Guest Speakers

Guest Writers

Giving Voice:  A Festival of Writing and the Arts

September 19-21, 2018


Harrison Scott Key, Creative Nonfiction


Harrison Scott Key Headshot


Harrison Scott Key is the author of THE WORLD'S LARGEST MAN: A MEMOIR, winner of the Thurber Prize for American Humor, and a new nonfiction novel out this November about how none of us are ever getting famous, called CONGRATULATIONS, WHO ARE YOU AGAIN?. His nonfiction has appeared in The New York Times, Oxford American, Outside, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, The American Conservative, Southern Living, Salon, Reader's Digest, Image, World, Creative Nonfiction, Gulf Coast, Savannah Magazine, The Mockingbird, The Best American Travel Writing, and the anthologies TRUE STORIES, WELL TOLD and SOUTHERN WRITERS ON WRITING. He teaches at SCAD in Savannah, Georgia, where he lives with his wife and three children. Follow him on Facebook  or on Twitter, at @HarrisonKey.



Laura Waters Hinson, Documentary Filmmaker



Laura Waters Hinson is the founder of Image Bearer Pictures, an award-winning production company in Washington, DC.  Her film, As We Forgive, about Rwanda’s reconciliation movement, won the student Academy Award for best documentary in 2008 and was broadcast nationwide on PBS stations. Laura co-founded the As We Forgive Rwanda Initiative, a Rwandan-led campaign that harnessed the power of film to promote healing after genocide, and reached nearly 100,000 Rwandans.  She also co-directed Dog Daysa feature documentary about the American Dream set in DC’s underworld of street vending which is currently being broadcast nationally on PBS WORLD’s America Reframed series.  In 2016, she directed Many Beautiful Things, a film about artist Lilias Trotter which premiered at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC.  Her latest documentary, Mama Rwanda, is about the new generation of women entrepreneurs in Rwanda helping to transform their nation into one of the world’s fastest growing economies, which was a finalist for best short documentary at the Heartland Film Festival. She is partnered with the Akilah Institute for Women, using the film to promote women's education in East Africa and beyond. In 2017, Laura wrote and directed her first short narrative film called Moving Violation starring Milana Vayntrub which won Best Short Narrative at the DC Independent Film Festival, among other awards, in 2018. Laura received a MFA in filmmaking from American University and has worked in the past at the Discovery Health Channel and as a research assistant for MSNBC host Chris Matthews.  



Angela Alaimo O'Donnell, Poet



       Angela Alaimo O’Donnell teaches English at Fordham University in New York City and serves as Associate Director of Fordham’s Curran Center for American Catholic Studies. Her publications include two chapbooks and five collections of poems, Saint Sinatra (2011), Moving House (2009), Waking My Mother (2013), Lovers’ Almanac (2015), and Still Pilgrim (2017). Her work has appeared in many journals, including Alabama Literary Review, America, Christian Century, Comstock Review, First Things, Hawaii Pacific Review, Mezzo Cammin, Potomac Review, Runes, String Poetry, The Same, Verse Wisconsin, and Valparaiso Poetry Review, among others, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, the Best of the Web Award, and the Arlin G. Meyer Prize in Imaginative Writing. O’Donnell also writes essays on contemporary literature and is a regular Books & Culture contributor at AMERICA magazine. A memoir, Mortal Blessings, appeared in 2014, and was awarded first prize by the Catholic Press Association in the category of “Family Life,” and a biography Flannery O’Connor: Fiction Fired by Faith (2015) was awarded first prize for excellence in publishing from the Association of Catholic Publishers. As for her current work, O’Donnell has just completed a critical book on Flannery O’Connor, Radical Ambivalence: Race in Flannery O’Connor, and she is completing a collection of 99 poems that channel the voice of O’Connor, titled Andalusian Hours: Poems from the Porch of Flannery O’Connor.



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