The Deacon Blog

A magazine staff blog with news of alumni and the WFU community


Parker Bradway (’11), WFU singer/prankster returns

At the counter at the bookstore on The Quad today, I couldn’t help but notice a new stack of CDs. There, on the cover, wearing a WF cap, was Parker Bradway (’11), a president’s aide from Georgia who graduated in May and has landed in Nashville. These CDs were his debut recordings, a fact mentioned proudly by Wake Forest’s religion department in its online updates. (His parents must be proud, too. They are Scott Bradway and Lee Burroughs Bradway, both from the class of 1983.)

Bradway studied religion, psychology and entrepreneurship while he was here. He also made news around Wake Forest when his famous YouTube video went viral on campus in fall 2010. With David Cox (’11) and as part of the Traditions Council efforts, Bradway walked around with his microphone to film  “Messing with Freshmen,” asking chin-scratching questions about where the forest of Wake might be found, when the Winston-Salem witch trials occurred and what the O stood for in President Nathan Hatch’s middle name. The best scene unfolded on a guys’ freshmen hall. You’ll have to see it to appreciate it. No spoiler alert here.

Twitter is lighting up with news that singer and songwriter Bradway will be back on campus tonight to perform at The Barn at 8 p.m. If you want to hear his CD’s featured song, “Carolina Blue,” listen here. But beware: If you go to the show, during these Halloween days don’t fall for the Winston-Salem witch trials line if Bradway corners you. You’ll be sorry.

A Vanity Fair shoot for a Demon Deacon

From The Wall Street Journal to Vanity Fair, best-selling author Emily Giffin (’94) is making news in 2011. The February issue of Vanity Fair shines its spotlight on Atlanta’s “literary sorority” in the article “Belles, Books, and Candor” by Alan Deutschman.

For the photo shoot, Giffin posed with eight other female writers — all in formal gowns — on the front lawn of the Atlanta History Center’s Swan House. Writes Deutschman, “Typically, these women left the South in their 20s, heading for New York, Chicago, or San Francisco. But in time they came home. And they’re now turning Atlanta into the most vibrant new literary scene outside of Brooklyn.”

Giffin’s stops were in London and Manhattan. Her debut novel titled “Something Borrowed” made The New York Times bestseller list in 2004. Her fifth and most recent novel, “Heart of the Matter,” was released last summer. This WFU graduate, with her double major in history and English, won a lofty compliment from Deutschman, who called her “Atlanta’s modern-day Jane Austen.” In Giffin’s company at Swan House were Kathryn Stockett (“The Help” ), Sheri Joseph, Susan Rebecca White, Karin Slaughter, Amanda Gable, Joshilyn Jackson, Natasha Trethewey and Jessica Handler.

Giffin also got a mention in The Wall Street Journal this month in an article about how authors move their own merchandise through such promotions as iPod giveaways and raffles on social networks. “Last year, to show support for a less-established colleague she admired, best-selling chick-lit author Emily Giffin used her blog to offer a signed copy of one of her own books to anyone who, over a 24-hour period, bought a copy of the novel ‘Pieces of Happily Ever After’ by Irene Zutell and provided a receipt,” according the Journal. Zutell’s agent told Journal reporter Joanne Kaufman that the gesture made the book a bestseller on the Amazon and Barnes & Noble websites.