Spencer G. Shaw Endowed Lecture Series, featuring Jason Reynolds
Update: Registration for this event is now CLOSED. We will be accepting walk-ups the night of the event on a case-by-case basis if there are no shows. It will be a first come, first served wait list; however, a spot on the wait list does not guarantee a seat. Doors open for the audience at 6:45 p.m.
This year’s annual lecture features Jason Reynolds, an award-winning novelist and poet. Reynolds is the New York Times best-selling author of All American Boys, the Track series, Long Way Down, For Everyone, and Miles Morales-Spiderman. He writes novels and poetry for young adult and middle-grade audiences, including Ghost, a National Book Award Finalist for Young People's Literature.
Born in Washington, D.C., and raised in neighboring Oxon Hill, Maryland, Reynolds found inspiration in rap to begin writing poetry at age 9. He focused on poetry for approximately the next two decades, only reading a novel cover to cover for the first time at age 17 and publishing several poetry collections before he published his own first novel, When I Was The Greatest, in 2014. He won the Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe Award for New Talent for this first work of prose and seven more novels followed in the next four years, including Ghost (2016) and two more books in what became his New York Times best-selling Track series, Patina (2017) and Sunny (2018); As Brave As You (2016), winner of the 2016 Kirkus Prize, the 2017 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work for Youth/Teen, and the 2017 Schneider Family Book Award; and a Marvel Comics novel called Miles Morales: Spider-Man (2017).
Reynolds returned to poetry with Long Way Down (2017), a novel in verse which was named a Newbery Honor book, a Printz Honor Book, and best young adult work by the Mystery Writers of America's Edgar Awards.
In his talk, titled "These Three Words," Reynolds will discuss the three words he keeps at the forefront of his mind when writing stories for young people. They serve as his compass to ensure the stories connect and feel like true representations of young life, leading to a more engaged reading.
The Spencer G. Shaw Endowed Lecture Series spotlights award-winning authors and illustrators. It honors beloved UW Information School Professor Emeritus Spencer Shaw, who was an internationally known librarian, storyteller and teacher.
Lecture from 7:30 - 8:30, followed by a reception and book signing.