Reading Series

April 5

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Writers of Color

  7 p.m.
  Prairie Lights Bookstore


with Benjamin Krusling, Regina Porter, Yvonne Cha, Tameka Cage Conley, Nami Mun & Melissa Mogollon

Prairie Lights Bookstore

Wednesday, April 5 – 7 p.m.

FREE admission


Join us for Writers of Color, a reading series featuring undergraduate and graduate writers of color at the University of Iowa.

Melissa Mogollon is studying Fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She graduated from the George Washington University with a B.A. in Political Communication. Born in Cartagena, Colombia, and raised in South Florida, she misses ceviche and loud people.

Regina Porter is an award-winning writer whose works have been presented at Playwrights Horizons, The Joseph Papp Theater, New York Stage & Film, The Woolly Mammoth Theater, and Horizons Theater Company. Ms. Porter has received commissions from The Women’s Project, The Actor’s Theater of Louisville, and Mixed Blood Theater in Minneapolis. Her plays have been anthologized in Plays from Woolly Mammoth by Broadway Play Services, and Heinemann’s Scenes For Women by Women. Her work has also been profiled in Southern Women Playwrights: New Essays in History & Criticism by University of Alabama Press. Ms. Porter’s fiction has been published in the Harvard Review. She is an Iowa Arts Fellow in the MFA fiction program at Iowa Writers’ Workshop.

Yvonne Cha is a 1st gen Korean American bred in Queens. She is in her first year at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. In her past life, she was a rapper. Or a munchkin cat. And she is allergic to ragweed. 

Benjamin Krusling is a poet and sound artist from Cincinnati, Ohio. His work has most recently appeared in the Berkeley Poetry Review and No, Dear Magazine and he is an MFA candidate at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. 

Tameka Cage Conley, PhD is a literary artist who writes fiction, poetry, plays and essays. She received a doctoral degree in English in 2006 from Louisiana State University, where she was a recipient of the Huel Perkins Doctoral Fellowship.  Her dissertation, Painful Discourses: Borders, Regions, and Representations of Female Circumcision from Africa to America, was awarded the annual Lewis Simpson Distinguished Dissertation Award.   She has received writing fellowships from the Cave Canem Poetry Foundation, the Vermont Studio Center, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Squaw Valley Writers Conference and Workshops.  In October 2013, she received the Eben Demarest Trust grant, awarded annually to an artist or archaeologist.  Past recipients of the Demarest include painter James Pollock (1945) and choreographer Kyle Abraham (2012.)  She is an MFA student in Fiction @ the Iowa Writers Workshop.

Nami Mun grew up in Seoul, South Korea and Bronx, New York. For her first book, Miles from Nowhere, she received a Whiting Award, a Pushcart Prize, the Chicago Public Library’s 21st Century Award, The Hopwood Award, and was shortlisted for the Orange Prize for New Writers and the Asian American Literary Award. Miles from Nowhere was selected as Editors’ Choice and Top Ten First Novels by Booklist; Best Fiction of 2009 So Far by Amazon; and as an Indie Next Pick. Chicago Magazine named her Best New Novelist of 2009.

Previously, Nami has worked as an Avon Lady, a street vendor, a photojournalist, a waitress, an activities coordinator for a nursing home, and a criminal defense investigator. After earning a GED, she went on to get a BA in English from UC Berkeley, an MFA from University of Michigan, and has garnered fellowships from organizations such as Yaddo, MacDowell, Bread Loaf, and Tin House. In 2011 she became a US Delegate for a China/America Writers Exchange in Beijing and Chicago. Her stories have been published in The New York Times, Granta, Tin House, The Iowa Review, The Pushcart Prize Anthology, Evergreen Review, Witness, and elsewhere. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing in Chicago.