To boldly go where no writers have gone before!
The Writer’s Center welcomes four writers (who don’t focus on science fiction) to discuss the influence of Star Trek on their work, literary philosophies, and basic grammar. This virtual round-table discussion features novelist Tope Folarin, novelist Zach Powers, playwright Gwydion Suilebhan, and poet Gale Marie Thompson.
RSVP below, and you’ll receive login info for joining the chat via our video conferencing platform, Zoom. FREE and open to the public, all times Eastern. Limited space.
About the Authors (and their favorite Star Trek characters)
Tope Folarin is a Nigerian-American writer based in Washington DC. He serves as Executive Director of the Institute for Policy Studies, and the Lannan Visiting Lecturer in Creative Writing at Georgetown University. He has garnered many awards for his writing, including the Caine Prize for African Writing and the Whiting Award for Fiction. He was educated at Morehouse College and the University of Oxford, where he earned two Masters degrees as a Rhodes Scholar. His debut novel, A Particular Kind of Black Man, was published by Simon & Schuster. Favorite character: I suppose I’ll be Mr. Cliché and say Picard. But it’s true—the man has influenced me in many ways.
Zach Powers is the author of the novel First Cosmic Velocity (Putnam 2019) and the story collection Gravity Changes (BOA Editions 2017). His writing has been featured by American Short Fiction, Lit Hub, Tin House Online, The Washington Post, and elsewhere. He serves as Director of Communications for The Writer’s Center, and lives in Arlington, Virginia. Get to know him at ZachPowers.com. Favorite character: Number One in my heart will always be Commander William T. Riker.
Gwydion Suilebhan is a writer and arts advocate who serves as both the Executive Director of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation and the Project Director of the New Play Exchange for the National New Play Network. A founding member of The Welders—a Helen Hayes Award-winning playwrights collective in Washington DC—Suilebhan previously held the position of Director of Brand and Marketing for Woolly Mammoth. As a writer, Suilebhan’s work has been noted for its “dexterous theatricality and unexpected pleasure” (Washington Post). He is the author of several plays, including The Butcher, Inner Harbor, Reals, Abstract Nude, Let X, The Faithkiller, and the Helen Hayes Award-nominated Transmission. His work has been commissioned, developed, and produced by Centerstage, the Ensemble Studio Theatre, the Gulfshore Playhouse, the Taffety Punk Theatre Company, Theater J, and Theater Alliance, among many others. Suilebhan is also the author of Anthem, a short film directed by Hal Hartley, and a forthcoming web series called All Souls. Favorite characters: My favorite characters are all (or almost all) of the engineers. Grew up wanting to be Scotty, then Geordi (shout-out to LeVar Burton, PEN/Faulkner Literary Champion). Big fan of B’Elanna Torres, too, and now Jett Reno. Hard to pick just one! But the one I would never pick would be Trip Tucker.
Gale Marie Thompson is the author of Helen or My Hunger (YesYes Books, 2020), Soldier On (Tupelo Press, 2015) and two chapbooks, Expeditions to the Polar Seas (Sixth Finch, 2013) and If You’re a Bear, I’m a Bear (2013). Raised in Georgia and South Carolina, Gale holds a BA from the College of Charleston, an MFA from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and a PhD from the University of Georgia, where she received the Robert H. West Award. She is the founding editor of Jellyfish Magazine and lives in the North Georgia Mountains, where she directs the Creative Writing program at Young Harris College. Favorite characters: I’m solidly Cap. Janeway with a minor in Data. Although I def call my dog “little one” like Lwaxana Troi.