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English Department Presents Writers Series

September 23, 2009    

Each semester, through the Writers Series, the English department brings prominent writers of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction to UNH to read from their work in public presentations and, in most cases, to spend in-class time with students during the day. The 2009-2010 UNH Writers Series is proud to present another strong lineup of writers who are recognized internationally for their outstanding literary work.

On Oct. 1, the Writers Series will host a reading by Jaed Coffin, author of “A Chant to Soothe Wild Elephants,” a memoir about the time he spent as a Buddhist monk. Coffin is the recipient of a Maine Literary Award, a Wilson Fellowship from Deerfield Academy, and the William Sloane Fellowship from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. A Brunswick, Maine, resident, he teaches at the University of Southern Maine's Stonecoast MFA in creative writing. 

Poet Ralph Angel will be on campus Oct. 15. Angel is the author of four books of poetry: “Exceptions and Melancholies: Poems 1986-2006”(2007 PEN USA Poetry Award); “Twice Removed; Neither World”(James Laughlin Award of The Academy of American Poets); and “Anxious Latitudes”; as well as a translation of the Federico García Lorca collection, “Poema del cante jondo / Poem of the Deep Song.” 

Angel is the Edith R. White Distinguished Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Redlands, and a member of the MFA program in writing faculty at Vermont College of Fine Arts. His appearance is sponsored by the Frederick Hyde Hibbert ’88 fund.

Novelist Julia Glass will read from some of her crucially acclaimed fiction on Nov. 5. She is the author of “Three Junes,” which won the National Book Award for Fiction, and “The Whole World Over.” Her short fiction has won several prizes, including the Tobias Wolff Award and the Pirate's Alley Faulkner Society Medal for the best novella.

On March 4, 2010, the Writers Series hosts author Victor LaValle, the author of the short-story collection, “Slapboxing with Jesus” and the novel, “The Ecstatic,” a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award. His latest novel, “Big Machine,” was published in August 2009 and is winning rave reviews from literary critics nationwide.

Wesley McNair comes to UNH on April 15, 2010. McNair is the author of seven books of poetry, the most recent of which is “Lovers of the Lost: New and Selected Poems.” In 2006-07, he received a U.S. Artists Fellowship for poetry. His awards include the Theodore Roethke Prize, the Eunice Tietjens Prize from Poetry magazine, and the Sarah Joespha Hale Medal. He received an Emmy for a recent PBS series on Robert Frost.

McNair is currently professor emeritus and writer in residence at the University of Maine at Farmington, where he directed the creative writing program and received the Distinguished Faculty Award and the Libra Professorship. He also served as a visiting professor in creative writing at Colby College.

Recent Writers Series visitors include Mark Doty, Tom Perrotta, Meredith Hall, Nahid Rachlin, Alistair MacLeod, Billy Collins, Edward P. Jones, ZZ Packer, Phillip Lopate, Ha Jin, Li-Young Lee, and Russell Banks.

Writers Series events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact the English department at 2-1313, or visit http://www.unh.edu/english/.


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