All readings are in Memorial Hall at 8 p.m. and are free, wheelchair accessible, and open to the public.
Sponsored by the MFA Program for Poets and Writers and Juniper Initiative. Made possible by support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, University of Massachusetts Arts Council, UMass Amherst Alumni Associaion, Vice Provost of Research & Engagement, College of Humanities & Fine Arts, and English Department.
Bernadette Mayer’s poetry has been praised by John Ashbery as “magnificent.” Brenda Coultas calls her a master of “devastating wit.” Mayer is the author of more than two dozen volumes of poetry, including Midwinter Day, Sonnets, The Desires of Mothers to Please Others in Letters, and Poetry State Forest. A former director of the Poetry Project at St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery and co-editor of the conceptual magazine 0 to 9 with Vito Acconci, Mayer has been a key figure on the New York poetry scene for decades.
Michael Knight's most recent novel, The Typist, was just published by Atlantic Monthly Press. He is the author of previous novel, Divining Rod; two collections of short fiction, Dogfight and Other Stories and Goodnight, Nobody; and a collection of novellas, The Holiday Season. His fiction has appeared in publications such as Esquire, The New Yorker, and Oxford American. He teaches creative writing at the University of Tennessee.
Michael Earl Craig is the author of three collections of poetry: Thin Kimono (Wave Books, 2010), Yes, Master (Fence Books, 2006) and Can You Relax in My House (Fence Books, 2002). He received a BA in English Literature from the University of Montana, and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Massachusetts. His poems have been published in various print and online journals, including Provincetown Arts, The Iowa Review, The Believer, HoboEye, Octopus Magazine, Fence, jubilat, and Denver Quarterly, as well as anthologized in Isn’t It Romantic: 100 Love Poems (Verse Press, 2004) and Poems About Horses (Everyman’s Library Pocket Series, 2009). He lives in Livingston, Montana, where is a Certified Journeyman Farrier, shoeing horses for a living.
Natalie Lyalin is the author of Pink & Hot Pink Habitat (Coconut Books, 2009) and the chapbook Try A Little Time Travel (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2010). She is the co-founder and co-editor of GlitterPony Magazine and Agnes Fox Press. She lives in Philadelphia.
Lance Olsen received his B.A. from the University of Wisconsin (1978, honors), his M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers Workshop (1980), and his M.A. (1982) and Ph.D. (1985) from the University of Virginia. He is author of ten novels, one hypertext, four critical studies, four short-story collections, a poetry chapbook, and a textbook about fiction writing, as well as editor of two collections of essays about innovative contemporary fiction. His most recent novels include Calendar of Regrets (FC2, 2010), Head in Flames (Chiasmus, 2009), Anxious Pleasures (Shoemaker & Hoard, 2007), and Nietzsche's Kisses (2006). His short stories, essays, poems, and reviews have appeared in hundreds of journals, magazines, and anthologies, including Conjunctions, Black Warrior Review, Fiction International, Iowa Review, Hotel Amerika, Village Voice, Time Out New York, BOMB, Gulf Coast, McSweeney's, and Best American Non-Required Reading. Olsen is an N.E.A. fellowship and Pushcart prize recipient, and former governor-appointed Idaho Writer-in-Residence. His novel Tonguing the Zeitgeist was a finalist for the Philip K. Dick Award. His work has been translated into Italian, Polish, Turkish, and Finnish. He has taught at the University of Idaho, the University of Kentucky, the University of Iowa, the University of Virginia, on summer- and semester-abroad programs in Oxford and London, on a Fulbright in Finland, at various writing conferences, and elsewhere. Olsen currently teaches experimental narrative theory and practice at the University of Utah. He serves as Chair of the Board of Directors at Fiction Collective Two; founded in 1974, FC2 is one of America's best-known ongoing literary experiments and progressive art communities. He is Fiction Editor at Western Humanities Review. With his wife, assemblage-artist and filmmaker Andi Olsen, he divides his time between the mountains of central Idaho and Salt Lake City.
Visiting Writing Lecture Series: Spring 2010