Sy Montgomery is the author of twenty-eight books for adults and children, including The Soul of an Octopus, finalist for the National Book Award, and most recently How to Be A Good Creature: A Memoir in Thirteen Animals. Denny Emerson is an equestrian eventer and trainer, author of How Good Riders Get Good and the new Know Better to Do Better: Mistakes I Made with Horses (So You Don’t Have To).
(Photo of Sy Montgomery courtesy of Nic Bishop.)
Jane Lindholm, Kit Norton, and Maggie Cassidy
Young Journalists and The New Era of Journalism
(August 8, 2019)
Jane Lindholm is the host for the Vermont Public Radio’s Vermont Edition, producer and host of But Why: A Podcast For Curious Kids, and former director/producer of Marketplace. Kit Norton is a reporter for VTDigger, and he previously worked at public radio’s Living on Earth. Maggie Cassidy is the new editor of The Valley News daily newspaper; she had previously been a reporter and web editor for the paper.
(Photo of Jane Lindholm courtesy of Daria Bishop. Photo of Maggie Cassidy courtesy of Geoff Hansen.)
Major Jackson is the author of four books of poetry, most recently Roll Deep, and editor of the Library of America’s Countee Cullen: Collected Poems. Didi Jackson is the author of the forthcoming Moon Jar, and recent poems have appeared in The New Yorker and Ploughshares. Both poets teach literature and creative writing at the University of Vermont.
(Photo of Major Jackson courtesy of Erin Patrice O’Brien. Photo of Didi Jackson courtesy of Gabe Emilio Cortese.)
Ed Koren and Alison Bechdel, with Pamela Polston
Cartoons and Graphic Storytelling
(August 22, 2019)
Ed Koren is a writer and cartoonist long associated with The New Yorker, also the former Cartoonist Laureate of Vermont, whose work is celebrated in a new retrospective book, Koren: In the Wild. Alison Bechdel, first known for the comic strip Dykes to Watch Out For, earned wider acclaim for her graphic memoir Fun Home, which was adapted as a Tony-winning musical, and a second graphic memoir, Are You My Mother? She is Vermont’s current Cartoonist Laureate.
(Photo of Ed Koren courtesy of Andrew Nemethy. Photo of Alison Bechdel courtesy of Elena Seibert.)
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A conversation between VIEVEE FRANCIS and MATTHEW OLZMANN
(August 2, 2018)
Readings and conversation with two poets who share a home: VIEVEE FRANCIS, author of three books, most recently Forest Primeval (2016), winner of the Kingsley Tufts and the Hurston/Wright Legacy awards, and professor at Dartmouth College; and MATTHEW OLZMANN, author of Mezzanines (2013) and Contradictions in the Design (2016), who also teaches at Dartmouth and in the MFA Program at Warren Wilson College.
(Photo of Vievee Francis courtesy of Dartmouth College/Robert Gill)
A conversation between
AMY HUYFFER and SHANNON VARLEY
(August 9, 2018)
A night of readings and conversation with AMY HUYFFER of Rockbottom Farm and Strafford Organic Creamery and SHANNON VARLEY of Strafford Village Farm. A close and personal look through stories at life on two Strafford farms—one two-generational and well-known throughout the Upper Valley and beyond, the other a revival of an old farm with its own history, new and growing and about to offer C.S.A. shares.
A conversation between BILL McKIBBEN and SUE HALPERN
(August 16, 2018)
Readings and conversation with acclaimed journalists, both scholars-in-residence at Middlebury College, who also write fiction: BILL McKIBBEN, author of eighteen books, most recently the novel Radio Free Vermont (2017); and SUE HALPERN, author of eight books, including A Dog Walks into a Nursing Home: Lessons in the Good Life from an Unlikely Teacher (2014) and most recently the novel Summer Hours at the Robbers Library (2018).
(Photo of Sue Halpern by Nancie Battaglia)
A conversation between MARTIN PHILIP and JAMES STURM (August 23, 2018)
Music, Bread, and Cartoons
Back-and-forth performance and conversation with two close friends who juggle livelihoods, family, and art in lively ways. MARTIN PHILIP is a breadwright and banjoist, head baker at King Arthur Flour, and author of Breaking Bread (2017), winner of Grand Prize at the New England Book Festival. JAMES STURM is co-founder of the Center for Cartoon Studies and author-artist of The Golem’s Mighty Swing, Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow, and the forthcoming Off Season, set in the Upper Valley. Live music, projected comics and fresh bread!
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A conversation between Pat Alger and Jim Rooney (August 3 2017)
Poetry and Song
The boundaries between literature and music often intersect, and sometimes even blur. Musicians Pat Alger and Jim Rooney walk this fine line between poetry and song. Pat Alger is an award-winning musician, prolific songwriter and Robert Frost scholar whose songs have been recorded by Garth Brooks, Nanci Griffith, Kathy Mattea, Dolly Parton, Lyle Lovett, and many others. Jim Rooney is a musician, songwriter, chronicler, and Grammy-winning producer of Iris Dement, John Prine, Nanci Griffith, Bonnie Raitt and many more; he is the author of In It for the Long Run: A Musical Odyssey (2014).
A conversation between Michael Caduto and Ted Levin (August 10, 2017)
The World Around Us
John Muir believed that “in every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.” Michael Caduto and Ted Levin’s work reminds us of the value in this exploration and examination.
Essayist and educator Michael Caduto is the director of the Justin Morrill Homestead and the author of twenty books, most recently Through a Naturalist’s Eyes: Exploring the Nature of New England (2016). John Burroughs Award-winning writer-photographer Ted Levin is the author of America’s Snake: The Rise and Fall of the Timber Rattlesnake (2016) and Liquid Land: A Journey through the Florida Everglades (2003).
A conversation between Robin MacArthur and Melanie Finn (August 17, 2017)
Robin MacArthur and Melanie Finn write stirring, honest, and powerful narratives. Their acclaimed work extends beyond literature, offering multiple outlets for their craft of storytelling. Robin MacArthur, is a writer, musician and the author of the story collection Half Wild (2016). She is also a member of the folk duo Red Heart the Ticker and the editor of Contemporary Vermont Fiction. Melanie Finn is the author of the novels Away from You (2004) and The Gloaming (2016), which has been included in the New York Times “Editor’s Choice” and “Notable Books” lists, and The Guardian’s “Not the Booker Prize” Shortlist. She is also the screenwriter of the documentary film The Crimson Wing: Mystery of the Flamingos (2008).
Pamela Harrison and Ina Anderson (August 24, 2017)
Vermont-based poets Pamela Harrison and Ina Anderson write with beauty and grace. Pamela Harrison, winner of the PEN Northern New England Discovery Poet Award, is the author of five poetry collections, including What to Make of It (2012) and most recently Glory Bush and Green Banana (2017). Ina Anderson is the author of the collection Journey into Space (2017). She has led numerous poetry groups throughout the Upper Valley and is an instructor with the Seven Stars Art Center in Sharon, Vermont.
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A conversation between Jay Parini and Wendy Moffat (August 4, 2016)
Poet, biographer, novelist, and scholar Jay Parini, author of Empire of Self: A Life of Gore Vidal (2015) and New and Collected Poems (2016), and biographer and scholar Wendy Moffat, author of A Great Unrecorded History: A New Life of E. M. Forster (2010) and the forthcoming Wounded Minds: Elizabeth Shepley Sergeant, Thomas Salmon, and the Trauma of the First World War.
A conversation between Baron Wormser and Dawn Potter (August 11, 2016)
Baron Wormser, essayist, novelist, and former Poet Laureate of Maine, author of Unidentified Sighing Objects (2015) and The Road Washes Out in Spring (2012), and poet and essayist Dawn Potter, author of Same Old Story (2014) and the forthcoming The Vagabond’s Bookshelf.
A conversation between Megan Mayhew Bergman and Chard deNiord (August 18, 2016)
Fiction writer Megan Mayhew Bergman, author of Almost Famous Women (2015) and Birds of a Lesser Paradise (2012), and Chard deNiord, Poet Laureate of Vermont, author of Interstate (2015) and The Double Truth (2011).
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A conversation between Rachel Hadas and writer Alice B. Fogel (August 6, 2015)
Presently the Poet Laureate of New Hampshire, Alice B. Fogel is the author of four books of poems, including the new Intervals, based on Bach’s Goldberg Variations. Poet, essayist, and translator Rachel Hadas is author of more than a dozen books, including The Golden Road (poems) and Strange Relation, a memoir about a spouse’s dementia.
A conversation between Sue Miller and Douglas Bauer (August 13, 2015)
Sue Miller is author of a collection of short stories, a memoir, and ten novels, most recently The Arsonist. Douglas Bauer is author of three novels and the essay collection What Happens Next? Matters of Life and Death, winner of the 2014 PEN/New England Book Award for Non-fiction.
A conversation between Ernest Hebert and Jeffrey Lent (August 20, 2015)
Ernest Hebert is author of ten novels, most recently Howard Elman’s Farewell, seventh volume of the Darby Chronicles. A former newspaper reporter, Hebert will retire this year from his longtime teaching position at Dartmouth College. Jeffrey Lent’s fifth novel has just been published: A Slant of Light, which returns to the Civil War era of his bestseller In the Fall.
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A conversation between Howard Norman and Jane Shore (August 7, 2014)
Howard Norman is a writer of fiction and nonfiction, and a scholar and teacher of folklore. His long list of books includes the novels The Bird Artist (1994), The Museum Guard (1998), The Haunting of L (2002), What is Left the Daughter (2010), and Next Life might be Kinder (2014), and the memoir I Hate to Leave this Beautiful Place. He is married to Jane Shore.
Jane Shore is a poet with books of poetry that span nearly five decades: Eye Level (1977), The Minute Hand (1987), Music Minus One (1996), Happy Family: Poems (1999), A Yes-or-No Answer:Poems (2008), and That Said: New and Selected Poems (2012). She is married to Howard Norman.
A conversation between Jeff Sharlett and 40 Towns (August 14, 2014)
Jeff Sharlett is a professor of creative fiction at Dartmouth and author of many articles and several books, including Killing the Buddha: A Heretic’s Bible, with Peter Manseau (2004), The Family: Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power (2008), Believer Beware: First-person Dispatches from the Margins of Faith, with Peter Manseau (2009), C Street (2010), and Sweet Heaven When I Die (2011).
40 Towns, in words from their web site, “…is a periodical of literary journalism by students in Jeff Sharlett’s creative nonfiction courses at Dartmouth.”
A conversation between M.T. Anderson and Gregory Maguire (August 21, 2014)
M.T. Anderson is the author of books for young adults and children, including The Pals in Peril series; Me, All Alone at the End of the World (2004); Thirsty (2008); The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Volumes I and II, the first volume Pox winning the National Book Award (2008); and Feed, a National Book Award finalist (2012)
Gregory Maguire is a prolific writer of books for children and adults that span five decades, including The Wicked Years: Wicked (1995), Son of a Witch (2005), A Lion Among Men (2008), and Out of Oz (2011); Mirror Mirror (2003); and The Next Queen of Heaven (2010). Wicked, of course, is the source for the incredible Broadway musical of the same name.
A conversation between Jeffrey Harrison and Jim Rooney (August 28, 2014)
Jeffrey Harrison is a poet and teacher who has published several volumes of poems, including Signs of Arrival (1996), Feeding the Fire: Poems (2001), Incomplete Knowledge(2006), The Names of Things: New and Collected Poems (2006), and Into Daylight (2014).
Jim Rooney has a long history as a musician and a music producer that includes producing Nanci Griffith’s Grammy-winning album Other Voices, Other Rooms. He has written three books: Bossmen: Bill Monroe and Muddy Waters (1971), Baby Let Me Follow You Down, with Eric Von Schmidt (1979), and In it for the Long Run (2014).
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A conversation between poets Jennifer Militello and Cynthia Huntington (August 8, 2013)
Militello teaches at River Valley Community College in Claremont, N.H., and has just published her second book, Body Thesaurus. Huntington, who is the former Poet Laureate of New Hampshire, teaches at Dartmouth College and is author of four books of poetry and a prose memoir. Her most recent book Heavenly Bodies was a finalist for the 2012 National Book Award in poetry.
A conversation between Bill McKibben and Gus Speth (August 15, 2013)
A talk by environmental activist and author Bill McKibben, followed by a discussion with environmental reformer, Vermont Law School professor, and author Gus Speth. McKibben has written more than fifteen books, including the bestseller Eaarth, and was recently awarded the international Sophie Prize for environmental writing. Speth has authored three books, most recently America The Possible: Manifesto for a New Economy. He is a co-founder of the Natural Resources Defense Council.
A conversation between David Hinton and Ernest Hebert (August 22, 2013)
Readings and a conversation with essayist, poet, and translator David Hinton and novelist Ernest Hebert. Hinton is our era’s leading translator of Chinese prose and poetry; his new book Hunger Mountain: A Field Guide to Mind and Landscape combines detailed descriptions of hikes on Vermont’s Hunger Mountain with ruminations on language, creativity, and awareness. Hebert is the author of eleven books, including the six-book Darby series. A longtime newspaper reporter, he is a professor at Dartmouth College and his most recent novel Never Back Down is set in his hometown of Keene, New Hampshire.