Learn from Working Writers
The Malone University Writers Series brings authors of distinction and promise to campus for public readings as well as to work with students as part of our creative writing major.
These renowned writers visit the classroom to workshop student poems, deliver masterclasses on elements of craft, and invite conversation from our students about the life of a working writer.
In the past we've invited writers including Gilbert King, Kirstin Valdez Quade, Maggie Smith, Steve Almond, Mark Halliday, Jill Allyn Rosser, Celeste Ng, G.C. Waldrep, Scott Cairns, Jamaal May, Erin McGraw, and Alyssa Nutting.
Gilbert King, Winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in Nonfiction, Speaking at Malone
Malone University English Department and Writers Series Mission Statement
One of the founding principles of Malone University is that students are called “to witness the truth.” Good literature fundamentally has the same goal -- to help readers experience truth through empathy for those with a different perspective than their own. One goal of the Malone University English Department, then, is to read texts by writers with diverse backgrounds who write texts that reflect the diversity of the human experience -- writers whose works span from experimental to traditional, writers in all different genres of literature, writers who directly engage with or express Christian values and those who do not expressly do so -- so that students can join a community of writers and readers who are pursuing truth.
In the Gospels Christ calls us to learn from and engage with not only like-minded people, but also those who think differently than us. He did this by example when He dined with Zacchaeus, when He engaged in discourse with Pharisees and Sadducees, when He told the parable of the Good Samaritan, and any time he showed us how to find good in others. Nowhere is the challenge to empathize more present than in literary texts that, like the Bible, ask readers to know and understand experiences different from their own.
Malone’s Visiting Writers Series provides students with the opportunity to engage with diverse texts in classroom discussion, learn craft from professional writers through master classes, and listen to writers’ works and dialogue with those writers in public readings. All of these activities invite direct and healthy dialogue with the authors of these texts while in the context of a Christian University.
Therefore, when the Malone University Writers Series hosts readers who write texts that challenge students’ core beliefs and values, we give our students the chance to reaffirm not only what they believe, but why they believe it. Often these uncomfortable works are powerful reflections of the world around us. Reading these works can spark a call to action and service and ask us grow not only as readers, writers, and scholars, but also as Christians.