Rave Reviews for Professor Elizabeth Geoghegan’s New Short Story Collection

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Geoghegan’s eloquently told stories examine themes of loneliness, sex, addiction, and grief through the lens of unfamiliar cultures and languages. The thread that holds it all together is Geoghegan’s cool, articulate demeanor and masterful writing.
Kirkus Reviews

Cover image of eightball by Jeannette Montgomery Barron

JCU Creative Writing professor Elizabeth Geoghegan’s latest book of short stories, eightball, published by the Santa Fe Writer’s Project (SFWP), will be available on May 1. This collection of darkly comic, occasionally violent, tales takes readers on a journey from Rome to Bali to Seattle. The stories are anchored by the eponymous “eightball,” a coming of age novella about a sister and brother guided by the inertia of recklessness and self-destruction.

According to the Santa Fe Writer’s Project, “the stories in eightball speak to readers who reach for the work of Lucia Berlin for her voice-driven realism, Lorrie Moore for her humor, Kate Braverman for her lyric language, and anyone who loves coming of age stories and travel.”

A protégé of the late Lucia Berlin, Professor Geoghegan was born in New York and grew up in the Midwest. She is the author of the bestselling memoir The Marco Chronicles, and Natural Disasters. Her work has appeared in The Paris Review, The Best Travel Writing, El PaisWords Without Borders, and elsewhere. A Rome resident for many years, she is currently teaching Creative Writing workshops in Fiction and Creative Non-Fiction at JCU.

Professor Elizabeth Geoghegan (photo by Lovisa Stephenson)

Professor Elizabeth Geoghegan (photo by Lovisa Stephenson)

Says author Susan Bradley Smith, “eightball’s magical thinking leaves me wonderstruck. If Lucia Berlin is early Patti Smith, then Elizabeth Geoghegan is Blondie and Joan Jett and Florence and the Machine in one big literary sandwich.”

Author Francesca Marciano describes eightball as “a masterful collection laced with dark humor, aching grief and great tenderness. Geoghegan’s stories take us around the world, from a beach house on the Atlantic all the way to Bali and Rome and the quiet power of her voice reaches both heart and bone.”

The book will become available on May 1 but may be preordered through the SFWP, Amazon or other booksellers. English language bookshops in Rome will also have the book by the publication date.

Professor Geogheghan will be participating in a book launch in Portland, Oregon on March 29 and moderating a panel called “The Triumph of Lucia Berlin” at the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) conference also in Portland on March 30.  She will be presenting the collection at readings in NYC, Washington DC, Chicago, Boulder, Denver, Santa Fe and other cities during the summer. She will also be teaching a craft seminar at the Lit Fest in Denver in June.

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