U.S. and British writers in Spring events

We are closing out the semester with a spring in our steps and two events featuring writers from America, Canada and the UK.

First, on Tuesday 3 May, Writers in Conversation will host American author Julia Ridley Smith, whose book of essays was recommended by IndyWeek “…for anyone who has lost a parent, for lovers and wranglers of ephemera, for amateur epistemologists, and for incorrigible musers.”

American essayist Julia Ridley Smith

We’ll follow that on Wednesday May 11 with a Writers in Conversation publishing extravaganza which begins with Katie Munnik reading from and talking about her latest novel, followed by a panel discussion with Munnik, Chicago writer and podcaster Mark Caro, and Abimael Ayala, a Southampton MA Creative Writing alum who is now working in publishing in New York City.

Writer Carole Burns, also head of Creative Writing at the University of Southampton, will host both events.

Julia Ridley Smith, who writes both fiction and non-fiction, will be talking about her book of essays, The Sum of Trifles, at 6 pm GMT on Tuesday 3 May. She’ll be joining us online from America — though you’ll need to come to the Avenue campus, Lecture Theatre C, to hear her and ask questions.

“A profound and engaging meditation on personal possessions…”

Smith’s moving book of essays circle around the deaths of her parents and the treasure trove of antiques they had spent their lives buying, selling and loving. What is the value of things? As a white person in the American South, how does one grapple with the history of those things? And how does one honor our loved ones after they are gone?

The event begins at 6 pm at the University of Southampton, Avenue Campus, Lecture Theatre C.

The following week, Wednesday 11 May, at 2 pm, please join us for our special Writers in Conversation/Publishing Extravaganza.

Katie Munnik starts us off with a reading and discussion on her newest novel, The Aerialists, which was published by Borough Press in mid-April.

The Aerialists is based on the true story of Louisa Maud Evans, a fourteen-year old girl who died during the Great Exhibition in Cardiff, 1896, and whose demise – tumbling 8,000 feet into the Bristol Channel – captured the imagination of the city.

The Aerialists is ‘a heady and stylish read that swept me away…’

You may read an exclusive excerpt from The Aerialists on ‘Unseen Histories’.

After a q-and-a led by Burns (and a quick break!) Munnik and our two other panelists – joining us online from Chicago and New York City – will talk about different aspects of publishing.

The event will be held at 2 pm in Lecture Theatre C, Avenue Campus, Building 65.

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