By VWS Intern Claire Buck (’22)
The days are getting shorter, the tests are piling up, and everyone around me is becoming increasingly dependent on caffeine to power through the day. You can feel it in the air: we’re approaching the finish line of the fall semester. Before classes wrap up, though, we’ve got one last Visiting Writers Series event planned, so take a study break and tune in on Thursday, November 11 at 7:00 p.m. to hear from authors Anjoli Roy and Ron Austin.
Anjoli Roy is a teacher, literary podcast co-host, and author of two published chapbooks: “Enter the Navel” and “Grandpa Was a Skin Diver.” She holds her MA and PhD in English from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, and she is a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee, among other distinctions. Her creative nonfiction blends storytelling with science and prose with poetry to form playful explorations of identity, origin, belonging, and family. Both of her full-length nonfiction works are available for free online, so you can check them out beforehand or let yourself be charmingly surprised by her writing at the event.
Ron Austin’s first book, Avery Colt is a Snake, a Thief, and a Liar, just came out in print in 2019, but his fiction has already grabbed critical attention and acclaim. His writing has earned the 2020 Devil’s Kitchen Fiction Award, the 2019 Forward INDIES Gold Award, the 2017 Nilson Prize, and a number of other distinctions. His linked short stories follow a boy growing up in inner-city St. Louis as he navigates possum infestations, the grueling labor of creating a community garden from a deserted street corner, and the complicated dynamics of family conflicts. Austin’s fiction is sharp, darkly funny, and filled with moments of surprising tenderness and empathy. His entertaining descriptions lend themselves to live reading, so his audience will be in for a treat.
The upcoming VWS event will take place virtually, which means you don’t even have to brave the West Michigan November chill to attend. Brew yourself a cup of tea, slip on your fuzziest socks, and settle in for an evening of shared literary enjoyment. For more information on the event and directions to the livestream link, visit the VWS website. We hope you’ll join us!