8° FFF – L’angolo degli Autori –”PORTRAIT OF A MEXICANA IN IOWA CITY”

This rom-com-with-zomb TV pilot starts from and develops the template of the three-season HBO series “Bored to Death” (with Ted Danson). In the Mexico/Iowa series, a young Mexicana poet wins a scholarship to the Writers Workshop at the University of Iowa. The year is 1963 and she meets Raymond Carver (actually in Iowa City then) when both are taking a class from Kurt Vonnegut, Jr (actually teaching there). The two young creative writing students fall for each other, but she is a cultural Catholic and he is married. She is innocent and sweet, but not always. He is a rat, but not always.


Serious examination of love, marriage, and infidelity. Zombies provide background satire of academe and give comic relief. Set half in Mexico City and half in Iowa. Target ages 20 – 35.



I was there at the University of Iowa as a graduate student in the 1960s, living in married student housing. I have lived or observed much of what is in this screenplay.
Professional details: I am Emeritus Professor of English at Northern Arizona University, and am Honorary Research Fellow in English at the University of Sheffield, United Kingdom. I have written a dozen stage plays and screenplays including “Barack Obama Remembers a Young Poet” and “Margaret Cavendish, Virginia Woolf, and The Cypriot Goddess Natura” (performed in Nicosia at the CVAR Museum in April of 2017). Producer – “The Farce of the Fisherman,” performed in Nicosia at the CVAR Museum in March of 2018.

Pre-retirement activities: Post-doctoral Fellow, Yale University 1983; Guest Professor, University of Tuebingen, 1986; Senior Visiting Research Fellow, Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge University, 1996.

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