Celebrated writers of poetry, fiction, and literary non-fiction visit campus several times each year to give lectures, readings, discussions, and book signings. For the Fall 2023 Creative Writers Reading Series, the four visiting writer readings will take place live and in person only.
All events are free and open to the public.
The Creative Writers Reading Series is produced by Penn State Behrend's B.F.A. in Creative Writing degree program with support from the Clarence A. and Eugenie Baumann Smith Fund.
For additional information, visit us on Facebook at Penn State Behrend - BFA Creative Writing.
Fall 2023 Smith Creative Writers Reading Series
Smith Readings begin promptly at 6:00 p.m. (preceded by receptions at 5:30 p.m.).
October 5 – Michael Czyzniejewski, Fiction
Michael Czyzniejewski is the author of four collections of stories, most recently The Amnesiac in the Maze (Braddock Avenue Books, 2023). He serves as editor-in-chief of Moon City Press and Moon City Review, as well as interviews editor for SmokeLong Quarterly. In 2010, he received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts.
October 19 – Bess Winter, Fiction & Woody Skinner, Fiction
Bess Winter has written on the topics of: dolls, mummies, taxidermy, death, horse tails, stolen eggs, Victorians, primates, private school girls, daguerreotypes, gas leaks, etc. Her work appears in Kenyon Review, American Short Fiction, Gettysburg Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Ecotone, W.W. Norton’s Flash Fiction International, and elsewhere, and has been awarded a Pushcart Prize and the American Short[er] Fiction Prize. She’s received fellowships and scholarships from Yaddo, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. She grew up in Toronto, Canada. Her debut collection, Machines of Another Era, was released by Gold Wake Press in 2021.
Woody Skinner's fiction has received Mid-American Review's Sherwood Anderson Fiction Award and appeared in Carolina Quarterly, Catamaran, River Styx, Hobart, Booth, Another Chicago Magazine, and other journals. PEN America selected his debut story collection, A Thousand Distant Radios, as a semifinalist for the 2018 Robert W. Bingham Prize. Originally from rural Arkansas, he's spent the last fifteen years living in various Midwestern cities. He holds an M.F.A. from Wichita State University and a Ph.D. from the University of Cincinnati.
November 9 – Matthew Roth, Poetry
Matthew Roth’s most recent book of poetry, Rains Rain, was published earlier this year by FutureCycle Press. His first book, Bird Silence, appeared with Woodley Press. His poems have been published in many literary journals, including Verse, American Literary Review, Antioch Review, and 32 Poems. He has also published a number of frequently cited articles on Vladimir Nabokov’s novel Pale Fire. He teaches literature and writing at Messiah University in Grantham, PA, and serves as associate reviews editor for the Nabokov Online Journal.
Readings begin promptly at 6:00 p.m.
September 7 – Faculty New Book Reading
Joshua Shaw, Professor of Philosophy and Bioethics, will read from his new book of fiction.
September 21 – Faculty New Book Reading
George Looney, Distinguished Professor of Creative Writing and English, will read from his new books of fiction and poetry.
November 30 – Sweet Sorrow Senior Readings
Graduating students from the Bachelor of Fine Arts program in Creative Writing read from their work.