The Creative Writing Program’s Spring 2020 Reading Series begins in January with events featuring Oscar-winning actor Dianne Wiest (Jan. 30), Sheila Heti (Feb. 10), Terrance Hayes (Feb. 13), and Pulitzer-Prize-winning poet Sharon Olds (Feb. 20).

The Lillian Vernon Creative Writers House

The New York University Creative Writing Program’s Spring 2020 Reading Series begins in January with events featuring Oscar-winning actor Dianne Wiest (Jan. 30), Sheila Heti (Feb. 10), Terrance Hayes (Feb. 13), and Pulitzer-Prize-winning poet Sharon Olds (Feb. 20), among others.

All events are held in the program’s Greenwich Village home, the Lillian Vernon Creative Writers House, located at 58 W. 10th Street (between 5th and 6th Aves.) and are free and open to the public—unless otherwise noted. Seating for free events is on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, call 212.998.8816 or visit Subways: F, L, M (14th Street/6th Avenue); 1 (Christopher Street); A, B, C, D, E, F, M (West 4th Street).

Thursday, January 30, 7 p.m.
The Dolphin Letters, 1970–1979: Elizabeth Hardwick, Robert Lowell, and Their Circle
Readings by poet and editor Saskia Hamilton and actor Dianne Wiest
Hosted by Catherine Barnett

Poet Saskia Hamilton is the editor of The Dolphin Letters, 1970–1979: Elizabeth Hardwick, Robert Lowell, and Their Circle (2019). Her poetry collections include Corridor: Poems (2014), Canal: New and Selected Poems (2005), Divide These (2005), and As for Dream (2001). Dianne Wiest has received two Academy Awards—both for Best Supporting Actress (Hannah and Her Sisters [1987] and Bullets Over Broadway [1995]).

Thursday, February 6, 7 p.m.
The New Salon: Writers in Conversation
Tina Chang
In conversation with Matt Brogan
Co-sponsored with the Poetry Society of America

Tina Chang is an American poet, teacher, and editor. In 2010, she was the first woman to be named Poet Laureate of Brooklyn and she continues to serve in this role. She is the author of three poetry collections: Hybrida (W. W. Norton, May 2019), Of Gods & Strangers (Four Way Books, 2011), and Half-Lit Houses (Four Way Books, 2004). Chang received her MFA in poetry from Columbia University. She teaches poetry at Sarah Lawrence College.

Friday, February 7, 5 p.m.
Cave Canem Presents: New Works
Lauren K. Alleyne, t'ai freedom ford, and avery r. young
Co-sponsored with Cave Canem Foundation

Lauren K. Alleyne is the author of two collections of poetry, Difficult Fruit (Peepal Tree Press 2014), and Honeyfish (New Issues & Peepal Tree, 2019). She is currently the assistant director of the Furious Flower Poetry Center and an associate professor of English at James Madison University. t’ai freedom ford’s first poetry collection, how to get over (2017), is available from Red Hen Press. Her second poetry collection, & more black (2019), is with Augury Books. Interdisciplinary artist avery r. young’s most recent book is neckbone: visual verses (Northwestern University Press, 2019).

Monday, February 10, 2 p.m.
Reading and Conversation
Sheila Heti
Hosted by Meghan O’Rourke

Sheila Heti is the author of eight books of fiction and nonfiction, including the novels Ticknor, Motherhood, and How Should a Person Be? and the story collection, The Middle Stories. She was named one of "The New Vanguard" by The New York Times book critics. Her most recent novel, Motherhood, was chosen by the book critics at The New York Times as one of their top books of 2018, and New York magazine chose it as its top book of the year. Her novel, How Should a Person Be? was named one of the 12 “New Classics of the 21st century” by Vulture. It was a New York Times Notable Book and a best book of the year in The New Yorker.  She is the former Interviews Editor of The Believer magazine. Her fiction and criticism have appeared in The New Yorker, McSweeney’s, Bookforum, n+1, Granta, The London Review of Books, and elsewhere.

Thursday, February 13, 7 p.m.
The 2019 Blaney Lecture
Terrance Hayes
Co-presented with the Academy of American Poets

Terrance Hayes’s latest poetry collection American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin was a finalist for the 2018 National Book Award. His collection How to Be Drawn was a finalist for the 2015 National Book Award, the 2016 National Book Critics Circle Award, and received the 2016 NAACP Image Award for Poetry. His other books are Lighthead, Wind in a Box, Hip Logic, and Muscular Music, and To Float In The Space Between: Drawings and Essays in Conversation with Etheridge Knight. The recipient of numerous honors and fellowships, he is a senior faculty member of the NYU Creative Writing Program.

Thursday, February 20, 7 p.m.
Poetry Reading
Edward Hirsch and Sharon Olds
Hosted by Deborah Landau
RSVP required:

Edward Hirsch has received numerous awards and fellowships, including a MacArthur Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Ingram Merrill Foundation Award, a Pablo Neruda Presidential Medal of Honor, the Prix de Rome, and an Academy of Arts and Letters Award. In 2008, he was elected a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. His first collection of poems, For the Sleepwalkers (1981), received the Delmore Schwartz Memorial Award from New York University and the Lavan Younger Poets Award from the Academy of American Poets. His second collection, Wild Gratitude (1986), won the National Book Critics Circle Award. Sharon Olds is the author of 12 books of poetry, including Odes (2016) and Stag’s Leap (2012), winner of the Pulitzer Prize and England’s T. S. Eliot Prize. In 1997, she received the Harriet Monroe Poetry Award. From 1998-2000 she was the New York State Poet Laureate. Olds holds the Erich Maria Remarque Professorship at NYU. Her latest collection, Arias, was published by Knopf in October 2019.

Friday, February 21, 5 p.m.
Poetry Reading
Dobby Gibson and Matthew Rohrer

Dobby Gibson is the author of Polar, which won the Alice James Award, Skirmish, and It Becomes You, which was shortlisted for the Believer Poetry Award. His newest collection of poems is Little Glass Planet (Graywolf Press, 2019). Matthew Rohrer is the author of The Sky Contains the Plans (Wave Books, 2020), The Others (Wave Books, 2017), which was the winner of the 2017 Believer Book Award, Surrounded by Friends (Wave Books, 2015), Destroyer and Preserver (Wave Books, 2011), A Plate of Chicken (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2009), Rise Up (Wave Books, 2007) and A Green Light (Verse Press, 2004), which was shortlisted for the 2005 Griffin Poetry Prize, among others. His first book, A Hummock in the Malookas was selected for the National Poetry Series by Mary Oliver in 1994.

Thursday, February 27, 7 p.m.
The Yale Review Presents
Shane McCrae, Jerome Ellison Murphy, and Monica Youn
Hosted by editor Meghan O’Rourke
Co-sponsored with The Yale Review

Shane McCrae is the author of six books of poetry, most recently The Gilded Auction Block (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2019), and In the Language of My Captor (Wesleyan University Press, 2017), which was a finalist for the National Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. He is the recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. Jerome Ellison Murphy earned his MFA from the Creative Writing Program at NYU, where he currently serves as Undergraduate Programs Manager. His critical writing has appeared in LA Review of Books, Publishers Weekly, Poets & Writers, The Adroit Journal, The Brooklyn Rail, Lambda Literary, and American Poets. His poetry appears at LitHub, Narrative Magazine, The Awl, Bellevue Literary Review, Spunk Arts Journal, Pleiades, and was also recorded for NPR as part of the Emotive Fruition poetry performance series. Monica Youn is the author of Blackacre (Graywolf Press, 2016), which won the William Carlos Williams Award, was a finalist for the National Book Critic Circle Award and the PEN Open Book Award, and was longlisted for the National Book Award. Her previous poetry collections are Ignatz (Four Way Books, 2010), which was a finalist for the National Book Award, and Barter (Graywolf Press, 2003).

Friday, February 28, 2 p.m.
Cave Canem Presents: Poets on Craft
Christian Campbell and Cheryl Boyce Taylor
Moderated by Samantha Thornhill
Co-sponsored with Cave Canem Foundation

Christian Campbell is a Trinidadian Bahamian poet, essayist and cultural critic, and the author of Running the Dusk (Peepal Tree Press, 2010), which won the Aldeburgh First Collection Prize, was a finalist for the Forward Prize for the Best First Collection and the Cave Canem Prize among other awards. Cheryl Boyce-Taylor is the recipient of the 2015 Barnes and Noble Writers For Writers Award and the founder and curator of Calypso Muse and the Glitter Pomegranate Performance Series. She is the author of four  collections of poetry: Raw Air, Night When Moon Follows, Convincing the Body, and Arrival.


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