Visiting Writers Series

About the Series

Every year the MFA program invites several prestigious writers to campus, where they lead workshops of student work and give readings to the broader community. Recent guests include Robert Lopez, Sarah Shun-Lien Bynum, Dana Johnson, Bonnie Nadzam, Paul Harding, Lily Hoang, Krys Lee, William Finnegan, Albert Goldbarth, Thomas Lynch, Peter Everwine, Patricia Hampl, Linda Bierds, Thomas Lux, Alison Baker, James Tate, Dorianne Laux, Yusek Komunyakaa, Phillip Lopate, Lan Samantha Chang, Marilynne Robinson, Stuart Dybek, Jane Smiley, and many more.

EWU’s Visiting Writers Series is promoted by Get Lit! Programs.

Please contact us at or 509.828.1434 for more information on visiting writers and all general program questions.

2020-21 Visiting Writers

A. Kendra Greene

A. Kendra Greene is an essayist, printer, and maker of artist’s books. She writes about collections and records radio essays and spends not enough time locking up wood type on a Vandercook proof press. Her work as an essayist started during a Fulbright to teach English in South Korea, and she earned an MFA in Nonfiction Writing from the University of Iowa and a Graduate Certificate from the University of Iowa Center for the Book under the auspices of a Jacob K. Javits Fellowship. She is Associate Editor of prose at the Southwest Review and lately a Fellow at Harvard University’s Library Innovation Lab. Kendra makes books and broadsides under the imprint Greene Ink Press, and occasionally Red Thread Press, while posters are done under the name Miniature Giraffe Press. Her chapbooks and broadsides are held in the special collections of Yale, Carnegie Mellon, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, University of Florida, University of Miami, and University of Iowa, among others. Kendra’s writing is more broadly available in print publications like The Normal School, Field Working: Reading and Writing Research 4th ed., and The Best Women’s Travel Writing 2010. Ephemerally, her zines can be found in the White Rock Zine Machine, for 25 cents a pop.

This event has already occurred but can be viewed here on YouTube


Nov. 13, 2020 at 7:30pm PST

Todd Davis

Todd Davis is the author of six full-length collections of poetry—Native Species; Winterkill; In the Kingdom of the Ditch; The Least of These; Some Heaven; and Ripe—as well as a limited-edition chapbook, Household of Water, Moon, and Snow. He edited the nonfiction collection, Fast Break to Line Break: Poets on the Art of Basketball, and co-edited the anthology Making Poems. His writing has won the Midwest Book Award, the Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Prize, the Chautauqua Editors Prize, the Bloomsburg University Book Prize, and the Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Silver and Bronze Awards. His poems appear in such noted journals and magazines as American Poetry Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Barrow Street, Iowa Review, North American Review, Missouri Review, Gettysburg Review, Orion, Poetry Northwest, West Branch, Sycamore Review, and Poetry Daily.  He teaches environmental studies, creative writing, and American literature at Pennsylvania State University’s Altoona College.

This event has already occurred but can be viewed here on YouTube


Dec. 4, 2020 at 7:30pm PST

Noah Davis

Noah Davis grew up in Tipton, Pennsylvania, and writes about the Allegheny Front. Davis’ manuscript Of This River was selected by George Ella Lyon for the 2019 Wheelbarrow Emerging Poet Book Prize from Michigan State University’s Center for Poetry, and his poems and prose have appeared in The Sun, Best New Poets, Orion, North American Review, River Teeth, Sou’wester, and Chautauqua among others. His work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize by Poet Lore and Natural Bridge, and he has been awarded a Katharine Bakeless Nason Fellowship at the Bread Loaf Writers Conference and the 2018 Jean Ritchie Appalachian Literature Fellowship from Lincoln Memorial University. Davis earned an MFA from Indiana University and now lives with his wife, Nikea, in Missoula, Montana.

This event has already occurred but can be viewed here on YouTube


Dec. 4, 2020 at 7:30pm PST

Zaina Arafat

Zaina Arafat is a queer Palestinian-American writer based in Brooklyn. Her debut novel, You Exist Too Much, was selected as an Indie Next Pick for June, and has been praised by O Oprah Magazine, Vogue, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, NPR, LitHub and Good Morning America. Her stories and essays have appeared in publications including Granta, The New York Times, The Believer, Virginia Quarterly Review, VICE, BuzzFeed, Guernica and The Atlantic. She holds an MFA from Iowa and an MA from Columbia, and was awarded the 2018 Arab Women/Migrants from the Middle East fellowship from Jack Jones Literary Arts. She teaches writing at Long Island University and the School of the New York Times, and is currently working on an essay collection.

This event has already occurred but can be viewed here on YouTube


Jan. 15, 2021 at 7:30pm PST

Amy Tan

Amy Tan is an American writer whose works explore mother-daughter relationships. Her best-known work is The Joy Luck Club, which has been translated into 35 languages. In 1993, the book was adapted into a commercially successful film. Tan has written several other bestselling novels, including The Kitchen God’s Wife, The Hundred Secret Senses, The Bonesetter’s Daughter and Saving Fish from Drowning. She also wrote a collection of non-fiction essays entitled The Opposite of Fate: A Book of Musings. In addition to these, Tan has written two children’s books: The Moon Lady and Sagwa, the Chinese Siamese Cat, which was turned into an animated series which aired on PBS. She also appeared on PBS in a short spot encouraging children to write. Tan is also in a band with several other well-known writers, the Rock Bottom Remainders.

This event has already occurred but can be viewed here on YouTube


Jan. 22, 2021 at 7:30pm PST

Alex Marzano-Lesnevich

Alex Marzano-Lesnevich is the author of THE FACT OF A BODY: A Murder and a Memoir, which received a Lambda Literary Award, the Chautauqua Prize, the Grand Prix des Lectrices ELLE, the Prix des libraires du Quebec, and the Prix France Inter-JDD, an award for one book of any genre in the world. Named one of the best books of the year by Entertainment Weekly,, Bustle, Book Riot, The Times of LondonThe GuardianParis MatchLireTelerama, and The Sydney Press Herald, it was an Indie Next Pick and a Junior Library Guild selection, long-listed for the Gordon Burn Prize, short-listed for the CWA Gold Dagger, a finalist for a New England Book Award and a Goodreads Choice Award, and has been translated into ten languages. They have written for The New York TimesThe New York Times Sunday MagazineThe Boston GlobeOxford AmericanHarper’s, and many other publications. They earned their BA at Columbia University, their JD at Harvard Law School, and their MFA at Emerson College. They are now an assistant professor at Bowdoin College and live in Portland, Maine, with an enormous puppy.

This event has already occurred but can be viewed here on YouTube


Feb. 12, 2021 at 7:30pm PST

Lina Ferreira

Lina was born and raised (mostly) in Bogota, Colombia and has since then been tumbleweeding aimlessly through the world. She is the author of Drown Sever Sing, and her ode to cannibalism can be found in the collection titled, After Montaigne: Contemporary Essayists Cover the Essays. She is a graduate of The University of Iowa’s Creative Nonfiction and Literary Translation programs, and her work has been featured in Arts and Letters, The Chicago Review, and Fourth Genre, among others. Her new book, Don’t Come Back, is published by Mad River Books, an imprint of The Ohio State University Press (January 2017). Ferreira is a recipient of the 2016 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award.

Stream live here on YouTube


Feb. 26, 2021 at 7:30pm PST

Alex Espinoza

Alex Espinoza was born in Tijuana, Mexico to parents from the state of Michoacán and raised in suburban Los Angeles. In high school and afterwards, he worked a series of retail jobs, selling everything from eggs and milk to used appliances, custom furniture, rock T-shirts, and body jewelry. After graduating from the University of California-Riverside, he went on to earn an MFA from UC-Irvine’s Program in Writing. His first novel, Still Water Saints, was published by Random House in 2007 and was named a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers Selection. The book was released simultaneously in Spanish, under the title Los santos de Agua Mansa, California, translated by Lilliana Valenzuela. His second novel, The Five Acts of Diego León, was also published by Random House in March 2013. His latest book is Cruising: An Intimate History of a Radical Pastime, published by Unnamed Press in 2019.

Stream live here on YouTube


Mar. 12, 2021 at 7:30pm PST

Eman Hassan

Eman’s debut collection of poems, Raghead, received a Folsom Award and was the editor’s pick in the 2018 New Issues Poetry Prize. A witness poet, Eman earned a PhD in poetry from the University of Nebraska and an MFA in poetry from Arizona State University, where she worked as the International Poetry Editor for Hayden’s Ferry Review. She has translated poems for The Ilanot Review, and Aldus, a Journal of Translation and presented on multiple panels including AWP and LANGSA. Her work has appeared in Blackbird, Painted Bride Quarterly, Mizna, and Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, among other journals.

Stream live here on YouTube


Apr. 9, 2021 at 7:30pm PST

Susan Choi

Susan Choi and her work have been praised by many. Choi’s fifth novel, Trust Exercise, won the 2019 National Book Award for Fiction. Described as “electrifying” (People) and “thrilling” (Boston Globe), it tells the story of a group of teenagers at a competitive arts school somewhere in American suburbia in the 1980s. Two of the students in the group fall in love, and this world makes a certain sense until the author upends everything and the boundaries of fiction and reality are pushed in a tale that is itself a trust exercise for readers. Born in South Bend, Indiana to a Korean father and a Jewish mother, Choi was raised there and in Houston, Texas. She studied literature at Yale and writing at Cornell and worked for several years as a fact-checker for The New Yorker. Choi teaches fiction writing at Yale and lives in Brooklyn.

Stream live here on YouTube


Apr. 24, 2021 at 3:00pm PST

Presented By:

The MFA at EWU

The MFA at EWU

Program Information

Get Lit! Programs

Get Lit! Programs

Get Lit! Website

Previous Visiting Writers

  • Christopher Boucher
  • Christopher Dombrowski
  • Dinah Lenney
  • Danielle Dutton
  • Ashley Capps
  • Alex Espinoza
  • Phillip Lopate

  • Steve Almond
  • Bonnie Nadzam
  • Mary Norris
  • Dennis Nurkse
  • Suzanne Matson
  • Ira Sukrungruang

  • Judy Blunt
  • Darin Strauss
  • Jesse Graves
  • Krys Lee
  • Emily Van Kley
  • Dan Chaon
  • Nance Van Winckel
  • Laura Kasischke

  • Alexis M. Smith
  • Kristin Dombek
  • Heather McHugh
  • Joe Wilkins
  • Sarah Shun-lien Bynum
  • Liz Kay
  • John Rybicki

  • Linda Bierds
  • S.M. Hulse
  • Bethany Schultz Hurst
  • Lily Hoang
  • Lidia Yuknavitch
  • Paul Harding
  • Nance Van Winckel
  • William Finnegan
  • Elizabeth Spires

  • Joseph Salvatore
  • Andrea Scarpino
  • William Wright
  • Emily Rapp
  • Elizabeth Graver
  • Walter Kirn
  • Michele Glazer
  • Mary Szybist