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UW Professor, Award-Winning Author Alyson Hagy to Speak at UW Nov. 12

October 28, 2019
woman leaning against tree
Alyson Hagy

Alyson Hagy, an award-winning author and a University of Wyoming professor, will discuss her latest book, “Scribe: A Novel,” Tuesday, Nov. 12, at UW.

Her talk, which is free and open to the public, will be at 3 p.m. in the Alma Doke McMurry Reading Room in Coe Library. The University Store will have copies of her book available for purchase after the talk.

In “Scribe,” Hagy writes about the struggles and hardships of a woman living alone on the family farmstead shortly after the brutality of a civil war in a post-apocalyptic world. The nameless main character, a scribe, earns a living by bartering her gift of letter writing.

Hagy incorporates elements and themes from traditional folktales, history and culture from Appalachia to create a novel that explores issues in present time. Reviewers call her work “a haunting, evocative tale about the power of storytelling.”

“‘Scribe,’ which begins with the baying of hounds and ends with silence, reminds us on every page that humans remain the storytelling animal, and that therein might lie our salvation . . . In this brave new world, a woman with a pen may prove mightier than a man with a sword,” according to The New York Times Book Review.

Released in 2018, “Scribe” is Hagy’s eighth work of fiction. The novel has received positive reviews from a variety of publications and authors. Additionally, it was selected as a finalist for the Southern Book Prize; chosen as the Indie Next List No. 1 pick for November 2018; and named to National Public Radio’s “Best Books of 2018” list.

Hagy grew up on a farm in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.

“I come from a storytelling culture, and I am drawn to how Americans, especially people who live in hard-to-live places, weave stories around their failures and successes,” Hagy says.

She is a graduate of Williams College, where she twice won the Benjamin Wainwright Prize for her fiction and completed an honors thesis. She earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing from the University of Michigan.

She joined UW in 1996. A professor in UW’s Creative Writing Program, she has won numerous awards for her writing and teaching. Her honors include a Pushcart Prize, a Nelson Algren Prize, a High Plains Book Award and a Devil’s Kitchen Award. She also won a John P. Ellbogen Meritorious Classroom Teaching Award for excellence in classroom teaching at UW. Additionally, she has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Christopher Isherwood Foundation.

Some of her other books are “Boleto,” “Ghosts of Wyoming” and “Snow, Ashes.”

Hagy lives in Laramie with her husband, Robert Southard, and son, Connor.

For more information about Hagy’s talk, call Rochelle Hayes at (307) 766-3641 or email

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