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Visiting Writers Series features Allen St. John, George Ella Lyon and Shira Dentz

BOONE—An award-winning journalist, a poet and a writer of multiple genres will read from and talk about their work as part of the Hughlene Bostian Frank Visiting Writers Series at Appalachian State University.

View larger imageSt. JohnView larger imageLyon (photo by Ann Olson)View larger imageDentz (photo courtesy of Drunken Boat)

The series begins with a reading by Allen St. John Sept. 4 on behalf of the university’s Common Reading Program, followed by a reading Oct. 2 by George Ella Lyon, the Rachel Rivers-Coffey Distinguished Professor in Creative Writing for fall semester. The series also brings poet Shira Dentz to campus Nov. 13.

All readings begin at 7:30 and are free and open to the public.

Allen St. John
St. John, an award-winning journalist, is the author of “Clapton’s Guitar: Watching Wayne Henderson Build the Perfect Instrument,” which incoming freshmen at Appalachian were invited to read and discuss before the start of fall semester. His presentation will be in Plemmons Student Union’s Blue Ridge Ballroom.

George Ella Lyon
Lyon publishes widely in multiple genres, including picture books, young adult novels, novels and poetry. A native of Harlan, Kentucky, Lyon’s work is often set in Appalachia. She currently teaches writing through conferences, workshops and author visits.

A reception in Lyon’s honor will be held in Plemmons Student Union’s Price Lake Room from 6-7:15 p.m., followed by a reading in the Table Rock Room.

Shira Dentz
Dentz is the author of a book of poems titled “black seeds on a white dish” (Shearsman Books, 2011), and “door of thin skins” (CavanKerry Press, 2013), a hybrid collection of prose, poetry and visual elements. She is also the author of two chapbooks, “Leaf Weather” (Tilt Press/Shearsman Books) and “Sisyphusina,” (forthcoming from Red Glass Books). Her third full-length manuscript is a finalist for the National Poetry Series.

Dentz will deliver a craft talk from 2-3:15 p.m. in Plemmons Student Union’s Rough Ridge Room and a reading in Table Rock Room.

For further information on the 2014-15 Visiting Writers Series season, please check out our Facebook page or send us an email at To receive Appalachian’s “This Week in the Arts” announcements by email, please contact

The Visiting Writers Series is named in honor of Hughlene Bostian Frank (class of 1968), a past trustee and generous supporter of the university and recipient of the 2013 Appalachian Alumni Association Outstanding Service award.

The Visiting Writers Series 2014-15 season is supported by the Appalachian State University Foundation, Appalachian’s Office of Academic Affairs, the College of Arts and Sciences, the Department of English, the Summer Reading Program, the University Bookstore, Belk Library and Information Commons, and the Appalachian Journal. Business sponsors are The Gideon Ridge Inn and The Red Onion Restaurant. Community sponsors include John and the late Margie Idol, Paul and Judy Tobin, Alice Naylor, Thomas McLaughlin and The High Country Writers.

Parking is free on campus after 5 p.m. The Library Parking Deck on College Street, which opens to the general public after 5:30 p.m., is recommended. To reach Plemmons Student Union, cross College Street and follow the walkway between the chiller plant and the University Bookstore, passing the University Post Office and entering Plemmons Student Union on the second floor.

For further parking information or a map, see or call the Parking and Traffic Office 828- 262-2878.