WWW Continues with Bestseller Paula McLain

Continuing the Winter with the Writers season with esteem, Rollins and the Winter Park community welcomed bestselling author Paula McLain Feb. 16.

“Listening to [McLain] read was an absolute hoot,” program intern Donald Glenn said.  “She is a very personal and animated speaker. Her reading was both entertaining and instructional.”

McLain is the author of The Paris Wife, a 2011 release that was on the New York Times bestseller list for 30 weeks.  The novel tells the story of Hadley Richardson, Ernest Hemingway’s first wife, and divulges their lives in Paris and Europe in the 1920s.

In the question and answer portion of Thursday’s reading, McLain divulged that she plans to continue in the historical fiction genre with her next novel.  This time she will turn her focus to the life of Marie Curie, a respected scientist.  Glenn approves of this career choice.

“The thing about historical fiction is the writer already knows a little something about the subject and a good historical fiction story can add depth and surprise to a subject the reader is already familiar with,” Glenn said.  “I encourage the fact that she is continuing in that vein of writing.”

Following her participation in the Winter with the Writers program, McLain taught a week long, one-credit course on historical fiction writing.  Students focused on their own historical figure while McLain critiqued and helped developed their work.

Feb. 23, Winter with the Writers will host its final event for the 2012 season.  Chimamanda Adichie, author of Half of a Yellow Sun and The Thing Around Your Neck, will read in Bush Auditorium at 7:30 p.m.

“I am really excited about meeting Adichie. I’ve watched her read and speak on YouTube and I know it’s going to be an enlightening experience,” intern Holly Stallard ‘13 said.

For interns, the conclusion of the season stimulates appreciation for all of the authors who visited and the program as a whole.

“The winter with the writers program was a wonderful opportunity for me to explore creative writing further,” Stallard said.  “I have enjoyed reading this season’s writers and becoming familiar with their unique styles.”

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