Publish your work in Upper Mississippi Harvest!

Calling all students!!

Do you want to get published? You have the opportunity to do so through our campus publication, Upper Mississippi Harvest! You don’t even have to submit a written piece; photographs and artwork is accepted as well!

Looking for ideas about what to submit?

  • Personal narratives are always very interesting reads!
  • Maybe you have a cultural or media critique?
  • Are you working on creating a graphic novel or comic book?
  • Poetry is always a great option!
  • Are you a photographer? Submit some of your shots!

For more information, visit the SCSU English Department Publications website or the Upper Mississippi Harvest website.

The following about submissions is taken directly from the Upper Mississippi Harvest website:

Our submission deadline each year is Oct. 31. To be eligible for submission, you should be enrolled in at least one credit during any of the following semesters: the previous spring or summer, or the current fall term.

Include your name and the title(s) of your work in the body of the email. Only the title of the work should appear on each piece submitted.

  • Poetry: 1-5 pieces per person, typed. 
  • Short Fiction/Nonfiction: 1-3 pieces per person. Maximum 3,500 words per piece, typed and double spaced.
  • Drama (monologues, short script excerpts): 1-3 pieces per person. Maximum 10 pages per piece. Formatted appropriately.
  • Photography/Art/Comics: 1-5 pieces per person. Black and white and full-color submissions accepted.

Failure to meet any of the guidelines may result in disqualification. We reserve the right to reject any submission. Faculty members enrolled in classes are not eligible for publication.

All submissions should be emailed to:

Honoring Indigenous People’s Day 2020

I’m an SCSU graduate student, a Graduate Assistant, and the English Department blog and social media manager. I am also a 5th and 6th grade English and Social teacher at a local elementary school. 

In honor of Indigenous People’s Day this year (October 12), I took my 5th and 6th graders on a field trip to listen to my dear old 78-year-old friend, Julius, talk about his time doing mission work on the Red Lake Reservation where he spent 20+ years living and working alongside the Indigenous People living on the reservation. 

My students were absolutely fascinated learning about Indigenous Peoples from someone who’s lived and experienced their way of life. It was so much better to hear him speak than to have my students read more out of a textbook. They thoroughly enjoyed learning about the Indigenous Peoples’ way of life! Instead of me sharing my experience, I’d like to share their experiences (in the red text) (and insert clarifications when necessary).

I like that he explained what he did. My favorite artifact was the dream catcher. My favorite part was when he said they came to take him home. The most interesting part was when he talked about the artifacts and how they were made with love. I did not dislike anything.


This student talked about the time when “they came to take him home.” Julius told a story about how years after his time on the Red Lake Reservation, his Indigenous friends invited themselves over to his house one day. When they arrived, they said, “Julius, we’re here to take you home.” They surrounded him and said they weren’t leaving his home without him. Obviously, they were only slightly serious as they knew he had other obligations in his life at that time and he couldn’t go back. The story demonstrated how much the people on the Reservation loved and respected him!

This student also talked about some of the Indigenous artifacts he had on display. He talked about how everything they create is made with love. He also showed many of the gifts these people had gifted him over the years. Everything was absolutely beautiful! 



What I thought was it was very cool. It was very fun to see the paintings he showed to us. The turtle shell was cool. I liked it because there were so many details on the shell. I liked to see the process to see what they did to get it to look that cool. I liked the canoe. It was so cool because you could see all of the details on the canoe. My favorite thing there was the painting that he got from a kid that he drove a bus for. It was so cool to see what he did when he was younger. It was a cool experience.

Part of his mission work was to drive a school bus route for their local school (as you can see in one of the later pictures; he’s wearing his bus driver jacket!). He told many stories about the kindness the students showed him. Many of the students painted or drew him pictures as gifts. Since they didn’t have much, they would give handmade items as gifts.

I think it was cool for the stuff on the table, and I think it was cool that he could speak their language. My favorite thing about it is how good they are at art. My favorite artifact was the pictures. He should put more stuff on the table.


One point Julius stressed was the importance of learning a second language. He can speak fluent Ojibwe, but he suggested my students learn Spanish. 

At one point, Julius recited the “Our Father” prayer in Ojibwe! It was really quite amazing! The written version of the “Our Father” is pictured here.


I loved it. It was so interesting. It was so cool to listen to all he had to say. I didn’t dislike anything. It was so awesome. The most interesting thing was all the pictures and artifacts. My favorite part was listening to everything. My favorite artifact was the birch bark wood canoes. 


Everything was really cool and the paintings were amazing. The language was cool too. And the boats made out of bark and stuff were really cool. The necklaces were cool too. Everything was really cool. But my favorite thing was the turtle shell. It was REALLY cool.





I’ve always honored Indigenous People in my classroom, but this year was way more impactful to my students. 

We’re curious to know:

How do you honor Indigenous People? 

What was your favorite artifact that Julius showed the children? (I know, the pictures aren’t amazing and don’t show everything.)

SCSU Writer’s Club

Hey English Department!

Did you know that SCSU has a writing club??

Check it out here!

Now, joining a club is a big deal, I know! You’re in college. You’re already so busy! But there are so many psychological benefits to write more, so you should definitely consider joining the Writer’s Club!

Check it out!

Writing makes you happier!

I absolutely love this reason to write! In our world today, we can all use a little more happiness. Why not find your happiness through writing for the Writer’s Club?

Writing leads to better thinking and communicating!

I mean, I think this is pretty obvious, but what better way to experiment with enhancing your writing and thinking skills than joining the Writer’s Club?

Writing leads to increased gratitude!

This is another value we need to see more of in our society. Why not help contribute in increasing the world’s gratitude by first increasing yours! Join the Writer’s Club!

Writing leads better learning!

So, you’re here at SCSU for what? To learn!! Why not join a club that will directly help your degree mean more?

There are so many more reasons to write and join the Writer’s Club. Feel free to check out “The Psychological Benefits of Writing” from for more valuable reasons to write!

Cezarija Abartis

This week, we have the great pleasure to feature:

Cezarija Abartis

In her words:

Some of my favorite classic authors and books:

Homer, Euripides, Jane Austen, Chekhov’s stories and plays, James Joyce’s “The Dead,” Erich Maria Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western Front, Eric Ambler’s A Coffin for Dimitrios, Nabokov’s Lolita, Isaac Babel, Carson McCullers’ “The Ballad of the Sad Cafe,” Isaac Bashevis Singer, Bernard Malamud’s stories. And Shakespeare, always Shakespeare.

Some of my favorite contemporary authors:

I’m going to list titles of books. Jo Ann Beard’s The Boys of My Youth, Lucia Berlin’s A Manual for Cleaning Women, Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber, Ellen Currie’s Available Light, Denis Johnson’s Jesus’ Son, Thom Jones’ The Pugilist at Rest, Jamaica Kincaid’s Annie John, Lorrie Moore’s Self Help, Grace Paley’s stories, Martin Cruz Smith’s Arkady Renko novels, Robert Stone’s Dog Soldiers, Amy Tan’s The Joy Luck Club, Stephanie Vaughn’s Sweet Talk. I will stop now. I expected this compiling to be tedious and effortful, but I find myself smiling as I recall these beautiful books and inspirations.

What I’m most proud of is my book on Shakespeare The Tragicomic Construction of Cymbeline and the Winter’s Tale  (Humanities Press) and my collection of short stories, Nice Girls and Other Stories (New Rivers Press). In a review on, Sima Rabinowitz writes, “These stories are as good the second time through as they are the first. Always, for me, a measure of success.”

Ursula K. Le Guin writes: “Covering the territory between memoir and fiction, these deft and accurate stories hava a rare honesty.”


A few of my hundred flashes published online:

“The Writer,” was chosen by Wigleaf Journal as one of the top 50 online flashes of 2011. Dan Chaon was the selecting editor.

“Lost and Found,” New World Writing. Online. June 15, 2020

“Sisters.” matchbook. Online. February 2020

“Medea Imagines” Carmina. Online. December 2, 2019

“Stories for Second-Grade Teachers” Baltimore Review. Summer 2019

“Sleeping Beauty Is Not Well,” Bennington Review. Issue Four. Fall / Winter 2017, pp. 146-147. Also online:

Current research interests:

I certainly value historical, biographical, political criticism, but I also value formal criticism. As a fiction writer, I study the structure of the work itself: character, setting, plot, theme, imagery. I’m interested in the formal characteristics of a work of art–how an author constructs a work to have an effect on our emotions, especially complex layered emotions (the pity and fear that Aristotle famously talked about in tragedy; the nobility and revenge that Euripides dramatizes in his plays).

Thank you so much for reading!!