Mary Karr, acclaimed memoirist and author of The Liar’s Club, gave the keynote address at the Kentucky Women Writer’s Conference on September 16, 2016. I was not familiar with Mary Karr’s work before I listened to her keynote address, but I walked out of that talk with her book of poetry, Sinners Welcome and her most recent memoir, lit.

That’s what I love the most about going to these types of events. As an English major and passionate reader, I’m constantly searching for things to read outside of the classroom. Author readings remind me of going to live music concerts and falling in love with the opener rather than the headliner. As Karr read from Sinners Welcome, I was drawn to her crisp and exciting word pairings. She described familiar things, such as pregnancy, in such a way that made them feel new. In her poem, “A Blessings from my Sixteen Years’ Son,” she says, “I have this son who assembled inside me / during Hurricane Gloria. In a flash, he appeared, / in a heartbeat.”

For me, readings are a chance to discover new authors, and often unexpectedly. Not only are they a great way to find new reading material, but they provide an opportunity to learn more about the writing craft and process. Here are the upcoming readings and talks planned for the rest of the fall semester:

November 16, 2016

Ada Limon

7:30 @ Holmes Hall Performance Studio


November 30, 2016

Claire Vaye Watkins and Derek Palacio

7:30 @ WT Young Auditorium


More information about each author can be found on their respective websites:


Events are sponsored by the MFA in Creative Writing and the Department of English