Thursday, February 28, 2013

Weekly Wisdom

"How did it get so late so soon?" -Dr. Seuss

First I would like to apologize for not posting the last couple of weeks. While I have no excuse, I chose this quote because it really describes my life in the past weeks and how I have now become (as many would classify) a real "college student".

Life as a typical college student usually consists of long nights studying for upcoming tests or finishing assignments that are due the next day. This was not the case for me until the past couple of weeks. Before I was able to make it to bed by nine o'clock every night with all of my homework complete, but recently have not made it to bed before eleven o'clock just so I can finish all of my work. The ironic part of the whole situation is that it wasn't difficult; I kept anticipating a time where I would crash from sheer exhaustion and not be able to focus, but that didn't happen. In fact, I was working on a presentation earlier last week and thought to myself "wow! It is already after one o'clock in the morning and I am not even tired." I was essentially asking myself "how did it get so late so soon?"

You may be asking yourself what any of this has to do with you. I reply by testifying that this is college. All of the things that I found myself staying up late to work on were things that were of interest to me--work for my elementary education courses. If it was for work in any other course I cannot imagine straining myself to go beyond my usual limits of nine o'clock to complete work. This is the beauty of college: you get to study (for the most part) the things that interest you. This is at least my experience so far and if you take one thing out of this post I hope that it would be to embrace your studies and your interests and you too will be asking yourself "how did it get so late so soon?" Hopefully you will be eager to continue your studies no matter the time just because they are of interest to you.

-Margaret Gruhler

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Author Spotlight

Anne McCaffrey (1926 - 2011)

Famous Works Include: Dragonriders of Pern series, Acorna series, The Tower and Hive series, The Brain and Brawn series, The Crystal Singer series.

McCaffrey is an American-born Irish writer of fantasy and science-fiction. In 1968 McCaffrey's short story "Weyr Search," the first story in the Dragonriders of Pern series, won a Hugo Award for Best Novella. McCaffrey thus became the first woman to win a Hugo for fiction. In 1978 her novel The White Dragon was published and became the first hardcover science fiction novel to make The New York Times bestseller list.

Until her death in 2011, she lived in a house of her own design in County Wicklow, Ireland and called her home Dragonhold-Underhill.
Hope you've enjoyed this blast from the past from a 2008 edition of the WCWC!

- Anna H.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Visitors to Coe College: Shelby Steele

This week's author is Shelby Steele, who visited Coe College in 1999.

Born in 1946, Shelby Steele received the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1990 for his book The Content of Our Character: A New Vision of Race in America. He studies the impact of race relations, and his most recent work is A Bound Man: Why We Are Excited About Obama and Why He Can't Win.

(information found on his Goodreads profile)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Author Spotlight

Ernest Hemingway (1899 - 1961)

Famous Works Include: The Sun Also Rises (1926), A Farewell to Arms (1929), For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940), and The Old Man and the Sea (1952).

One of the most famous stories involving Hemingway is about a bet between him and his fellow authors. In the 1920s, Hemingway bet $10 that he could write a complete short story in just six words. His colleagues were forced to pay up. His story: "For Sale: baby shoes, never worn."

Famous Quotes Include:

"Anyone who says he wants to be a writer and isn't writing, doesn't."

"I rewrote the ending to Farewell to Arms, the last page of it, thirty-nine times before I was satisfied. [The problem was] getting the words right."

Hope you've enjoyed this blast from the past from a 2008 edition of the WCWC!

- Anna H.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Visitors to Coe College: Salman Rushdie

Recently, Coe College was honored to have Salman Rushdie visit campus and give a speech.

Salman Rushdie was born in India in 1947, and used that nation as the setting for many of his early works. He has received numerous awards and distinctions, including a Knighthood in the United Kingdoms. 
During his speech, he made three comments in particular which stood out to me. The first is that a writer is a servant of their work, and they must use their talents to tell a story, not to make a point (though hopefully they should be able to do both). He also advised that writers write the books they have to write, rather than just writing books for money or prestige because "even if everyone stopped writing books today, there would still be too many books". 
Outside the bounds of writing though, he was asked about his thoughts on freedom of speech as it related to hate speech. He stated that, while he lived in the United Kingdoms, there were laws in place which punished those who committed acts of hate speech, and he thought them wise and fair. However, upon spending more time in America, he decided that banning hate speech was unwise, because if it is spoken it can be brought to the light and dealt with, rather than festering in the darkness.

(more information found on his Goodreads profile)

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Author Spotlight

Toni Morrison (1931 -   )

Famous Works Include: The Bluest Eye, Song of Solomon, Tar Baby, Beloved, Paradise, Love, A Mercy, Jazz, I Sula, The Big Box, and The Book of Mean People.

Morrison is quite the character -- she wrote her thesis on suicide in the works of Faulkner and Virginia Woolf. Her works too are somewhat polarizing, with difficult, controversial subject matter. She is also quite out-spoken; she famously called Bill Clinton "the first black President," saying that "Clinton displays almost every trope of blackness: single-parent household, born poor, working-class, saxophone-playing, McDonald's-and-junk-food-loving boy from Arkansas."

Her gregarious nature seems to have served her well, though, as she is the first black woman to win the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993. Morrison has also won a Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1988 for Beloved, which has been made into a movie starring Oprah Winfrey and Danny Glover.

Hope you've enjoyed this blast from the past from a 2008 edition of the WCWC!

- Anna H.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Visitors to Coe College: Debra Marquart

This week's author is Debra Marquart, who visited Coe College in 2001.

Debra Marquart spent some time as a traveling musician, an experience she drew on in writing a collection of short stories she later published. She is currently employeed at Iowa State University, where she teaches English and MFAs in Creative Writing. Her most recent book: The Horizontal World: Growing Up in the Middle of Nowhere: A Memoir discusses rural life and was published in 2006.

(information found on her Goodreads profile)

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Weekly Wisdom

"Talent without discipline is like an octopus on roller skates. There's plenty of movement, but you never know if it's going to be forward, backwards, or sideways." - H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

This quote reflects a lot about my past week. My attention was demanded in so many different directions that it was difficult to stay focused and actually get things done. College can be tough and sometimes you have more to do than time allows but all that means is that you need to figure out how to get your priorities straight. For me it helps to write out my schedule on a white board. It gives me motivation to get things done not only on time but early so that I have more “free” time. Balance your time wisely and free time, even for a college student, is possible. In the past I have been the queen of free time; I have found it quite possible to get all of my homework done, on time, and still make it to bed by 9 or 10 at night. Maybe this makes me abnormal, but I know quite a few people who are quite jealous of this ability of mine.

Despite my previous notion of “free” time, I did mention that this past week has been quite difficult. I must admit that I am becoming more and more like the typical college student. Studying late and becoming sleep deprived. I have a huge course load this semester and I am doing everything I can not to be an “octopus”.

This happens to be my recent “octopus” experience, but I have a feeling all of you have similar experiences. Whether it is academic or not, I suggest that keeping your eye on one thing at a time. No matter how many things you have to do, many places you have to be, many people you have to see; you can’t do it all at once so you might as well prioritize and tackle it one at a time. The semester seems to have only begun and yet it is already a quarter of the way complete. Stay calm. Stay focused. Make it to spring break!

-Margaret Gruhler

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

CWC Blog Instagram of the Week

Here is the first edition of our Instagram of the Week! This is a (very artsy and square-shaped) photo of the CWC Blog Team's very own Patrick Johnson hard at work!

Stay tuned for more!

-Jane L

Author Spotlight

Kenzaburō Ōe (1935 -    )

Famous Works Include: Prize Catch, Nip the Buds Shoot the Kids, Teach Us to Outgrow Our Madness, The Day He Himself Shall Wipe My Tears Away, and A Personal Matter.

Ōe is a Japanese author and major figure in Japanese literature and critical theory. His works tend to focus on political, social, and philosophical issues including nuclear weapons, nuclear power, social non-conformism, and existentialism. He also pays close attention to the bombing of Hiroshima and his personal struggle with raising his mentally handicapped son. 

Ōe has been recognized both in Japan and internationally, winning a Nobel Prize in Literature (1994) for his work. He is also on record as the only person to refuse the Order of Culture, as awarded by the Emperor of Japan. 

In the words of Mr. Ōe, "I have always wanted to write about our country, our society, and feelings about the contemporary scene. But, there is a big difference between us and classic Japanese literature." If you've read the Tale of Genji, then you're probably well-versed in these differences.

Hope you've enjoyed this blast from the past from a 2008 edition of the WCWC!

- Anna H.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Staff Spotlight

This week our staff spotlight goes to Heather Job.  Heather is a lively and zealous sophomore with many interests.  Her scholarly passions are spent on a double major of creative writing and film studies. These passions go back to her childhood.  Heather grew up as an introvert who loved to read so she found comfort and solace in books.  Since books were such an important part of her childhood and life, she wants to provide that same solace to other people.  Besides books, she also enjoys movies and hopes that with her skills gained here she can go into screenwriting in the future.  Besides writing up some future Oscar-winning screenplays, Heather is involved in many other activities on campus.  She has another job in the Speaking Center where she talks to people so they can become better at talking.  She is a sister of the panda-loving and spunky Alpha Omicron Pi sorority.  She also owns a 1.5 liter mug perfect for tea that helps her stay awake while being an editor for the college newspaper The Cosmos.  Heather's enthusiasm is displayed through her involvement with all of these activities and within the writing center.  One thing Heather is really excited about is that she is going to Ireland this coming May.  It would come as no surprise if her experiences abroad end up being the next blockbuster.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Visitors to Coe College: jessica Care moore

This week’s excerpt comes courtesy of jessica Care moore, who visited Coe College in 2001.


In 1997, she founded her own published company: Moore Black Press. Using this company, she has published two books (“The Words Don’t Fit In My Mouth” and “The Alphabet Verses The Ghetto”), as well as the books of several other notable writers and celebrities. In addition to these literary pursuits, she has spent a great deal of effort helping in the fight against AIDS and been involved in a number of films—both as an actress and as a playwright.


(information found on

Friday, February 1, 2013

Poem of the Week

This semester we are lucky to have the lovely Felicia Owens as our staff Magnetic Poet!  She will be crafting poems out of whatever words happen to be laying around the writing center.  Check out the first creation:
Check back for more next week!

 Kelci de Haas

Weekly Wisdom

“If opportunity doesn't a door.” - Milton Berle

You cannot just sit around and expect great things to happen to you. You have to get out of your chair and do something. I am in college because I built a door of opportunity. Yes I was expected to go to college, but if I never filled out the applications I would never be here at Coe. If there is something in your life that you want more than anything, then do something about it. Every opportunity has a door, but many of the doors need your work and effort to open: you have to fill out the applications, do the homework, meet new people, help someone in need, etc. There are so many opportunities out there that you pass up every day. I say that you need to do something about that. Don’t let another opportunity slip you by, because what do you expect to become if you do nothing?