Award-winning Novelist Alexander Chee Discusses the Craft of Writing at Williams College

Media contact: Noelle Lemoine, executive assistant; tele: 413-597-4277; email: [email protected]

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass., September 13, 2018—Writer and professor Alexander Chee will discuss and read from his first collection of nonfiction, How to Write an Autobiographical Novel, at Williams College on Tuesday, Sept. 25, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in Griffin Hall, room 3. The talk is free and open to the public. The reading will be followed a light reception and a book-signing, with books available for purchase.

Author of the acclaimed 2016 novel The Queen of the Night, Chee’s latest work, How to Write an Autobiographical Novel, is a manifesto on the entangling of life, literature, and politics, and how the lessons learned from a life spent reading and writing fiction have changed him.

In this collection of essays, Chee grapples with his identities—a son, a gay man, a Korean American, an artist, an activist, a lover, and a friend—and examines some of the most formative experiences, both joyful and tragic, of his life and the nation’s history. By turns commanding, heartbreaking, and wry, How to Write an Autobiographical Novel asks questions about how we create ourselves in life and in art, and how to fight when our dearest truths are under attack.

An associate professor of English and creative writing at Dartmouth College, Chee is also a contributing editor at The New Republic and an editor at large at VQR. His essays and stories have appeared in The New York Times Book Review, T Magazine, Tin House, Slate, Guernica, and Best American Essays 2016, among others. He is the winner of a 2003 Whiting Award, a 2004 NEA Fellowship in prose and a 2010 MCCA Fellowship, and residency fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the VCCA, Civitella Ranieri and Amtrak.

This event is presented by the Williams College American Studies program, with support from the Minority Coalition, English, Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Asian Studies, the Lecture Committee, and the Finance Committee of the Student Council, and is co-sponsored by the W. Ford Schumann ’50 Program in Democratic Studies as part of a year-long series on Race and Democracy.


For building locations on the Williams campus, please consult the map outside the driveway entrance to the Security Office located in Hopkins Hall on Main Street (Rte. 2), next to the Thompson Memorial Chapel, or call the Office of Communications 413-597-4277. The map can also be found on the web at