MURRAY, Ky. — Murray State University’s Master of Fine Arts program in creative writing is pleased to announce its lineup of visiting writers as part of its July Residency Reading Series. All readings are free and open to the public.
Acclaimed novelist, poet and historian Robert Morgan will read from his work on Friday, July 7 at 7:30 p.m. in the Curris Center Theater on the Murray State University campus.  Morgan is the author of fourteen books of poetry, most recently “Dark Energy,” published in 2015. He has also published twelve volumes of fiction, including “Gap Creek,” a New York Times bestseller and Oprah Book Club selection, and “The Road From Gap Creek,” which was published in 2013 and received the 2014 Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award. In addition, he is the author of three nonfiction books, “Good Measure: Essays, Interviews, and Notes on Poetry,” “Boone: A Biography,” and “Lions of the West: Heroes and Villains of the Westward Expansion.” Robert Morgan’s awards include the James G. Hanes Poetry Prize by the Fellowship of Southern Writers, the Academy Award in Literature and fellowships from the Guggenheim and Rockefeller foundations, the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Arts Council. Born in Hendersonville, North Carolina in 1944, he has taught since 1971 at Cornell University, where he is Kappa Alpha Professor of English. Robert Morgan is the inaugural recipient of the Clinton and Mary Opal Moore Appalachian Writer’s Residency, made possible by gifts from the children of Clinton and Mary Opal Moore.
Poet Christina Stoddard and fiction writer Justin Quarry will read from their work on Sunday, July 9 at 4:30 p.m. in the Clara Eagle Art Gallery on the Murray State University campus. Christina Stoddard is the author of “Hive,” which was selected by Lucia Perillo for the 2015 Brittingham Prize in Poetry (University of Wisconsin Press). Christina’s poems have appeared in various journals including “storySouth,” “DIAGRAM” and “Spoon River Poetry Review.” Originally from Tacoma, Washington, Christina received her M.F.A. from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where she was the Fred Chappell Fellow. Christina is an Associate Editor at “Tupelo Quarterly” and a Contributing Editor at “Cave Wall.” She currently lives in Nashville, Tennessee where she is the managing editor of a scholarly journal in economics and decision theory. Justin Quarry is a senior lecturer in English and program coordinator of undergraduate creative writing at Vanderbilt University. He holds a B.A. from Vanderbilt, where he received high honors in English, and an M.F.A. from the University of Virginia, where he was a Henry Hoyns Fellow. His fiction has appeared in a number of publications, including TriQuarterly, The Southern Review, New England Review, Alaska Quarterly Review and The Normal School, which awarded him its Normal Prize in Fiction. He is also the recipient of the Robert Olen Butler Short Fiction Prize, an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Arkansas Arts Council and a grant from the Elizabeth George Foundation, among other honors. In addition to teaching at Vanderbilt, Quarry also serves on the faculty of the Sewanee Young Writers’ Conference at the University of the South.
Poet T.J. Jarrett will read from her work on Monday, July 10 at 7:30 p.m. in the Clara Eagle Art Gallery on the Murray State University campus.  Jarrett is a writer and software developer in Nashville, Tennessee. Her recent work has been published in Poetry Magazine, African American Review, Boston Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Callaloo, VQR and others. She has been anthologized in “Language Lessons” by Third Man Books and “Best American Non-Required Reading 2015” from Houghton-Mifflin. Her debut collection, “Ain’t No Grave” was published with New Issues Press (2013), and her second collection, “Zion” (winner of the Crab Orchard Open Competition 2013), was published by Southern Illinois University Press.
Creative nonfiction writer Sarah Einstein will read from her work on Wednesday, July 12 at 7:30 p.m. in the Clara Eagle Art Gallery on the Murray State University campus. Einstein is the author of “Mot: A Memoir” (University of Georgia Press 2015) and “Remnants of Passion” (Shebooks 2014). Her essays and short stories have appeared in The Sun, Ninth Letter, PANK and other journals. Her work has been awarded a Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net and the AWP Prize in Creative Nonfiction. Prose editor for “Stirring: A Literary Collective” and special projects editor for Brevity Magazine, Sarah currently lives in Chattanooga, Tennessee, where she is a professor of creative writing at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
Fiction writer Lynn Pruett and poet Jeff Skinner will read from their work on Thursday, July 13 at 3:00 p.m. in the Pogue Library Reading Room on the Murray State University campus. Pruett is the author of the novel “Ruby River.” Her stories and essays have appeared in the Michigan Quarterly Review, Border Crossing, scissors and spackle, Louisville Review, Arts and Letters, American Voice, Southern Exposure and Black Warrior Review. She has earned fellowships from Yaddo, Sewanee, Squaw Valley and the Kentucky Arts Council and has led fiction and creative nonfiction workshops at Vanderbilt University, the University of Kentucky, the University of Alabama and North Carolina State University. She teaches at the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning in Lexington, Kentucky and raises sheep in Salvisa. Her mother’s family has lived in Calloway County, Kentucky since the Jackson Purchase. Skinner’s most recent collections of poetry include “I Offer This Container: New and Selected Poems” (Salmon Poetry, 2017) and “Chance Divine,” winner of the 2016 Field Poetry Prize. Other of his seven published volumes of poetry have been winners in the Crab Orchard Open Poetry Award and the National Poetry Series. For more than forty years his poems have been appearing in such journals as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Poetry, Yale Review and Paris Review. His awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship in poetry, an American Academy of Arts & Letters Award and two National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships in poetry. Also a playwright, Skinner’s plays have been produced in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia and elsewhere. He lives in Louisville, Kentucky, where he teaches at the University of Louisville and helps run Sarabande Books, a literary press he co-founded with his wife, poet Sarah Gorham.
For more information on the summer reading series, visit murraystate.edu/mfa.
Poet T.J. Jarrett will read from her work on Monday, July 10 at 7:30 p.m. in the Clara Eagle Art Gallery on the Murray State University campus.