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Delta poet and fiction writer to read and conduct workshops for Delta Blues event

Feb. 28, 2008 -- In conjunction with the Delta Blues Symposium XIV: Sense of Place, and the Lecture-Concert Series, ASU’s English & Philosophy Department is honored to welcome Ralph Burns and Jack Butler to campus on March 28-29. Butler, an award winning fiction writer, will read from his work Friday night, March 28, then conduct a fiction workshop on Saturday morning, March 29. Acclaimed poet Burns will also read Friday night, March 28, then conduct a poetry workshop on Saturday, March 29. The Friday night readings will take place in the Grand Hall, Fowler Center, at 7:30 p.m. All readings and workshops are free and open to the public.

A native of Alligator, Mississippi, Jack Butler has been a fried-pie salesman and Baptist preacher, an actuarial analyst and a university administrator. As versatile a writer as there is, he has published fiction, poetry, and eight books overall, including a cookbook, "Jack’s Skillet: Plain Talk from a Guy in the Kitchen." His novels include the classics, "Jujitsu for Christ" and the Pulitzer Prize-nominated "Living in Little Rock with Miss Little Rock." An MFA graduate of the creative writing program at the University of Arkansas, Mr. Butler is currently finishing his novel, "The Illumination of Elijah Lee Roswell," forthcoming from the Toby Press. Three excerpts of the novel recently appeared in Arkansas Review.

Ralph Burns has an MFA in creative writing from the University of Montana. He has published six books of poetry, including "Ghost Notes," "Swamp Candles" and "Mozart’s Starling." His poetry has also appeared in such magazines as The Atlantic, Field and The Kenyon Review. A two time National Endowment for the Arts fellow in creative writing, he currently co-directs the Creative Writing Program at UALR. His reading is co-sponsored by the Lecture-Concert Series.

Both workshops take place Saturday morning, March 29. Jack Butler will meet with students at 9 a.m. to in the Student Union’s 1909 Room. Ralph Burns will meet individually with students, starting at 9 in the 1909 Room Lobby.

To be eligible for either workshop, participants need to pre-enroll by submitting either 10 to 15 pages of fiction or three to five poems. Entries must be received by March 10, 2008. Send name, address, phone number, email address (if available), along with a copy of your manuscript to: Creative Writing Workshops, Box 1890, Dept. of English & Philosophy, Arkansas State University, State University, AR 72467-1890, or send an email attachment of your work to: or

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