. Individuals can register for classes through the Piper Center’s website, where they can also find more information about the courses.

#ArtLitPhx: Phoenix Poetry Series. Venita Blackburn and Virginia Chase Sutton

Coronado-Poetry SeriesThe Phoenix Poetry Series showcases some of the best poets in our community. Venita Blackburn and Virginia Chase Sutton, two award-winning writers, will be reading their work at The Coronado. The event takes place on Friday, September 23rd at 7 p.m. 2201 N 7th St, Phoenix, Arizona 85006. For more information, please visit the Facebook event. 

Works by Venita Blackburn have appeared in American Short Fiction, the Georgia Review, Pleiades, Madison Review, Bat City Review, Nashville Review, Smoke Long Quarterly, Café Irreal, Santa Monica Review, Faultline, Devil’s Lake Review, Nat.Brut., Bellevue Literary Review, and others. She was awarded a Bread Loaf Fellowship in 2014 and a Pushcart prize nomination the same year among other accolades. In 2016 she received the Prairie Schooner book prize in fiction, which will result in the publication of her collected stories, Black Jesus and Other Superheroes, in 2017. Her home town is Compton, California, but she now lives and teaches in Phoenix, Arizona. She earned her MFA from Arizona State University in 2008, and is finishing a new novel, Guts.

Virginia Chase Sutton’s work has appeared Paris Review, Ploughshares, Antioch Review, Boulevard, Quarterly West, and many other journals and anthologies. She’s been a finalist for the National Poetry Series, the Walt Whitman Award, Levis Poetry Prize, Brittingham Prize and others. Five times nominated for the Pushcart Prize, she has been the Louis Untermeyer Scholar at Bread Loaf and has won the Allen Ginsberg Poetry Award. Her prize winning collection, What Brings You To Del Amo, was published in 2007 by University Press of New England. Her new book, Of a Transient Nature, was published this spring by Knut House Press.