Writing Now, Reading Now 2013-14

40th Anniversary of the Wichita State MFA Program

Writing Now Reading Now FlyerSponsored by Department of English, Ulrich Museum, University Libraries, Watermark Books & Café and Women’s Studies

View past readings here.

Thursday, September 12
5:30 p.m.
Ulrich Museum
Poetry Reading
Gregory Orr

Gregory Orr is the author of numerous poetry collections including "The River Inside the River" (2013); a nonfiction work, "Poetry as Survival"; and "The Blessing," a widely acclaimed nonfiction memoir that addresses the transformation of trauma into art. His many honors include the Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Guggenheim Fellowship and two NEA fellowships.

“Orr’s new book is a wonder, exploring such weighty themes as the sources of love, the sources of mourning, the working of redemption and memory, the ways in which these give rise to poetic utterance ... all in language as light as airborne thistledown." -- Albert Goldbarth

“[E]very poem is a house, and every house a poem.”
-- Gregory Orr

Friday, October 4
6 p.m. Reception
Ulrich Museum

7 p.m. Fiction Reading
CAC Theater
Alice McDermott

Alice McDermott is the author of seven novels including "Someone" (2013) and "Charming Billy," winner of the 1998 National Book Award for Fiction and the American Book Award. Her second novel "That Night" was nominated for the National Book Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, PEN/Faulkner Award and was a Pulitzer Prize finalist. Two of her other novels, "At Weddings and Wakes" and "After This," have been Pulitzer finalists as well. Book Magazine named McDermott’s "Child of My Heart" one of the 2002 Ten Best Novels, while the Book-of-the-Month Club named it a main selection.

The New York Times review of her “luminous and affecting” novel "Charming Billy" describes the “wisdom and grace” of McDermott’s writing, observing how she refuses “to sentimentalize her characters, even as she forces us to recognize their decency and goodness.” This reading is presented by Farrar, Straus & Giroux and Watermark Books & Café. After the reading, Alice McDermott will be available to sign copies of her new novel Someone, as well as her previous titles. Signing line numbers and books are available at Watermark Books & Café after August 26 and the evening of the reading.

“The aim of literature ... is the creation of a strange object covered with fur which breaks your heart.”
-- Donald Barthelme

Friday, October 25
5:30 p.m.
Ulrich Museum
Fiction Reading
Kevin Brockmeier

Kevin Brockmeier is the author of short stories which have been included in the Best American Short Stories series and have won some of the most prestigious awards given to short fiction: three O. Henry Prizes, the Nelson Algren Award and the Italo Calvino Short Fiction Award. Described as a writer of fantasy and literary fiction, he’s written three novels for adults: "The Truth About Celia," "The Brief History of the Dead" and "The Illumination" as well as two children’s novels, "City of Names" and "Grooves: A Kind of Mystery."

"Great literature is simply language charged with meaning to the utmost possible degree."
-- Ezra Pound        

Thursday, November 14
5:30 p.m.
Ulrich Museum
Fiction Reading
Peter Behrens

Peter Behrens’s novel "The Law of Dreams" won the Governor-General’s Award, Canada’s most prestigious book prize. He’s the author of a second novel, "The O’Briens," and the story collection "Nightdriving." His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Tin House, Brick, Best Canadian Stories and many anthologies. He is the Fall 2013 Wichita State Visiting Distinguished Fiction Writer.

“Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry.”
-- Cassandra Clare

Thursday, April 10
5:30 p.m.
Ulrich Museum
Poetry Reading
Ed Skoog

Ed Skoog, the Spring 2014 WSU Visiting Distinguished Poet, is the author of two poetry collections, "Mister Skylight" and the 2013 collection "Rough Day." He’s been awarded the 2005 Marble Faun Prize in Poetry and the Lyric Poetry Award from the Poetry Society of American. His poems have appeared in Poetry, The New Republic, NO: a Journal of the Arts, Sonora Review, Barrow Street, Willow Springs, New Orleans Review and Ploughshares.

"Everywhere I go I find a poet has been there before me."
-- Sigmund Freud

Sunday, April 27
2 p.m.
Ablah Library
Fiction & Poetry Reading
2013 MFA Graduates

As it celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2014, the Wichita State MFA program celebrates the accomplishments of the class of 2014, a group of poets and fiction writers drawn from all over the country.

“That is part of the beauty of all literature. You discover that your longings are universal longings, that you're not lonely and isolated from anyone. You belong.”
-- F.Scott Fitzgerald