Batesville Herald Tribune, Batesville, Indiana

Features

June 21, 2013

BSU author's novel inspires musical

OSGOOD – “Write what you know,” authors have long been advised. Cathy Day, who teaches creative writing at Ball State University, found success doing just that, she told about 20 during a June 6 discussion at the Osgood Public Library sponsored by its book club.

Her 2004 debut novel, “The Circus in Winter,” is about her hometown of Peru in northern Indiana. Yet “southern Indiana has been my ... home for quite a while.” Her parents now live in Aurora, her sister works at Bright Elementary School and her mother and brother used to work in Batesville.

One woman asked about her writing beginnings. “Like a lot of writers, I love to read,” she answered. While devouring “Silas Marner” at 12, “I read this really beautiful paragraph .... What occurred to me, a writer could put words together in such a way to make readers feel something.”

At DePauw University, Day had to write a senior thesis. The professor pointed out, “‘You’re from that weird circus town. Why don’t you write about it?’”

The Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus performers wintered there from 1884-1944 because the owners lived in the town. She explained, “The kids in Peru hate the circus. They’re sick of it,” just like Gettysburg residents are tired of the Civil War.

But she did have stories. “My great-great-uncle, my mother’s sister’s husband’s father, got killed by the elephant.”

Her book began as a 50-page nonfiction essay. She wrote more stories before earning a master’s degree at the University of Alabama in 1995 and the rest of the chapters after that.

One professor said some of her stories were like Victorian dollhouses. Day got the period details right, but the characters felt like dolls, not real persons. She realized, “You have to get inside the characters in the same way actors and actresses do. For me, my favorite stories are the ones when I’m learning as much about myself” and putting those emotions into the characters. “They are literally parts of me.”

Text Only
Features
  • nws - bv070814 - muething RAA gave theater founder his start When John Leo Muething was 5 and living in Batesville, his three older siblings and parents, Dr. Steve and Meg Muething, starred in the Rural Alliance for the Arts production of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” but, much to his dismay,

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv070814 - jeffers West Point graduation Jeffers savors West Point experience Tom Jeffers, a 2010 Batesville High School graduate, recently graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point. The Fort Sill, Oklahoma, resident is the son of former Batesville residents Tom and Kathleen Jeffers, Alexandria, Virginia,

    July 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv062714 - STEM - sara bauer Students learn valuable STEM skills Two area students attended the U.S. Military Academy at West Point’s Middle School STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) Workshop June 2-5.Alexandra Cottingham, Batesville, daughter of Rebecca Krieger Cottingham and Michael Cottingham,

    June 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • nws - bv062014 - Eckstein family Cancer hits home for local family Cancer survivors and those who have lost their fight with the disease will be honored during the June 21-22 Ripley County Relay for Life. One local individual who will be remembered is Mark Eckstein, Batesville, who worked for the Batesville Water an

    June 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv061314 - Wilson, Alex Wilson explores CIA and Ukraine Next month in Chicago, Alex Wilson will start working as an investment banking analyst at Bank of Montreal (BMO), doing financial analysis and modeling for a group within the Capital Markets division. The 2010 Batesville High School graduate just ear

    June 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv060614 - Betts in Scotland Student helps mastermind museum exhibit Tomorrow Alex Betts, a 2009 Batesville High School graduate, will be standing at a museum door in England, welcoming his family (parents Bill and George Ann Betts and brothers Jairus, 19, and Arno, 14) to an exhibit he helped create. "Diving into Dur

    June 6, 2014 3 Photos

  • nws - bv051614 - McDonough speaking Detective recalls working with Princess Diana BROOKVILLE - Rich McDonough has had an exciting career as a private detective, working for various celebrities and political figures. He told the story about one of his most memorable clients, the late Princess Diana of Wales, on April 16 as part of

    May 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv050214 - Kreinhop, Bertha with book Cancer battle recounted in book

    May 2, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv041814 - Harley, Bill (entertaining) Students sing along with Harley

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv032114 - sidell mission trip 1 Sidell helps people in Burkina Faso

    March 22, 2014 2 Photos

Featured Ads
AP Video
Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Obama Voices Concern About Casualties in Mideast Diplomacy Intensifies Amid Mounting Gaza Toll AP Exclusive: American Beaten in Israel Speaks Obama Protects Gay, Transgender Workers Raw: Gaza Rescuers Search Rubble for Survivors Raw: International Team Inspects MH17 Bodies Raw: 25 Family Members Killed in Gaza Airstrike US Teen Beaten in Mideast Talks About Ordeal 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success
Seasonal Content
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Facebook