Among the hundreds of writers Wells has hosted over the years, many have been top figures in their field who have won such prestigious awards as the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and their works regularly appear on "best of the year" lists by the New York Times, National Public Radio and other prestigious media outlets. One visiting author (the Russian poet Joseph Brodsky) was even a Nobel Prize winner! Yet, the Visiting Writers Series selects only those writers who can bring something special to the close-knit Wells community, which has had its continuously growing share of ambitious and committed undergraduate writers.
Visiting writers are frequently editors and publishers, or are involved in graduate writing programs, and all have wide publishing experience, so they can help students learn about practical matters relating to the literary scene and publishing, in addition to providing hands-on advice and criticism. Sometimes there are group readings by editors and writers representing journals, such as the Healing Muse or Stone Canoe, or by publishers such as Michael Czarnecki of FootHills Publishing, enabling students to gain exposure to the vital work being done all over the country by small presses and literary magazines.
The Visiting Writers Series is supported by Wells College, the New York State Council on the Arts, the Virginia Kent Cummins Fund (for poets), the Mildred Walker Fund (for fiction writers), and gifts from the College's alumnae, alumni and other friends and supporters.
The Wells College English Department is thrilled to welcome these writers to campus virtually and in person. Masks and adherence to all College public health guidelines are required for in-person events. Visit wells.edu/covid-19-info for more details.
Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021
VIRTUAL POETRY READING—7:00 p.m (ZOOM LINK)
Ada Limón is the author of five poetry collections, including The Carrying, which won the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her fourth book, Bright Dead Things, was a finalist for the National Book Award, the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award, and the National Book Critics Circle Award. A recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship for Poetry, she serves on the faculty of Queens University of Charlotte M.F.A. program and lives in Lexington, Ky.
ARTIST-IN-RESIDENCE, Sept. 20−24, 2021
PUBLIC READING—Friday, Sept. 24, 7:00 p.m., Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall
Michelle Gil-Montero has published several book translations, most recently Edinburgh Notebook by Valerie Mejer Caso. Berlin Interlude and Exilium, both by María Negroni, are forthcoming from Black Square Editions and Ugly Duckling Presse. She has been awarded fellowships from the NEA and the Howard Foundation as well as a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award and a PEN/Heim Translation Fund Grant. She is the author of Attached Houses and Object Permanence. At Saint Vincent College, she directs the minor in Literary Translation and is the founding editor of Eulalia Books.
Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021
MASTER CLASS: "The Science of Fiction: Why We Write Stories"—5:00 p.m., Art Exhibit Room (AER), Macmillan Hall
FICTION READING—7:30 p.m., AER
Jack Wang is the author of the story collection We Two Alone, winner of the Danuta Gleed Literary Award from the Writers’ Union of Canada for best debut collection in English. His fiction has shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize and longlisted for the Journey Prize. He is a 2021 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow in Fiction and an associate professor in the Department of Writing at Ithaca College. His novel-in-progress, The Riveters, received a Research and Creation grant from the Canada Council for the Arts.
Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2021
VIRTUAL MASTER CLASS—5:00 p.m. (ZOOM LINK)
VIRTUAL NONFICTION READING—7:00 p.m. (ZOOM LINK)
Kazim Ali was born in the United Kingdom and has lived transnationally in the United States, Canada, India, France, and the Middle East. His books encompass multiple genres, including several volumes of poetry, novels, and translations. He is currently a professor of literature at the University of California, San Diego. His newest books are a volume of three long poems entitled The Voice of Sheila Chandra and a memoir of his Canadian childhood, Northern Light: Power, Land, and the Memory of Water.
For each visiting writer, the Book Arts Center and Press collaborates with Wells' English department to prepare a handmade broadside of the writer's work. View previous broadsides available for purchase here.