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News Release

Sept. 8, 2022

Visiting Writers Series to feature poet, novelist

By Kourtnie Stenwall, communication assistant

Northwest Missouri State University’s 2022-23 Visiting Writers Series will open with a night of readings by a poet and novelist.

The event featuring Jordan Stempleman and Phong Nguyen begins at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 15, in the J.W. Jones Student Union Living Room. It is free and open to the public.

The Visiting Writers Series is designed to enrich Northwest’s educational mission while promoting the values of community, civil discourse and self-expression. Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing Corporation, Green Tower Press and the Department of Language, Literature and Writing sponsor the series.

More information about Stempleman and Nguyen is provided below. The Visiting Writers Series continues later this fall with Rebecca Aronson on Oct. 18 and Matthew Cooperman and Aby Kaupang on Oct. 27.

For more information about the Visiting Writers Series, contact Daniel Biegelson, the series director and a senior instructor of English, at or 666.562.1266.

About Jordan Stempleman

Stempleman is the author of nine books of poetry including “Cover Songs,” “Wallop” and “No, Not Today.” He was listed in The Huffington Post in 2013 as one of the “The Top 200 Advocates of American Poetry.” He edits The Continental Review, Windfall Room and Sprung Formal, and he runs the Common Sense Reading Series. He is an associate professor for the Liberal Arts Department at the Kansas City Art Institute.

Said Biegelson, “Jordan Stempleman’s ‘Cover Songs’ is a difficult book to describe, and I mean that in the best sense. It is a work of estrangement and familiarity, of dialogue and working through. The poems never feel prescribed or preordained but are alive in their meaning making and the unflinching way they approach the mysteries of our most intimate relationships with others and ourselves.”

About Phong Nguyen

Nguyen is the author of three novels, “The Bronze Drum,” “Roundabout: An Improvisational Fiction” and Prairie Heritage Book Award winner “The Adventures of Joe Harper.” He also is the author of two story collections, “Pages from the Textbook of Alternate History” and Elixir Press Fiction Prize winner “Memory Sickness and Other Stories.” His stories have appeared in more than 50 national literary journals and anthologies, including Agni, Boulevard, Chattahoochee Review, Iowa Review, Massachusetts Review, Mississippi Review, Ninth Letter, North American Review, PANK, Prairie Schooner, River Styx and Texas Review. He is co-editor of the book “Nancy Hale: On the Life & Work of a Lost American Master,” which is part of the Unsung Masters Series. He also is series editor for the “Best Peace Fiction” anthology.

Said Biegelson, Phong Nguyen’s “’Bronze Drum’ is an ambitious book — part epic, part folktale, part history — that speaks to the power of women, sisterhood and solidarity. The spirit of resistance and the call for self-determination that infuses the novel prompts us to think about the ages old battle for gender equality and the role of national origin stories in constructing identity.”


Dr. Mark Hornickel
Administration Building
Room 215