Author Williams to speak on craft of fiction April 15

Joy Williams, the visiting Fannie Hurst Professor of Creative Literature in the Department of English in Arts & Sciences, will give a talk on the craft of fiction at 8 p.m. April 15 in Hurst Lounge, Duncker Hall, Room 201.

The talk, which is free and open to the public, is part of the Spring Reading Series 2004, sponsored by the English department and The Writing Program in Arts & Sciences.

Williams is the author of two collections of stories, Escapes and Taking Care, and four novels, most recently The Quick and the Dead. Other novels include State of Grace and The Changeling. She has also published Ill Nature, a collection of essays, and the nonfiction book The Florida Keys: A History and Guide.

Fiction writer Marshall Klimasewiski, assistant professor of English, said of Williams’ work: “Who else has glowing blurbs on her books from writers as different from one another as Raymond Carver, Brett Easton Ellis, Ann Beattie, Don DeLillo and Truman Capote?

“In 1973, with her very first novel, George Plimpton was saying she ‘towers over most contemporary fiction.’ In 1988, Harold Brodkey said, ‘To put it simply, Joy Williams is the most gifted writer of her generation.’ And in 2000, William Gass said, ‘Joy Williams is now the best at her business.’

“She’s an amazing writer, one sentence to the next and one book to the next, and a consummate artist, entirely unique — and she has been for the last 30 years.”

Williams’ stories and essays appear frequently in such publications as The Paris Review and The New Yorker. Her honors include the Academy-Institute Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a National Magazine Award for Fiction and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation.

A reception and book-signing will follow the talk, and Williams’ books will be available for purchase. For more information, call 935-7130.

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