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Community dialogue series continues with dual professors

February 20, 2009

Coastal Carolina University English professors Jason Ockert and Joe Oestreich will give a talk on "The Story of Our Lives: Turning Experience into Art" on Wednesday, Feb. 25 at 7 p.m. at the University's Waccamaw Higher Education Center in Litchfield. The discussion is free and open to the public.

The lecture is part of "Creativity and Conflict," the University's seventh annual community dialogue series. Sponsored by the Board of Visitors of the Thomas W. and Robin W. Edwards College of Humanities and Fine Arts, Ockert and Oestreich, both assistant professors of English, will read work inspired by their own lives and discuss the process of shaping their experiences into stories and essays.

Ockert joined the University faculty in 2007. He earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Florida and a master of fine arts degree from Syracuse University. Ockert is the author of "Rabbit Punches," a collection of short stories. His fiction has appeared in many journals, including The Oxford American, Black Warrior Review and The Mid-American Review. His most recent story is included in the 2007 anthologies "New Stories from the South" and "Best American Mystery Stories."

Oestreich joined the University faculty in 2008. He earned a bachelor's degree in political science and a master's degree in creative writing from The Ohio State University in 2001 and 2007, respectively. A creative nonfiction specialist, his essays have appeared in Esquire, Sports Illustrated, Ninth Letter, Fourth Genre and many other magazines and journals. He has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, noted in "The Best American Non-required Reading" and honored in The Atlantic Monthly.

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