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University of Iowa News Release

Nov. 21, 2003

Naturalist Dittmar Reads On 'Live From Prairie Lights'

Naturalist and essayist Trudy Dittmar will be featured on the "Live from Prairie Lights" series at 8 p.m. Monday, Dec. 1. The broadcast reading, hosted by Julie Englander on UI radio station WSUI, AM 910, will be a free event in the Prairie Lights bookstore at 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City.

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

Dittmar will read from "Fauna and Flora, Earth and Sky: Brushes with Nature's Wisdom," just published by the University of Iowa Press.

The settings of these essays include the Wind River Range of Wyoming, the mountain town of Leadville, Colo., and the pine barrens of her native New Jersey. She weaves personal experience with diverse threads of subject matter to create unexpected connections between human nature and nature at large.

UI alumna Jo Ann Beard, author of "The Boys of My Youth," comments, "Dittmar writes about life with the precision of a scientist and the introspective lyricism of a poet, illuminating for us those parts of the world we barely remember to notice. . . Reading this book is like finding a geode in a stream bed -- crack it open and it sparkles."

In addition to holding a master's degree in English literature from the University of Chicago, Dittmar is a graduate of Columbia University's Master of Fine Arts program in writing, and she is the founder and former director of a writing program at Brookdale Community College in New Jersey. Her work has appeared in publications including "The Norton Book of Nature Writing," "Pushcart XXI," the Georgia Review and Orion.

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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,