Little Rock Culture Vulture

Cultural events, places and people in the Little Rock area


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Central to Creativity – Eliza Borne

Eliza Borné was named Editor of Oxford American magazine in October 2015.  She had been the Managing Editor of the magazine, prior to that appointment.  Under her leadership, the magazine has won the 2016 Ellie – National Magazine Award in General Excellence.

A Little Rock native and graduate of Central High School, she wrote Children’s Theatre reviews for the Arkansas Times while in high school.  While a student at Wellesley College, she interned for OA.  After graduation, she was an associate editor at BookPage.  In February 2013, she joined the OA as an editor.  When he was in Little Rock earlier this year, author Harrison Scott Key praised Borné’s skills as an editor.  At that appearance, he also lauded her skills as an interviewer. She has also used these skills serving as a moderator for the Arkansas Literary Festival.

While her talents as a writer and editor have been honed through hard work, she is also carrying on a family tradition in promoting Little Rock’s cultural life. A great-grandmother, Adolphine Fletcher Terry, was a member of the Little Rock Public Library Board (a forerunner of CALS) for decades.  Much could be written about what various ancestors have done to help Little Rock, but Borné is not one to rely on the family name as she forges her own career.  Instead, she uses her skills and love of Little Rock to promote good writing, good music, and good living.

Since 2016, Eliza has served on Little Rock’s Arts+Culture Commission.

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The OXFORD AMERICAN received $25,000 Art Works grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

2e6b4_1320267846-oxa_logoLittle Rock-based Oxford American magazine was announced as a recipients of funding by the National Endowment for the Arts.

National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu has approved more than $30 million in grants as part of the NEA’s first major funding announcement for fiscal year 2017. Included in
this announcement is an Art Works grant of $25,000 to the Oxford American to support the publication and promotion of the magazine in 2017.

“We are honored to receive National Endowment for the Arts funding through their Art Works program,” said Oxford American executive director Ryan Harris. “Art Works excels at providing democratized support opportunities for organizations like the Oxford American to continue their work. We are humbled to be amongst a select group of grant recipients.”

The Art Works category focuses on the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and the strengthening of communities through the arts. “The arts are for all of us, and by supporting organizations such as the Oxford American, the National Endowment for the Arts is providing more opportunities for the public to engage with the arts,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “Whether in a theater, a town square, a museum, or a hospital, the arts are everywhere and make our lives richer.”

The award granted to the Oxford American—a national magazine dedicated to featuring the best in Southern writing—will fund the publication of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry by both emerging and established authors.

“An investment in nonprofit publications like the Oxford American is an investment in the future of American letters,” said editor Eliza Borné. “We are grateful to receive funding from the National Endowment for the Arts for the second year in a row.”

Oxford American is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization and national magazine dedicated to featuring the very best in Southern writing, while documenting the complexity and vitality of the American South. The Oxford American is committed to the development of young individuals aspiring to work in the publishing industry and to the production and presentation of multidisciplinary arts events in and around Little Rock.

Billed as “A Magazine of the South,” it has won four National Magazine Awards—including the 2016 Award for General Excellence in the category of Literature, Science and Politics—and other high honors since it began publication in 1992. The magazine has featured the original work of such literary powerhouses as Charles Portis, Roy Blount, Jr., ZZ Packer, Donald Harington, Donna Tartt, Ernest J. Gaines, and many other distinguished authors, while also discovering and launching the most promising writers in the region. The magazine has also published previously unseen work by such Southern masters as William Faulkner, Eudora Welty, Walker Percy, James Agee, Zora Neale Hurston, James Dickey, and Carson McCullers. In 2007, the New York Times stated that the Oxford American “may be the liveliest literary magazine in America.” The Oxford American is published from the University of Central Arkansas.


And the 2016 Ellie for General Excellence in Literature, Science and Politics goes to THE OXFORD AMERICAN!

2e6b4_1320267846-oxa_logoOn February 1, at a ceremony in New York City, the Oxford American received some very good news: They won the 2016 Ellie – National Magazine Award in General Excellence! 

The OA was recognized in the Literature, Science and Politics category.  The other nominees were Aperture; Foreign Affairs; Nautilus; Poetery; and Virginia Quarterly Review.
Honors smaller-circulation general-interest magazines as well as publications covering the arts.

 

This is the Oxford American’s thirteenth National Magazine Award nomination since the magazine’s founding in 1992, and their first for General Excellence since 1999.  The award recognized both the efforts of former editor Roger Hodge and current editor Eliza Borné and the OA staff.
The American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) celebrated the 50th anniversary of the awards.
Other winners of the evening were:

General Excellence

  • News, Sports and Entertainment – New York
  • Service and Lifestyle – Lucky Peach
  • Special Interest – The Hollywood Reporter

Design – Wired
Photography – The California Sunday Magazine
Single-Topic Issue – Bloomberg Businessweek for “Code: An Essay,” June 15-28
Website – New York
Multimedia – New York for “This Is the Story of One Block in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn,”
Video – Vice News for “Selfie Soldiers: Russia’s Army Checks In to Ukraine
Public Interest – BuzzFeed News for “The New American Slavery,” and “All You Americans Are Fired,” by Jessica Garrison, Ken Bensinger and Jeremy Singer-Vine,
Personal Service – FamilyFun for “The Happy Family Playbook,” by Jennifer King Lindley
Leisure Interests – Eater for “The Eater Guide to Surviving Disney World
Magazine Section – New York for “The Culture Pages”
Reporting – Matter for “My Nurses Are Dead and I Don’t Know If I’m Already Infected,” by Joshua Hammer
Feature Writing – The New Yorker for “The Really Big One,” by Kathryn Schulz
Feature Photography – Politico for “Front Row at the Political Theater,” photographs by Mark Peterson
Essays and Criticism – Esquire for “The Friend,” by Matthew Teague
Columns and Commentary – The Intercept for three “The Barrett Brown Review of Arts and Letters and Prison” columns by Barrett Brown: “Stop Sending Me Jonathan Franzen Novels,” “A Visit to the Sweat Lodge,” and “Santa Muerte, Full of Grace.”
Fiction – Zoetrope: All-Story for “The Grozny Tourist Bureau,” by Anthony Marra
Magazine of the Year – The Atlantic

The American Society of Magazine Editors is the principal organization for magazine journalists in the United States. The members of ASME include the editorial leaders of most major consumer and business magazines published in print and on digital platforms. Founded in 1963, ASME works to defend the First Amendment, protect editorial independence and support the development of journalism. ASME sponsors the National Magazine Awards in association with the Columbia Journalism School and publishes the ASME Guidelines for Editors and Publishers.


Oxford American nominated for 2016 National Magazine Award!

2e6b4_1320267846-oxa_logoLast week the Oxford American received some very good news: They were nominated for a 2016 National Magazine Award in General Excellence! 

This is the Oxford American’s thirteenth National Magazine Award nomination since the magazine’s founding in 1992, and their first for General Excellence since 1999.
Editor Eliza Borné and the OA staff are proud to be recognized among many other wonderful publications, and were grateful for our amazing writers, artists, contributors, and dedicated readers.
The American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the awards when each of the 114 finalists is honored at the annual awards dinner on Monday, February 1, at the Grand Hyatt New York.
The American Society of Magazine Editors is the principal organization for magazine journalists in the United States. The members of ASME include the editorial leaders of most major consumer and business magazines published in print and on digital platforms. Founded in 1963, ASME works to defend the First Amendment, protect editorial independence and support the development of journalism. ASME sponsors the National Magazine Awards in association with the Columbia Journalism School and publishes the ASME Guidelines for Editors and Publishers.


Eliza Borné named new editor of Oxford American

Eliza BorneEliza Borné is the new editor of the Oxford American, succeeding Roger D. Hodge, who left the magazine in June. Borné joined the magazine in 2013 as associate editor and was promoted to managing editor in 2014. Since June 2015, she has served as interim editor.
“This is wonderful news,” said Hodge, who recruited Borné in 2013. “Eliza is a brilliant editor and wonderful person—the Oxford American could not have made a better choice. I look forward to reading her magazine for many years.”
“I am incredibly proud of the work we have done under Roger’s leadership for the past three years,” said Borné. “We have published great stories that transcend genre and give our readers new perspectives on the South. With every issue, I am astounded again by the brilliance of our amazing writers, artists, and contributors. I am honored to have the opportunity to lead our talented editorial staff as we continue creating this vital and spirited magazine that I have loved since I was a teenager.”
Under Borné’s direction, the OA has maintained its high standard of excellence, publishing work as rich and varied as a 12-page poem by Nikky Finney; fiction by Catherine Lacey and Jamie Quatro; and a deep profile of a transgender drug counselor from the U.S.-Mexico border. Since 2013, she has worked with such acclaimed writers as Lauren Groff, Harrison Scott Key, Beth Ann Fennelly, Stephanie Elizondo Griest, Sarah Menkedick, and many others. Pieces Borné edited have been recognized in Best American Essays and Best American Travel Writing.
“Eliza is a member of the next generation of readers,” said Vincent LoVoi, OA board member and publisher of This Land Press. “Her keen insights and long-view will enable the OA to continue to grow in the new media environment. She has a timeless talent that will serve us well.”
Borné is the third editor of the Oxford American. Hodge led the magazine from September 2012 through June 2015, when he became the national editor of the Intercept. Hodge remains on the masthead as editor-at-large. Marc Smirnoff founded the Oxford American in 1992.
A native of Little Rock, Borné, 29, previously worked as an editor at BookPage, a book review publication based in Nashville. She graduated from Wellesley College and she lives in Little Rock with her husband, John C. Williams, an assistant federal public defender (whom she met when they were both Oxford American interns in 2006).
The Oxford American also welcomes longtime contributor Jay Jennings to the masthead as senior editor. Jennings brings decades of industry experience as a former editor with Sports Illustrated, Time Out New York, Artforum, and other magazines. He is the author of Carry the Rock: Race, Football, and the Soul of an American City and he edited Escape Velocity: A Charles Portis Miscellany.


Creative Class of 2015: Eliza Borné

Eliza BorneEliza Borné was named Interim Editor of Oxford American magazine earlier this year.  She had been the Managing Editor of the magazine.  Currently, she is at work on the annual OA music issue, which this year will feature Georgia.

A Little Rock native and graduate of Central High School, she wrote Children’s Theatre reviews for the Arkansas Times while in high school.  While a student at Wellesley College, she interned for OA.  After graduation, she was an associate editor at BookPage.  In February 2013, she joined the OA as an editor.  When he was in Little Rock earlier this year, author Harrison Scott Key praised Borné’s skills as an editor.  At that appearance, he also lauded her skills as an interviewer. She has also used these skills serving as a moderator for the Arkansas Literary Festival.

 

While her talents as a writer and editor have been honed through hard work, she is also carrying on a family tradition in promoting Little Rock’s cultural life. A great-grandmother, Adolphine Fletcher Terry, was a member of the Little Rock Public Library Board (a forerunner of CALS) for decades.  Much could be written about what various ancestors have done to help Little Rock, but Borné is not one to rely on the family name as she forges her own career.  Instead, she uses her skills and love of Little Rock to promote good writing, good music and good living.


Busy Saturday at the Arkansas Literary Festival

AR Lit Fest 2014Today is the busiest day of the 11th annual Arkansas Literary Festival. Unless otherwise specified the events are free.

Highlights for today are:

10:00 am

  • Ron Robinson Theater: “Other People’s Secrets” – Mona Simpson (Casebook) and Curtis Sittenfeld (Sisterland) with moderator Eliza Borné.
  • Darragh Center of CALS Main Library: “Love or Hate a Cowboy” – Joe Nick Patoski (The Dallas Cowboys) with moderator Tim Jackson
  • Lee Room of CALS Main Library: Workshop – “Get the Reference”
  • Room 124 of Arkansas Studies Institute: “Ecotone” – Kevin Brockmeier (A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip), Cary Holladay (Horse People) and Rebecca Makkai (Astoria to Zion) with moderator Kyran Pittman.
  • Cox Creative Center: “Fantasy & Fangs” – Colleen Doran (Vampire Diaries series, A Distant Soil) with moderator Randy Duncan
  • Historic Arkansas Museum: “Eat, Prey, Love” – Cindy Grisham (A Savory History of Arkansas Delta Food) and Kat Robinson (Classic Eateries of the Ozarks and Arkansas River Valley) with moderator Rex Nelson
  • MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History: “Peace” – Lisa Leitz (Fighting for Peace) with moderator Alex Vernon
  • Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center: “A Piece of the Extraordinary” – Alan Lightman (The Accidental Universe) with moderator Lance Turner

11:30 am

  • Ron Robinson Theater: “Canal Voyage” – Mary Roach (Gulp) with moderator T. Glenn Pait.
  • Darragh Center of CALS Main Library: “Modern Parenthood” – Jennifer Senior (All Joy and No Fun) with moderator Amy Bradley-Hole
  • Lee Room of CALS Main Library: Workshop – “Literacy Action”
  • Room 110 of Arkansas Studies Institute: Workshop – “Wonder-Filled Work” with Jeff VanderMeer (Wonderbook)
  • Room 124 of Arkansas Studies Institute: “Fever & Fatherhood” – Mary Beth Keane (Fever) and Wiley Cash (The Dark Road to Mercy) with moderator Susan Moneyhon.
  •  Cox Creative Center: “Dream Navigators” – Dylan Tuccillo (A Field Guide to Lucid Dreaming) with moderator Michael Hibblen
  •  Historic Arkansas Museum: “Hattie!” – Nancy Hendricks (Senator Hattie Caraway) with moderator Tricia Spione
  •  MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History: “Veterans Write Their Lives” – with moderator Sherry F. Clements
  •  Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center: “Dino-Might” – Brian Switek (My Beloved Brontosaurus) with moderator Kevin Delaney

 

1:00 pm

  • Ron Robinson Theater: “The Fine Art of Suspense” – Catherine Coulter (The Final Cut) with moderator Susan Fleming.
  • Darragh Center of CALS Main Library: “Class and Character” – Doug Wilson (Brooks: The Biography of Brooks Robinson) with moderator Rod Lorenzen.
  • Lee Room of CALS Main Library: “Tongues & Virginia” – Cary Holladay (Horse People) and David Jauss (Glossolalia) with moderator Karen Martin
  • Room 110 of Arkansas Studies Institute: “Poetry I” – Megan Volpert (Only Ride) and Tess Taylor (The Forage House) with moderator Bryan Borland-Pennington
  • Room 124 of Arkansas Studies Institute: “Stellar Debuts” – Kelly Luce (Three Scenarios in which Hana Sasaki Grows a Tail), Rebecca Makkai (The Borrower) and Mario Alberto Zambrano (Loteria) with moderator Angelle Gremillion
  • Cox Creative Center: “Evangelical Adoption Movement” – Kathryn Joyce (The Child Catchers) with moderator Judith Faust
  • Historic Arkansas Museum: “Southern Journeys” – Mark Nichols (From Azaleas to Zydeco) and Akasha Hull (Neicy) with moderator Paula Morrell
  • MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History: “Western Mythmaking” – Glenn Frankel (The Searchers) with moderator Alex Vernon
  • Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center: “Area X” – Jeff VanderMeer (Annihilation) with moderator Ben Fry

 

2:30 pm

  • Ron Robinson Theater: “Vanguard” – Doug Dorst (S.) and Victor LaVelle (The Devil in Silver) with moderator Phillip Huddleston
  • Darragh Center of CALS Main Library: “Real Girlz” – ReShonda Tate Billingsly (Fortune and Fame; Real As It Gets) with moderator Angela Thomas
  • Room 110 of Arkansas Studies Institute: “Poetry II” – John Bensko (Visitations), Sandy Longhorn (Girlhood Book of Prairie Myths) and Ash Bowen (The Even Years of Marriage) with moderator Hope Coulter.
  • Room 124 of Arkansas Studies Institute: “Great TV” – Brett Martin (Difficult Men)with moderator Philip Martin
  • Cox Creative Center: “Measuring the World” – Ethan Hauser (The Measures Between Us) and Michael Parker (All I Have in This World) with moderator Jay Jennings
  • Historic Arkansas Museum: “Storytellers” – Suzanne Hudson (All the Way to Memphis, The Shoe Burnin’) and Joe Formichella (Waffle House Rules, The Shoe Burnin’) with moderator Shari Smith
  • MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History: “Preludes and Memorials” – David Sesser (The Little Rock Arsenal Crisis) and W. Stuart Towns (Arkansas Civil War Heritage) with moderator Mark Christ
  • Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center: “Puma Tale” – Darcy Pattison (Abayomi: The Brazilian Puma) with moderator Mary Ruth Marotte
  • Mosaic Templars Cultural Center: “Mysterious Duo” – Attica Locke (The Cutting Season) and Qiu Xiaolong (Enigma of China) with moderator Sharon Lee

 

4:00 pm

  • Ron Robinson Theater: “Wonka Times 2” – Rick & Michael Mast (Mast Brothers Chocolate) with moderator Kevin Shalin
  • Darragh Center of CALS Main Library: “7th Grade in Little Rock” – Kevin Brockmeier (A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip) with moderator Nickole Brown
  • Lee Room of CALS Main Library: Poetry Competition
  • Room 110 of Arkansas Studies Institute: “Make or Break” – Carla Killough McClafferty (Fourth Down and Inches) with moderator Rhonda Thornton.
  • Room 124 of Arkansas Studies Institute: “Terrifically Tiny” – Dee Williams (The Big Tiny)with moderator Lyndsey Lewis-Pardue
  • Cox Creative Center: “Badass Presidents” – Daniel O’Brien (How to Fight Presidents) with moderator Joel DiPippa
  • Historic Arkansas Museum: “Spa City Gangsters” – Orval Albritton (The Mob at the Spa) and Robert K. Raines (Hot Springs: From Capone to Costello) with moderator Liz Robbins
  • MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History: “Photographic History” – Carl Moneyhon (Portraits of Conflict series) with moderator Bobby Roberts
  • Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center: “Go Indie!” – with Darcy Pattison
  • Mosaic Templars Cultural Center: “Illustration” – Kadir Nelson (Baby Bear), Colleen Doran (Vampire Diaries series) and Nate Powell (March: Book One) with moderator Paul A. Crutcher

 

5:00 pm

  • Christ Episcopal Church: “Nourishment” – Fred Bahnson (Soil and Sacrement)

 

7:00 pm

  • Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack: “Pub or Perish”

 

The Cox Creative Center will be having a used book sale on Saturday from 9am to 5pm. In addition there will be a used book sale in the CALS basement from 10am to 4pm.