Winter With the Writers Announces 2017 Schedule

The annual literary festival at Rollins College opens in February with national bestselling author Susan Orlean.

Rollins College will again partner with the National Book Foundation as part of the 2017 Winter With the Writers literary festival. As the Southeast’s sole representative of the National Book Awards on Campus program, Rollins will host two 2016 finalists who will teach master classes, give a joint reading and interview, and sign books.

Since 1927, Rollins has hosted world-class writers for this event, which is free and open to the public.

2017 Winter With the Writers Season At A Glance

Susan Orlean

February 1–2

Susan Orlean has worked as a staff writer for The New York Times, a contributing editor at Rolling Stone and Vogue, a writer for Outside, Esquire, The Boston Globe, and more. Among her many books is The Orchid Thief, a national bestseller about a charming conniver who was once convicted of attempting to steal endangered orchids. Orlean’s elegant personal journalism inspired Adaptation, an Academy Award-winning film.

February 1
6:15 p.m.:  Screening of Adaptation, Enzian Theatre

February 2
4 p.m.: Master class, SunTrust Auditorium
7:30 p.m.: Reading, on-stage interview, and signing, Bush Auditorium
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David Kirby

February 9

David Kirby's collection The House on Boulevard St.: New and Selected Poems was a finalist for the National Book Award in 2007. Kirby is the author of Little Richard: The Birth of Rock ‘n’ Roll. His latest poetry collection is Get Up, Please. He teaches at Florida State University, where he is the Robert O. Lawton Distinguished Professor of English. Kirby’s honors include fellowships from the National Endowment of the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation. In 2016, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Florida Humanities Council.

4 p.m.: Master class, SunTrust Auditorium
7:30 p.m.: Joint reading with Peter Meinke, on-stage interview, and signing, Bush Auditorium
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Peter Meinke

February 9

Peter Meinke is Poet Laureate of Florida. His work has received many national awards, among them are two NEA Fellowships, a Fulbright Professorship, and three awards from the Poetry Society of America. His most recent books are The Expert Witness (2016), a collection of short stories, The Elf Poem (2015), a children’s book, and Lucky Bones (2014), his eighth collection in the prestigious Pitt Poetry series. Last year he received the SunLit Festival’s Lifetime Achievement Award for “his outstanding contribution to letters.”

2 p.m.: Master class , SunTrust Auditorium
7:30 p.m.: Joint reading with David Kirby, on-stage interview, and signing, Bush Auditorium
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Chris Abani

February 16

Chris Abani is an acclaimed novelist, screenwriter, poet, essayist, and playwright. Currently residing in Chicago, he was born in Nigeria. His most recent work of fiction, The Secret History of Las Vegas (2014), was nominated for the Hurston/Wright 2015 Legacy Award. His other works of fiction include Song for Night (2007), Becoming Abigail (2006), and Masters of the Board (1985). His poetry collections include Sanctificum (2010), There Are No Names for Red (2010), and Feed Me The Sun – Collected Long Poems (2010). He has received many awards and honors, including the PEN USA Freedom-to-Write Award, a Lannan Literary Fellowship, a Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and the PEN Hemingway Book Prize, just to name a few.

4 p.m.: Master class, SunTrust Auditorium
7:30 p.m.: Reading, on-stage interview, and signing, Bush Auditorium
4 p.m.: Master class, SunTrust Auditorium
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National Book Award Finalists (TBA)

February 23

2 p.m.: Master class, SunTrust Auditorium
4 p.m.: Master class, SunTrust Auditorium
7:30 p.m.: Joint reading, on-stage interview, signing, Bush Auditorium