"I'm writing a memoir which has me thinking about the stories that our lives write. Memoir crams the writer into close proximity with their own experience, but the act of writing forces a distance that helps makes sense of it all. Maybe. Sometimes I'm not so sure. What draws me to memoir is the brazen honesty. Do I have the fortitude for it? Fiction allows a masquerade. A respite. Memoir shoves the writer under the lights where it gets hot and can get to feeling desolate, but that's where faith in the process must kick in to carry the writer back to safety."
Years at Knox: 2006 to present
M.F.A., 2005, Spalding University.
B.A., 2000, Knox College.
Creative writing, beginning to advanced fiction and non-fiction taught in a workshop setting, composition and rhetoric, modern and contemporary American literature with an emphasis on Southern writers.
Top Ten Finalist 2009 storySouth Million Writers Award.
Post Graduate Residency Assistant, Spalding University, May 2008.
Commencement Speaker, Spalding University, May 2005.
Short-list, Raymond Carver Short Story Award, 2004.
Spalding University Graduate Student Fellowship, 2003.
Cum laude, Knox College, 2000.
Davenport Prize in Poetry, 2000.
Motif 3: All the Livelong Day, anthology from MotesBooks, "Answering the Call," December 2011.
Midwestern Gothic, "A Man on One Knee is Considered Down," November 2011.
The Mom Egg, "Living in River City on Mother's Day" September 2011.
Hard to Parent, Easy to Love, anthology from DRT Press, "A Light Bulb Moment," Fall 2011.
Ten Tongues: stories. Louisville: MotesBooks, October 2010. Released in paperback, May 2012.
"It Could Be Worse" Mamas and Papas anthology, City Works Press, 2010.
"Prosthesis" You Must Be This Tall to Ride, August 2010.
"Time and Time Again." Menda City Review, Spring 2009.
"Diagnosis." Ars Medica, Summer 2009.
"Period." Women. Period. An Anthology of Women Writers on Menstruation, August 2008.
"Breathless." Opium Magazine, September 2008.
"Nothing Could Prepare Me." The Louisville Review, forthcoming, Fall 2008.
"Every Earth is Fit for Burial." Menda City Review, Spring 2008.
"The Raccoon in the Wall." Minnetonka Review, Spring 2008.
"Ashes Ashes." The Louisville Review, Fall 2007.
"Disaster Preparedness." Blood Lotus, Fall 2007.
"You Made It, Whatever It Is." Keepgoing.org, Summer 2007.
"The Ugly Truth Behind My Adorable Neighborhood Coffeeshop." New Southerner, June/July 2006.
"Phone Marrow." Literary Mama, February 2006.
"Savior." Santa Fe Writers Project/sfwp.org, January 2006.
"Witness to a Family's Crushing Grief." Chicago Tribune, November 2005.
"How to Avoid Sex With a Man Who Weighs 300 Lbs. More Than You." Carve Magazine, September 2004.
InKY Reading Series, Louisville, Kentucky, December 2010.
Knox College Caxton Club, October 2010.
Readings, from my short story collection, Ten Tongues, Spalding University, Louisville, Kentucky, 2008.
What Students Say
"Cyn is not only one of my favorite teachers, she is also one of the most inspiring people I have had the chance to meet. Her availability to her students is impressive on so many levels--not only is she more than willing to sit down for an hour or more to talk with you about your writing, she is also remarkably honest and upfront about her own past experiences, especially in her writing. Her ability to share so much of herself gives us, her students, the courage to dig deeper into ourselves, deeply enriching our own work with our unique pasts."
-Ashley Blazina, Environmental Studies major, English Literature minor
"Professor Cyn Kitchen is a mastermind of insight of which she clearly encourages her students to be as well. Cyn always comes into the classroom with new and exciting ways to start class so that the everyone is eager to get involved in discussion. Also, both inside and outside of the classroom, Cyn is light-hearted, laid-back, and helpful enough to always make herself available at the Gizmo when you're stuck with ideas for revision."
-Beth Root, English Literature and Educational Studies double major
Leading up to a worldwide event -- Gun Control Theatre Action Week, May 27 through June 2 -- a play by Knox College theatre professor Neil Blackadder was selected for a new collection, "24 Gun Control Plays."
Rana Tahir, a double major in creative writing and political science, wrote dozens of poems and created 29 paintings after interviewing Kuwaiti residents about the 1990 Iraqi occupation.
Knox College awarded more than $1,750 in prizes in the 2013 Al Young Art Show. Organizing 200 art works in an array of media is a challenge, according student Katie O'Connor, who helped arrange the entries.