Lee University’s Isom, Center Stage

Friday, October 5, 2012 - by Christian Downes, Lee University
Stacey Isom
Stacey Isom
- photo by Courtesy of Sara Renee

Assistant Professor of Creative Writing Stacey Isom was nationally recognized for her playwriting. “California Dreamin’” was deemed a finalist in the EstroGenius Festival and “On the 8s” was selected to The Great Plains Theatre Conference. 

With “California Dreamin’” Ms. Isom was selected as one of 15 finalists from nearly 300 submitters to the EstroGenius Festival at the Manhattan Theatre Source in New York City.  

Volunteer run, the EstroGenius Festival is one of New York City’s largest women’s arts festivals.

According to the New York Times, EstroGenius “lives up to its billing as a celebration of women’s work.” 

Ms. Isom’s “On the 8s” was one of 30 plays chosen from over 600 entries to the Great Plains Theatre Conference in Omaha, Neb. and received a staged reading this past May. 

“I had a wonderful director, Becky Key Boesen, and a truly fantastic cast,” shared Ms. Isom. “I couldn’t have asked for a better group of artists to work with on my play. There is something exciting about working with other artists; it becomes something bigger than you because it requires other artists.”

The conference hosted playwrights from New York City, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and from all over the country. “I got to meet a lot of playwrights,” Ms. Isom said.  “I learned so much in workshops led by well-known playwrights Rebecca Gilman, Constance Congdon, and Sibyl Kempson.”

The Great Plains Theatre Conference affords playwrights and theatre artists the opportunity to share time, energy and talent in developing the craft, creating new work and strengthening community. GPTC seeks to recognize the work of renowned American playwrights while fostering the work of new and emerging ones. 

Ms. Isom said, “It was good to see what’s being written right now from so many creative playwrights doing great things.”

Third Course: Theater of Austin, Texas, with whom Ms. Isom has been working for three years, plans to produce “On the 8s” this coming summer. 

“Theater is about relationships,” Ms. Isom said. “And TCT has done more for my work than anyone else. I’m thrilled at the prospect of working with this wonderful group of artists again. It’s in these long-term collaborations that truly great theater is created.”

In her college years, Ms. Isom wrote fiction and screenplays. She said, “I came about playwriting in a circuitous manner, not in the traditional way; I wrote fiction, and was later encouraged to try screenplays.”  When Ms. Isom attended Regent University for graduate studies, she was “adopted” by the theater department. “I fell in love with theater, and it still fits the way I see the world.  I love the community of it.”

Ms. Isom is the instructor for Lee’s Introduction to Playwriting and Advanced Playwriting courses, as well as courses in screen writing.

“I’d encourage any creative writer to take a playwriting course. You learn about structure, voice, and audience. There’s immediate feedback; it’s a formidable place to learn about who you are as a writer.” 

Ms. Isom joined the Department of Language and Literature at Lee University as an assistant professor of creative writing in 2007.  She received an MFA in Script and Screenwriting from Regent University and an MFA in Creative Writing from Old Dominion University, where she was the recipient of a teaching assistantship, as well as the David Scott Sutelan Memorial Award. 

Ms. Isom’s plays include “Letters to John Lennon,” “Touching Aurora,” “Smokin’ Devils,” “California Dreamin’”,” “On the 8’s,” “Dough & Cookies,” among others.  Her work has been seen or won awards at The Barter Theatre, the Playwright’s Theater (Dallas), Pittsburgh New Works Festival, L.A. First Stage, Third Course: Theatre (Austin), and elsewhere. 

Ms. Isom is also a Fellow of The Hambidge Center, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation of New Mexico. 



Dalton Announces Makeup Day Plans For Students, Staff

Dalton Public Schools has announced that students will only make up 1 day of school after the recent inclement weather forced schools to close last week.  The current school calendar only has one make-up day remaining in the school year.  Dalton students and staff will use Thursday, March 12, as a full instructional day. March 12 was originally an elementary design ... (click for more)

6th Annual Dalton State Book Festival Features Tennessee Author

Book lovers are invited to hear Tennessee author Susan Gregg Gilmore speak on her latest novel, “The Funeral Dress,” March 18, at Dalton State’s sixth annual Book Festival. This annual literary festival celebrates authors from the South, including local authors. The Book Festival is hosted by Dalton State’s Roberts Library and made possible with support from the Dalton State ... (click for more)

Hamilton County Placed Under Winter Storm Watch

Hamilton County has been placed under a Winter Storm Watch with a prediction of freezing rain, sleet and snow for Thursday. The new wintry mix is slated to begin around midnight on Wednesday and continue through 4 p.m. on Thursday. There could be up to two inches of snow following up on last week's eight inches.  Here is the Winter Storm Watch: ...WINTER STORM ... (click for more)

Henry Hopes To Bring E-Filing To Clerk's Office This Year; Saving Almost $222,000 On Personnel

Circuit Court Clerk Larry Henry said he hopes to E-Filing of documents and other court papers to the clerk’s office this year.   He said at first it appeared it might take much longer, but that progress is being made to the online program. Mr. Henry told members of the Pachyderm Club that attorneys, litigants and members of the public would be able to go online to view ... (click for more)

Tennessee Deserves Better Health Reform - And Response

Tennessee needs health care reform. Expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, or "Obamacare," was not the best solution for Tennesseans. That is why the vast majority of Tennessee legislators never publicly supported the plan defeated in a special legislative session in February.   It is important to distinguish health care from health insurance. As one physician ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Our Insult To Israel

I am deeply saddened that over two dozen members of Congress – all Democrats – will be boycotting a speech by Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, when he speaks in Washington tonight. I am also offended that the President of the United States will not receive Netanyahu prior to the speech – a customary gesture on such occasions – because he claims it is too close to ... (click for more)