Events
  • Public-Library is a cross-disciplinary design studio in Los Angeles. They construct identities, concepts and experiences for brands through the practice of reduction using fundamental typographic theory and experimentation with space and form.

    Ramón Coronado and Marshall Rake met as design students at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. After studying, working, and exhibiting independently for many years—both stateside and internationally—their design philosophy and approach brought them back together as Public-Library in 2011.

  • Sandra Lim

    Mar 29| Lectures
    More

    Sandra Lim is the author of two collections of poetry, Loveliest Grotesque and The Wilderness, winner of the 2013 Barnard Women Poets Prize, selected by Louise Glück. Her work is also included in the anthologies Gurlesque, The Racial Imaginary, and Among Margins: An Anthology on Aesthetics. She has received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Getty Research Institute.

  • Intern Recruitment Day

    Mar 30| Special Event
    More
    Continental breakfast will be from 8:00 – 8:45, interviews will take place from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm. Otis welcomes companies that are recruiting for Summer internships in the following areas: Architecture/Landscape/Interiors, Digital Media, Communications Arts, Fashion Design, Fine Arts, Product Design, Toy Design.
  • A quintessentially Los Angeles artist, Larry Johnson has worked for over 4 decades investigating the inherent contradictions between the shiny surfaces and underlying cynical logics of American culture. His works reference the languages of animation (especially the fantasy worlds of Walt Disney), graphic and commercial design, and advertising.

  • A limited number of tickets are available to FUN HOME, an emotionally charged and poignant family drama, inspired by the graphic novel of the same name by Alison Bechdel, in which she explores her coming out and the suicide of her domineering father Bruce. Sign up in the Office of Student Activities located in the Student Life Center Room 150E.

  • Edgar Arceneaux was born in Los Angeles in 1972. He investigates historical patterns through drawings, installations, and multimedia events, such as the reenactment of Ben Vereen’s tragically misunderstood blackface performance at Ronald Reagan’s 1981 Inaugural Gala.

O-Tube

In Conversation with Author and Alumnus Victor Yates

Jun 16, 2016
Spotlight Category: Alumni

Graduate Writing alumnus Victor Yates' ('14 MFA) debut novel, A Love Like Blood recently received the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Debut Fiction. An author and educator, here Yates describes how he first got into writing and some of the challenges along the way.  

 

Can you give us a brief introduction of yourself and your work? 

I enrolled in the Writing Program at Otis College to become a professional writer. And, now I consider myself to be a professional writer. Since graduating from the program, I published my thesis project, a novel titled, A Love Like Blood which was awarded the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Debut Fiction. I freelance write for three local publications and I have taught various workshops including creative writing, spoken word, and writing for film. I am most proud of a one-day workshop that I taught at USC for LGBT youth and a one week workshop I taught in Malibu for youth affected by or infected with HIV.

 

When did you first discover your love of writing? 

I discovered my love of writing at 14. I read a poem by Maya Angelou called The Black Family Pledge. Soon after, I started writing poetry, but later moved to newspaper writing and then creative writing.

 

Publishing a book is a huge goal for many writers and quite an undertaking. How did this come about, and what was the process like for you?

I worked at a library in Ann Arbor, Michigan for a while. Shortly after working there, I started working for a newspaper and then two more newspapers hired me. I did not major in English or Writing in undergrad,  I just read voraciously for the library job and the newspaper jobs. One day, the opening scene for a book came to me - no middle or ending. So my entire approach was different for starting the project and writing the book was challenging. However, thanks to the writing program, I am better prepared and my hope is that the second book project will be easier.

 

What advice, if any, do you have for young writers?

Read, read, and read. Write, write, and write. Edit, edit, edit, edit, and edit. Then edit more.

 

What are you currently reading?

The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende.

 

How has being a part of the Otis community contributed to your practice? 

I am originally from Florida, but when I moved from Michigan back home, I could not get a writing job. A good friend lived in L.A. and I knew L.A. had a larger writing market, so I started researching writing programs. Otis’ program was a perfect match for me. I loved the curriculum, the writing workshop, and what the instructors were doing. I owe my writing career to the program, specifically the writing instructors, through them I was able to read in the ALOUD Reading Series through Central Library in downtown L.A. It is one of the most prestigious reading series in the country. I have received multiple writing workshop jobs because of Otis. Most importantly, I was able to develop my writing style. I like incorporating strange and unusual images into my writing along with sound and breath. Now, I understand the importance of community, writing workshops, and how to be part of a community. Currently, I work full-time at a trade school in Long Beach, but my  goal is to teach English Comp or Creative Writing at a community college. Because of the program, I feel prepared to do so.

 

Victor Yates is a graduate of the Graduate Creative Writing program at Otis College. His work has appeared in Windy City Times, Edge, and he is the winner of the Elma Stuckey Writing Award (1st place in poetry). Two of his poems were included in the anthology, “For Colored Boys,” which was edited by Keith Boykin. The anthology won the American Library Association’s Stonewall Book Award. A Love Like Blood is the winner of the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Debut Fiction and is available on Amazon. Keep up with the writings of Victor Yates by following his blog.

Tags
Otis College Ranked 6th in Nation by The Economist