Next reading — Sunday February 17th at the Highland Ballroom


Thomas Lake, a senior writer for Sports Illustrated, is the third of Robert and Elizabeth Lake’s six home-schooled children. He spent seven years working for newspapers in Georgia, Massachusetts, and Florida before he caught his big break, in 2008, when Gary Smith helped him get a freelance assignment for Sports Illustrated. That story, “2 on 5,” won the Henry Luce Award for story of the year among all the magazines of Time Incorporated, the nation’s largest magazine publisher. Lake believes in using the techniques of investigative reporting to uncover good deeds and prove people right. He has written about a softball player who carried her injured opponent around the bases, a buzzer-beating three-pointer that actually saved people from a tornado, and the man falsely accused of cutting Michael Jordan from his high school basketball team. Lake graduated from Herkimer County Community College in upstate New York and Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts. His work has been anthologized in three editions of the annual Best American Sports Writing collection, as well as the book Next Wave: America’s New Generation of Great Literary Journalists. He lives in Decatur. You can e-mail him at and follow him on Twitter @thomaslake. In 2011 he told the story of his life in a speech at the chapel of Gordon College. That speech can easily be found on YouTube.


Andrew Plattner is the author of two collections of stories: Winter Money (Flannery O’Connor Award winner, University of Georgia Pres) and A Marriage of Convenience (Bookmark Press).  His forthcoming novel,Offerings from a Rust Belt Jockey, won the Mid-Career Novel Prize from Dzanc Books. He also has forthcoming work in The Southern Review, Chattahooche Review, Sewanee Review and Folio.


Michael David Murphy is an artist in Atlanta, Georgia.  His installation, “Unphotographable”, was shown at Festival Images in Vevey, Switzerland in 2012.  Michael is Program Manager for Atlanta Celebrates Photography, Editor for Fall Line Press, and has an MFA in English from the University of Washington.

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