Fall 2022 Visiting Writers Reading Series


4th Atlanta International Poetry & Translation Festival  
01/27/2022, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM 

The Purdue University Creative Writing Program partners with Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University (HURI) to bring us a special night of poetry and translation, featuring Ukrainian poets Boris Khersonsky, Ludmila Khersonsky, & Lyuba Yakimchuk. With US Poets Jenny Xie, Javier Zamora, & Diane Seuss. Moderated by Oksana Maksymchuk & Oleh Kotsyuba.  



Visiting Writers Series Reading and Q&A with Aimee Nezhukumatathi
02/15/2022, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM 

In a reading sponsored generously by the Thomas H. Scholl Fund for Visiting Poets, the Purdue University Creative Writing Program welcomes Aimee Nezhukumatathil to a virtual visit on Tuesday, February 15 at 7:00PM (ET) followed by a Q & A session on Zoom. Nezhukumatathil is the author of a book of nature essays, World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, & Other Astonishments, which was named a finalist for the Kirkus Prize in non-fiction, and four award-winning poetry collections, most recently, Oceanic (2018). Awards for her writing include fellowships from the Mississippi Arts Council, Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Award for poetry, National Endowment of the Arts, and the Guggenheim Foundation. Her writing has appeared in NYTimes Magazine, ESPN, and Best American Poetry. She is professor of English and Creative Writing in the University of Mississippi’s MFA program. 

This event is free and open to the public.  

Register in advance:


Visiting Writers Series Reading and Q&A with Robert Olen Butler 
03/29/2022, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM 

The Purdue University Creative Writing Program welcomes Robert Olen Butler to a virtual visit on Tuesday, March 29 at 7:00PM (ET) followed by a Q & A session on Zoom. Butler is the author of sixteen novels, including The Hot Country, The Star of Istanbul, The Empire of the Night, Perfume River, Paris in the Dark, and most recently Late City. He has also authored six volumes of short fiction including Severance, Intercourse, and A good Scent from a Strange Mountain, which one the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. In 2013 he became a recipient of the F. Scott Fitzgerald Award for Outstanding Achievement in American Literature. He is currently a Krafft Distinguished Professor holding the Michael Shaara Chair in Creative Writing at Florida State University.   

This event is free and open to the public.  

Register in advance:


Visiting Writers Series In-Person Reading and Q&A with Theodore Van Alst 
Sycamore Review Q&A 4:30 PM - 5:00 PM (Krannert G016) 
Reading 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM (Krannert Auditorium) 

The Purdue University Creative Writing Program welcomes Theodore Van Alst to an on-campus visit on Wednesday, April 6th. Sycamore Review magazine will host a Q & A session in Krannert G016 at 4:30pm, followed by the reading and book-signing in Krannert Auditorium at 7:00pm.  

Van Alst, Jr.’s most recent work includes the novel Sacred City, the incomparable follow-up to his award-winning debut short story collection, Sacred Smokes. His fiction and photography have been published in EntropyThe Rumpus, Indian Country Today, The Raven Chronicles, and Yellow Medicine Review, among others. He has worked as a consultant on multiple projects for the Disney Channel as well as on NPR’s All Things Considered, and has recently appeared in multiple segments of the History Channel series Mankind the Story of All of Us. Currently, Van Alst is the Department Chair and Tenured Associate Professor of Indigenous Nations Studies at Portland State University. 

This event is free and open to the public. Masks will be required. 


History of Purdue Literary Awards and Visiting Writers

Literary Awards has been an institution at Purdue since 1928. Speakers have included: Sherwood Anderson, Tennessee Williams, Thornton Wilder, Eudora Welty, Robert Frost, Katharine Ann Porter, Saul Bellow, Gwendolyn Brooks, John Ashbery, Grace Paley, Adrienne Rich, Edward Albee, Derek Walcott, Louise Erdrich, Russell Banks, Seamus Heaney, Tony Kushner, Charles Wright, Maxine Hong Kingston, Sherman Alexie, Michael Chabon, Rita Dove, Annie Proulx, Charles Simic and Michael Cunningham. For more information about Literary Awards, please visit: http://www.cla.purdue.edu/literary-awards/

Recent Visiting Writers to the MFA program have included: Brigit Pegeen Kelly, Li-Young Lee, Edward P. Jones, Russell Edson, Andre Dubus III, Alicia Ostriker, Quan Barry, Michael Martone, Heather McHugh, Steve Yarbrough, Ellen Bryant Voigt, Denise Duhamel, Charles Baxter, Joyce Carol Oates, Adam Zagajewski, Peter Ho Davies, Jane Hamilton, Lan Samantha Chang, A. Van Jordan, Carl Phillips, Helena María Viramontes, Natasha Trethewey, Dorothy Allison, Dan Chaon, Julie Otsuka, Maurice Manning, Edith Pearlman, Jess Walter, Terrance Hayes and Antonya Nelson.

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