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Monmouth University’s Visiting Writers Series opens with Award-Winning Poet

The 2013-2014 Visiting Writers Series opens with a reading by award-winning poet Katie Ford on Thursday, September 19 at 4:30 p.m. in Wilson Hall Auditorium on Monmouth University’s campus.  This event is free and open to the public.

Katie Ford is the author of Deposition, Colosseum, and the forthcoming Blood Lyrics (Graywolf Press, 2014).   She is the recipient of a Lannan Literary Fellowship and the Larry Levis Prize.

While a 19-year-old student at Whitman College earning her B.A. in English, Ford began writing poetry. In an interview with Devil’s Lake magazine board member, Nancy Reddy, Ford attributed her growth as a writer to poet, author, and playwright, Tess Gallagher: “In my last year of college, I studied under Tess Gallagher, and that was utterly formative for my ideas about poetry and poetics, especially in terms of lyricism and figuration.” Ford also credits poet, Jorie Graham, for inspiration during her studies at Harvard, where she earned a Master’s in Divinity and began work on her first poetry collection, Deposition. She then went on to receive a Master’s in Fine Arts (MFA) from the University of Iowa.

Ford’s individual poems have appeared in many journals and reviews, such as The New Yorker, The American Poetry Review, The Paris Review, Ploughshares, Poets & Writer, and Pleiades. She has three published works, including Deposition, Colosseum,and Storm. Her debut collection, Deposition, confronts God, violence, and Christian belief.

Her book Colosseum, which was named “Best Book of 2008” by Publishers Weekly, explores the theme of ruination and pulls from Ford’s personal experiences as a resident of New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina drove thousands out of their homes. The New York Times Book Review stated that Ford’s poetry, “possess[es] the veiled brilliance of stained glass windows seen at night.” With short lyrical poems, Storm continues on the theme of ruination with a focus on the efforts to escape New Orleans in the aftermath of the hurricane.

Ford’s poem, “The Soul,” from her forthcoming book, Blood Lyrics (Graywolf Press, 2014) was selected for publication by the Public Poetry Project of the Pennsylvania Center for the Book in 2013.

From 2005-2009, Katie Ford served as the poetry editor of the New Orleans Review and taught at Loyola University and Reed College. She currently resides in Philadelphia with her husband, novelist, Josh Emmons, and teaches creative writing and literature in contemporary poetry at Franklin and Marshall College.

Monmouth University’s Center for the Arts Visiting Writers Series brings the most celebrated poets and authors from around the world (Andrei Codrescu, Colm Tóibín, Adam Zagajewski,) and our own back yard (Long Branch’s own US Poet Laureate, Robert Pinsky) to the beautiful auditorium of the University’s centerpiece, historic Wilson Hall. With our Visiting Writers Series, we hope the audience will experience a renewed sense of their relationship to poetry and fiction, to language, and to be moved emotionally by that writer’s representation of what it means to be a human being, whether that experience is one of joy, celebration, longing, or sorrow.

For additional information, please contact the director of the Visiting Writers Series, Michael Thomas at 732-263-5635 or visit online at

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Media contact: Petra Ludwig or Rosaly Rivera t 732-571-3526