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The Big Texas Author Talk featuring Thomas H. McNeely

September 20, 2023 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm CDT



RSVP to join us for our Free Monthly Online Lecture Series from WritingWorkshops.com & Gemini Ink

Wednesday, September 20th, 2023 via Zoom @ 7PM CST

Up Next: Thomas H. McNeely’s story collection, Pictures of the Shark. Stephanie Reents is the moderator.

2023 Foreword Reviews INDIES Awards Finalist in Literary Fiction
2023 Houston Chronicle Notable Book
2023 Massachusetts Book Award Must-Read

“An emotionally taut and often haunting collection.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“[An] always compelling novel in short stories.”
Foreword Reviews

“[A] powerful family portrait … heartbreaking authenticity.”

“A tightly written and often emotionally gripping collection.”
Lone Star Literary Life

A sudden snowfall in Houston reveals family secrets. A trip to Universal Studios to snap a picture of the shark from Jaws becomes a battle of wills between father and son. A midnight séance and the ghost of Janis Joplin conjure the mysteries of sex. A young boy’s pilgrimage to see Elvis Presley becomes a moment of transformation. A young woman discovers the responsibilities of talent and freedom.

Pictures of the Shark, by award-winning Houston writer Thomas H. McNeely, moves from its protagonist Buddy Turner’s surreal world of childhood into the wider arenas of sex, addiction, art, and ambition. Appearing in the country’s finest literary journals, including Ploughshares, The Virginia Quarterly ReviewEpoch, and Crazyhorse, shortlisted for the O. Henry Award, Best American Short Stories, and Pushcart Prize collections, the stories in Pictures of the Shark are gems that refract their characters’ complex relationships.

An East Side Houston native, THOMAS H. McNEELY has published short stories and non-fiction in The Atlantic, Texas Monthly, Ploughshares, and many other magazines and anthologies, including Best American Mystery Stories and Algonquin Books’ Best of the South. His stories have been short-listed for the Pushcart PrizeBest American Short Stories and O. Henry Award anthologies. He has received National Endowment for the Arts, Wallace Stegner, and MacDowell Colony fellowships for his fiction. His first book, Ghost Horse, won the Gival Press Novel Award and was shortlisted for the William Saroyan International Prize in Writing. He currently teaches in the Stanford Online Writing Studio and at Emerson College, Boston.

Stephanie Reents received a BA from Amherst College, a second BA from Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, and an MFA from University of Arizona. She is the author of The Kissing List, a collection of connected stories that was an Editors’ Choice in The New York Times Book Review, and I Meant to Kill Ye, a bibliomemoir that is an account of her journey into the strange voice at the heart of Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian. She has twice been awarded an O. Henry prize for her short fiction. Her novel I Loved to Run is under contract at Penguin Random House.


September 20, 2023
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm CDT
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Alexandra van de Kamp