Arts and culture

A Falling Star

Sep 13, 2016

Chantel Acevedo is a poet and novelist whose books speak eloquently about the Cuban-American experience. An Associate Professor of English in the MFA program at the University of Miami, she has been honored with the Latino International Book Award. “A Falling Star,” reviewed today by Sally Bissell, was awarded the 2012 Doris Bakwin Award for writing by a woman.

Popular Twitter accounts like “Florida Man,” have helped to spread some of the Sunshine State’s strangest stories and encounters to readers throughout the country and even the world.  The unusual (and sometimes criminal) exploits that occur here coupled with the dangers of hurricanes, sinkholes, shark encounters and lightning strikes have helped give the state a reputation that can make Florida seem like a national punchline and prompt outsiders to wonder why so many people continue to relocate to a place that seems bent on killing its residents.

Doug MacGregor

Cartoonist Doug MacGregor has been drawing political cartoons for more than 30 years. His work was a daily part of the editorial pages of the Fort Myers News-Press from 1988 through 2011, and his cartoons still appear once a week in the paper’s Sunday edition.

Gene Wilder

Aug 29, 2016

Actor and author Gene Wilder died today at age 83. On October 25, 2007 WGCU’s Amy Tardif interviewed him on Gulf Coast Live Arts Edition. He was about to appear at the Sarasota Reading Festival. He joined us live by phone from his home in Connecticut for a discussion about life, acting and writing. They chatted about stage, screen and the loves of his life including his marriage to the late Gilda Radner and his continued efforts to fight ovarian cancer.

This month’s Versed in Florida is with Miami poet Mia Leonin. She teaches creative writing at the University of Miami. She has published poetry and creative nonfiction in numerous journals and reviews. Leonin is the author of three poetry collections and a memoir. Her fourth collection comes out next year. And Leonin tells WGCU’s Amy Tardif that writing has always been about survival to her.