Connections Literary Series

Author smiles while reading at a podium

Connections Magazine

connections_spring2022.pngConnections Literary Magazine is a regional literary journal published twice a year that features the very best poems, stories, artwork, and photography of Southern Maryland. Also included in each issue is featured material from visiting writers. Publication readings take place in December and May each year.

View Guidelines and Archive

Want to be published? Connections Literary Magazine is now accepting submissions. Poetry, short stories, and black and white photography are accepted for consideration. See submission guidelines for more information.

Connections Literary Readings

Since it began in 1990, the program has featured writers such as National Book Award winners Tim O'Brien and Robert Stone, Pulitzer Prize winning poets Yusef Komunyakaa and Henry Taylor, and Maryland Poet Laureates Lucille Clifton and Michael Glaser. Connections readings offer the Southern Maryland community a chance to hear from and meet established and emerging local writers up-close-and-personal.


Fall 2022 Readings

Come out and meet the most engaging and interesting authors in literature today as they read from and reflect on their works. Copies of the books featured in the Connections Literary Series can be purchased at any CSM College Store location or online at Previous readings are available on our YouTube playlist.


September 15, 2022

Poets Martin Espada and Lauren Marie Schmidt

12 p.m.

La Plata Campus, Community Education (CE Building), Room 101

martin espada book coverMartín Espada has published more than 20 books as a poet, editor, essayist and translator. His new book of poems from Norton, "Floaters," is the winner of the 2021 National Book Award. Among his other poetry collections are "Vivas to Those Who Have Failed" (2016), "The Trouble Ball" (2011), "The Republic of Poetry" (2006), "Alabanza" (2003), "A Mayan Astronomer in Hell’s Kitchen" (2000), "Imagine the Angels of Bread" (1997), "City of Coughing and Ashes" (1993), and "Rebellion is the Circle of a Lover’s Hands" (1990). He is the editor of "What Saves Us: Poems of Empathy and Outrage in the Age of Trump" (2019).

In addition to the National Book Award, he has received the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, the Shelley Memorial Award, the Robert Creeley Award, an Academy of American Poets Fellowship, the PEN/Revson Fellowship and a Guggenheim Fellowship. "The Republic of Poetry" was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His book of essays and poems, "Zapata’s Disciple" (1998), was banned in Tucson as part of the Mexican-American Studies program outlawed by the state of Arizona and reissued by Northwestern. A former tenant lawyer in Greater Boston, Espada is a professor of English at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

lauren marie schmidt book coverLauren Marie Schmidt is the author of "Filthy Labors" and three previous collections of poetry: "Two Black Eyes and a Patch of Hair Missing; The Voodoo Doll Parade," selected for the Main Street Rag Author’s Choice Chapbook Series; and "Psalms of The Dining Room', a sequence of poems about her volunteer experience at a soup kitchen in Eugene, Oregon. Her work has appeared in journals such as "North American Review," "Alaska Quarterly Review," "Rattle," "Nimrod," "Painted Bride Quarterly," "PANK," "New York Quarterly," "Bellevue Literary Review," "The Progressive," and others. Her awards include the So to Speak Poetry Prize, the Neil Postman Prize for Metaphor, The Janet B. McCabe Prize for Poetry, and the "Bellevue Literary Review’s" Vilcek Prize for Poetry. Schmidt is currently at work on a young adult novel. 

"Filthy Labors" chronicles her volunteer teaching experience at a transitional housing program for homeless women in her native New Jersey.  “Lauren Marie Schmidt gets better and better.  In 'Filthy Labors,' she’s given us equal parts grit and elegance. The poems are about encounters with people who have stumbled into the dark in their lives.  A collection that will often be read in one setting, there is no poem that is not superbly turned, full of dark wit, and powered by heart.”  --Doug Anderson.


November 9, 2022

Poet Doug Anderson

12 p.m.

Prince Frederick Campus, John E. Harms Academic Center (Building A), Room 119

doug anderson book coverDoug Anderson’s new poetry collection is "Undress, She Said" (Four Way Books in September, 2022).  Doriane Laux in describing the book wrote: “Anderson’s luminous poems light the caves of our inner lives, touch the silk of the waning body, the skeins of loss, and death, who leaves her smoky perfume in every room, tattoos on her arms as she drives, crows in the backseat.  He re-visits the war, that place where ‘The sun/turns the fog to spun glass.’ A place he returns to years later where he can ‘peel a green orange and find gold.’ He pays homage to the great masters of poetry, to love, and to the fallen myths that trail us into the end of our days, undressing us all.”

Doug Anderson grew up in Memphis, Tennessee. He served as a combat medic in the Vietnam War, and after Vietnam attended the University of Arizona, where he studied acting. He started writing poetry after he moved to Northampton, Massachusetts, and worked with the poet Jack Gilbert. He is the author of the poetry collections "Horse Medicine" (2015), "The Moon Reflected Fire" (1994), which was the winner of the Kate Tufts Discovery Award, and "Blues for Unemployed Secret Police" (2000). His memoir, "Keep Your Head Down: Vietnam, the Sixties, and a Journey of Self-Discovery," was published by Norton in 2009. His awards include a grant from the Eric Mathieu King Fund of the Academy of American Poets, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, and a Pushcart Prize. Anderson has taught at the University of Connecticut, Eastern Connecticut State University, and the William Joiner Center for the Study of War and Its Social Consequences at the University of Massachusetts Boston. 


December 2, 2022

Connections Literary Magazine Publication Reading

La Plata Campus, Center for Business and Industry (BI Building), Room 103

Contributors to the Fall 2022 Connections Literary Magazine will read and discuss their published works.

Connections Literary Magazine is a regional literary journal published twice a year that features poems, stories, artwork, and photography of Southern Maryland. Also included in each issue is featured material from visiting writers. 

Thank you to our sponsors

The Connections Literary Series is sponsored by CSM's English, Communication, and Languages Department, and, in part, by grants from the Arts Council of Calvert County, the Charles County Arts Alliance, the St. Mary’s County Arts Council, and the Maryland State Arts Council.

Arts council of calvert countycharles county arts alliancemsac-color-horizontal-text.jpgst. mary's arts council

Watch Past Connections Readings


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