Visiting Writers

Drawing of a roseThe Visiting Writer Series at Reed College is sponsored by the Department of English. The intent is to bring interesting and diverse writers of prose and poetry to Reed to enhance our courses with readings and discussions.

The Department maintains a mailing list to which interested people can subscribe, to receive details of the upcoming Readings. The mailings are either electronic or paper. You can subscribe by emailing the Department office at vswr@reed.edu or calling the Department at 503-777-7753.

Visiting Writers Series will take place this year in the Eliot Chapel. The readings begin at 6:30pm. Books are sold and refreshments are served!

2015-16 Schedule

View a list of former visiting writers.

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Tom Barbash

Reading (Free and open to the public)

Thursday, October 8, 6:30 PM
Eliot Chapel

Tom Barbash is the author of the award winning novel, The Last Good Chance, and the New York Times Bestselling nonfiction book, On Top of the World. His stories and articles have been published in The Best American Non-Required Reading, Tin House, McSweeney's, OneStory, Narrative, The Missouri Review, VQR, Men's Journal, ESPN the Magazine, the Observer, The New York Times, Bookforum, Salon, The Believer, and other publications, and have been performed on National Public Radio for their Selected Shorts Series. His short story collection, Stay Up With Me, was selected last year as a Book of the Year by NPR, Amazon, the San Francisco Chronicle, The Independent of London, and will be published this year in France.

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Emily Hunt

Poetry Reading (Free and open to the public)

Thursday, October 29, 6:30 PM
Eliot Chapel

Emily Hunt is the author of the poetry collection Dark Green (The Song Cave, 2015), named a "standout debut" by Publishers Weekly. She holds an MFA from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and her poems have appeared in The Iowa Review, the PEN Poetry Series, TYPO, The Volta, and Diagram, among others. In 2013, Brave Men Press published This Always Happens, a book of her drawings, and she has provided cover art for several poetry collections. She lives in San Francisco, where she is currently working on a second book of poems.

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Lucy Corin

Reading (Free and open to the public)

Thursday, November 5, 6:30 PM
Eliot Chapel

Lucy Corin is the author of the short story collections One Hundred Apocalypses and Other Apocalypses (McSweeney's Books), and The Entire Predicament (Tin House Books) and the novel Everyday Psychokillers: A History for Girls (FC2). Stories have appeared in American Short Fiction, Conjunctions, Bomb, Tin House Magazine, and elsewhere, and her work is included in the forthcoming New American Stories anthology from Vintage. She was awarded the American Academy of Arts and Letters Rome Prize and currently directs the Program in Creative Writing at the University of California, Davis.

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Mary Jo Bang

Poetry Reading (Free and open to the public)

Thursday, November 12, 6:30 PM
Eliot Chapel

Mary Jo Bang is the author of seven books of poems: Apology for Want, Louise in Love, The Downstream Extremity of the Isle of Swans, The Eye Like a Strange Balloon, The Bride of E, and Elegy, which received the National Book Critics Circle award. Her most recent collection is The Last Two Seconds. She has also published a translation of Dante's Inferno, with illustrations by Henrik Drescher. She's been the recipient of a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, and a Berlin Prize Fellowship from the American Academy in Berlin. She is a Professor of English at Washington University in St. Louis, where she teaches in the Creative Writing Program.

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Karen Russell

Reading (Free and open to the public)

Thursday, February 4, 6:30 PM
Eliot Chapel

Karen Russell is the author of the story collections St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves and Vampires in the Lemon Grove, the novella Sleep Donation, and the novel Swamplandia!, which was named one of the five best fiction books of 2011 by the New York Times Book Review and honored as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. She is a graduate of the Columbia MFA program (SOA '06), a 2011 Guggenheim Fellow, and a 2013 MacArthur Fellow.

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Amy Leach

Reading (Free and open to the public)

Thursday, February 25, 6:30 PM
Eliot Chapel

Amy Leach is the author of Things That Are, published by Milkweed Editions. She holds an MFA in creative nonfiction from the University of Iowa, and her work has appeared in Best American Essays, A Public Space, Orion, and The Gettysburg Review, among other journals. She has been recognized with the Whiting Writers' Award and a Rona Jaffe Foundation Award. She lives in Bozeman, Montana.

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Martine Syms

Poetry Reading (Free and open to the public)

Thursday, March 3, 6:30 PM
Eliot Chapel

Martine Syms is a conceptual entrepreneur based in Los Angeles who uses publishing, video, and performance to look at the making and reception of meaning in contemporary America. In 2012 she founded Dominica, an imprint dedicated to exploring blackness as a topic, reference, marker, and audience in visual culture. From 2007-11, Syms directed Golden Age a project space focused on printed matter. She has lectured at Project Row Houses, the Houston Museum of African American Art, California Institute of the Arts, University of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Johns Hopkins University, Maryland Institute College of Art, and MoMA P.S.1, among other venues. Her artwork has been exhibited and screened extensively, including presentations at the New Museum, the Studio Museum in Harlem, MCA Chicago, Green Gallery (Milwaukee), Gene Siskel Film Center (Chicago), White Flag Projects (St. Louis), and Bridget Donahue (New York).

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Mark Levine

Poetry Reading (Free and open to the public)

Thursday, March 17, 6:30 PM
Eliot Chapel

Mark Levine is the author of three books of poems: Debt (1993), Enola Gay (2000), and The Wilds (2006). A new collection, Travels of Marco, will be published in early 2016. His poems have been widely anthologized, and have been recognized with fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Whiting Foundation, Princeton University, and the Canada Council for the Arts. He has also published a nonfiction book, F5, and numerous articles for magazines including The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, and Outside. His work has appeared in Best American Poetry, Best American Magazine Writing, and Best American Sportswriting. He has taught poetry writing at University of Montana and, since 1999, at the Iowa Writers' Workshop.