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Visiting Writers Series

All readings begin at 7:30 p.m. and are free of charge, but seating is limited.
Ahmanson Hall Forum, Goldsmith Campus
9045 Lincoln Boulevard Los Angeles, CA. 90045


Spring 2014 Visiting Writer Series


January 22
Michael Palmer 

San Francisco poet and translator Michael Palmer’s most recent collections are Active Boundaries (Selected Essays and Talks), Thread, and Madman With Broom (selected poems with Chinese translations by Yunte Huang). His work has been translated into over thirty languages. He has collaborated with many visual and performing artists, notably working with the Margaret Jenkins Dance Company for close to forty years, and taught widely, including at St. Mary’s College and CCA. His honors include two grants from the NEA, a Guggenheim fellowship, a Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Fund Writer’s Award, and the Wallace Stevens Prize for Poetry. In 2012, Palmer received the Arts and Letters Prize in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Joyelle McSweeney 
Joyelle McSweeney

Joyelle McSweeney is the author of six books of poetry and prose, most recently Salamandrine, 8 Gothics, and Percussion Grenade. Her play Dead Youth, or, The Leaks won the first Leslie Scalapino Prize for Innovative Women Playwrights. She is the editor of Action Books, a founding contributor to the blog Montevidayo, and teaches at Notre Dame. She lives in Indiana.

February 5
Antoine Wilson
Antoine Wilson

Antoine Wilson is the author of the novels Panorama City and The Interloper. His short fiction has been published in The Paris Review and Best New American Voice. A contributing editor to A Public Space and The Los Angeles Review of Books, Wilson lives in Los Angeles.

February 19
Danzy Senna
Danzy Senna

Danzy Senna’s first novel Caucasia won the Book of the Month Award for First Fiction and the American Library Association’s Alex Award. Caucasia was also a finalist for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and named a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year. A recipient of a Whiting Writers Award, Senna is also the author of the novel Symptomatic, the memoir Where Did You Sleep Last Night? A Personal History, (written as a fellow at the New York Public Library’s Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers), and a story collection, You Are Free. She lives in Los Angeles.

March 5
Michael Heller 
Michael Heller

Michael Heller has published over twenty volumes of poetry, essays, memoir and fiction.  His recent works include This Constellation Is A Name: Collected Poems 1965-2010, Eschaton, Beckmann Variations & other poems, and Speaking the Estranged: Essays on the Work of George Oppen. Heller collaborates frequently with the composer Ellen Fishman Johnson on multimedia works, including Constellations of Waking, This Art Burning, and Out of Pure Sound, all of which premiered at the Philadelphia Fringe Festival. He has received grants and awards from the NEH, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Poetry Society of America, and the Fund for Poetry. He lives in New York.


Prageeta Sharma
Prageeta Sharma

Prageeta Sharma’s poetry collections include Bliss to Fill, The Opening Question, Infamous Landscapes, and Undergloom. Her work has appeared in Art Asia Pacific, Bomb, Boston Review, Women’s Review of Books and other journals. A recipient of the 2010 Howard Foundation Grant, Sharma teaches at the University of Montana and lives in Missoula.

March 12
Salvatore Scibona
Salvatore Scibona

Salvatore Scibona’s first book, The End, was a finalist for the National Book Award, and won both the Young Lions Fiction Award from the New York Public Library and the Norman Mailer Cape Cod Award for Exceptional Writing. He has also received a Whiting Writers’ Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and was included in the New Yorker's “20 Under 40.” In addition to The New Yorker, his work has appeared in Harper’s, A Public Space, The Threepenny Review, and been included in The Pushcart Book of Short Stories: The Best Stories from a Quarter-Century of the Pushcart Prize and Best New American Voices. Scibona teaches at Weslyan and lives in Provincetown, Massachusetts, where he is on staff at the Fine Arts Work Center.

April 2
Guy Bennett
Guy Bennett

Otis Books is pleased to publish a collection of writing that spans the career of the late Italian poet Giovanna Sandri, including verbal and visual texts, poems and poetic essays.

Edited by Otis College Professor Guy Bennett, and introduced by Giulia Niccolai, only fragments found: selected poems, 1969–1998 includes translations by Bennett, Faust Pauluzzi and Giovanna Sandri.

Guy Bennett is the author of several collections of poetry and numerous translations, including most recently Self-Evident Poems and a translation of Mohammed Dib’s Tlemcen or Places of Writing. He is the publisher of Mindmade Books and co-editor of Otis Books/Seismicity Editions.

April 23
Lou Beach
Lou Beach

Born in Germany of Polish parents, Lou Beach came to the US when he was four. He began his career as a visual artist making collages and assemblage, and while working for a record company was asked to design an album cover, launching his notable career as an illustrator. In 2012, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt published Beach’s 420 Characters, a collection of single-paragraph short stories accompanied by collages. Lou Beach lives in Los Angeles.


Fall 2014 Visiting Writer Series


September 3
Forrest Gander 

Otis Books/Seismicity Editions is pleased to publish Panic Cure: Poetry from Spain for the 21st Century, an anthology of poems from eleven contemporary Spanish poets, active from the 1960s through the present. Selected and translated by Forrest Gander, Panic Cure is notable for its impressive range of poetic voices. Forrest Gander is the author of more than a dozen books, including his 2011 poetry collection Core Samples from the World, a collaboration with the photographers Graciela Iturbide, Raymond Meeks, and Lucas Foglia, which was a finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. Other books include the novel As A Friend, the poetry collections Eye Against Eye (with photographs by Sally Mann), Torn Awake, and Science & Steepleflower, as well as the essay collection Faithful Existence: Reading, Memory & Transcendence. Gander notably has translated work by Pura Lopez Colome, Kiwao Nomura (with Kyoko Yoshida, which won the Best Translated Book Award for 2012), Coral Bracho, and Jaime Saenz (with Kent Johnson). The recipient of fellowships from the NEA, the Guggenheim, Howard, and Whiting Foundations, Gander was named a United States Artists Rockefeller Fellow in 2008. He is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Brown.


September 17
Michael Joyce 

Otis Books/Seismicity Editions is pleased to publish Twentieth-Century Man by Michael Joyce. Starting with a disappearance, Twentieth-Century Man contemplates issues imbedded in aging, memory, language, family, and even life and death, covering and uncovering many profound mysteries. The New York Times called Michael Joyce’s afternoon “the granddaddy of hypertext fictions,” and The Toronto Globe and Mail said that it “is to the hypertext interactive novel what the Gutenberg bible is to publishing.” Other hyperfictions include “On the Birthday of the Stranger,” Twilight, A Symphony, and Twelve Blue, the collaborative work The Sonatas of Saint Francis, and the shorter hyperfictions WOE, Lucy's Sister, Reach and Lasting Image (with Carolyn Guyer). Joyce is also the author of eleven books, including The War Outside Ireland, Moral Tales and Meditations: Technological Parables and Refractions, Was: annals nomadique/A novel for the internet, Liam’s Going, Disappearance, Going the Distance, and Foucault, in Winter, in the Linnaeus Garden. His collaborative multimedia work with Alexandra Grant includes Lost Hills Hokku and The Ladder Series. In 2013, he was appointed Laureate of the City of Paris and selected to participate in the Institut français artist-in-residence program at Les Récollets. Joyce teaches at Vassar, where he co-founded the program in Media Studies. .

October 1
Sarah Manguso 
Sarah Manguso

Sarah Manguso is the author, most recently, of The Guardians: An Elegy for a Friend, named one of the top ten books of the year by Salon. Her previous book, the memoir The Two Kinds of Decay, was named an Editors’ Choice by the New York Times Sunday Book Review and short-listed in the UK for the Wellcome Trust Book Prize and long-listed for the Royal Society Winton Prize. Her other books include the story collection Hard to Admit and Harder to Escape, and the poetry collections Siste Viator and The Captain Lands in Paradise. A recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowhip, the Hodder Fellowship at Princeton, and the Rome Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, her work has appeared in Harper’s, the New York Review of Books, the New York Times Book Review, and the New York Times Magazine. Manguso has taught at Columbia, the New School, NYU, Princeton, and Pratt. She now lives in Los Angeles and is currently teaching at Otis.


October 15
Karen Tei Yamashita 

Karen Tei Yamashita is the author of Through the Arc of the Rain Forest, Brazil-Maru, Tropic of Orange, Circle K Cycles, and I Hotel, which was a finalist for the National Book Award and awarded the California Book Award, the American Book Award, the Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association Award, and the Association for Asian American Studies Book Award. She recently received a United States Artists Ford Foundation Fellowship and is Professor of Literature and Creative Writing at UC Santa Cruz, as well as a co-holder of the UC Presidential Chair for Feminist Critical Race and Ethnic Studies.

October 29
Rob Spillman 

Rob Spillman is Editor and co-founder of Tin House, which has been honored in Best American Stories, Best American Essays, Best American Poetry, O’Henry Prize Stories, the Pushcart Prize Anthology and numerous other anthologies. He is also Executive Editor of Tin House Books and co-founder of the Tin House Literary Festival. His writing has appeared in BookForum, the Boston Review, Connoisseur, Details, GQ, Nerve, the New York Times Book Review, Rolling Stone, Salon, Spin, Sports Illustrated, Time, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and elsewhere. He is also the editor of Gods and Soldiers: The Penguin Anthology of Contemporary African Writing and currently a lecturer at Columbia University. He lives in Brooklyn.

November 12
Cathy Park Hong 

Cathy Park Hong's poetry collections include Translating Mo'um and Dance Dance Revolution, which was chosen for the Barnard Women Poets Prize. Norton published her third book of poems, Engine Empire, in 2012. A former Fullbright Fellow, Hong is also the recipient of fellowships from the NEA and the New York Foundation for the Arts. Her poems have been appeared in A Public Space, Poetry, Paris Review, Conjunctions, McSweeney's, APR, Harvard Review, Boston Review, The Nation, and other journals. She currently teaches at Sarah Lawrence College and is regular faculty at the Queens MFA program in Charlotte, North Carolina.

December 3
Anthony Marra 

Anthony Marra’s New York Times-bestselling debut novel A Constellation of Vital Phenomena was longlisted for the National Book Award, nominated for the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award and won both the inaugural National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Prize and the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in Fiction. The novel was also selected as one of the ten best books of 2013 by The Washington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, Salon, New York, Publishers Weekly, and Library Journal. A Whiting Award winner, Marra currently teaches at Stanford.


Past Readers

Salar Abdoh
Daniel Alarcón
Jane Alison
Samina Ali
Erik Anderson
J. Reuben Appelman
Rae Armantrout
Luigi Ballerini
Mary Jo Bang
Amiri Baraka
Tom Barbash 
Lou Beach 
Art Beck 
Philippe Beck
Bruce Bégout
Aimee Bender
Guy Bennett
Nick Benson 
Bill Berkson
Kate Bernheimer
Jenny Boully
Laynie Browne
Peter Cameron
Mary Caponegro
Ron Carlson
Beppe Cavatorta
Ann Cefola
Neeli Cherkovski
Jeff Clark
Joshua Clover
Norma Cole 
Wanda Coleman
Gillian Conoley
Eleanor Cooney
Bernard Cooper
Lucy Corin
Robert Crosson
John D'Agata
Donna de la Perrière
Mark Z. Danielewski 
Michael Davidson
Ray DiPalma
Yves Di Manno 
Timothy Donnelly
Ben Doller
Sandra Doller
Dolores Dorantes
Ben Ehrenreich
Gilad Elbom
Kenward Elmslie
Lynn Emanuel
Steve Evans
Percival Everett
Janet Fitch
Sesshu Foster
David Francis
Kathleen Fraser
Peter Gadol
Forrest Gander
Cristina Garcia
Polly Geller
Amy Gerstler
Hal Glicksman

Jaimy Gordon
David Groff
Olga Grushin
Katharine Haake
Paul Harding
Adam Haslett
Brooks Hansen
Jack Hirschman
Jen Hofer
Anselm Hollo
James Houston
Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston
Brenda Hillman
Harmony Holiday 
John Humble
Christine Hume
Samantha Hunt
Lawson Fusao Inada
David James
Dennis Loy Johnson
Devin Johnston
Pierre Joris
Trevor Joyce
Bhanu Kapil
Ilya Kaminsky 
Douglas Kearney
Walter Kirn
Norman Klein
Bill Krohn
Joshua Kryah
Joanne Kyger
Aaron Kunin
Rachel Kushner 
Paul La Farge
Laila Lalami
Ann Lauterbach
Michelle Latiolais 
Joseph Lease
Ben Lerner
Jonathan Lethem 
Suzanne Jill Levine
Sam Lipsyte
Timothy Liu
Michael Lowenthal
Alvin Lu
Lisa Lubasch
Carol Maier
Lewis MacAdams
Barbara Maloutas
Louise Mathias
Yves di Manno
Michael McClure
Heather McGowan
John McManus
Joyelle McSweeney
Laura Moriarty
Jennifer Moxley
Harryette Mullen
Laura Mullen 
Ryan Murphy
Maggie Nelson
Monica Nepote
Joseph O'Neill
Ron Padgett
Elio Pagliarani
Michael Palmer
Nicole Peyrafitte
Nick Piombino
Claudia Rankine
Tom Raworth
Ishmael Reed
Antonio Riccardi
Elizabeth Robinson
Stephen Rodefer
Joe Ross
Jerome Rothenberg
James Sallis
Ari Samsky
Hélène Sanguinetti
Janet Sarbanes
Leslie Scalapino
Joanna Scott
Hubert Selby Jr.
Danzy Senna
Standard Schaefer
Christine Schutt
Aaron Shurin
Eleni Sikelianos
Jane Smiley
Carmen Giménez Smith
Ersi Sotiropoulos
Sister Spit
Jane Sprague
Kevin Starr
David St. John
Cole Swenson 
Nathaniel Tarn
Justin Torres
Monique Truong
Frederic Tuten
David Ulin
Cecilia Vicuna
Catherine Wagner
D.J. Waldie
Jess Walter
Diane Ward
Marjorie Welish 
Lawrence Weschler
Marianne Wiggins
Antoine Wilson
Allyssa Wolf
CD Wright
Gail Wronsky
Matthew Zapruder
Ofelia Zepeda