Bestselling Author Sena Jeter Naslund to visit Oct. 17-19

SenaflyerFINSena Jeter Naslund, bestselling author of Ahab’s Wife and other novels, will appear in Fargo on Oct. 17-19 for an author’s visit hosted by Plains Art Museum and North Dakota State University (NDSU). A reception is set for 5:30 p.m., Oct. 17, at Plains Art Museum, followed by a reading at NDSU Barry Hall at 7 p.m. Zandbroz will also hold a book signing at on Oct. 18.

Jeter Naslund’s acclaimed 1999 novel Ahab’s Wife inspired artist T. L. Solien in Toward the Setting Sun, a collection of his newest works currently on exhibit at the museum. A prominent surrealist who grew up in Fargo-Moorhead, Solien also created mixed media pieces and paintings based on the classic novel Moby-Dick by Herman Melville.

Both novels are the focus of the “3.2.1 Project: Three Communities, Two Books, One Art Exhibit,” a collaboration by the public libraries in Fargo, West Fargo, and Moorhead along with the museum and NDSU to encourage people throughout the region to the read the books and participate in related events.

“Sena Jeter Naslund takes a female character only mentioned twice in Moby-Dick and builds a tale of epic proportions about a woman whose passionate engagement with the world matches her husband’s, but with less disastrous consequences,” said Colleen Sheehy, museum director and CEO. “This fictional character was so captivating that T.L. Solien made Ahab’s wife the centerpiece of his new body of work.”

A “Writing Workshop for Teachers” on Oct. 19 at the museum will feature Jeter Naslund as a speaker. Kelly Sassi, NDSU assistant professor of English and Education, is coordinating the workshop, as well as the Red River Valley Writing Project’s National Day on Writing on Oct. 20, which follows the author’s visit. “Both these writing events use literature and visual art as starting points for inspiring original written works,” Sassi said. “We are excited and honored to have an author of Sena’s stature lead the workshop and share insights on her craft.”

The visit is supported in part through a grant from the North Dakota Humanities Council. All events are free and open to the public; the writing workshop for teachers requires registration. The events include:

Thursday, Oct. 17
5:30 – 6:30 p.m., Author’s Reception at Plains Art Museum, 704 1st Ave. N., Fargo
7:00 – 9:00 p.m., Author’s Reading at NDSU Barry Hall, 811 2nd Ave. N., Fargo

Friday, Oct. 18
5:00 – 6:30 p.m., Book signing at Zandbroz, 420 Broadway, Fargo

Saturday, Oct. 19
9:00 a.m. – Noon, Writing Workshop for Teachers, Plains Art Museum
Registration required, contact Kelly Sassi at

Sunday, Oct. 20
2:00 – 4:00 p.m., National Day on Writing, Plains Art Museum

About the author
New York Times bestselling author Sena Jeter Naslund has written several novels, including Abundance, A Novel of Marie Antoinette. Her newest novel, The Fountain of St. James Court; or, Portrait of the Artist as an Old Woman, was released in September by Harper Collins. A native of Birmingham, Ala., she is a winner of the Harper Lee Award; and her bio includes Distinguished Teaching Professor and Writer in Residence at the University of Louisville; director of the Spalding University brief-residency Master of Fine Arts in Writing program; former poet laureate of Kentucky; and editor of The Louisville Review and the Fleur-de-Lis Press.