posted March 14, 2011

Visiting Writers Series to Feature Benjamin Percy

The Jack Ridl Visiting Writers Series of Hope College will feature fiction and non-fiction writer Benjamin Percy on Monday, March 28, at 7 p.m. at the Knickerbocker Theatre in downtown Holland.

Percy will also participate in a question-and-answer session on Monday, March 28, at 3:30 p.m. in the DeWitt Center Herrick Room, and present a lecture on craft in fiction on Tuesday, March 29, at 3:30 p.m. in the Fried/Hemenway Auditorium of the Martha Miller Center for Global Communication.

The public is invited to all three events. Admission is free.

"I admire the work of Benjamin Percy for its sheer ferocity and compassion, for its deep empathy for people at the hard edges of rage and grief and fear," said Dan Chaon, author of "Among the Missing" and "You Remind Me of Me." "The stories in 'Refresh, Refresh' are big-hearted and dangerous, and there's a heightened, unnerving vibe as you travel through Percy's world."

Percy teaches creative writing (fiction and nonfiction) in the MFA program at IowaStateUniversity. Prior to joining the IowaStateUniversity faculty, he taught at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and MarquetteUniversity. Percy is also a faculty member at the Low-Res MFA program at PacificUniversity.

Percy is the author of two novels, "Red Moon" (forthcoming from Grand Central/Hachette in 2002) and "The Wilding" (Graywolf, 2010), and two books of short stories, "Refresh, Refresh" (Graywolf, 2007) and "The Language of Elk" (Carnegie Mellon, 2006). His fiction and nonfiction have been read on National Public Radio, performed at Symphony Space, and published by "Esquire," "Men's Journal," "Outside," "Paris Review," "Chicago Tribune," "Glimmer Train," "The Wall Street Journal" and many other publications.

Percy's many awards include: the Whiting Award, The Whiting Foundation, 2008; the Ann Powers Book-length Fiction Award, Council for Wisconsin Writers, 2008; The Pushcart Prize Fellowship, 2007; the John Gardner Fellowship in Fiction, Breadloaf Writer's Conference, Summer 2007; the Tennessee Williams Scholarship, 2003 Sewanee Writers' Conference; the Plimpton Prize, The Paris Review, 2007; the 2002 Chicago Tribune Nelson Algren Award; and inclusion in the Best American and Pushcart Prize anthologies.

Additional information about the Jack Ridl Visiting Writers Series may be obtained online by going to www.hope.edu/vws.

A performance by a Hope jazz group will precede the reading beginning at 6:30 p.m. 

The DeWitt Center is located at 141 E. 12th St., facing Columbia Avenue at 12th Street.  The Knickerbocker Theatre is located at 86 E. Eighth St.  The Martha Miller Center for Global Communication is located at 257 Columbia Ave., on Columbia Avenue at 10th Street.