A book by Susan Veihdeffer Vogt ’69
A mother of four, Vogt gives parents hope, guidance and support as she addresses the personal and spiritual formation of adult children. She writes from a Catholic perspective but provides lessons for families of any faith. “The kids don’t always follow the path we hoped or wanted for them … but that’s part of our faith journey — learning how to let go and trust God.” A professional Catholic family minister for more than 30 years with husband Jim ’68, she is also a vowed lay Marianist and points to Mary’s formation of Jesus — and by Jesus — as instructive for parents: Our children form us.
A book by Gary Leising ’95
Leising forages for free coffee in the offices at Utica College N.Y., where he teaches creative writing and contemporary literature. In its absence, he grudgingly visits the overpriced campus coffee cart where he is repeatedly stuck behind a customer with a complicated order. He turned his impatience into “Your Punishment in Hell,” one poem in his new book of poetry. “I try to engage readers with a lot of humor and, I hope, a sense of assertion and self-deprecation,” he says. His poems deal with questions of mortality through symbolism of the human animal. But don’t take him too seriously. Every bit of venom he directs at a character illustrates he’s as flawed as us all, just more creative in showing it.
A book by Jen Violi ’96
Hurricane Katrina scattered members of the University of New Orleans creative writing MFA program, blowing Violi north to Dayton. That’s when the seed of the story that had been germinating since her father’s death in 1988 took root. “I always knew I was going to write about loss, honoring my dad and exploring my own healing through fiction,” she says. What began as a short story cycle evolved into an absorbing young adult novel in which high-schooler Donna deals with the grief of her father’s death by finding her own path in life. Violi sets the story in Dayton and hopes readers will forgive Donna, who turns down UD for mortuary school.