The Virginia G. Piper
Center for Creative Writing

Home / Events / Talks and Readings

The Distinguished Visiting Writers Series

Author talks and readings from some of the strongest voices in contemporary literature

Every year, the Distinguished Visiting Writer Series brings nationally and internationally recognized authors to the Phoenix metropolitan area for talks and readings, connecting local communities with the national scene.

Events take place throughout the Valley and are open to the public and free unless otherwise noted.

To learn more about the series, you can select a visiting writer event from the list below. For more events, you can view all upcoming events

Upcoming Visiting Writers

Art for Justice
Nikky Finney

Date: Wednesday, February 6, 2019 - 7:00pm
Location: Singer Hall, Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 N Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85004
Genre & Forms: African American Studies, Human Rights, Poetry, Social Justice

The University of Arizona Poetry Center is proud to present Nikky Finney, who will read from her work commissioned for the Poetry Center's Art for Justice grant.  After the reading, there will be a short Q&A and a book signing.

Please note: while this event is open to the public and free, you must RSVP in order to attend. Seats may be available the day of the event. However, as seating is limited, we recommend reserving your seats in advance. Any unclaimed seats will be released to the public five minutes before the start of the reading. 


De Las Islas: A Celebration of Cuba & Puerto Rico
Achy Obejas, Jennine Capó Crucet, Nicole Sealey

Date: Saturday, February 23, 2019 - 7:30pm
Location: Carson Ballroom, Old Main, Arizona State University Tempe, 400 E Tyler Mall, Tempe, AZ 85281
Genre & Forms: Creative Nonfiction, Essays, Fiction, Mixed Genre, Poetry, Short Stories

The Borderlands Reading Series and the Desert Nights, Rising Stars Writers Conference present De Las Islas: A Celebration of Cuba and Puerto Rico with Achy Obejas, Jennine Capó Crucet, and Nicole Sealey on Saturday, February 23, 2019 in Carson Ballroom at Old Main, Arizona State University Tempe (400 E Tyler Mall, Tempe, AZ 85281) at 7:30 p.m.


Date: Thursday, March 21, 2019 - 6:30pm
Location: Tempe Center for the Arts, 700 W Rio Salado Pkwy, Tempe, AZ 85281
Genre & Forms: Creative Nonfiction, Essays, Fiction, Memoir, Mixed Genre, Poetry

One of the tragic consequences of being confined to a single body is that we will never know what other people experience when they meet us for the first time. We can’t know how someone will register the slight change in the atmosphere that our presence causes when we enter a room. We will never know what another person feels while keeping us company. Memoirist choose to make themselves, someone they can never objectively grasp or fully represent on the page, the primary subject of most of their writing.


Date: Wednesday, April 17, 2019 - 7:00pm
Location: Singer Hall, Phoenix Art Museum, 1625 N Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85004
Genre & Forms: Poetry

The University of Arizona Poetry Center is proud to present a poetry reading with Naomi Shihab Nye, After the reading, there will be a short Q&A and a book signing.

Please note: while this event is open to the public and free, you must RSVP in order to attend. Seats may be available the day of the event. However, as seating is limited, we recommend reserving your seats in advance. Any unclaimed seats will be released to the public five minutes before the start of the reading.