2016 South Africa Tour



Kia CORTHRON’s first novel, The Castle Cross the Magnet Carter, will be published in 2016 by Seven Stories Press. Her plays have been produced by the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Playwrights Horizons, Ensemble Studio Theatre, NY Theatre Workshop; in London by the Royal Court and Donmar Warehouse; regionally by Minneapolis’ Children’s Theatre, ATL/Humana, Mark Taper Forum, Alabama Shakespeare, Yale Rep, Huntington, NY Stage & Film, Baltimore's Center Stage, Goodman, Hartford Stage, and elsewhere. For her body of stage work she has been honored, among others, with the Otto Award (2016); the Windham Campbell Prize for Drama, the USArtists Jane Addams Fellowship and the Simon Great Plains Playwright Award. Residencies include the Bogliasco Foundation (Italy), Hawthornden Castle (Scotland), Bellagio (Italy), Dora Maar (France), MacDowell, Siena Arts Visiting Artist (Italy), and McKnight National Residency. Among her other awards are the Wachtmeister , the Columbia/Goodman Fellowship, a MacLean Foundation Award, an NEA, and a Kennedy Center Fund. For her TV work she received the Writers Guild membership, and the Edgar Allan Poe award for The Wire. She serves on the Dramatists Guild Council and is a member of the Authors Guild. Her website is www.kiacorthron-author.com.


The Writing University Webmaster Lauren Haldeman is the author of Instead of Dying (winner of the 2017 Colorado Prize for Poetry, Center for Literary Publishing, 2017), Calenday (Rescue Press, 2014) and the chapbook The Eccentricity is Zero (Digraph Press, 2014). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Tin House, The Colorado Review, Fence, The Iowa Review and The Rumpus. A poet, web designer and comic book artist, she has taught in the U.S. as well as internationally, including a reading and lecture tour of South Africa sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. She has been a recipient of the 2015 Sustainable Arts Foundation Award, the Colorado Prize for Poetry and fellowships from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. You can find her online at http://laurenhaldeman.com.

Katori HALL is a playwright/performer. Her plays include The Mountaintop (2010 Olivier Award for Best New Play), Hurt Village (2011 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize), Children of Killers (National Theatre, UK and Castillo Theatre, NYC), Hoodoo Love (Cherry Lane Theatre), Remembrance (Women’s Project), Saturday Night/Sunday Morning, WHADDABLOODCLOT!!! (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Our Lady of Kibeho (Signature Theatre) and Pussy Valley (Mixed Blood). Among her many awards are the Lark Play Development Center Playwrights of New York, two Lecomte du Nouy Prizes from Lincoln Center, a NYFA Fellowship, the Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award, the Columbia University John Jay Award for Distinguished Professional Achievement and the Otto Rene Castillo Award for Political Theatre. Her journalism has appeared in The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Guardian, Essence, and elsewhere; her collected plays have been published by Methuen Drama. Currently a member of the Residency Five at Signature Theatre Company in New York City, Katori will make her directing debut with a film adaptation of Hurt Village. Her website is www.katorihall.com.

Naomi JACKSON is the author of The Star Side of Bird Hill ( 2015), long-listed for the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize and an NAACP Image Award finalist. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, traveled to South Africa on a Fulbright scholarship, where she received an M.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Cape Town. Her work has appeared in literary journals and magazines in the United States and abroad. She is the recipient of residencies from the University of Pennsylvania’s Kelly Writers House, Hedgebrook, Vermont Studio Center, and the Camargo Foundation. Her website is www.naomi-jackson.com.

Christopher Merrill has published seven collections of poetry, including Watch Fire, for which he received the Lavan Younger Poets Award from the Academy of American Poets; many edited volumes and translations; and six books of nonfiction, among them, Only the Nails Remain: Scenes from the Balkan Wars, Things of the Hidden God: Journey to the Holy Mountain, The Tree of the Doves: Ceremony, Expedition, War, and Self-Portrait with Dogwood. His writings have been translated into nearly forty languages; his journalism appears widely; his honors include a Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres from the French government, numerous translation awards, and fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial and Ingram Merrill Foundations. As director of the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa since 2000, Merrill has conducted cultural diplomacy missions to more than fifty countries. He served on the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO from 2011-2018, and in April 2012 President Barack Obama appointed him to the National Council on the Humanities. www.christophermerrillbooks.com


Happening Now

  • Just completed: “Sense of Belonging,” a bilingual Iowa City + Paris-based podcast series commissioned by Walid Rachedi and produced by NFW grad students in both cities, with support of the US Embassy in Paris.

  • Word has just reached us of the sudden death, in his hometown Gdańsk, of the novelist, poet, essayist, and playwright Paweł Huelle. RIP.

  • “I regret that poems can’t serve as witnesses in military tribunals; they can only testify in the court of history,” writes Iya Kiva in an essay for the project “War Is… Ukrainian Writers on Living Through Catastrophe.”

  • Congratulations to novelists Mansoura Ez-Eldin and Taleb Al-Refai for placing on the 2023 finalist list of the prestigious Prix de la littérature arabe.


  • Samuel Kolawole’s first novel, The Road to the Salt Sea, is announced for a July 2024 release.

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