Live From Prairie Lights
"Live from Prairie Lights” is an internationally known readings series, which features some of the best up-and-coming and well-established authors & poets from all over the globe. Presented before a live audience and streamed over the world wide web, this long running series brings the spoken word from the bookstore to the masses. Most readings begin @ 7:00 p.m. Arrive early to assure yourself a seat.
May 29, 2018 - 7:00pm
Pramila Dugel will read from Shadows of Wealth. This novel is of a wealthy, spiritual family in Mumbai who devotedly raise their intelligent and good-looking son and daughter only to later discover that their wealth and parenting skills couldn’t guarantee the moral character of their offspring. It doesn’t prevent their children from making bad decisions, nor does it shelter them from the consequences.
“Intricately woven around a plot charged with superstition, power, wealth, spirituality, destiny, doom, joy and hope, Pramila Dugel writes a story of life that poses the ultimate challenge and tussle between success & failure, right & wrong and the ever raging battle of wealth versus personal fulfillment & non-attachment… a most captivating read.” – Viraj P. Thacker
Pramila Dugel is originally from Kathmandu, Nepal. She has lived in numerous places around the world with her husband, a UN diplomat from Nepal. She has taught at the National Child Research Center in Washington, D.C. and started the first Kindergarten private school in Kathmandu. She has taught at the United Nations School in Manhattan, a private school in Westchester, and The International School in Beijing. She is the author of Family Secrets, Two In One, Shadows Of Wealth and the Nepali Cookbook. They currently live in California.
June 5, 2018 - 7:00pm
Best-selling author Alexandra Fuller will read from her novel, Quiet Until the Thaw. “Beloved for the string of gorgeous memoirs begun with Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight, Fuller here depicts the Lakota people of South Dakota’s Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, particularly two cousins in conflict. Fluidly written, with no sanctimony and plenty of dark humor.” – Library Journal
Alexandra Fuller was born in England and lived in Africa until her mid-twenties. She has lived in Wyoming since 1994. She is the author of Scribbling the Cat, Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness, Leaving Before the Rains Come, and The Legend of Colton H. Bryant.
She lives in Wyoming.
June 8, 2018 - 7:00pm
Iowa City and Ames authors Miriam Kashia and Danielle Wirth will read from their contributions to the anthology We Rise to Resist: Voices from a New Era in Women’s Political Action. "For every person who railed, in private or public protest against assaults on our nation's cherished institutions, Dail's anthology provides essential validation affirming that dissent eventually works and that one's outrage need not be in vain . . . "
—Carol Haggas, Booklistonline
Miriam Kashia is retired from a private psychotherapy practice in Iowa City. Following service in the Peace Corps In Africa, she walked across America with the Great March for Climate Action in 2014. She made three trips to Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota, and was arrested twice while peacefully protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline across Iowa. She is active in several environmental groups.
Danielle Wirth, Ph.D., is a former park ranger and naturalist. She teaches ecofeminism at Iowa State University and environmental science and policy at Drake University. She focuses on organic food standards and food security, the impact of pesticides on human health and environmental quality, the restoration of native plant communities, and environmental ethics.
June 14, 2018 - 7:00pm
Pulitzer prizewinning author Jennifer Egan will read from her best-selling historical novel Manhattan Beach. Anna works at the Brooklyn Naval Yard, where women are allowed to hold jobs that once belonged to men, now soldiers abroad. With the atmosphere of a noir thriller, it follows Anna into a world populated by gangsters, sailors, divers, bankers, and union men. “I don’t know a better writer working today. There is a generosity in her prose that is vastly enlivening to its reader and brings about that beautiful effect fiction sometimes causes: more, and better-grounded, fondness for reality, just as it is."—George Saunders
Jennifer Egan is the author A Visit From the Goon Squad, The Invisible Circus, Look at Me, and The Keep. Also a journalist, she has written for New York Times Magazine, and her short stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Harpers, Granta and McSweeney's. She lives in Brooklyn.
June 15, 2018 - 7:00pm
Poet James P. Lenfestey will read from his new book of poetry, A Marriage Book: 50 Years of Poems from a Marriage. “Warning Label: prepare to be shaken, moved, amused, terrified, relieved, delighted. Take in small doses or one large gulp; either way, you will be healed.” –Jim Moore
Lenfestey is the author of Seeking the Cave: A Pilgrimage to Cold Mountain, a Minnesota Book Award finalist, and multiple collections of poems, including A Marriage Book. He co-edited the anthology Robert Bly in This World. He is chair of the Literary Witness poetry series, teaches at the Mackinac Island Poetry Festival, and lives in Minneapolis with his wife.
June 18, 2018 - 7:00pm
Sands Hall will read from her new memoir Flunk. Start.: Reclaiming My Decade Lost in Scientology. "Novelist and actress Hall probes her descent into Scientology in this impassioned, wonderfully constructed memoir . . . Hall reflects with brutal honesty on her decisions throughout this meticulously crafted book, which explores her negative experiences with Scientology and how her desire to please led her to believe in the unbelievable." ―Publishers Weekly
Sands Hall is the author of a novel, Catching Heaven, a Willa Award Finalist for Best Contemporary Fiction and a book of writing essays and exercises, Tools of the Writer’s Craft. She teaches at the Iowa Summer Writing Festival, and the Community of Writers, Squaw Valley. Hall lives in Nevada City.
June 19, 2018 - 7:00pm
Writers’ Workshop alum Nick Dybek will read from his new novel The Verdun Affair. Set in Europe in the aftermath of World War I and Los Angeles in the 1950s, The Verdun Affair follows a lonely young man, a beautiful widow, and the amnesiac soldier whose puzzling case binds them together even as it tears them apart. “From a still-smoldering battlefield, Nick Dybek conjures a sweeping saga of secrets, lies, mistaken identity, love and betrayal. This is the kind of book you can’t put down.” —Claire Vaye Watkins
Nick Dybek is also the author of When Captain Flint Was Still A Good Man. A recipient of a Granta New Voices selection, a Michener-Copernicus Society of America Award, and a Maytag Fellowship, he currently teaches at Oregon State University.
June 20, 2018 - 7:00pm
Andrew Sean Greer will read from his Pulitzer Prizewinning novel, Less. “I adore this book. It’s funny, piquant, bittersweet and so achingly observant about the vanity of writers that it made me squirm in recognition. I’ll probably read it again very soon.” —Armistead Maupin
A former instructor at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, Andrew Sean Greer is the bestselling author of six novels including The Story of a Marriage and The Confessions of Max Tivoli. He lives in San Francisco and in Tuscany, where he is Executive Director of the Santa Maddalena Foundation.
June 21, 2018 - 7:00pm
Des Moines Psychiatrist Loren Olson will read from his powerful exploration of human sexuality, Finally Out: Letting Go of Living Straight. Finally Out explores the sexuality of mature men who, like Dr. Olson, lived a large part of their lives as married straight men.
“Less a handbook for coming out late in life than one man's story of doing so, Olson's always-compassionate voice asserts the importance of being true to oneself.” —Publishers Weekly
Loren Olson came out at forty. A father and grandfather, he is also a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and a recipient of the Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness. He has presented findings from his research on mature gay men at the World Congress of Psychiatry in Prague. He lives on a farm in Iowa with his husband, Doug. This event has been co-sponsored by the GoGuide Magazine.
June 22, 2018 - 7:00pm
Writers’ Workshop graduates Ian Stansel and Sarah Strickley will read from their new fiction.
Ian Stansel will read from The Last Cowboys of San Geronimo. “Stansel confidently updates the American Western while honoring its most daring storytellers: Charles Portis and Larry McMurtry. In taut, cinematic prose, Stansel considers the romance of frontier justice, the seductive power of a good old-fashioned horse chase/manhunt and the heartbreaking costs of fraternal rivalry.” —Amber Dermont
Stansel is the author of the story collection Everybody’s Irish, and his work has appeared in Ploughshares, Joyland, Ecotone, and Salon. He teaches creative writing at the University of Louisville.
Sarah Anne Strickley will read from Fall Together: Stories Re-Told, published by Gold Wake Press. “Strickley’s work is bold, honest, and confident. Her language is the perfect combination of lyricism and directness . . . inventive stories that carry the reader into dark territory.” —Chris Offutt
Her work has appeared in Oxford American, A Public Space, Harvard Review, Gulf Coast, The Normal School, and the Cincinnati Review. Strickley teaches creative writing and is the faculty editor of Miracle Monocle at the University
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