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Visiting Writers Series


The Visiting Writers Series began in the Spring of 2014 with a reading by poet Roger Reeves. After the start of the MFA in Creative Writing in the Fall of that year, the VWS took off. Over the past 8 years, the MFA in Creative Writing has hosted nationally renowned poets and writers, adding to the vibrant literary culture of Lexington. All events are free and open to the public.

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Spring 2023

Dionne Irving
6:00 PM, February 15th, 2023
UK Athletics Association Auditorium, William T. Young Library

Dionne Irving is originally from Toronto, Ontario.  She is the author of  Quint (7.13 Books) and The Islands (Catapult Books) in 2022.  Her work has appeared in Story, Boulevard, LitHub, Missouri Review, and New Delta Review, among other journals and magazines. Irving teaches in the Creative Writing Program and the Initiative on Race and Resilience at the University of Notre Dame.

Greg Pape
6:00 PM, March 22nd, 2023
UK Federal Credit Union E-sports Theater, The Cornerstone

Greg Pape is the author of Four Swans, Sunflower Facing the Sun, Storm Pattern, and several other books of poems. New work from his recently completed book, American Flamingo, has appeared in DoubleTake and The Atlantic. His poems have appeared in many anthologies, including Poems of the American West and The Viking Portable Western Reader. He lives in the Bitterroot Valley and teaches at both the University of Montana and Spalding University.

Charles Dodd White
6:00 PM, April 19th, 2023
UK Athletics Association Auditorium, William T. Young Library

Charles Dodd White is the recipient of the Thomas and Lillie D. Chaffin Award for excellence in Appalachian Literature, the Appalachian Book of the Year award in fiction, a Jean Ritchie Fellowship from Lincoln Memorial University, and an individual artist’s grant from the North Carolina Arts Council. His novels are HOW FIRE RUNS (A Fall 2020 SIBA Okra Pick, IPPY GOLD MEDAL for Best Fiction in the South), IN THE HOUSE OF WILDERNESS (2018), A SHELTER OF OTHERS (2014), LAMBS OF MEN (2010), and the story collection, SINNERS OF SANCTION COUNTY (2011). He has also edited the anthologies, DEGREES OF ELEVATION (2010) and APPALACHIA NOW (2015). His newest book, A YEAR WITHOUT MONTHS, is a fragmented memoir available from West Virginia University Press. He teaches English at Pellissippi State Community College in Knoxville, Tennessee. 





Danni Quintos, Ron A. Austin, Amy Leach, Joy Priest, Austyn Gaffney, Erika Simpson, Megan Pillow, Bernard Clay, Nicole Chung, Kevin Willmott, Carter Sickles, Madeline Ffitch, Li-Young Lee, Cinelle Barnes, Minda Honey, Joy Priest, Evie Shockley, Paul Muldoon, Shayla Lawson, Keith S. Wilson, Marcelo Hernandez Castillo, Randall Horton, Chanelle Benz, Tayari Jones, Kayleb Rae Candrilli, Morgan Parker, Brittany Perhham, Maurice Carlos Ruffin, Dr. DaMaris B. Hill, Maurice Manning, Silas House, Garth Greenwell, Gregory Pardlo, Mary Gaitskill, Mitchell S. Jackson, Viet Thanh Nquyen, Yona Harvey, Kelly Luce, Marie-Helene Bertino, Ramona Ausubel, Carrie Fountain, Margaret Lazarus Dean, Mary Karr, Tyehimba Jess, Ada Limón, Claire Vaye Watkins, Derek Palacio, Dinaw Mengestu, Eileen Myles, John Jeremiah Sullivan, Peter Fallon, Helen Oyeyemi, Rob Spillman, Wayne Kostenbaum, Adrian Matejka, Roxane Gay, Francisco Goldman, Ann Beattie, Dara Wier, Emily Pettit, Nic Brown, Jim Gavin, Jill McCorkle, Roger Reeves.


For more information about the Visiting Writers Series contact Erik Reece at or Jazmin Witherspoon at