The Hugh C. Hyde Living Writers Series

San Diego State University Department of English and Comparative Literature

The Living Writers Series began at San Diego State University over twenty-five years ago, and thus has achieved recognition as one of the longest continuously running reading series in the nation.  Shortly before the new millennium, Mr. Hugh C. Hyde generously endowed the reading series, thereby ensuring the continuance of its mission.  


Through the years, the Series has brought to San Diego prominent and emerging poets and writers for readings, workshops, salon discussions, and classroom lectures.  There is no substitute for the experience of direct contact with writers and poets, for hearing the words lift off the page as poets and writers perform their works in their own voices.  


The Series offers the San Diego community the opportunity to be exposed to the work of nationally and internationally known, prominent as well as emerging poets and writers whose work represents both the cultural and stylistic diversity of the contemporary literary scene.  A look at the lineup of authors featured in the past reflects this intention.  Among our most prominent guests are:  West Indian poet, playwright and Nobel-laureate, Derek Walcott; Poet Laureate of the United States, Billy Collins; Pulitzer-prize winning playwright, Edward Albee;  National Book Award winners, Philip Levine and Norman Rush;  American Book Award winner (and SDSU MFA alumna), Diana Garcia; MacArthur Award winning poets Alice Fulton and Luis Alfaro;  internationally acclaimed Argentine novelist, Luisa Valenzuela; Swedish American poet, translator, artist, composer, Siv Cedering; Iranian-born novelist, Nahid Rachlin; environmental activist, poet and essayist, Gary Snyder; and many other highly acclaimed and award-winning poets and writers, including Tillie Olsen, Tess Gallagher, Genny Lim, Jane Miller, Killarney Clary, Dorianne Laux, Pam Houston, David Wong Louie, Judy Grahn, Wanda Coleman, David Mura, Allan Gurganus, Toi Derricotte, William T. Vollman, Marisela Norte, Ralph Angel, Simon Ortiz, Raymond Federman, Cecile Pineda, C.K. Williams, Elizabeth Alexander, Cris Mazza, Debra Magpie Earling, Rick Bass  and many, many more.  


As part of the Hyde Living Writers Series, each semester the Laurie Okuma Memorial Reading features a woman author from an underrepresented group.  Past poets and writers have included:  Japanese American poets and social activists, Janice Mirikitani and Mitsuye Yamada; Chinese American poets Priscilla Lee and Carol Lem; Pakistani poet Shadab Zeest Hashmi; African American poets, Donna J. Watson and Rosetta Lynch; Japanese American novelist, Karen Tei Yamashita; and Chicana writers and poets, Veronica Cunningham and Michelle Serros.


We also sponsor readings featuring the works of faculty poets and writers as well as MFA students in our graduate creative writing program.


Our events are free and open to the public.  Evening readings usually take place at 7pm in SDSU's Malcolm A. Love Library, Room 2203. To join our mailing list, email your request to


To join our mailing list, please complete the following information and return to:

SDSU, Dept. of English and Comparative Literature

5500 Campanile Dr. 

San Diego, CA 92182.8140

(Attn: Meagan Marshall) 

or email your request to:





We value your privacy; this list will only be used to update you

on events sponsored by the Hugh C. Hyde Living Writers Series.

We also welcome your support.  Donations in any amount can be made out to The Campanile Foundation, and sent to: Nancy Lemkie, College of Arts and Letters, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA 92182-4435.  Please be sure to note that the gift is in support of The Hugh C. Hyde Living Writers Series or The Laurie Okuma Memorial Fund.  Your gift is tax-deductible as defined by law.
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