Open main menu

Alice Friman (born October 20, 1933) is an American poet.[1] She has taught at a number of universities and helped to found the Indiana Writers' Center. She is Professor Emerita at the University of Indianapolis, and poet-in-residence at Georgia College & State University.[2] She hosts a poetry podcast, "Ask Alice".


Friman was born and raised in New York City. She married Elmer Friman in 1955, followed his job to Dayton, Ohio, in 1956, and in 1960 moved to Indianapolis, Indiana. Their children are H. Richard Friman, Paul Lawrence Friman, and Lillian Elaine Wilson. They divorced in 1975 and she married Marshall Bruce Gentry in 1989.


Friman is a graduate of Brooklyn College (1954), holds a master's degree from Butler University (1971), and received an honorary doctorate from the University of Indianapolis (2002). She started writing poetry seriously in her forties and is one of the founders of the Indiana Writers' Center. Friman taught English and creative writing at the University of Indianapolis from 1971 to 1993 and has been Professor Emerita of English and Creative Writing since 1993. She was named "Teacher of the Year" at U of I in 1993. She also taught at Randolph College, Ball State University, Indiana State University, IUPUI, and Curtin University in Perth, Australia. In 2003 she moved to Milledgeville, Georgia, where she is poet-in-residence in the MFA program at Georgia College & State University. Friman also hosts a poetry podcast titled Ask Alice,[3] which is sponsored by the Georgia College MFA program and can be seen on YouTube.


Friman has published six full-length collections of poetry: The View from Saturn (LSU Press, 2014),[4] Vinculum (LSU Press, 2011),[5] The Book of the Rotten Daughter (BkMk Press, 2006), Zoo (University of Arkansas Press, 1999), Inverted Fire (BkMk Press, 1997),[6] and Reporting from Corinth (The Barnwood Press, 1984).[7] She has also authored several chapbooks of poetry: Driving for Jimmy Wonderland (Barnwood Press, 1992), Insomniac Heart (Years Press, 1990, 2nd printing 1991), Song to My Sister (Writers' Center Press, 1979), and A Question of Innocence (Raintree Press, Bloomington, IN, 1978). Her poetry has been included in numerous anthologies, including Pushcart Prize XXXVI and The Best American Poetry 2009. Essays by Friman include “Truth: The Road or the Rug” [essay on Carson McCullers] (published in The Georgia Review, 2012); “Letting Go” (published in The Movable Nest, Helicon Nine, Kansas City, MO, 2007); “The Office” (published in Arts & Letters Journal of Contemporary Culture, 2004); “Inking In the Myth” (published in Hopewell Review, 1996–97, and expanded in anthology Sleeping with One Eye Open: Women Writers and the Art of Survival, University of Georgia Press, 1999).

Awards and honorsEdit

Friman's many awards include the Pushcart Prize (2012); Ekphrasis Prize for Poetry (2012); the Georgia Writers' Association's Georgia Author of the Year Award for Poetry (2012); James Boatwright III Prize for Poetry, Shenandoah (2001); Creative Renewal Fellowship, Arts Council of Indianapolis (1999-2000); Individual Artist Fellowship, Indiana Arts Commission (1996–97); Poetry Society of America's Lucille Medwick Memorial Award (1993), Cecil Hemley Memorial Award (1990), and Consuelo Ford Award (1988); New England Poetry Club's Gretchen Warren Award (2011) and Erika Mumford Prize (1990, 2008); and Society for the Study of Midwestern Literature's Midwest Poetry Award (1990). She has been a Fellow at numerous literary colonies and centers including MacDowell, Yaddo, Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest, VCCA, Millay, Leighton, Carson McCullers Center for Writers and Musicians, and Georgia Review/Bowers House Literary Center.

Critical opinionEdit

Reviewers have expressed appreciation of Friman's poetry in publications including Poetry Daily,[8] Image Journal,[9] KCUR,[10] Hollins Critic,[11] and The Prairie Schooner.[12]


  1. ^ Friman's work occupies new vantage point, Indianapolis Star, Sept 7, 1997
  2. ^ "A Closer Look: Alice Friman". Innisfree Poetry Journal. Retrieved 11 May 2015.
  3. ^ "Alice Friman". NUVO. Retrieved 11 May 2015.
  4. ^ "The View from Saturn by Alice Friman". The Rumpus. Retrieved 11 May 2015.
  5. ^ "Alice Friman". The Cortland Review: Issue 58. Retrieved 11 May 2015.
  6. ^ "Alice Friman". The Cortland Review: Issue 8. Retrieved 11 May 2015.
  7. ^ Poetry Society, Charleston Post Courier, Jan 31, 2008
  8. ^ Kelly Cherry, Poetry Daily: featured poet
  9. ^ Artist of the Month, Image Journal, April 2013
  10. ^ Elam, Angela; Walsh, Jamie. "For Poet Alice Friman, Kansas City Is An Unexpected Mecca". KCUR. Retrieved 11 May 2015.
  11. ^ Huddle, David. "Vinculum: Poems.(Book review)." Hollins Critic. 2011. Retrieved May 11, 2015 from HighBeam Research: Archived 2015-09-24 at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ Kallet, Marilyn. "Alice Friman. The Book of the Rotten Daughter.(Book review)." Prairie Schooner. University of Nebraska Press. 2008. Retrieved May 11, 2015 from HighBeam Research: Archived 2015-09-24 at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit