WSU Vancouver launches Creative Writers Series Jan. 24

Fri, 01/12/2018 - 2:31pm -- brenda_alling

VANCOUVER, Wash. – Six professional writers from the Pacific Northwest will speak at Washington State University Vancouver on six Wednesday nights between Jan. 24 and April 11. The talks are free and open to the public as part of the annual Creative Writers Series (formerly the Professional Writers Series). Each talk begins at 7 p.m. in the Library Building, Room 240.

The writers represent a variety of literary genres and styles, from poetry to memoirs and creative nonfiction. Writers will discuss their careers and achievements, the writing process and ways they intersect with their communities.

Jan. 24: Mary Szybist, “Keeping Faith in Poetry”

Szybist won the National Book Award for her poetry collection “Incarnadine.” Her work has been awarded two Pushcart Prizes and has been supported by several fellowships and grants. Szybist teaches at Lewis & Clark College.

Feb. 7: Paulann Petersen, “A Life Poetic”

Petersen, the Oregon Poet Laureate Emerita, has published six books of poetry and in 2013 was Willamette Writers’ Distinguished Northwest Writer. Her latest chapbook is “Shimmer and Drone,” a collection of poems about India.

Feb. 21: David Biespiel, “Memory and Memoir”

Poet, literary critic, columnist and contributing writer for a wide range of publications, including Slate and the New York Times, Biespiel has recently published a memoir, “The Education of a Young Poet.” He is the founder of the Attic Institute of Arts and Letters in Portland, Ore.

March 21: Justin Hocking, “Surfing into the World of Moby Dick: A Personal Journey”

Hocking’s “The Great Floodgates of the Wonderworld” is a multifaceted modern odyssey that touches on everything from the history of surfing to the environmental impact of the Iraq War. Formerly director of the Independent Publishing Resource Center in Portland, he was named one of “Ten Writers Who Made Portland” by Willamette Week.

March 28: April Henry, “Thrilled by the Thriller: Adult and Young Adult Fiction”

Henry is the bestselling author of more than 20 mysteries for young adults and adults, including the Point Last Seen series. Her most recent mystery is “Count All Her Bones.” She travels the country visiting schools to advocate for the importance of writing and developing the kind of research skills she uses in her own work.

April 11: Karen Karbo, “Dangerous Women: Breaking the Rules”

Karbo’s “In Praise of Difficult Women” will be published in February 2018. It features 29 bold, charismatic women of modern history, including Amelia Earhart, Amy Poehler and Helen Gurley Brown. She is also the bestselling author of the Kick-Ass Women series and has published essays, articles and reviews in a variety of prominent publications.

Closing reception, 6–7 p.m., Location: The Writing Center, Library Building, Second Floor

Enjoy refreshments and conversation, as we recap the series with faculty, staff, students and community members.

About WSU Vancouver

WSU Vancouver is located at 14204 N.E. Salmon Creek Ave. in Vancouver, east of the 134th Street exit from either I-5 or I-205, or via C-Tran bus service. Parking is available at meters or in the Blue Daily Pay Lot for $1.50 after 5 p.m.; parking is free after 7 p.m.

As one of six campuses of the Washington State University system, WSU Vancouver offers big-school resources in a small-school environment. The university provides affordable, high-quality baccalaureate- and graduate-level education to benefit the people and communities it serves. As the only four-year research university in Southwest Washington, WSU Vancouver helps drive economic growth through relationships with local businesses and industries, schools and nonprofit organizations. 

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Brenda Alling, Office of Marketing and Communications, 360-546-9601,

Howard Aaron, Series Coordinator, College of Arts and Sciences, 503-816-2742

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