Category Archives: Accomplishments

2017 NEOMFA Playwrights Festival

NEOMFA Plays 17For the sixth year, convergence-continuum continues its successful collaboration with Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and Cleveland State University.

This time they will be presenting two new full-length plays by two different local MFA playwrights. Each play will be performed over the span of one weekend. The first, THE DARKNESS by Katie Wallace, Renee Schilling and Rob Daniels, will be performed Febuary 9-11. The second, SEXUAL POLITICS by Jaclyn Cifranic, will be performed February 16-18.

Tickets for Festival plays are only $10 general admission, $5 students. Further details on the plays and playwrights will be posted on convergence-continuum’s website ( and Facebook page.

These plays are the culminating work of the playwrights after undertaking three years of intensive study in the NEOMFA in Creative Writing program, a consortium of Cleveland State University, Kent State University, University of Akron and Youngstown State University.

Be part of the process. Check out what the next generation of playwrights is up to!


NEOMFA Accomplishments for AY 2015-2016

Kelly Bancroft (alumna and playwright)

  • One-act play “Lovie’s Spring” was produced by Pittsburgh New Works.
  •  “Arriving at Bessie” was a Tennessee Williams One-Act Play festival honorable mention

Bill Soldan (student and short story writer)

  • Story “The Thirteenth Step” in New World Writing (it was nominated for a 2015 Pushcart Prize).
  • Story “Talking and Standing Still” in the Vignette Review.
  • Story “The Long Drive Home” in Thuglit.
  • Recipient of Juniper scholarships.
  • Featured reader at Brews + Prose Reading Series in Cleveland.

Emily Lundgren (student, fiction)

  • Story “Tell Her” in grimoire magazine.

Christopher Barzak (faculty and novelist)

  • Wonders of the Invisible World novel published by Knopf. Stonewall Honor Award Winner from the American Library Association.
  • Guest Editor for “Queers Destroy Fantasy” special issue of Lightspeed Magazine.
  • Short story “The Creeping Women” published in Uncanny Magazine.
  • Guest author at Books by The Banks Festival in Cincinnati.

Colleen Clayton (alumna and novelist)

  • Presentation and panelist at Ohio Education and Library Media Association Conference.
  • Novel What Happens Next was an ‘Ohio Reads’ State Library Pick for 2015-16.
  • Featured author and panelist at Ohioana Book Festival and Western Reserve Book Festival.
  • Contracted by Youngstown State University Special Education Department to teach a summer writing course for 5th grade students.

Emily Troia (student and poet)

  • Awarded the 2015 Leonard Trawick Scholarship from CSU
  • Accepted into and attended the Summer 2016 Kenyon Review Art of Text Workshop
  • Read at The Big Big Mess, May 16th, 2015
  • Read at Brews and Prose, March 1st, 2016

Jonathan Wlodarski (student and fiction writer)

  • Presented at the National Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association conference in Seattle
  • Selected to attend Juniper Conference

Varley O’Connor (faculty and novelist)

  • Moderated and presented on a panel, ‘Women Writing Fiction in a Post-Feminist Era,’ at the Los Angeles AWP convention.

Anne Garwig (student and poet)

  • Two poems published in magazine Icarus Down.

Holly Brown (student and poet)

  • 2 poems in Jellyfish
  • 1 poem forthcoming in The New Old Stock
  • 1 poem forthcoming in H_NGM_N
  • 3 poems forthcoming in Rockhurst Review

Abi Bechtel (student and poet)

  • Featured reader for The Big Big Mess Reading Series
  • Essays published on and xoJane.

Philip Brady (faculty, poet, and essayist)

  • To Banquet with the Ethiopians: A Memoir of Life Before the Alphabet, Broadstone  Books.
  • Poems & Their Making: A Conversation, Etruscan Press, 2015.

Steven Reese (faculty, poet, and essayist)

  • Article “Jeffers in Context: The Presence of Shelley” accepted for publication in Jeffers Studies.

Mary Biddinger (faculty and poet)

  • Published her fourth full-length collection of poems, Small Enterprise (Black Lawrence Press, 2015).
  • Poems “My Upper Peninsula” and “Copper Harbor” appeared in Here: Women Writing on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula (Michigan State University Press, 2015).
  • Poems appeared in the literary magazine Gargoyle, issue 64: “Most Unique, Mint Condition,” “Horizon-Free Living,” “A Little Action,” “Conspicuous Consumption,” and “Consolation Prize” (Paycock Press, 2016).

David Giffels (faculty and essayist)

  • Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award, 2016.
  • An essay, “A Comedy of Errors,” published in Cleveland Magazine, August 2015.
  • An essay, “Shaving Needs,” accepted for publication in Other Fathers, Other Rooms, an anthology of literary essays about contemporary fatherhood.

Eric Wasserman (faculty and fiction writer)

  • Short story “Trampled Under Foot.” Insomnia & Obsession Magazine

The 2015 NEOMFA Playwrights Festival

The 2015 NEOMFA Playwrights Festival at Convergence-continuum:

The first weekend, February 12 – 14 (Th, F, S) 8pm, will feature a double bill: Inside Out: The Fattening Room by Lisa Langford & The Walling Up of Wildflowers by Logan Smith.

The second weekend, February 19 – 21 (Th, F, S) 8pm, will feature The Lies We Hold by Monica Morgan.

Tickets are $5 for students; $10 for general admission.


Join the event on Facebook