Writers on the Rise Showcased During UH Gulf Coast Readings March 21

Reading Series Returns to Rudyard’s British Pub

Soon, a trio of the University of Houston’s top literary talents will return from spring break refreshed and ready to read new works during the Gulf Coast Reading Series.

Each fall and spring, the Gulf Coast Reading Series offers Houstonians an opportunity to experience new poetry and fiction in the intimate confines of Rudyard’s British Pub. This month’s readings are set for 7 p.m., March 21. Featured readers include UH Creative Writing Program students Michelle Oakes, Jeni McFarland and Layla Benitez-James.

Oakes is a Master of Fine Arts candidate and is serving as poetry editor for Gulf Coast, A Journal of Literature and Fine Art. Her poems have been published in The Laurel Review, RHINO and Owl Eye Review.

Master of Fine Arts student McFarland previously served as fiction editor for Houston & Nomadic Voices Magazine. Her works have appeared in literary publications such as Spry and Forge.

Benitez-James works with Houston’s Writers In The Schools program and is the nonfiction assistant editor for Gulf Coast. She has contributed works to the San Antonio Express-News, the San Antonio Current, Acentos Review and Plaza: Journal of Language and Literature..

The Gulf Coast Reading Series is an extension of UH’s acclaimed Gulf Coast, A Journal of Literature and Fine Art. Founded in 1986 by Donald Barthelme and Philip Lopate, the journal spotlights the literary and visual arts communities. Gulf Coast is a partnership between CWP, the Museum of Fine Arts-Houston and the Menil Collection. It reviews submissions from artists and writers from around the country. To learn more about the Gulf Coast journal and the reading series, visit www.gulfcoastmag.org.

As part of UH's English department, CWP offers fiction and nonfiction writers and poets intensive training in both creative writing and literary studies. It offers two graduate degrees: the Master of Fine Arts and Doctor of Philosophy. CWP's noted faculty includes award-winning authors and poets such as novelist Antonya Nelson, poet and nonfiction writer Nick Flynn, graphic novelist Mat Johnson and poet Tony Hoagland. To learn more about the program, visit www.class.uh.edu/cwp/.