Chad

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“Make Love, Not War,” a poem by Ada Jo Mann (Chad)
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“Peace Corps Crown” — A poem by Ada Jo Mann (Chad)
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Michael Varga’s (Chad) award winning story published in Glimmer Train
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Review: UNDER CHAD’S SPELL by Michael Varga (Chad)
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Free e-version of UNDER CHAD’S SPELL by Michael Varga (Chad)
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Michael Varga (Chad 1977-79) wins Glimmer Train Fiction Award for June
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A Writer Writes: “Addicted to Chad” by Michael Varga (Chad)
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A Writer Writes: Three short essays by George Branson (Chad)

“Make Love, Not War,” a poem by Ada Jo Mann (Chad)

  • Make Love, Not War by Ada Jo Mann (Chad 1967–69) We joined the Peace Corps to keep my new husband From going to War. We flew to the heart of darkest Africa And changed our lives. We learned the language of the village And wrote it down. We made love under a gauzy net And changed our lives. We drew our water from the police yard spigot And kept it cold. We took drugs against Malaria and for amusement And changed our lives. We taught about clean water and latrines To children and chiefs. We wrote letters and made tapes and changed our lives. We made good friends from around the globe And shared their joy. We packed our bags with memories that Had changed our lives. • In her retirement, RPCV Ada Jo Mann is writing poetry and participates in a Poetry Circle at Politics and Prose . . .

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“Peace Corps Crown” — A poem by Ada Jo Mann (Chad)

  In her retirement, RPCV Ada Jo Mann is writing poetry and participates in a Poetry Circle at Politics and Prose bookstore in Washington, D.C. Recently her writing group was studying the contemporary poet, Patricia Smith, who writes complicated “crown sonnet” poems. Ada Jo decided to write a crown sonnet poem about her Peace Corps experience. The poem is actually 15 sonnets with the 15th sonnet made up of the first lines of each of the previous 14 sonnets, and her whole poem is focused on just one topic, her Peace Corps country, Chad. • Peace Corps Crown By Ada Jo Mann (Chad 1967-69) The toughest job you’ll ever love, they say And certainly a better choice than war A two-year stint on some forgotten shore So far from friends and family, should I stay? Or say my sad goodbyes and fly away. The choice is made-go forth and join the Corps Soon . . .

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Michael Varga’s (Chad) award winning story published in Glimmer Train

Michael Varga’s short story, “Chad Erupts in Strife,” which won the Fiction Open in 2014 from Glimmer Train Magazine [“harder to get into than Harvard”], is published in November (Issue #96) of the magazine). The story centers on how a Peace Corps Volunteer’s family reacts when word arrives in a cryptic newspaper article that war has broken out in Chad. Michael (Chad 1977–79) is a  Foreign Service Officer, playwright and actor, as well as a writer of fiction.  Three of his plays have been produced, and one published (Payable Upon Return).  His Peace Corps novel, Under Chad’s Spell, published by Peace Corps Writers, is available at Amazon.com.  For other works by Michael Varga, visit his website at www.michaelvarga.com.

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Review: UNDER CHAD’S SPELL by Michael Varga (Chad)

Under Chad’s Spell (Peace Corps novel) by Michael Varga (Chad 1977–79) CreateSpace August 2014 378 pages $16.99 (paperback), $9.99 (Kindle) Reviewed by John Kennedy (Ghana 1965–68) • Under Chad’s Spell is a fine book. I enjoyed reading it from start to finish. It’s an easy read. Michael Varga’s story kept me entertained on many levels. I recommend this book to all over the age of eighteen. Read this book and you will know more about Chad, the people of Chad, and the experience of being a Peace Corp Volunteer in Chad. I also believe that if you are open to exploring the possibilities of how your life might have been different if you had been a PCV in Chad, you will learn something about yourself, your past and possible future by reading this book. That’s a heavy burden to place on a book, but for me, Under Chad’s Spell did . . .

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Free e-version of UNDER CHAD’S SPELL by Michael Varga (Chad)

The Kindle edition of Under Chad’s Spell, a Peace Corps novel by Michael Varga (Chad 1977-79.), is available for free for a limited period of time at Amazon.com. The promotion will end without warning, so if you have an interest in having the Kindle edition of the book, now’s the time to download it. Under Chad’s Spell tells the story a group of Peace Corps Volunteers serving in Chad in the 1970s when civil war breaks out. To receive the Kindle version of Under Chad’s Spell from Amazon.com for no cost, click on the book cover or the bold book title.

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Michael Varga (Chad 1977-79) wins Glimmer Train Fiction Award for June

Glimmer Train June 2014 Fiction Open 1st Place Michael Varga receives $2,500 for short story “Chad Erupts in Strife.” After his tour in Chad, Michael Varga became a Foreign Service Officer serving primarily in the Middle East. He holds a Master’s degree in Economics from the University of Notre Dame and a Bachelor’s degree in English from Rider University. Michael is also playwright and actor. Three of his plays have been produced. “Collapsing into Zimbabwe,” a short story, earned him first prize in the competition sponsored by the Toronto Star. His columns have appeared in various newspapers and journals. This will be his first off-campus fiction in print. www.michaelvarga.com. Here’s what Mike has to say about his writing and himself, and the Peace Corps. I went to Chad in 1977 as a 21-year-old freshly minted college grad in the Peace Corps. Chad has been very much a part of my personal narrative . . .

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A Writer Writes: “Addicted to Chad” by Michael Varga (Chad)

A Writer Writes Michael Varga (Chad 1977–79) is a retired American diplomat, who spent much of his career in the Middle East. The BBC broadcast his short story “There Are No Kangaroos In Egypt,” and four of his plays have been produced and one published (Payable Upon Return; Juniper Press, 1983). One of his essays was used by the Peace Corps as the introduction to a book, Uncommon Journeys: Peace Corps Adventures Across Cultures, published in 2004. Other stories, essays and poems of his have appeared in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The South Bend Tribune, The Foreign Service Journal, Commonweal, Archer, Earthwise, The New Jersey Poetry Monthly, Notre Dame Magazine, The Scholastic, Cabin Fever, and Rider University Magazine. The Peace Corps has a slideshow on its website about his service in Chad, entitled “Africa Colors A Destiny.” This essay was first published in Literal Latte in 2011. • Addicted to Chad . . .

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A Writer Writes: Three short essays by George Branson (Chad)

A Writer Writes George Branson (Chad 1975-78) was a water well driller in country. Since then, and over the years, he has written several short pieces on his experiences in Africa. One of his African pieces won first prize at the Space Coast Writers Guild Conference in Coco Beach. His pieces are short and humorous, all non-fiction vignettes. He has also written a few fables/parables that draw on the animal characters in African folklore. Here are three of George’s essays. • CAMEROON VACATION In early ’77, when we had been drilling wells in Chad for The Peace Corps for well over a year, one of my fellow well drillers, Mark, and I decided to take our vacation in Cameroon, where it was a lot greener, a welcome change from the desert. We got a real kick out of Western Cameroon, the old English speaking part of the country. The people . . .

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