Wilkes University


Wilkes University English Department Hosts Author Readings In Allan Hamilton Dickson Writers Series

The Wilkes University English Department will host the Allan Hamilton Dickson Fund Spring Writers Series featuring three distinguished authors and literary critics throughout the spring semester 2016. The writers will read from their work and participate in a workshop and Q&A-style discussion of their writing processes. All workshops and readings are free and open to the public and will take place in the salon of Kirby Hall.

The featured writers are: 

Maggie Messitt,
Tuesday, February 23
Workshop/Q&A: 3-4:30pm
Reading: 7-8pm 

Maggie Messitt is the author of The Rainy Season: Three Lives in the New South Africa. She spent a decade reporting from inside underserved communities in southern Africa and midwestern America and founded a writing school for rural African women. Messitt’s reportage and essays have been published in Creative Nonfiction, Essay DailyMother Jones, River TeethThe Rumpus and the Southern Poverty Law Center's Teaching Tolerance magazine, among others. Messitt is a 2015 Kenyon Review Peter Taylor Fellow and a scholar-in-residence at Bowers Writers House at Elizabethtown College. Messitt has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and faith, peace, and justice (an interdisciplinary human rights program) from Boston College and a master of fine arts degree in creative nonfiction from Goucher College. 

Andrew Krivak,
Tuesday, March 22
Workshop/Q&A: 3-4:30pm
Reading: 7-8pm 

Wilkes-Barre native Andrew Krivak is the author of The Sojourn, which was a finalist for the National Book Award and the 2012 recipient of both the Chatauqua Prize and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize for fiction.

Inspired by Krivak’s own family history, The Sojourn is the story of a man who must join his adopted brother as a sharpshooter in the Kaiser’s army during World War I and survive a treacherous journey across the Italian Alps as well as capture by enemy forces. He is also the author of a memoir about his time in the Jesuit order, A Long Retreat: In Search of a Religious Life

He is a graduate of St. John’s College in Annapolis, the writing program at Columbia University and holds a doctorate from Rutger’s University. Krivak was born in Wilkes-Barre and raised in nearby Dallas, Pennsylvania. He resides with his wife and three children in both Somerville, Massachusetts and Jaffrey, New Hampshire.

Shelley Puhak,
Wednesday, April 13
Workshop/Q&A: 3-4:30pm 
Reading: 7-8pm

Shelley Puhak is the author of two poetry collections, the more recent of which, Guinevere in Baltimore, was selected by Charles Simic for the Anthony Hecht Poetry Prize. Her debut, Stalin in Aruba, was a finalist for the St. Lawrence Book Award and was awarded the Towson Prize for Literature. Puhak’s poems have appeared in many journals, most recently Kenyon Review Online, Missouri Review, Ninth Letter, North American Review, andVerse Daily. Her essays have appeared in Creative Nonfiction, Fourth Genre, and Salon.

Puhak earned her master of arts degree in English Literature from the University of Delaware and her master of fine arts degree in poetry from the University of New Orleans. She has received grants and awards from DISQUIET International Literary Program, Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and the Maryland State Arts Council. Puhak teaches at Notre Dame of Maryland University, where she is the Eichner Endowed Professor. She lives in Baltimore with her husband and son.