Join host Dean Nelson as he welcomes three writers to this year’s Writer’s Symposium by the Sea. This annual event at Point Loma Nazarene University presents an evening of interviews conducted by symposium founder Dean Nelson, featuring lively conversations about the inspiration behind the authors’ works. Enjoy cutting edge creators, life stories, examples of great writing, and evocative conversation that will inspire the reader and writer alike.
An Evening with Tracy Kidder
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Tracy Kidder reveals his reporting strengths as he describes how he earned the trust of the people he has featured in books such as “Mountains Beyond Mountains,” “House,” “A Truck Full of Money,” “Old Friends,” and “Strength in What Remains.” Kidder shares the joys and doubts of a career in writing with veteran journalist and host Dean Nelson.
An Evening with Robert Pinsky
Former Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky describes himself as a “composer” who considers poetry to be first and foremost a vocal art, and his work seeks to blur the distinctions between language and music by emphasizing the rhythms and innate physicality of recited verse in a jazz context. In this performance, Pinsky’s reading is accompanied by a talented trio of PLNU students. The music – a blend of rehearsed and improvised – employs a variety of jazz styles, sometimes sympathetic and sometimes in playful counterpoint, but always responsive to the poet’s distinctive voice.
An Evening with Shauna Niequist
This far-reaching conversation with best-selling author Shauna Niequist offers an honest account of her journey of becoming and evolving as a writer. She shares her love of storytelling and her goal of living life to the fullest, and offers tips for aspiring writers. Niequist’s newest release is “Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic For A Simpler, More Soulful Way Of Living.”
Browse past seasons of Writer’s Symposium by the Sea to watch interviews with Joyce Carol Oates, Anne Lamott, Billy Collins, Mary Karr, and more!
Explore new interviews and readings from your favorite authors as well as up and coming authors and students from the University of California.
Writers explain in their own words the process of creation, how they stay motivated, and what it takes to go from an idea to a completed piece of writing. Listen as they read new and popular excerpts of their work and discuss the writing life during in-depth interviews. From poetry to prose, memoirs to fiction, screenplays to blogs – whether your passion is reading, writing, or both – with our latest collection, you’ll discover new books to explore and perhaps find the inspiration to write one of your own.
Watch some of your favorite writers as they read selected excerpts from their works. This prose reading series is hosted by UC Berkeley English department faculty Vikram Chandra and Melanie Abrams and features distinguished prose writers from the Bay Area and beyond.
Look for these new programs:
Jess Row Jess Row, the author of “Your Face in Mine” and two short story collections, “The Train to Lo Wu” and “Nobody Ever Gets Lost” reads from his work at UC Berkeley. He has received a Whiting Writers Award, the PEN/O. Henry Award, and two Pushcart Prizes. In 2007 he was named a “Best Young American Novelist” by Granta. He teaches at the College of New Jersey and is an ordained Zen Teacher.
Joyce Maynard Joyce Maynard has been a writer of both fiction and nonfiction since the age of 18. Her memoir “At Home in the World” has been translated into fifteen languages. Her eight novels include the newly released “After Her,” as well as “To Die For” and the New York Times bestseller, “Labor Day.” In addition to writing, Maynard performs frequently as a storyteller with The Moth in New York City, and is the founder of the Lake Atitlan (Guatemala) Writers’ Workshop.
And coming soon – Tom Barbash Tom Barbash is the author of the new book of stories “Stay Up With Me.” Previous books include award-winning novel “The Last Good Chance” and “On Top of the World: Cantor Fitzgerald, Howard Lutnick, and 9/11,” which was a New York Times bestseller. His stories and articles have been published and performed on National Public Radio.
Story Hour in the Library celebrates the writers in the UC Berkeley campus community with an annual student reading. The event features short excerpts of work by winners of the year’s biggest prose prizes, Story Hour in the Library interns, and faculty nominees.
David Shields graduated magna cum laude with Honors in English Literature from Brown University and earned his MFA in Fiction from the University of Iowa’s Writers Workshop. He published his first novel, Heroes, in 1984 and his second, Dead Languages, in 1989.
Shields is best known for his blending of genres, which began with his third book, Handbook for Drowning: A Novel in Stories. His stories such as Remote: Reflections on Life in the Shadow of Celebrity and Enough About You: Notes Toward the New Autobiography blur the lines of fiction, autobiography, and essay as Shields writes in a style that is suggested to represent the fragmented culture of this modern age.
Join Shields for Story Hour in the UC Berkeley library:
Acclaimed author T.C. Boyle’s forthcoming work, San Miguel, is the latest entry in what The New York Times called Boyle’s “own fascinating, unpredictable, alternately hilarious and terrifying fictional history of utopian longing in America.” The novel is a soaring historical narrative about two families—one in the 1880s and one in the 1930s—starting new lives on a windswept, near-desolate island off of the Santa Barbara coast.
In the latest installment of UC San Diego Extension’s Revelle Forum, Boyle presents excerpts from his new novel, followed by a reading of his gripping short story, The Lie.