Visiting Writers

In partnership with the EWU’s MFA in Creative Writing, Get Lit! Programs is a proud sponsor of the 2018-2019 Visiting Writers Series. This season includes a lineup of seven writers from across the country who have published award-winning works of fiction, non-fiction and poetry. Each writer’s visit will be held at Spark Central (1214 W Summit Pkwy, Spokane, WA, 99201). All events are FREE, open to the public, and will include a reading, Q&A, and book signing.

Please direct all questions regarding the Visiting Writers Series to Get Lit! Programs at


2018/2019 Visiting Writers Schedule

Authors TBD

Past Authors


Judy Blunt

October 27th, 2017 @ Spark Central

Judy Blunt spent more than 30 years on wheat and cattle ranches in northeastern Montana, before leaving that life to attend the University of Montana. Her best-selling memoir, Breaking Clean, was published by A.A. Knopf in 2002 to wide critical acclaim, including a PEN/Jerard Fund Award for nonfiction, the 2001 Whiting Writers’ Award, 2003 Mountains and Plains Bookseller’s Award, Willa Award for Nonfiction Book of the Year, and a 2004 National Endowment for the Arts writer’s fellowship.  Blunt received a Guggenheim fellowship in 2005.  She teaches creative nonfiction at the the University of Montana.

Darin Strauss

November 17th, 2017 @ Spark Central

Darin Strauss, a recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship and a winner of the American Library Association’s Alix Award and The National Book Critics Circle Award, is an internationally-bestselling writer and the author of the novels Chang & Eng, The Real McCoy, and More Than It Hurts You, and the NBCC-winning memoir Half a Life. These have been New York Times Notable Books, Newsweek, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Amazon, Chicago Tribune, and NPR Best Books of the Year, among others. Darin has been translated into fourteen languages and published in nineteen countries, and he is a Clinical Associate Professor at NYU’s creative writing program.

Jesse Graves

January 19th, 2018 @ Auntie’s Bookstore

Jesse Graves grew up in Sharps Chapel, Tennessee, about 40 miles north of Knoxville, in a community his ancestors settled in the 1780s. He is an Associate Professor of English and Poet-in-Residence at East Tennessee State University, where he won the 2012 New Faculty Award from the College of Arts & Sciences. His first poetry collection, Tennessee Landscape with Blighted Pine, won the 2011 Weatherford Award in Poetry from Berea College and the Appalachian Studies Association, as well as a Book of the Year Award from the Appalachian Writers’ Association. He was given the 2013 Thomas and Lillie D. Chaffin Award for Appalachian Writing. His second collection of poems, Basin Ghosts, also won the 2014 Weatherford Award in Poetry, making him the first poet to win the award more than one time. His poems have appeared in such journals as Prairie Schooner, Southern Poetry Review, Connecticut Review, and in the Poem of the Week feature for Missouri Review. He is editor of several volumes of poetry and scholarship, including three volumes of The Southern Poetry Anthology (Contemporary Appalachia, Tennessee, and North Carolina), Jeff Daniel Marion: Poet on the Holston, and the forthcoming Complete Poems of James Agee (University of Tennessee Press, 2017). Graves was awarded the 2014 Philip H. Freund Prize for Creative Writing from Cornell University, and the 2015 James Still Award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers.

Krys Lee

February 16th, 2018 @ Spark Central

Krys Lee is the author of the short story collection Drifting House and the recent debut novel How I Became a North Korean, both published by Viking, Penguin Random House. She is a recipient of the Rome Prize and the Story Prize Spotlight Award, the Honor Title in Adult Fiction Literature from the Asian/Pacific American Libraries Association, and finalist for Center for Fiction First Novel Prize and the BBC International Story Prize. Her fiction, journalism, and literary translations have appeared in Granta, The Kenyon Review, Narrative, San Francisco Chronicle, Corriere della Sera, and The Guardian, among others. She is an assistant professor of creative writing and literature at Yonsei University, Underwood International College, in South Korea.

Emily Van Kley

April 13th, 2018 @ Spark Central

Emily Van Kley was raised in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula but now lives with her partner in Olympia, Washington, where she writes, works at a cooperative grocery, practices aerial acrobatics, and nurses a near-pathological longing for snow. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in numerous publications and anthologies, including The Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner, The Mississippi Review, Best New Poets 2013, and Best American Poetry 2017. Emily holds an MFA from Eastern Washington University and has taught composition and creative writing at the high school and college levels. Her first book, The Cold and the Rust, is forthcoming from Persea in spring of 2018.

Dan Chaon

April 28th, 2018 @ Montvale Events Center, 12PM

Dan Chaon’s most recent book is Ill Will,  a novel.   Other works include the short story collection Stay Awake (2012), a finalist for the Story Prize; the national bestseller Await Your Reply and Among the Missing, a finalist for the National Book Award. Chaon’s fiction has appeared in Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize Anthologies, and The O. Henry Prize Stories. He has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award in Fiction, the Shirley Jackson Award, and he was the recipient of an Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Chaon lives in Ohio and teaches at Oberlin College.

Nance Van Winckel

April 28th, 2018 @ Montvale Events Center, 12PM

Nance Van Winckel is the author of eight books of poetry, most recently Our Foreigner, winner of the Pacific Coast Poetry Series Prize (Beyond Baroque Press, 2017), Book of No Ledge (Pleiades Press Visual Poetry Series, 2016), and Pacific Walkers (U. of Washington Press, 2014). She’s also published five books of fiction, including Ever Yrs, a novel in the form of a scrapbook (Twisted Road Publications, 2014), and Boneland: Linked Stories (U. of Oklahoma Press, 2013). She teaches in the MFA Programs at Eastern Washington University and Vermont College of Fine Arts. The recipient of two NEA poetry fellowships, the Paterson Fiction Prize, Poetry Society of America’s Gordon Barber Poetry Award, a Christopher Isherwood Fiction Fellowship, and three Pushcart Prizes, Nance lives with her husband Rik Nelson in Spokane, Washington.

Laura Kasischke

May 11th, 2018 @ Spark Central

Laura Kasischke was raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  She is the recipient of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry, 2012. She has published nine novels, three of which have been made into feature films—The Life Before Her Eyes, Suspicious River, White Bird in a Blizzard—and eight books of poetry, most recently Space, in Chains.  Her new poetry collection, The Infinitesimals was published in May, 2014. She has also published the short story collection If a Stranger Approaches You. She has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as several Pushcart Prizes and numerous poetry awards and her writing has appeared in Best American Poetry, The Kenyon Review, Harper’s and The New Republic. She has a son and step-daughter and lives with her family and husband in Chelsea, Michigan.  She is Allan Seager Colleagiate Professor of English Language & Literature at the University of Michigan.


September 30th, 2016 Alexis Smith
October 14th, 2016 Kristin Dombeck
October 29th, 2016 Heather McHugh
November 11th, 2016 Joe Wilkins
February 24, 2017 Sarah Shun-lien Bynum
March 9, 2017 Megan Kruse
March 17, 2017 Liz Kay
April 2017 John Rybicki


November 13th, 2015 Linda Bierds
November 20th, 2015 S.M. Hulse
December 4th, 2015 Bethany Schultz Hurst
January 22nd, 2016 Lily Hoang
February 26, 2016 Lidia Yuknavitch
April 14th, 2016 Paul Harding
April 14th, 2016 Nance Van Winckel
April 29th, 2016 William Finnegan
May 13th, 2016 Elizabeth Spires


October 4th, 2014 Joseph Salvatore
February 6, 2015 William Wright and Andrea Scarpino
February 20, 2015 Emily Rapp
March 6, 2015 Elizabeth Graver
April 24, 2015 Walter Kirn
May 15, 2015 Mary Szybist and Michele Glazer
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