© Princeton University

A talk about the unusual and unlikely forces that act on writers, including the speaker, and turn them to their vocation. Richard Ford, author of the recently published The Lay of the Land, won the Pulitzer Prize for Literature and the Penn/Faulkner Award in 1996 for Independence Day. A native of Mississippi, he graduated from Michigan State University and received an M.F.A. from the University of California. The winner of many awards, including Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, he has taught at Princeton University, the University of Michigan, and Williams College. Additional major works include the novels A Piece of My Heart, The Ultimate Good Luck, Wildlife, and The Sportswriter, and short story collections Rock Springs and Women with Men.