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The 2012-2013 Visiting Writers Series opens with a reading by award-winning fiction writer Josh Emmons on Wednesday September 19 at 4:30 p.m. in Wilson Hall Auditorium on Monmouth University’s campus.

Josh Emmons, an assistant professor of creative writing Monmouth University, was born in Bangkok and grew up in northern California. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he published his first novel with Scribner in 2005, The Loss of Leon Meed, which won a Copernicus-James Michener Award and has been translated into French, Hebrew, German and Dutch. The Los Angeles Times called Meed “An audaciously ambitious first novel…[not] merely determined to dazzle with weirdness… a canny status report on the American soul…engaging, enigmatic.”

Emmons second book Prescription for a Superior Existence came out in 2008 from Scribner, and led the San Francisco Chronicle to conclude, “It’s probably unfair that someone so young should be so talented …by the end of this witty, wise novel, he has demonstrated how character and destiny are inextricably intertwined.”

Fellow fiction writer Jonathan Franzen, author of Freedom and The Corrections,

has praised Emmon’s work reflecting, “Here’s how you know Josh Emmons is the real deal: he’s created a full spectrum of Californian characters who are ludicrous and ill-behaved and lovable in equal measure; he’s a major-league prose writer who has fun in every sentence without ever showing off or hitting a phony note; and you want to keep reading him for the pure pleasure of his company.”

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.

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Media contact: Petra Ludwig at 732-263-5507