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Faculty Publications Day, May 2015

Amy Sodaro, Social Sciences, Human Services and Criminal Justice

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On May 5, 2015 BMCC faculty from across the departments came together to share and celebrate their recent publications. The focus of the day was the publication of creative works. The centerpiece was a panel discussion that addressed the process of writing and publishing creative work, as well as moving back and forth between creative and academic writing.

The event was opened by remarks from Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Michael Gillespie and Provost and Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs, Karrin Wilks, and was organized by Phyllis Niles (Library), Amy Sodaro (Department of Social Sciences, Human Services and Criminal Justice), and Megan Elias (Director of CETLS).

Prof. Maria Enrico (Chair, Modern Languages) opened the panel discussion with remarks about her role as translator and in particular how translation is itself creative work. Translation involves not just the translation of words from one language to another, but also the preservation and translation of the author’s voice and intent, as Prof. Enrico stated. Her remarks focused on her recent work translating her Modern Language Department colleague, Francisca Suarez-Coalla’s, recent book of short stories, The First Time We Went to the Movies, from Spanish to English.

Panelist Prof. Francisca Coalla-Suarez (Modern Languages) spoke on her development as a writer of both fiction and academic work in the context of her coming to New York City from rural Spain. For her, the line between academic work, fiction and memoir, is one that is constantly blurred, as both her academic work and fiction has been infused with her own experiences.

Prof. Jason Schneiderman (English) discussed his work as poet, poetry editor, and academic writer. His forthcoming book of poems, Primary Source, won the Benjamin Saltman Award from Red Hen Press. He said that as he moves between the worlds of poetry and academic writing, he finds that he himself is the constant and his own experiences and ideas infuse both his creative and academic work.

Is it important to accept rejection as part of the process of publishing creative and academic work? Absolutely, Prof. Diane Simmons (English) noted in her presentation. Prof. Simmons spoke about her book of short stories, Little America, which received the Ohio State University Prize in Short Fiction in 2010. Prof. Simmons emphasized the necessity of hard work and persistence.

In preparation for Publications Day, the organizing committee invited all BMCC faculty members to submit citations for their recent publications and bring copies of their work to the event. Over thirty faculty members submitted their citations, spanning the breadth of disciplines and departments. Publications Day illuminated the productivity and accomplishments of BMCC faculty.