For a writer seeking new inspiration, there’s no better place to travel than Rome, Italy. Nearly 2,000 years of ancient culture is embedded in the streets, buildings and earth of the city, and sights such as the Pantheon and the Via Appia are sure to spark a writer’s inquiry and insight into the people who lived and breathed among these structures so many years ago.
Students studying at John Cabot University, like so many other travellers who have passed through Rome, often experience that special feeling of inspiration one can only get while walking the streets of the Eternal City. Creative outlets like painting, photography, and writing are just some of the ways travelers have channeled this inspiration into living, breathing memories and works of art.
Writers have a chance to shine at John Cabot through the university’s Bachelor of Arts in English Literature degree, and the university’s minor in Creative Writing option. The John Cabot faculty itself hosts several distinguished writers, whose published works have often been inspired by life in Rome. This past year, professors Daniel Connelly and Elizabeth Geoghegan from the Department of English Language and Literature were recognized with numerous awards for excellence in writing. Read on to find out more.
Professor Daniel Connelly Receives the Cúirt New Writing Prize
The Cúirt International Festival of Literature began in 1986 in Ireland, and is a place where creative minds come together once a year to celebrate book launches, hear readings of works, and award the Cúirt New Writing Prize in the categories of fiction and poetry. This year, John Cabot professor and writer Daniel Connelly was awarded the Cúirt New Writing Prize in poetry. In April, he will attend the festival in Galway City, Ireland to perform a reading of his winning collection.
As a writer and professor, Daniel Connelly is teaching two courses at John Cabot University this semester: Public Speaking and Shakespeare in Italy, where students who study abroad in Rome can learn the art of rhetoric, and contextualize the plays of Shakespeare in the setting of Italy.
Two Best Travel Writing Awards for Professor Elizabeth Geoghegan
Every year, the Solas Awards honor writers in a broad range of categories for their contributions to the canon of travel writing. The Ninth Annual Solas Awards were announced March 1, and John Cabot professor Elizabeth Goeghegan was honored with two awards for her Rome-centric tales. Her essay The Marco Chronicles won gold in the category of Travel Memoir, meanwhile, her essay Things You Can Learn From Nuns and Other Tales won bronze in the category of Women’s Travel.
The Marco Chronicles are Geoghegan’s recollections of her “adventures and misadventures” in Rome, deconstructing the foreigner’s glamourized and idealized vision of romance in Italy. The e-book has made Amazon’s best sellers list and the Kindle Store’s “hot new releases” list.
Student who study abroad in Italy have the opportunity to attend the many creative writing workshops and activities on campus which have been hosted by instructors like Professor Geoghegan. These include a creative writing workshop with Italian high school students, an exclusive reading of Professor Geoghegan’s work in John Cabot’s Aula Magna Regina, and a recent presentation this past February on the subject of women in digital publishing.
Would you be interested in taking a creative writing or English literature course while attending university in Italy?