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University of Iowa News Release

Aug. 29, 2003

"Live from Prairie Lights" Features Alumna Thisbe Nissen

"Live from Prairie Lights," the series of broadcast readings hosted by Julie Englander on University of Iowa radio station WSUI, AM 910, will feature University of Iowa Writers' Workshop alumna Thisbe Nissen reading her contribution to "The Dictionary of Failed Relationship" at 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 11 in the Prairie Lights bookstore at 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. Nissen will be joined in the reading by Meredith Broussard, who conceived and edited the volume.

Other free, 8 p.m. readings that week include:
-- poets Lee Ann Brown and Monica Youn, reading from their new collections on Monday, Sept. 8;
-- poet Stephen Corey on Wednesday, Sept. 10; and
-- novelist Frances Sherwood on Friday, Sept. 12.

Listen to the readings -- America's only radio series of live readings -- on the internet at

Lee Ann Brown, founding editor of Tender Buttons Press and the author of "Polyverse," will read from "The Sleep That Changed Everything." Brown's poems were a feature of the widely distributed free book "How 2 Write Love Poems that Don't Suck," and critic Charles Bernstein called her new volume, "a sprung formalist ode to the open possibilities of song."

Monica Youn, an entertainment lawyer in Manhattan, will read from her first book, "Barter." UI alumnus D.A. Powell described her as "an elegant new voice, dazzling, haunting, immediate."

Stephen Corey will read from his 10th book, "There Is No Finished World." A long-time associate editor of the Georgia Review, Corey is also an essayist and co-author of "Spreading the Word, Editors on Poetry." Georgia Writer, Inc. has named him author of the year in poetry three times.

"When Meredith Broussard celebrated her 26th birthday and realized that she'd survived exactly 26 failed romantic relationships, she knew it was time to dissect the topic," explains the description of her new alphabetical anthology of pieces by women under 40. Broussard is a literature and arts critic at the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Philadelphia City Paper. She has also written for Philadelphia Magazine, the Hartford Courant, the Chicago Reader and the New York Press.

Thisbe Nissen's contribution to "The Dictionary of Failed Relationships" is the "e" story, "Etiquette." Nissen's other work includes "The Ex-Boyfriend Cookbook."

Frances Sherwood, author of the highly praised novel "Vindication," will read from her latest work, "The Book of Splendor," a historical fantasy about Prague in the year 1600. "The Book of Splendor" constructs an unlikely love story around the legend of the golem, spiced with the mysticism of the Jewish occult and Emperor Rudolph II's mad bid for immortality.

For UI arts information and calendar updates, visit To receive UI arts news by e-mail,

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Winston Barclay, 319-384-0073,

OTHER INFORMATION: Garrison Keillor will also be featured on "Live from Prairie Lights" on Saturday, Sept. 6. Since this event is presented in the context of a WSUI fundraiser, it will be the subject of a separate news release.