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Writers Speak Wednesdays

Fall 2020 Schedule

fall 2020 writers speak

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PLEASE NOTE: Because of the cancellation of public events, the Writers Speak sessions will be streamed live on Wednesdays at 7 pm ET on our YouTube channel at

Be sure to bring your questions!

September 16
Ursula Hegi and Susan Minot

Hegi’s new novel, The Patron Saint of Pregnant Girls, has been called “haunting, uplifting, a celebration of women, mothers, and daughters.” A bi-cultural writer, Hegi didn’t plan to set nearly half of her novels in Germany and the other half in the Americas—but that’s how the pages have opened for her, reflecting what it is like to be an immigrant. Hegi has published 13 books.

Booklist describes Susan Minot’s Why I Don’t Write: And Other Stories as “sterling, pristine, often erotic, gorgeous, and searing.” An award-winning novelist, short-story writer, poet, and screenwriter, her first novel,  Monkeys, was published in a dozen countries and won the Prix Femina Étranger in France.

Emcee: Bobby Crace

September 30
Regina Porter

Porter’s debut novel, The Travelers, has been described as “innovative, deeply moving, poetic, and masterful.” An award-winning playwright (Playwrights Horizons, the Joseph Papp Theater), her writing has been published in the Harvard Review, Tin House, and The Oxford Review.

Emcee: Ariana McLean

October 14
Roger Rosenblatt in conversation with Paul Harding

Cold Moon is Rosenblatt’s latest book . The author of five New York Times Notable Books of the Year, four national bestsellers, and seven off-Broadway plays, his essays for Time magazine and the PBS NewsHour have won two George Polk Awards, the Peabody, and the Emmy.

Novelist Paul Harding’s third novel, The Other Eden, will be published next year. His Pulitzer Prize-winning Tinkers, with a foreword by Marilynne Robinson, was rereleased last year on its 10 th anniversary. 

October 28
Major Jackson

Jackson’s just-published The Absurd Man: Poems has been termed “erudite…with moments of startling linguistic play.” His edited volumes include:  Best American Poetry 2019 Renga for Obama , and Library of America’s  Countee Cullen: Collected Poems. A recipient of Guggenheim and NEA grants, he’s also a Whiting Award winner and has been honored by the Pew Fellowship and the Witter Bynner Foundation. Jackson, a University of Vermont Distinguished Professor, is Poetry Editor of the Harvard Review.

Emcee: Grace Dilger

November 11
Jamil Jan Kochai

Author of 99 Nights in Logar, Kochai was born in a Peshawar, Pakistan, refugee camp and grew up in Afghanistan. A Stanford Stegner Fellow, his work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Ploughshares, and The O. Henry Prize Stories 2018.  

Emcee: TBA

December 2
Patricia Marx and Roz Chast

Faculty member Patricia Marx most recently collaborated with Roz Chast on You Can Only Yell at Me for One thing at a Time: Rules for Couples. She has been contributing to The New Yorker since 1989. A former writer for  Saturday Night Live and  Rugrats, she’s also the author of:  Let's Be Less Stupid, Him Her Him Again The End of Him, and  Starting from Happy. She is a Guggenheim recipient.

Roz Chast, who has contributed more than 1,000 cartoons to The New Yorker since 1978, has written or illustrated more than a dozen books, including Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? and Why Don’t You Write My Eulogy Now So I Can Correct It? with Patricia Marx.

Emcee: Amy Handelsman

December 9
MFA Student Readings

Future literary stars read their work!


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For more information on the series, call 631-632-5287. On Facebook, visit Writers Speak Wednesdays; to follow on Twitter, @ WritersSpeakWed.

Visit the Writers Speak Series archive