October 25, 2014  

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Southern Miss Visiting Writers Series Features Poetry and Fiction

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Kevin Young

The Center for Writers at The University of Southern Mississippi will host the first of two readings by visiting writers on Wednesday, Oct. 2 at 7 p.m. when guest writer Kevin Young will present a poetry reading. The second reading will be Wednesday, Oct. 9 at 7:30 p.m. when guest writer Michael Farris Smith will present a fiction reading. Both readings will be held in room 101 in the International Center.

Kevin Young is the author of eight books of poetry, including Ardency: A Chronicle of the Amistad Rebels, winner of an American Book Award, and Jelly Roll, which was a finalist for the National Book Award. Young's book The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness was named a New York Times Notable Book for 2012 and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Award in criticism. Young's poetry and essays have appeared in the New Yorker, New York Times Book Review, Paris Review, Kenyon Review, and Callaloo.

Young’s awards include a Stegner Fellowship in Poetry at Stanford University, a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, and a MacDowell Colony Fellowship. Young is the Atticus Haygood Professor of Creative Writing and English and Curator of Literary Collections and the Raymond Danowski Poetry Library at Emory University in Atlanta.

Michael Farris Smith is the author of the novel Rivers (Simon and Schuster 2013) and the novella The Hands of Strangers. He has been awarded the Transatlantic Review Award, Brick Streets Press Short Story Award, Mississippi Arts Commission Literary Arts Fellowship and the Alabama Arts Council Fellowship Award for Literature. He is a graduate of Mississippi State University and the Center for Writers at the University of Southern Mississippi. He lives in Columbus, Miss. with his wife and two daughters.

The Center for Writers, housed in the Department of English, offers workshops in fiction, non-fiction, prose, and poetry by the program's distinguished faculty.  Additional courses in craft, literary forms and teaching creative writing are also offered regularly, and students participate in a regular reading series and in the publication of a student journal, Product. The department is also home to the Mississippi Review, a nationally recognized literary magazine.

For more information about the Fall Visiting Writers Series or the Center for Writers at Southern Miss, visit www.usm.edu/English or call 601.266.4320.