Lecture series welcomes Kathleen Rooney

WEST LIBERTY – The annual Hughes Lecture Series at West Liberty University will welcome Kathleen Rooney, founding editor of Rose Metal Press, for three public events this October.

– Hughes Lecture featuring Rooney, 7:30 p.m., Oct. 9, Boyle Conference Center;

– “Poems While You Wait,” an interactive poetry experience, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Oct. 10, Ballroom, College Union; and

– Poetry Reading, 3 p.m., Oct. 10, Alumni Lounge, College Union.

The title of her lecture is “X Marks the Spot: Why Paper Books are Like Us but Ebooks are Like Nothing.”

Rooney’s second program, “Poems While You Wait,” offers participants a chance to request a poem and wait while it’s typed up on paper for their own personal poetry experience. Manual typewriters will be used for this event, which Rooney has offered at many Chicago venues and other spots. Poet Laureate of West Virginia Marc Harshman and Bethany College Professor Jessie Janeshek will assist Rooney in this part of her program.

The poetry reading will feature Rooney reading her work.

A nonprofit publisher of literary work in hybrid genres, and a founding member of the typewriter poetry collective, “Poems While You Wait,” Rooney also is the author of six books of poetry and nonfiction, including “Live Nude Girl: My Life as an Object,” and her most recent book, the novel in poems, “Robinson Alone” (Gold Wake, 2012). “Robinson Alone” won the Eric Hoffer Award.

Her debut novel, “O Democracy!,” is forthcoming from Fifth Star Press in 2014, and her collaborative chapbook “The Kind of Beauty That Has Nowhere to Go,” co-written with Elisa Gabbert, has just been released by Hyacinth Girl Press.

A resident of Chicago, she is a visiting assistant professor at DePaul University.

The WLU bookstore has copies of Rooney’s book “Robinson Alone” for sale and interested readers may call (304) 336-8211 for more information. Her website, rosemetalpress.com has information on both her books and her blog.

The Hughes Lecture Series was begun in the 1970s by former WLU professor, Raymond Grove Hughes, who joined West Liberty in 1931. As a result of his endowment, the series has brought a wide range of speakers to the University, including: Ralph Abernathy, confidant of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.; Eugene McCarthy, U.S. Senator and presidential candidate in 1968; John Simon, noted film critic; and West Virginia writer and NASA scientist Homer Hickam.

For information, contact WLU Assistant Professor of English Steve Criniti at scriniti@westliberty.edu or (304) 336-8197.