Loading Events

« All Events

Author Event: Conversation with Mesha Maren, Sugar Run, and M. Randal O’Wain, Meander Belt

November 16 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Free

Join us for a joint reading and conversation with Mesha Maren and M. Randal O’Wain as they touch on themes of place and identity in their works from both rural and urban, fiction and nonfiction perspectives.

“A heady admixture of explosive plot and taut, burnished prose . . . Mesha Maren writes like a force of nature.” —Lauren Groff, author of Florida

In 1989, Jodi McCarty is seventeen years old when she’s sentenced to life in prison. When she’s released eighteen years later, she finds herself at a Greyhound bus stop, reeling from the shock of unexpected freedom but determined to chart a better course for herself. Not yet able to return to her lost home in the Appalachian Mountains, she heads south in search of someone she left behind, as a way of finally making amends. There, she meets and falls in love with Miranda, a troubled young mother living in a motel room with her children. Together they head toward what they hope will be a fresh start. But what do you do with your past—and with a town and a family that refuses to forget, or to change?

Set within the charged insularity of rural West Virginia, Mesha Maren’s Sugar Run is a searing and gritty debut about making a break for another life, the use and treachery of makeshift families, and how, no matter the distance we think we’ve traveled from the mistakes we’ve made, too often we find ourselves standing in precisely the place we began.

Mesha Maren’s short stories and essays have appeared in Tin House, the Oxford American, the Southern ReviewTriQuarterlyEcotone, and elsewhere. She is the recipient of the Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize, an Elizabeth George Foundation grant, the Kenan Visiting Writer Fellowship at UNC-Chapel Hill, and fellowships from the MacDowell Colony and the Ucross Foundation. She serves as a National Endowment of the Arts Writing Fellow at the Federal Prison Camp Alderson and is an Assistant Professor of the Practice of Creative Writing at Duke University.

*****

In Meander Belt M. Randal O’Wain offers a reflection on how a working-class boy from Memphis, Tennessee, came to fall in love with language, reading, writing, and the larger world outside of the American South. This memoir examines what it means for the son of a carpenter to value mental rather than physical labor and what this does to his relationship with his family, whose livelihood and sensibility are decidedly blue-collar. Straining the father-son bond further, O’Wain leaves home to find a life outside Memphis, roaming from place to place, finding odd jobs, and touring with his band. From memory and observation, O’Wain assembles a subtle and spare portrait of his roots, family, and ultimately discovers that his working-class upbringing is not so antithetical to the man he has become.
M. Randal O’Wain earned his MFA from the University of Iowa’s Nonfiction Writing Program. He is a teaching assistant professor of creative writing at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and serves as a National Endowment of the Arts Writing Fellow at the Beckley Federal Correctional Institution. O’Wain is the author of the short story collection Hallelujah Station and his work has been published in Oxford American, Hotel Amerika, Crazyhorse, and Guernica Magazine. 

Details

Date:
November 16
Time:
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Cost:
Free
Event Categories:
, , ,
Website:
https://fearrington.com/event/mesha-maren-and-m-randal-owain/

Organizer

McIntyre’s Books

Venue

McIntyre’s Books
2000 Fearrington Village Ctr
Pittsboro, NC 27312 United States
+ Google Map
Phone:
(919) 542-3030
Website:
www.mcintyresbooks.com

Have an event you would like to see published?  Please fill out this form with as much detail as possible. {Click Here}

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This