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Release: Sept. 13, 2001

IWP writers from Bulgaria, Korea will read Sept. 23 in Prairie Lights

Bulgarian fiction writer Nikolai Grozdinski and Korean poet Man-sik Lee, participants this fall in the University of Iowa International Writing Program (IWP), will be featured in a free reading at 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 23 in the Prairie Lights bookstore at 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. Fiction writer Seth Harwood, a graduate student in the Iowa Writers' Workshop, will also read.

Lee is deputy professor at Kyungwon College and is currently writing a doctoral dissertation on T.S. Eliot at Korea University's department of English literature. Lee has written extensively on deconstruction as literary theory, and his translation of Jonathan Culler's "On Deconstruction" was selected as one of Korea's Best Scholarly Books of 1998. He has published two poetry collections: "God's Baseball Game Ticket" and "On Poetry." His translations include the poetry of Sylvia Plath and J.M. Coetzee's "Waiting for the Barbarians."

Grozdinski is part-time lecturer in Tibetan language, history and culture at the New Bulgarian University. He holds the diploma in musical composition from the Berklee College of Music in Boston. His collection of short stories "Lives of Idle Men and Lost Mystics" is a bestseller, and he received a grant for a first publication from the Open Society Book Program in 2000. A novel, "To Have a Nap on the Lap of the Great Sameness," is in the process of publication.

Some 30 writers representing 24 countries are now in residence at the IWP through Nov. 20. The IWP was the first international writers residency at a university, and it remains unique in world literature. Over the years, nearly a thousand writers from more than 115 countries have completed residencies in the program.

Like most IWP residency groups, the 2001 community is a mix of poets, fiction writers, screenwriters, playwrights, journalists, essayists and critics. Many of the IWP writers will travel from Iowa City to present lectures, symposia and readings at other campuses in Iowa and throughout the country, and to visit places of cultural or historical interest.

The IWP is staffed and housed by the University of Iowa. IWP writers have been financed by the United States State Department, through bilateral agreements with numerous countries; by grants given by cultural institutions and governments abroad; and by private funds that are donated by a variety of American corporations, foundations and individuals.

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