David Shields to highlight spring writers seriesTweet
The Binghamton Center for Writers’ spring series of events will feature best-selling authors David Shields, Pam Houston, Meg Wolitzer and Martin Espada, as well as emerging writers Metta Samá and José Antonio Rodriguez. All of these events are scheduled for 8 p.m. Tuesdays in S1-149. They are free and open to the public.
The series will open Feb. 19 with a visit from David Shields, the author of 14 books, including the NY Times best-selling “The Thing About Life is That One Day You’ll Be Dead;” “Black Planet: Facing Race During an NBA Season” (about which A.O. Scott of Newsday said: “He has produced one of the best books ever written on the subject of sport in America”); and “Remote: Reflections on Life in the Shadow of Celebrity.” Shields is probably best known for “Reality Hunger,” a book that he described to Stephen Colbert as “a call to arms to urge writers to ignore the laws regarding appropriation, obliterate the distinctions between fiction and nonfiction and to create new forms for the 21st century.” Shields’ latest book – “How Literature Saved My Life”—has just been released.
On March 12, the Center will welcome award-winning author Pam Houston, whose stories have been selected for The O. Henry Awards, The Pushcart Prize, and Best American Short Stories of the Century. Author of “Cowboys are My Weakness;” “Waltzing the Cat;” “Sight Hound;” a collection of essays called “A Little More About Me” and her hard-to-categorize but irresistible newest release, “Contents May Have Shifted.”
On March 19, the Center honors Meg Wolitzer, winner of the Binghamton University John Gardner Book Award in Fiction for “The Uncoupling,” a witty take on desire, passion and relationships. Wolitzer is noted as an astute cultural observer and an entertaining storyteller. Other books from this best-selling author include “The Ten Year Nap;” “The Position;” “The Wife;” and the just-released “The Interestings.”
On April 16, the Readers’ Series will feature a joint reading from two Binghamton University alumni: Metta Samá and José Antonio Rodríguez. Samá is the author of the poetry collections “South of Here” and “Nocturne Trio,” while Rodríguez has published “The Shallow End of Sleep” and the just-released “The Backlit Hour,” winner of the Stephen F. Austin University Press Poetry Prize.
The final reader in the Spring Readers’ Series will be poet Martin Espada on April 23. Espada is being recognized as the winner of the Binghamton University Milt Kessler Book Award in Poetry for “The Trouble Ball.” Hailed as “the Latino poet of his generation,” Espada has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize with his 2006 collection “The Republic of Poetry,” and has published more than 15 books as a poet, editor, essayist and translator.
In addition to the Readers’ Series, the Center for Writers, with the support of the Dean of Harpur College of Arts and Science, will also offer three free workshops that give students, faculty and community members the opportunity to learn about publishing and to meet directly with editors in an informal Q&A session. The Writing Life Series features conversations with working writer/ editors discussing craft, publishing and the writing life.
The first of these workshops for the spring semester will be held on Monday, Feb. 18 from 1:30–3:30 p.m. in the Graduate Student Lounge (LN-1104) at the base of the Library Tower (across from Jazzman’s Café) and will feature George Guida and Kate Falvey, editors of 2 Bridges Review, publishers of poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction. On Wednesday, March 13 from 1:30-3:30 p.m. in the Graduate Student Lounge, there will be an opportunity to meet with Jan Freeman, editor of Paris Press, a not-for-profit press publishing work by women that has been neglected or misrepresented by the literary world; and Wednesday, April 24 in the Grad Lounge from 1:30-3:30 p.m. with Beverly Matherne, poetry editor of Passages North, an annual literary journal that publishes short fiction, poetry and creative nonfiction.