Chatham News

Wiley Cash, New York Times best-selling author, to give free public reading at Chatham University on September 13

Cash will speak as part of the Melanie Brown Lecturer Series at the event sponsored by Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing Program

PITTSBURGH—Wiley Cash, New York Times best-selling author of A Land More Kind Than Home, will give a free public reading at Chatham University at 8 p.m. on Friday, September 13, in the Mellon Board Room on the Shadyside Campus. As Chatham’s 2013 Melanie Brown Lecturer, Cash will read from his works, including his upcoming book This Dark Road to Mercy, available from William Morrow/HarperCollins in January 2014. The event is hosted by Chatham’s Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program.



The New York Times Sunday Book Review called Cash’s debut novel a “mesmerizing first novel. . . intensely felt and beautifully told.” Cash teaches in the Low-Residency MFA Program in fiction and nonfiction writing at Southern New Hampshire University and has received grants and fellowships from the Asheville Area Arts Council, the Thomas Wolfe Society, the MacDowell Colony, and Yaddo. His stories have appeared in Crab Orchard Review, Roanoke Review, and The Carolina Quarterly, and his essays on Southern literature have appeared in such publications as American Literary Realism and The South Carolina Review.

He holds a Ph.D. in English from the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, an M.A. in English from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, and a B.A. in literature from the University of North Carolina-Asheville. A native of North Carolina, he and his wife currently live in West Virginia.

About the Browns
Melanie and Fred R. Brown are life-long residents of Western Pennsylvania. Avid readers, the Browns began collecting contemporary American and international literary fiction and mysteries in the early 1980s. In February 2010, they generously donated the collection to Chatham University. The Melanie and Fred R. Brown Special Collection of Literary Fiction is permanently housed in the Jennie King Mellon Library, the primary research, study, and resource center for the Chatham community.

The donation of their treasured book collection enhanced the Browns’ relationship with Chatham, which began with the establishment of the Melanie Brown Lecturer in 2008. Each year, the endowed fund supports a two-day campus visit by an established author whose fiction writing is guided by a strong sense of place.

About Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing program
Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing allows students to focus on tracks in creative nonfiction, fiction, poetry, screenwriting, and writing for children, while encouraging them to explore two tracks simultaneously. Students take innovative field seminars that include travel to such places as Costa Rica, Ecuador, India, and Germany. In 2007 Poets & Writers named the MFA one of “Nine Distinctive Programs” and The Atlantic Monthly named it one of five innovative/unique programs in the country in its “Best of the Best” graduate program listings. In January 2012, The Writernamed it one of the “4 top schools you should consider” and in 2009, named it one of ten programs that offer a specialty focus. Chatham University also offers an undergraduate BFA in Creative Writing, an online Master of Professional Writing, and a low-residency Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. For more information, visit or contact Sheryl St. Germain at

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Consistently ranked among the top master’s level institutions in the Northeast by U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review, Chatham University is also ranked in the top five percent of graduate-intensive institutions nationally and experienced the fastest-growing enrollment in the Pittsburgh region throughout the past decade. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum and Chatham Eastside facility, and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information, call 800-837-1290 or visit

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