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This event is sponsored by the College of Arts and Sciences and the English Department. As a result of COVID-19, we have moved the VWRS’ events to a virtual platform. We encourage students, faculty and staff to attend the event as they will have the opportunity to ask questions to our guest. A recording of the live event will be available shortly afterwards for those unable to attend.


Date: Thursday, October 1, 2020

Time: 2:30pm-3:30pm

Location: Microsoft Teams Link


Anthony (Tony) Grooms grew up in rural Virginia.  His education at the College of William and Mary and George Mason University led him to a teaching career in Georgia, where he has taught creative writing and literature at Kennesaw State University since 1995, and currently directs its M. A. in Professional Writing Program. He is the author of Ice Poems, Trouble No More: Stories and Bombingham, a novel. His stories and poems have been published in Callaloo, African American Review, Crab Orchard Review, and other literary journals and anthologies both in the US and abroad. His new novel The Vain Conversation has been designated an Honor Book for Fiction for 2019 by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association.

Grooms is a Fulbright Fellow, a Yaddo Fellow, a Hurston-Wright Foundation Legacy Award finalist, an Arts Administration Fellow from the National Endowment for the Arts, and the recipient of two Lillian Smith Awards for Fiction.

Currently, Grooms is finishing novels about Black Americans in Sweden and school desegregation in Birmingham, Alabama.  He lives in Atlanta with his wife and son.

About The Vain Conversation--

“We ask many things of the writers we have taken to our hearts �" honesty, sincerity, sensitivity, ‘old verities,’ to borrow Faulkner’s phrase. I suspect that those are things Grooms did not have to learn because they were already in his blood before he wrote his first words.”
               --Edward P. Jones, author of The Known World and winner of the Pulitzer Prize

“The Vain Conversation vividly evokes the horrors of American racism, but Anthony Grooms never denies the humanity of his characters, whether black or white, young or old. His novel achieves what only the best literature can give us: it refuses too-easy consolations or too-easy condemnations. When we finish the last page, the book is not finished with us. It will haunt us.”

--Ron Rash, New York Times Best Selling Author, SerenaThe World Made StraightOne Foot in Eden

Thursday, 01 October, 2020


Dr Brigitte Byrd



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