A spark for writing, teaching: Meacham fires up ‘After Thoughts’ audience

After Thoughts, Rebecca Meacham speaker

It was apparent by the end of her “After Thoughts” presentation Monday evening, October 1, that award-winning author and UW-Green Bay Associate Prof. Rebecca Meacham is also an enthusiastic motivator and teacher.

With her captivating presentation, “Fiction’s Burning Questions: Novelists, History and the Creative Spark,” she inspired nearly 100 attendees to consider putting pen to paper to begin their own character development.

Meacham shared with the audience how novelists navigate a process she refers to as “slow, directionless and full of wrong turns” — how they create absorbing fiction from the facts of history, and how they imagine the thoughts and passions of characters often left out of the history books. Then, through a series of questions, she asked audience members to start the process of becoming fiction novelists, themselves.

Designed to connect women in the community with UW-Green Bay, After Thoughts gatherings showcase faculty, staff and guests, and convene women after their workdays for learning, enrichment and fun.  Meacham’s presentation began the third season, and the seventh in the program series.

Meacham, an associate professor of Creative Writing, English and Women’s and Gender Studies, is on sabbatical for the current academic year, working on her novel about Wisconsin’s Peshtigo Fire of 1871.

“I’m following that spark of imagination to light my way over the dimly lit, half-buried path of history,” Meacham said.

The remaining After Thoughts presentations for the 2012-13 academic year are as follows:

• Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012: “The Green Bay Way: The Impact of National Recognition in Collegiate Sports at UW-Green Bay,” by Jeanne Stangel, UW-Green Bay Director of Development and former associate director of UW-Green Bay Athletics

• Tuesday, March 5, 2013: Heidi Fencl, UW-Green Bay assistant professor of Physics and Women’s and Gender Studies

• Tuesday, April 9, 2013: Denise Bartell, UW-Green Bay associate professor of Human Development and Psychology

Each After Thoughts session takes place from 5-7 p.m. in the Grand Foyer of the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts at UW-Green Bay, 2420 Nicolet Drive. The events begin with time to network, mingle and enjoy hors d’oeuvres before the featured speaker begins. Seating is limited, so advance registration is recommended. The cost of each program is $13, and attendees are invited to register for each event individually or all four at once. To reserve your spot, send a check (payable to UW-Green Bay Foundation) to: UW-Green Bay Foundation, CL 805, 2420 Nicolet Drive, Green Bay, Wi 54311; or register online at https://secure.qgiv.com/for/afterthoughts/. Walk-up registration also is an option. Call (920) 465-2074 for more information.

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– Photos by Eric Miller, photographer, Office of Marketing and University Communication