Emily Mitchell awarded an Arcan Semester Research Award (ASRA), Spring 2020

October 10, 2019

The English Department is delighted to announce that Emily Mitchell has been selected for an Arcan Semester Research Award (ASRA) for Spring 2020.  This semester leave from teaching and administrative responsibilities aims to support faculty at the rank of associate and full professor, with preference given to associate professors for whom the completion of a major project will lead to promotion to full professor.

The committee found Emily Mitchell's current collection of speculative fiction, Becoming a Cat, as an exciting project that creatively grapples with human relationships to the non-human – whether technological, natural or fantastic. In one story in this collection, a woman falls deeply in love with a tree she passes one day as she runs through a park near her home. In another, a man is followed around for a year by a cloud of tiny drones that photograph his every move for an online audience which can reward him richly – if they find him sufficiently interesting. In a third, an unnamed patient wakes up from what they thought would be a tonsillectomy to find a sentient, electronic assistant has been implanted in their body by mistake. Two stories from this collection were published individually in 2018, the title story in The Sun and a short novella entitled “Life/Story” in Alaska Quarterly Review. Several other stories are currently on submission to literary magazines and journals. Emily plans to complete the collection during the term of the fellowship and place the manuscript with a publisher.

Special thanks to members of the AY19-20 ASRA Committee Merle Collins and Neil Fraistat.