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Writer and poet Frank X. Walker speaks at ASU Nov. 19

Article Published: Nov. 12, 2009 | Modified: Sep. 7, 2011
Writer and poet Frank X. Walker speaks at ASU Nov. 19

Writer and poet Frank X. Walker closes fall semester's Visiting Writers Series at ASU with a reading Nov. 19.

Photo submitted

Writer and poet Frank X. Walker closes fall semester's Hughlene Bostian Frank Visiting Writers Series at Appalachian State University with a reading Thursday, Nov. 19.

Walker's reading begins at 7:30 p.m. in Plemmons Student Union's Table Rock Room. Books will be available for sale and signing following the presentation. During his visit to Appalachian, Walker will give an afternoon reading to middle-school students at the Western Youth Network.

Walker is the author of the poetry collections "When Winter Come: The Ascension of York," a dramatic reimagining of Lewis and Clark's legendary exploration of the American West, "Black Box" and "Affrilachia."

A multidisciplinary artist, Walker is co-founder of the Affrilachian Poets. He coined the term Affrilachian to describe an African-American who lives in Appalachia.

Walker's poetry collection "Buffalo Dance: the Journey of York" won the 35th Annual Lillian Smith Book Award. "Affrilachia" was a Kentucky Public Librarians' Choice Award nominee.

A Kentucky Arts Council Al Smith Fellowship recipient, Walker has had his poems adapted for a stage production by the University of Kentucky Theatre Department and widely anthologized in numerous collections.

Walker is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. He completed an MFA in writing at Spalding University. In 2001, the University of Kentucky awarded Walker an honorary Doctorate of Humanities for his collective community work and artistic achievements.

Walker is a writer in residence and lecturer of English at Northern Kentucky University.
He also regularly teaches in writing programs such as Fishtrap in Oregon and Split Rock at the University of Minnesota.

Walker has served as founder/executive director of the Bluegrass Black Arts Consortium, program coordinator of the University of Kentucky's King Cultural Center and assistant director of Purdue University's Black Cultural Center.

He also is the recipient of the 2006 Thomas D. Clark Literary Award for Excellence, the Actors Theatre's Keeper of the Chronicle Award, and was a 2005 Recipient of a $75,000 Lannan Literary Fellowship in Poetry.

Technical assistance for Walker's visit is funded in part by a grant from the Southern Arts Federation in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the North Carolina Arts Council.

The Visiting Writers Series is named in honor of Hughlene Bostian Frank, a 1968 graduate of Appalachian, a member of the university's board of trustees and generous supporter of the university.

The Fall 2009 Visiting Writers Series is supported by the Appalachian State University Foundation; Appalachian's Offices of Academic Affairs, Multicultural Student Development, and Cultural Affairs; the College of Arts and Sciences, the Department of English, University College, The Center for Appalachian Studies, the Writing Across the Curriculum program, the Sustainable Development Program, the Summer Reading Program, the University Bookstore, and The Appalachian Journal.

Business sponsors are The Gideon Ridge Inn and the Red Onion Cafe. Community sponsors include John and Marjorie Idol, Paul and Judy Tobin, Alice Naylor, Thomas McLaughlin, Mildred Luckhardt and The High Country Writers.

For more information about the fall Visiting Writers Series season, call (828) 262-2871 or visit

Parking is free on campus after 5 p.m.; however, visitors to Appalachian should be aware that numerous construction projects on campus as well as activities associated with the academic year have limited visitor parking. The parking deck on College Street adjacent to Belk Library and Information Commons provides convenient access to Plemmons Student Union. For information about parking, call the university's parking and safety department at (828) 262-2878.

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