The Aspen Writers’ Foundation Goes “Off The Page” With Inventive Winter Words Program

December 7, 2010  • Alexa Wahl

Contact: Lisa Consiglio
Executive Director
Aspen Writers’ Foundation
970-925-3122, ext. 1# | [email protected]

Tickets On Sale Now For 2011 Season Launching with Terry Tempest Williams

Aspen, CO, December 7, 2010 – Winter Words, the Aspen Writers’ Foundation’s 14th annual literary performance series, leaps “Off The Page” this season with an expansive lineup of 13 events (eight of them free or discounted) over four months. From December 16th through March 23rd, the beloved winter series, which has traditionally featured half a dozen author readings and talks, will this season celebrate a baker’s dozen of events featuring writers who propel the written word forward, not only through their novels, essays, poetry chapbooks, and memoirs, but also through song lyrics, magazine pages, and comedy sketches. Headliners for the season include: Terry Tempest Williams, Paul Muldoon, Emma Donoghue, Ethan Canin, and Joyce Maynard.

“Winter Words 2011 is inventive by design,” said Lisa Consiglio, executive director of the Aspen Writers’ Foundation. “Our goal is to present the very best writing, no matter what shape it may take.”

At a time when Poets & Writers magazine (Nov/Dec 2010) suggests that “finding new ways to get writing in front of more readers” is the future of literature, the Aspen Writers’ Foundation aims to keep the art form alive and kicking by mixing up innovative literary performances along with traditional fiction and poetry readings. On any given day during the winter season, an audience member may experience a cutting edge literary cabaret; a poetry reading by a Pulitzer Prize-winning author; a reading/gallery exhibition featuring local writers and artists; one of dozens of participatory community events celebrating The Great Gatsby, the 2011 book selection of The Great Read; or an interview with one of the world’s leading environmental voices.

Winter Words Authors
Like the free-wheeling design of the “Off The Page” series, Winter Words 2011 will spotlight five headline authors whose diverse talents defy easy categorization:

  • Terry Tempest Williams / Jan 5: Award-winning essayist; bestselling author of the environmental lit classic, Refuge; free speech advocate; naturalist
  • Paul Muldoon / Jan 27: Pulitzer Prize-winning poet; bass guitarist; professor; rock lyricist
  • Emma Donoghue / Feb 23: Novelist and author of Room; Man Booker Prize shortlistee and Lambda Literary Award winner; literary historian; dramatist
  • Ethan Canin / Mar 16: Novelist and author of America America; former physician; faculty at what is arguably the best MFA creative writing program in the nation
  • Joyce Maynard / Mar 24: Bestselling memoirist; author of To Die For, the novel turned Golden Globe Award-winning film; New York Times correspondent; expat

Bonus Winter Events
In addition to the five official Winter Words events by these headliners, the Aspen Writers’ Foundation will present eight free and discounted events taking place during the winter season: Vanity Fair contributor Mark Seal (Dec 16), Cabinet of Wonders literary variety show (Jan 30), Andrew Sean Greer (Feb 10), Ishmael Beah and special guests (Feb 17), and Tobias Wolff (Mar 7); David Wroblewski at a special Aspen Art Museum engagement (Jan 6); John Wesley Harding (Jan 31); and the Story Swap exhibit opening (Feb 4). Also filling literary calendars this winter is The Great Read community reading program, featuring a series of dozens of events celebrating F. Scott Fitzgerald’s modern American classic, The Great Gatsby.

The Details
Winter Words headline events take place at 5:30pm (doors at 5pm) at Aspen venues to be announced. Tickets are $15/event or $70/season subscription with deeper discounts available for AWF members, students and educators. Tickets may be purchased starting December 10th from Aspen Show Tickets at 970.920.5700 and through www.aspenshowtix.com. More information is available from the Aspen Writers’ Foundation at 970.925.3122 and www.aspenwriters.org.

The Aspen Writers’ Foundation, one of the West’s pioneering literary centers and a program of the Aspen Institute, has been bringing readers and writers together since 1976. The organization’s mission is to provide programs that encourage writers in their craft and readers in their appreciation of literature. Through its repertoire of ten year-round programs and projects, the Aspen Writers’ Foundation annually serves 100,000+ literary enthusiasts of all ages.

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