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Fiction writer Benjamin Percy to be first Good Thunder guest

Iowa fiction writer Benjamin Percy kicks off reading series Thursday.

Minnesota State University, Mankato Media Relations Office News Release [8-24-11]

Iowa fiction writer Benjamin Percy will kick off the 30th year of Minnesota State University, Mankato’s Good Thunder Reading Series Thursday, Sept. 15, with a reading and discussions of his work.

Percy will meet with community writers in the morning and will be interviewed on KMSU 89.7 FM. At 3 p.m. in Centennial Student Union’s Ostrander Auditorium, he will lead a discussion on the craft of writing. He will read from his published work at 7:30 p.m. in Centennial Student Union Room 253.

All events are free and open to the public.

Texas fiction and creative nonfiction writer Debra Monroe was originally scheduled to appear with Percy, but her residency has been re-scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 10.

Percy is author of a novel, The Wilding, and two books of stories, Refresh, Refresh and The Language of Elk. His fiction and nonfiction works have been read on National Public Radio, performed at Symphony Space, and published by Esquire – where he is a regular contributor – Men’s Journal, Outside, the Paris Review, Tin House, Chicago Tribune, Orion, The Wall Street Journal, Ploughshares, Glimmer Train and many other magazines and journals.

Percy’s work has been cited in Best American Short Stories, and he has received a Whiting Award, the Plimpton Prize and a Pushcart Prize. Refresh, Refresh was adapted into a screenplay and a graphic novel.

He teaches in the MFA creative writing and environment program at Iowa State University.

The Good Thunder Reading Series invites emerging and established writers to Mankato. It began in 1982 and has committed itself since to programs that balance emerging and established talent drawn from Minnesota, the Upper Midwest and the rest of the nation.

This year’s series is funded by the Department of English, the College of Arts & Humanities, the Office of Institutional Diversity, the Nadine B. Andreas Endowment, the Eddice B. Barber Visiting Writer Endowment, the Robert C. Wright Endowment, and individual donors. It is made possible by a Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council grant from the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, appropriated by the Legislature. Library Services and the Barnes & Noble Bookstore offer additional assistance.

Those who want more information may call Candace Black, Department of English, at (507) 389-2680, or go to

Minnesota State Mankato, a comprehensive university, is part of the Minnesota State Colleges & Universities system, which comprises 32 state institutions.

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