F309. You Can't Go Home Again: Writing About Where We're From

E143-144, Oregon Convention Center, Level 1
Friday, March 29, 2019
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm


Five nonfiction writers whose books sent them back home examine the messiness of writing about the places we’re from. What does research look like in the halls of your elementary school or at your family’s dinner table? How do you write about the space between the place you remember and the place you find when you return? In addition to discussing research and craft, panelists will talk about the aftermath of publishing a book about people and landscapes you once knew.


Jeremy B. Jones is the author of the memoir Bearwallow. His essays appear in Oxford American, The Iowa Review, Brevity, and elsewhere. He is an associate professor of English at Western Carolina University, and is the series coeditor of In Place, a book series from WVU press.

Jesse Donaldson is the author of the novel, The More They Disappear, and the memoir, On Homesickness. He studied creative writing at The Michener Center for Writers and Oregon State University, and his work has appeared in The Oxford American, Crazyhorse, and The Greensboro Review, among others.

Justin St. Germain is the author of the memoir Son of a Gun. His work has appeared in the New York TimesTin HouseBarrelhouseHobartThe Best of the West anthology, and elsewhere. He attended the University of Arizona and was a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. He teaches at Oregon State University.

Jenny Forrester wrote Narrow River, Wide Sky from her memories of living in western Colorado where the biggest town she lived in until her twenty-first year had 800 souls and seven churches. She writes and creates from the small and wide open spaces within and without.

June Melby is the author of the memoir My Family and Other Hazards, as well as three books of poetry published both in the US and in Europe. A former standup comedian, her work has appeared in Utne Reader, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Fugue, Versal, LAWeekly, and Water~Stone Review.


March 27–30, 2019
Portland, OR

Oregon Convention Center