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New Writing Series Winter 2010

Salvador Plascencia, Wednesday, January 20, 2010, 4:30-6:00 p.m. at the Visual Arts Facility: Performance Space
splascencia Salvador Plascencia was born in 1976 in Guadalajara, Mexico. Plascencia's mother was a seamstress, his father a factory worker who moved frequently between California and their home in Jalisco. He grew up at his grandparents' farm, where his extended family passed along a wealth of stories, some of which formed the inspiration for The People of Paper. His family eventually settled east of Los Angeles in the city of El Monte when Plascencia was 8 years old. At the time, he spoke no English. Salvador Plascencia holds a B.A. in English from Whittier College and an MFA in fiction from Syracuse University. He received a National Foundation for Advancement of the Arts Award in Fiction in 1996 and the Peter Nagoe Prize for Fiction in 2000. In 2001 he was awarded the Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans, becoming its first fellow in fiction. The People of Paper is Plascencia's first novel. His first published fiction appeared in McSweeney's Issue 12. (http://www.mcSweeneys.net)

Luis Humberto Crosthwaite, Wednesday, February 10, 2010,  4:30-6:00 p.m. at the Visual Arts Facility: Performance Space

Luis Humberto Crosthwaite is a Mexican writer, born in Tijuana in 1962. He has published Puro border: Dispatches, Snapshots & Graffiti from La Frontera; Idos de la mente; Estrella de la Calle Sexta; Lo que estará en mi corazón (Ña’a ta’ka ani’mai); The Moon Will Forever Be a Distant Love; No quiero escribir no quiero; El gran PRETENDER; Mujeres en traje de baño caminan solitarias por las calles de su llanto, and Marcela y el rey al fin juntos.

His editorial and literary work has received various prizes in Mexico. He won a grant of the National Fund for Culture and the Arts in the Young Creators category in 1990, and of the State Fund for Culture and the Arts in the category of Established Writers in 1995. He is now a member of the National System of Creators.

Ben Lerner, Thursay, February 25, 2010, 4:30-6:00 p.m. in the Literature Building, Room 155 (de Certeau)

Ben Lerner has a BA in political science and an MFA in creative writing from Brown University. He has taught creative writing and literature courses at Brown and California College of the Arts. Lerner is the author of two books of poetry: The Lichtenberg Figures (2004) and Angle of Yaw (2006), both published by Copper Canyon Press. He co-founded and co-edits No: a journal of the arts (www.nojournal.com). His poems have appeared in the Best American Poetry and Gertrude Stein Awards in Innovative American Poetry anthologies, among many other publications.

Lerner was a 2003 Fulbright Fellow in Spain. The Lichtenberg Figures won the Hayden Carruth Award, was a Lannan Literary Selection, and was named one of the best poetry books of the year by Library journal. Angle of Yaw was a finalist for the National Book Award.

Joanne Dobson, Wednesday, March 10, 2010, 4:30-6:00 p.m. at the Visual Arts Facility: Performance Space

Joanne Dobson is a novelist, essayist, English professor and creative writing teacher. Her essays have appeared in the New York Times opinion pages, and she has taught at Fordham University, Tufts University and Amherst College. She was a research fellow at the National Endowment for the Humanities (1990), an Agatha Nominee for her mystery novel Quieter then Sleep(1997), Noted Author of the Year, at New York Library Association (2001), and a Creative Arts Fellow for American Antiquarian Society (2004). She is the author of numerous mystery novels, including Quieter Than Sleep, The Raven and the Nightingale, Cold and Pure and Very Dead, and The Maltese Manuscript. Her most recent novel, Death without Tenure, was released by Poisoned Pen Press of this year.