Raise a glass to literature! Faculty and alumni from the UCF Creative Writing program read pieces from their body of work.

Raise a glass to literature! Faculty and alumni from the UCF Creative Writing program read pieces from their body of work. Hosted by Terry Thaxton, readers include English faculty members Rochelle Hurt, Chrissy Kolaya, Darlin’ Neal and David James Poissant, and alumni Audi Barnes ’20 and Malcolm Kelly ’20.

Audi Barnes ’20 is a poet, essayist, and the founder of the WE HAVE VOICES reading series dedicated to amplifying the work of local Black writers. Audi’s work discusses identity, disability, and interpersonal relationships, and can be found in AZE Journal, The Offing magazine, and FusionFest Orlando.

Rochelle Hurt teaches in the creative writing program at the University of Central Florida. She is the author of three books, including The J Girls: A Reality Show, forthcoming from Indiana University Press in 2022; as well as In Which I Play the Runaway, which won the Barrow Street Poetry Prize in 2016, and The Rusted City: A Novel in Poems, published by White Pine Press in 2014. 

Malcolm Kelly ’20 is a poet, essayist, spoken word performer, and offender of family values and good ol’ boy sensibilities. His work deals with race, sexuality, queerness and the idea of love.

Chrissy Kolaya is a fiction writer and poet author of Charmed Particles: a novel and two books of poems: Any Anxious Body and Other Possible Lives. Her work has been included in the anthologies New Sudden Fiction (Norton),  Fiction on a Stick (Milkweed Editions), and Stone, River, Sky: An Anthology of Georgia Poems, as well as in a number of literary journals. She teaches creative writing in the MFA program at the University of Central Florida.

Darlin’ Neal is the author of the story collections Rattlesnakes & the Moon and Elegant Punk. Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in dozens of publications including The Mississippi Review, The Southern Review, Puerto del Sol, and Best of the Web. A recipient of the DH Lawrence, Frank Waters, and Mississippi Arts Commission Fiction Fellowships and a Henfield Transatlantic Review Award, she is Associate Professor in the MFA and undergraduate Creative Writing programs at the University of Central Florida.

David James Poissant is the author of the novel Lake Life (Simon & Schuster, 2020), a New York Times Editors’ Choice selection, and The Heaven of Animals: Stories, a finalist for the L.A. Times Book Prize. His work is in print in seven languages. He teaches in the MFA Creative Writing program at the University of Central Florida.

Terry Ann Thaxton is the author of three books of poetry Getaway Girl, The Terrible Wife, and Mud Song. She has won the T.S. Eliot Prize in poetry, the Jeffrey E. Smith Editor’s Prize in Nonfiction from The Missouri Review, and two Florida Book awards. She directs the English Department Graduate Programs and teaches in the MFA Creative Writing Program at UCF.


This event will be closed-captioned in English.