A few years back we spent the academic year in Iowa City, while Tony taught at the renowned Writers Workshop. It was an amazing year for all of us, on many levels. Our son, Brendan, loved being in a neighborhood (as opposed to living on a mountain) and made something of a name for himself as a musician. After just a few weeks in town, he took the stage at Peacefest Iowa and performed two original songs, including the unforgettable "Bush S*cks". Here's the Daily Iowan's report on the event. (I love the lede: "Brendan Eprile may be only eleven years old, but...") This led to his being asked to appear on university radio and, eventually, to his forming a band (The Keepers of Peace) which placed second in the Emma Rocks! Battle of the Bands fundraiser for the Emma Goldman Women's Health Clinic. It was quite a ride. As for me I enjoyed hobnobbing with the literati, but was also reminded of how rewarding it is to create a life for oneself in a new place, a kind of risk-free self-invention.
In his spare time Tony was most drawn to U of Iowa's International Writing Program, and loved the chance to engage with writers from all over the world. At the end of the year he joined a group of writers on a trip through the Middle East, meeting students and leaders in Syria, Jordan, Turkey, Greece, Israel, and East Jerusalem. He was recently asked to contribute to the IWP's 100 Word Project, a series of brief stories on the topic of war and peace. See what Tony is able to do with 100 words.
Here is a sneak preview for Tony's soon-to-be website. It's an image he drew based on South African folk art. He calls this one "Dancing Man".
Short Story Writers Sarah Hall & Jennifer Haigh
3 months ago