Jodie Mortag presents her published personal essay “Bend”

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Jodie Mortag presents her published personal essay “Bend”

Jodie Mortag’s personal essay, titled “Bend” is currently published in issue six of the online journal, Counterclock. Her essay follows her journey through the Bahamas. Jodie was reluctant to give too many details as to the personal meaning of the essay. Saying she wanted her audience to interpret and apply her story to something meaningful in their own life. 

Forty students attended the event. Jodie received some feedback from faculty and staff members who attended. The librarian of The John Esch Library, Melanie Jones, gave some insight on the input; quite a few students found it inspiring for a professor to share their work with the student base. 

When asked how she felt about the turnout, Jodie replied:The turnout for my reading exceeded my expectations.” During the reading, the library was filled corner to corner. Before she began the presentation, Jodie thanked her mother in the audience. Later said in an interview, “Looking out and seeing many familiar faces—current and past students, my colleagues, inspiring writers, and, of course, my mother—will forever be another memory that will keep invading my thoughts, and who knows, may appear in future writing.”  

Nearing the end of the reading, Jodie elaborated that this final edit was not the first. She revealed that she edited her story many times. Now, the present copy of “Bend” is published and available for anyone to read.  

During an interview, when asked what she hoped the audience took from her presentation, Jodie quoted famous author, Stephen King. “Editing is Divine!” She continued this thought, saying it is essential to know that it may take a dozen times to get something close to right.  

Olivia Lehman, sophomore student, stated that she thought the piece was an excellent and eloquent insight on human nature. Adding, “Not only was Mortags reading done very well, the setting of the library opposed to convocations in the Bradley theatre was much more comforting and personal.” Olivia finished by giving some advice for future readings, “I think the library could benefit from improved seating. Such as the number of chairs and more comfortable seats.” 

Coming up in the near future, expect more guest readers as, John Esch Library librarian, Melanie Jones has announced two more presentations for this semester. Lakeland Professor Yaron Zoller will be presenting his academic research on Wednesday, Oct. 2. Later in the month, Professor Karl Elder will also present his original work on Tuesday, Oct. 29. 


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