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SWOSU Sponsored Programs Hosting Blake Sonobe Lecture Series on November 7

Dr. Blake and wife Janie SonobeDr. Blake and wife Janie Sonobe

“World Building in Modern Fantasy Literature” is the focus of the Dr. Blake Sonobe Lecture Series planned Thursday, November 7, on the Southwestern Oklahoma State University campus in Weatherford.

Dillon Martone and Dr. Denise Landrum-Geyer will speak at 6 p.m. in the Memorial Student Center East Ballroom. Admission is free, and there will be free pizza.

The pair will lead an interactive discussion that will explore common techniques applied to world building by modern fantasy writers, as well as methods to bring the fantasy genre into a more modern mold, avoiding tired tropes and problematic orcs.

Landrum-Geyer is an associate professor in the SWOSU Language & Literature Department, and Martone is a senior English student.

At the first session of the lecture series, the series’ namesake, Dr. Blake Sonobe, shared his experiences as an undergraduate researcher during his time at the Air Force Academy. Sonobe is a former provost at SWOSU. The evening’s featured speaker was Elisabeth Allbritton, an undergraduate researcher performing chemistry research under the mentorship of Dr. Tim Hubin, chair of the SWOSU Department of Chemistry and Physics. A senior from Tulsa, Albritton began her research career through Oklahoma-Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (OK-LSAMP), a program aimed at increasing the number of students from under-represented populations who receive degrees in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines.

During her time at SWOSU, Allbritton has presented her research at multiple venues and, most recently, spent 12 weeks working alongside fellow researchers in France. Albritton said that her research has provided her with once-in-a-lifetime opportunities that would not have otherwise been possible if not for the support of her mentors at SWOSU. 

The goal of the Blake Sonobe Lecture Series is that students and faculty come together to enjoy a meal and learn about what research looks like in various disciplines. All SWOSU students and faculty are invited to attend this fellowship of scholars. For more information or questions about the series, contact the Office of Sponsored Programs at or call Jennifer Cook-Johns at 580-774-7012.