Book Markers: 02.19.15

Local book news

Deadline for Scribes

Hot, crowded July may seem far off, what with a winter for the ages upon us, but March 1 is not. That’s the scholarship deadline for this year’s Southampton Writers Conference, sponsored by the M.F.A. program in creative writing and literature at Stony Brook Southampton and running from July 8 to 19.

“Workshops are filling up,” a mass email warns. Teachers range from Billy Collins on the poetry front, to a master essayist, Roger Rosenblatt, to Meg Wolitzer, the novelist, to Masha Gessen heading up creative nonfiction. More information is at

Soffer Starts Writers Speak

At that same campus, the spring iteration of the college’s Writers Speak series begins Wednesday with Jessica Soffer stepping to the lectern, or something like it, with her debut novel, “Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots.” Published in 2013 and out in paperback last year, it’s a food-rich coming-of-age story of a young woman of Iraqi-Jewish ancestry. Ms. Soffer, who has spent much of her life calling Amagansett her part-time home, as her father, the late sculptor Sasson Soffer, lived and worked there, teaches fiction at Connecticut College.

If you can’t make that one, there’s the following laundry list to consider: March 4 brings a faculty reading by Susan Scarf Merrell, Roger Rosenblatt, Lou Ann Walker, Ursula Hegi, and Julie Sheehan, followed on March 11 by a panel discussion of what’s new in self-publishing and small presses. On April 1, it’ll be Alice Fulton, with Patricia McCormick and Mitchell Kriegman on April 15, Roxana Robinson on the 22nd of that month, Laura Lippman interviewed by the college’s Daniel Menaker on the 29th, and then a reading by M.F.A. students on May 6.

All begin at 7 p.m. in the Radio Lounge, upstairs in Chancellors Hall.