New York Times-Bestselling writer Jeff VanderMeer joins the Hobart and William Smith community as the 2016-17 Trias Writer-in Residence. VanderMeer is the author of the award-winning “Southern Reach” trilogy (“Annihilation,” “Authority,” and “Acceptance”), released in 2014 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. As this year’s Trias resident, VanderMeer will teach workshops and mentor students who have shown distinction in writing at the Colleges.
VanderMeer is the author of more than 20 books, including novels, non-fiction, and the world’s first fully illustrated creative-writing guide, “Wonderbook.” He is the winner of the Shirley Jackson Award, the Nebula Award, and three-time winner of the World Fantasy Award. The first book in VanderMeer’s “Southern Reach” series is currently in production with Paramount Pictures. The film will star Natalie Portman and Oscar Isaac, and is directed by Ex Machina director Alex Garland.
VanderMeer is also well known for his non-fiction, which has appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian, Vulture and Esquire, among other publications. He has taught at the Yale Writers’ Conference, lectured at MIT, Brown and the Library of Congress, and is the co-director of Shared Worlds, a unique teen writing camp.
As the Trias Writer-in-Residence, VanderMeer will teach one class in the fall and work with a number of select students the following spring. Additionally, he will curate a speaker series, inviting his contemporaries to give readings of their work throughout the 2016-17 year.
The following readings will take place as part of the 2016-17 Trias Reading Series, and are open to the public:
On Thursday, Sept. 15, VanderMeer will kick off the Fall 2016 Trias Reading series at 7:30 p.m. in the Albright Auditorium.
On Thursday, Oct. 6, Dexter Palmer, the postmodernist fiction writer, will give a reading from his work in the Bartlett Theatre.
Palmer’s first novel, “The Dream of Perpetual Motion,” was published by St. Martin’s Press in 2010, and was selected as one of the best debuts of that year by Kirkus Reviews. An NPR review called Palmer, “A novelist with an abundance of things to say – about life, about time, and about the essence of the universe.”
On Wednesday, Nov. 2, in Bartlett Theatre, the Los Angeles writer Amelia Gray will be the final reader in the fall series. She has published four books, including “AM/PM,” “Museum of the Weird,” “THREATS,” and “Gunshot.” Her short stories and essays have been described by Electric Literature as “extremely unsettling and deeply moving” and have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Tin House and Vice.
The spring semester will feature Ottessa Moshfegh on Wednesday, April 5. the recipient of the Plimpton Prize for her short stories and novels, Moshfegh’s work explores the psychological experience of keeping and telling secrets. Her novel, “Eileen,” has been recognized internationally and is on the long list of candidates for the esteemed Man-Booker Prize, an award given to the best novel of the year written in English.
The Trias Residency for Writers is supported by The Peter Trias Endowed Fund for Poetry and Creative Writing. The series was created through a generous bequest from Peter J. Trias ’70, and is designed to give distinguished writers of fiction and poets time to write, while mentoring students of the Colleges. The writers are active in contributing to the artistic community of the Colleges and the City of Geneva.