Nov. 1, 2004Southeastern Ohio has been hit by both economic hardships and natural disasters. Ohio University's Program in Creative Writing presents Writers Harvest, a benefit for hunger relief, 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 3, at Irvine Auditorium.
All proceeds from the Writers Harvest $3 admission donation will go the Southeastern Ohio Food Bank's Second Harvest, a food distribution program serving Athens, Gallia, Hocking, Jackson, Perry, Meigs, Morgan, Vinton and Washington counties since 1984. More than 31,160 families received assistance from Second Harvest in 2003 and the food bank expects to surpass that number this year. According to Marilyn Sloan, food bank coordinator, they have distributed more than 6.5 million pounds of food so far, and this year's total is expected to be well over last year's total of 10 million pounds.
This year's program will feature readings by non-fiction writer David Lazar, poet Daniel Torres and poet Sharmila Voorakkara.
Lazar is professor of creative writing at Ohio University, where he established the creative nonfiction writing program in 1990. He is the author of the nonfiction collection "The Body of Brooklyn" (2003) and has edited "Conversations with M. F. K. Fisher" (1993) and "Michael Powell: Interviews" (2003). His work has been published in numerous journals, magazines and anthologies. He was associate editor of the Ohio Review from 1990 to 1997 and is founding editor of Hotel Amerika.
Torres is professor of Spanish and Latin American Studies at the University, where he co-directs the Study Abroad Program in Mexico (Yucatan) every winter quarter. He was born in Caguas, Puerto Rico, in 1961 and has lived in the States since 1984. His creative publications include a novel, "Morirás si da una primavera" (1993), a collection of short stories, "Cabronerías: Historias de tres cuerpos" (1995), and three collections of poetry: "Siete poemas de Cariño" (1995), "Fusilado dios" (2000) and "Invasión de ternura" (2004).
Voorakkara is assistant professor of creative writing at Ohio University. She received her M.F.A. from the University of Virginia, where she was a Henry Hoyns Fellow. She was Jay C. and Ruth Halls Poetry Fellow at the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing at the University of Wisconsin for the 2003-2004 academic year. She is the winner of the ninth annual Akron Poetry Prize for "Fire Wheel," which was judged by Maxine Kumin. "Fire Wheel" is forthcoming from the University of Akron Press.
Tickets for Writers Harvest may be purchased at the door of Irvine Auditorium beginning at 7 p.m. A book signing and reception will follow the event. For more information, contact the Special Programs Office at 593-4181.
For details about donations and volunteer opportunities at the Southeastern Ohio Food Bank's Second Harvest, please visit www.seorfc.com/.