Join us in celebrating the Austin launch of It’s All About Shoes, a collection of essays, poems and stories about women and their unusual relationship to shoes, edited by Pamela L. Laskin (with co-editors Lyn Di Iorio and Karen Clark). Pamela will share excerpts from the anthology, and will be joined by writers Judith Austin Mills and Ute Carson, who will read from their recent works.
Pamela L. Laskin (above right) is a lecturer in the CCNY/CUNY English Department, where she directs the Poetry Outreach Center. Her poetry chapbooks include Grand Central Station (Millennium Poetry Prize); Remembering Fireflies; Secrets of Sheets; Ghosts, Goblins, Gods and Geodes; Van Gogh’s Ear; Daring Daughters/Defiant Dreams; The Plagiarist; and The Bonsai Curator. Her Young Adult novel Visitation Rites was published in 2012. Homer the Little Stray Cat is her most recent children’s book. A memoir, My Life in Shoes, came out in 2011. Of her many published short stories, two include YA stories, one in Young Miss and the other in Sassy. She edited two other anthologies: The Heroic Young Woman (2006), a book of original feminist fairy tales, and Life on the Moon: My Best Friend’s Secrets, a collection of young adult fiction.
Judith Austin Mills grew up surrounded by music and literature, an upbringing that she says “makes rhythm and rhyme natural friends” to her poetry. Family moves during childhood deepened her appreciation of adventure and contrast. Northern states provided indelible memories of seasonal change, but settling in Texas made her “dig deep to see beauty in any landscape.” Just released in October 2015, Those Bones at Goliad, a Texas Revolution novel, is a sequel to her 2011 historical novel How Far Tomorrow. In 2013, between the two novels, she published Accidental Joy: a streak of poetry, containing 101 psalms of poetry. Her short stories and poems have appeared in diverse publications, including the Texas Poetry Calendar. The fiction manuscript Tripping Home won a Writers’ League of Texas competition in 2001. Mills earned an undergraduate degree and later her M.A. in English with a Creative Writing concentration at the University of Texas and has been writing fiction and poetry ever since. With a career as a teacher, frequently in the French classroom, she is currently an Adjunct Associate Professor of English at Austin Community College.
Ute Maria Elisabeth Gräfin von Hardenberg-Carson was born on the Baltic Coast in Köslin, Pomerania, shortly after the beginning of World War II. As Russian forces swept toward central Europe, her family fled westward to what became West Germany, where she went to school and attended the Universities of Hamburg and Mainz. Immigrating to America in 1962, she completed her masters at the University of Rochester, becoming a college instructor of German Language and Literature, and Women’s Studies. A writer from youth, Carson’s first story was published in 1977. For the past 26 years she has continuously published stories and essays in journals, magazines, and books. In 2011 she published Just a Few Feathers, a book of poems. Her latest contributions include “Gypsy Spirit” in Falling in Love Again – Love the Second Time Around, and “A Mantra” in Arts and Letters Magazine. Colt Tailing, finalist for the 2003 Peter Taylor Book Award, is Carson’s first novel; In Transit her second. She is currently at work on a third, Letters to a Dying Friend. Carson has traveled the world and has lived in Germany, France, Scotland, New York, Vermont, and Florida. She now resides in Texas, with her husband. They have three daughters, five grandchildren, two horses, and a number of cats.