Jump to Footer

Symposium Celebrates Talents of Local Writers

PLATTSBURGH, NY __ Celebrating local writers is this year's theme for the third annual writing symposium sponsored by the departments of journalism and English at the State University of New York College at Plattsburgh and made possible by assistance from the Winkel Humanities Fund.

"In Our Backyard: A Symposium Celebrating the Talents of Local Writers," will be held Friday, March 31, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in Room 153C, Hawkins Hall. The symposium is free and open to the public.

Speakers will include Pulitzer-Prize winner Ron Powers and author Elizabeth Inness-Brown who will discuss the craft of writing, how to weave historical fact into a story and how to find inspiration from your local surroundings.

Powers has published 13 books on a range of topics: TV criticism, topical fiction, biography, narrative nonfiction about American community and the plight of American adolescents.  Born in Hannibal, Mo. - Mark Twain's boyhood hometown - Powers has taken his "fierce affection and scabrous argument with this country" as his literary ideal.

In 1973, at age 31, as the TV-radio columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times , Powers became the first TV critic to win the Pulitzer Prize.  Later, as an on-air television commentator, he won a Chicago Emmy and a National Emmy for his work on CBS News Sunday Morning .

His most recent book, Mark Twain: a Life , a 720-page biography, was a finalist for the 2006 National Book Critics Circle Award.  He has taught writing at Middlebury College and has also written for a variety of magazines, including Smithsonian , Esquire and Playboy . Powers lives in Middlebury, and you can hear his commentaries on Vermont Public Radio.

Inness-Brown is author of two collections of short stories, Satin Palms and Here. Her novel, Burning Marguerite, published by Knopf in 2002, was a best seller in New England and has appeared in 10 editions, including translations to Dutch, German, and Italian.

Publisher's Weekly had this to say about Burning Marguerite: "Inness-Brown probes her characters deftly and thoroughly... There's no doubt about this author's ability to convey the complex passions of her characters. Following on the heels of two well-reviewed short story collections, this novel represents a solid building block in the foundation of a promising career."

She currently teaches writing at Saint Michael's College, where she also directs the Writing Center. Raised in the North Country, she now lives with her husband and young son in South Hero, Vt. 

-- 30 --

Back to top