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Festival of Contemporary Writing

May 26, 2018 - June 1, 2018

Spalding’s Festival of Contemporary Writing Features Man Booker Prize-shortlisted Author Rachel Seiffert

A presentation by British novelist Rachel Seiffert on May 30 will highlight Spalding University’s upcoming Festival of Contemporary Writing, the state’s largest fall-spring reading series. It will take place May 26-June 1 and also feature faculty and alumni of Spalding’s low-residency Master of Fine Arts in Writing program.

Seiffert, the MFA program’s Distinguished Visiting Writer, is one of the most critically acclaimed contemporary novelists in the United Kingdom. Her book The Dark Room, which is about the Holocaust and the German Third Reich, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2001. Her 2017 novel, A Boy in Winter, which also explores the Holocaust and World War II, was among The New York Times’ 100 Notable Books of last year. She’s also written Field Study, a collection of short stories published in 2004, and the novels Afterwards (2007) and The Walk Home (2014).

Festival events will be held at Spalding’s Egan Leadership Center and the Brown Hotel, as noted below. Plenty of free parking is available for the campus readings. All readings and events are free, ticketless, and open to the public.

Schedule of Events:

4:00-5:00 p.m. Saturday, May 26. (Egan Leadership Center, 901 S. Fourth St.)

  • Robin Lippincott (fiction, creative nonfiction), In the Meantime; Blue Territory; Rufus + Syd
  • Larry Brenner (playwriting, screenwriting), Saving Throw vs. Love
  • Jody Lisberger (fiction), Remember Love
  • Michael Roberts (playwriting), Goldstein
  • Kirby Gann (fiction, creative nonfiction), Ghosting; John Knowles’ A Separate Peace: Bookmarked

4:45-5:45 p.m. Sunday, May 27. (Egan Leadership Center, 901 S. Fourth St.)

  • Dianne Aprile (creative nonfiction), The Book: A Collaboration with Photographer Julius Friedman
  • Charlie Schulman (playwriting, screenwriting), Goldstein
  • Beth Bauman (writing for children & young adults), Jersey Angel
  • Crystal Wilkinson (fiction), The Birds of Opulence
  • Kathleen Driskell (poetry), Blue Etiquette

5:30-6:45 p.m. Monday, May 28 Celebration of Recently Published Books by Faculty. Book signing to follow. Books provided by Follett Bookstore. (Egan Leadership Center, 901 S. Fourth St.)

  • Douglas Manuel (poetry), Testify
  • Lesléa Newman (poetry, writing for children and young adults), Lovely
  • Pete Duval (fiction), Strange Mercies
  • Kiki Petrosino (poetry), Witch Wife

5:30-6:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 29. Selected readings by MFA alumni. (Egan Leadership Center, 901 S. Fourth St.)

  • Sonja de Vries (’09), The Hour of Departure
  • Danette Haworth (’16), A Whole Lot of Lucky
  • Michael Premo (’14)
  • Janet Harrison  (’16)
  • Kelly Hill (’13)
  • Leslie Lynch (’17), Hijacked

5:30-6:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 30. Distinguished Visiting Writer presentation. Book signing to follow. Books provided by Follett Bookstore.  (Egan Leadership Center, 901 S. Fourth St.)

  • Rachel Seiffert, The Dark Room

5:30-6:45 p.m. Friday, June 1. Celebration of Recently Published Books by Alumni. Book signing to follow. Books provided by Carmichael’s. (Brown Hotel, 1st fl., Citation Room, 335 W. Broadway)

  • Erin Chandler (’17), June Bug vs. Hurricane
  • Holly Gleason (’15), Woman Walk the Line: How the Women of Country Music Changed Our Lives
  • Gayle Hanratty (’06), Gray Hampton
  • R.J. Harris (’12), The Spirit Breather
  • Claudia Love Mair (’17), Don’t You Fall Now
  • Aimee Mackovic (’05), Love Junky
  • Barbara Sabol (’10), Solitary Spin
  • Sara Truitt (’15), More: A Memoir of Hungers

The reading schedule may change without notice. Check Facebook for updated information: For more information, call 502-873-4400 or email


May 26, 2018
June 1, 2018
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See schedule of events