Literary Festival

The 21st Annual Villanova Literary Festival will feature the following writers

All readings begin at 7 p.m., are free, and are followed by a reception and book signing.


Ross Gay

February 5: Ross Gay

Speakers' Corner, Falvey Library

Gay's poems have appeared in the American Review, Harvard Review, and various anthologies. Gay was a finalist for the 2015 National Book Award for poetry, and won the 2015 National Book Critics Circle Award for poetry, and the 2016 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award.

Leslie Nneka Arimah

February 21:  Lauren Grodstein

Speakers' Corner, Falvey Library

Grodstein has published six books, and was nominated for the Philolexian Prize for literary work. Her novel A Friend of the Family is a New York Times bestseller, Washington Post Book of the Year, and January Magazine top ten book of the year.


Collette Bryce

March 21:  Mike McCormack

Presidents' Lounge, Connelly Center

Mccormark has published two collections of short stories, as well as three novels. He won the 1996 Rooney Prize for Irish literature, and his novel Getting it in the Head was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. His book Solar Bones won the Goldsmiths Prize, and in 2018 he won the Dublin literary prize.

* In conjunction with the Heimbold Professorship in Irish Studies


Zinzi Clemmons

April 4: Claudia Rankine

Connelly Cinema

Rankine's poem "Citizen: an American Lyric" won the Los Angeles Times Book Award in 2014, the 2014 National Book Critics Circle Award for poetry, among other awards, as well as the T.S Eliot Prize. She has also won the 2014 Morton Dauwen Zabel award, the 2014 Jackson Poetry prize, and the 2014 Lannan Foundation literary award, and in 2016 she became a McArthur fellow.

Ariel Levy

April 30: Julia Kasdorf

St. Augustine Center, Room 300

Kasdorf won the Agnes Lynch Starrett poetry prize in 1991 for "Sleeping Preacher," as well as the Great Lakes Colleges award in 1993, the 2001Conference on Christianity and Literature's Book of the Year award, the 2004 Pushcart Prize, and an NEA grant for poetry. Her poems have been featured on Keillor’s NPR "The Writer’s Almanac" program, as well as in Prairie Schooner, The Gettysburg Review, and The Antioch Review.

Creative Writing program

Creative Writing Program 
St. Augustine Center 402

Alan Drew, MFA
Associate Professor, English