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University of Iowa News Release


July 13, 2011

Live streams will feature Rescue Press authors from UI Writers' Workshop

The final July literary readings in the "Live from Prairie Lights" series, streamed live and archived on, will include Rescue Press authors Madeline McDonnell, Shane McCrae and Marc Rahe -- alumni of the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop -- on Thursday, July 28. The readings, originating in free events at 7 p.m. in Prairie Lights Books in downtown Iowa City, will also feature:
--Poet Anita Skeen on Tuesday, July 26.
--Chicago novelist Melanie Benjamin on Wednesday, July 27.

Skeen will read from her new collection of poems, "Never the Whole Story," which following in the tradition of James Wright, Maxine Kumin, Mary Oliver, Jane Kenyon, Robert Hass and other writers whose work is grounded in the detail of ordinary life.

She is director of the Creative Arts Festival and the Fall Writing Series at Ghost Ranch is Abiquiu, N.M., and is director of the Residential Option in Arts and Letters Program at Michigan State University.

Benjamin, whose first historical novel was "Alice I Have Been," will read from her new novel, "The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb," about the diminutive Lavinia Warren Bump, one of P.T. Barnum's "oddities."

Sara Gruen, the author of "Ape House" and "Water for Elephants," wrote, "By turns heart-rending and thrilling, this big-hearted book recounts a fictionalized life of this most extraordinary of women in prose that is lush, and details that are meticulously researched."

Learn more at

Danny Khalastchi will host the reading with the Rescue Press authors ( McDonnell will read from her collection of short fiction, "There is Something Inside, It Wants To Get Out"; McCrae will read from his poetry collection, "In Canaan"; and Marc Rahe will read from his collection of poems, "The Smaller Half."

Rescue Press describes itself as "a library of chaotic and investigative work."

The Writers' Workshop is a unit in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Graduate College.

UI arts events are searchable on the UI Master Calendar: Exhibitions are searchable at To receive UI arts news by e-mail, go to, click on the link "Subscribe or Unsubscribe" then follow the instructions.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500

MEDA CONTACTS: Jan Weissmiller, Prairie Lights,; Winston Barclay, University News Services,