posted March 30, 2010

Visiting Writers Series to Feature George Saunders on April 12

 The Jack Ridl Visiting Writers Series of Hope College will feature fiction writer George Saunders on Monday, April 12, at 7 p.m. at the Knickerbocker Theatre in downtown Holland.

The public is invited. Admission is free.

Saunders will also be interviewed on WTHS, the college's student-run FM radio station, 89.9 FM, on Monday, April 12, at 10:30 a.m., and will participate in a question-and-answer session on Monday, April 12, at 3 p.m. in the DeWitt Center Herrick Room.

George Saunders is the author of three collections of short stories: the bestselling "Pastoralia"; "CivilWarLand in Bad Decline," which was a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award; and "In Persuasion Nation," which was a finalist for the 2006 STORY Prize for best short story collection of the year. "Pastoralia" and "CivilWarLand in Bad Decline" were both "New York Times Notable Books."

Saunders is also the author of the novella-length illustrated fable, "The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil," and the "New York Times" bestselling children's book, "The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip." His most recent book is a collection of essays, "The Braindead Megaphone," which received critical acclaim and landed him spots on "The Charlie Rose Show," "Late Night with David Letterman" and "The Colbert Report." "Vanity Fair" wrote of the book, "Saunders's bitingly clever and compassionate essays are a Mark Twain-syle shot in the arm for Americans, an antidote to the dumbing down virus plaguing our country."

Saunders's work appears regularly in "The New Yorker," "GQ" and "Harpers Magazine," and has appeared in several notable anthologies. In 2006, he was awarded both a MacArthur Fellowship, for "bring[ing] to contemporary American fiction a sense of humor, pathos, and literary style all his own," and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He teaches in the Creative Writing Program at Syracuse University.

A 6:30 p.m. performance by the Hope College Jazz Ensemble will precede the reading at the Knickerbocker.

Additional information may be obtained online by visiting www.hope.edu/vws.

The DeWitt Center is located at 141 E. 12th St., facing Columbia Avenue at 12th Street.  The Knickerbocker Theatre is located at 86 E. Eighth St.