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News Release

March 8, 2024

English faculty to discuss new books during Visiting Writers Series March 21

Northwest Missouri State University’s 2023-24 Visiting Writers Series continues this month with a night of readings celebrating new books published by two University faculty members.

The event featuring John Gallaher and Luke Rolfes begins at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 21, in the J.W. Jones Student Union Living Room. It is free and open to the public.

John Gallaher

John Gallaher

Gallaher is a Northwest professor of English and poet. Having joined the University’s faculty in 2003, he serves as an advisor for Northwest’s Scribblers and Medium Weight Forks, a student-created literary and art magazine. He also is co-editor of The Laurel Review, a nationally distributed, biannual literary arts magazine composed of poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction through the University’s GreenTower Press.

His new book of poetry and non-fiction, “My Life in Brutalist Architecture,” published by Four Way Books, shares the story of his adoption while exploring adoption more generally and what it means to be family and neighbors.

Gallaher also is the author of “Gentlemen in Turbans, Ladies in Cauls,” “The Little Book of Guesses,” “Map of the Folded World,” “Your Father on the Train of Ghosts” with G.C. Waldrep, “In Landscape,” “Ghost/Landscape” with Kristina Maria Darling and “Brand New Spacesuit.”

Luke Rolfes

Luke Rolfes

Rolfes is an assistant professor of English at Northwest, where he has taught creative writing and composition courses since 2008. He also edits the Laurel Review and served as a mentor in the Association of Writers and Writing Programs’ Writer to Writer Mentorship Program.

His forthcoming novel, “Sleep Lake,” is being published by Braddock Avenue Books in May. Set around a suburban metropolitan area in the middle of the country, the book explores community, family and Midwestern morality alongside a strong sense of place.

Rolfes’s first book, “Flyover Country,” won the Georgetown Review Press Short Story Collection Contest, and his second book, “Impossible Naked Life,” won the Acacia Fiction Prize from Kallisto Gaia Press. His manuscripts have been shortlisted for numerous honors.

The Visiting Writers Series is designed to enrich Northwest’s educational mission while promoting the values of community, civil discourse and self-expression. Kawasaki Motors Manufacturing Corporation, GreenTower Press and the Department of Language, Literature and Writing sponsor the series.

It continues this spring with Taylor Byas, a Maya Angelou Award Winner for her debut poetry collection “I Done Clicked My Heels Three Times” on Tuesday, April 9, and poets Hadara Bar-Nadav and Kevin Prufer on Tuesday, April 16.

For more information about the Visiting Writers Series, contact Daniel Biegelson, the series director and a senior instructor of English, at or 660.562.1266.


Dr. Mark Hornickel
Administration Building
Room 215