Yesterday at 4:30pm, authors Maud Casey & Karen Russell (from left to right) visited Wellesley College as a part of The Newhouse Center’s Distinguished Writer Series. I’d heard about Karen Russell before the event. I mean she’s a recent MacArthur fellow (my dream!), was on The New Yorker’s 20 under 40, and Swamplandia!, her first book, was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. However I’d never heard of Maud Casey. I don’t know why not (possibly because I live in the land of genre fiction), but she was amazing!!!
They had a lot of great things to say about writing, taking the time to figure everything out, and also spoke a lot about the importance of getting someone else to look at your work.
Some of my favorite quotes from the event were:
“In some ways, nothing ever feels complete…” – Maud Casey on knowing when a story is finished
“Once you figure out what’s best for the story, take out the rest.” – Karen Russell on her writing process
“It took me a long time to find my voice.” – Maud Casey on her writer’s journey
Here are my books…and look, they’re signed!
(she asked me if I was a writer, hence the write on…also, she kept getting the date wrong on everyone’s book…I thought it was cute. Authors are people too, lol.)
(She complimented me on my owl necklace — I have quite the obsession with owls, maybe one day I’ll share my owl items!)
It was such a beautiful event. Casey speaks beautifully and her stories sound so lyrical and just gorgeous (listening to her is like being in a serene trance-like state). I’ve already read the first of her short stories and am in love! As for Russell, well, I was already a fan but now, I just think she’s the coolest (she’s great at capturing realistic young voices in her writing). Plus Stephan Kings says she’s creepy so nuff said!
Thank you to the authors and to The Newhouse Center! Ang Lee and Robert Pinksky are on the schedule of upcoming speakers, and I can’t wait to see them 🙂