Mecca Jamilah Sullivan to Headline November’s Dr. Carl Calendar Visiting Writers Series

The Dr. Carl Calendar Visiting Writers Series is proud to announce that acclaimed author Mecca Jamilah Sullivan will be the featured speaker for the November 9th event. Mecca Jamilah Sullivan is a literary powerhouse whose work has garnered critical acclaim, and she is set to captivate and inspire our audience with her profound insights and groundbreaking writing.

Renowned figures in the literary world have praised Sullivan’s work.

Janet Mock, the celebrated author, and transgender rights activist, said, “Mecca Jamilah Sullivan gives voice to girls and women with unruly bodies who dare to take up space in a world that shames them for being hungry for more. A tender and sumptuous offering of beauty.”

Kevin Quashie, a distinguished scholar, added, “Sullivan’s thinking elegantly explores the ways black women writers use genre as a queer practice of difference.”

Sullivan is the author of the critically acclaimed short story collection “Blue Talk and Love,” which won the Judith Markowitz Award for Fiction from Lambda Literary. Her latest work, the highly anticipated debut novel “Big Girl,” published by W.W. Norton & Co. in 2022, has already received widespread recognition. It was shortlisted for the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize and long-listed for a Lambda Literary Award.

Kiese Laymon, the celebrated author of “Heavy: An American Memoir,” praised “Big Girl,” saying, “There are three books on earth that I would give anything to be able to write and reread until the suns burn us up. Big Girl is one of those books. The sound, the expansiveness of the whispers, the critical, brilliant, sometimes bruising, beautiful Black girlness explored in this novel is literally second to none. I know I have just read and reread a new American classic that we as a culture and country desperately need. Believe that.”

Sullivan’s exceptional storytelling ability has drawn comparisons to literary giants like William Faulkner. Her short stories have graced the pages of esteemed publications such as Kenyon Review, Callaloo, Prairie Schooner, and many others.

In addition to her creative work, Sullivan is an Associate Professor of English at Georgetown University. Her critical and scholarly work on sexuality, identity, and poetics in contemporary African Diaspora culture has been published in leading academic journals and magazines, including The Cut, Feminist Studies, and The Rumpus.

Sullivan’s achievements and contributions to the literary world have earned her numerous accolades, including the Charles Johnson Fiction Award, the Glenna Luschei Fiction Award, and honors from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and Lambda Literary. She also received the James Baldwin Memorial Playwriting Award and an inaugural Emerging Writers Fellowship from the Center for Fiction in New York City.

Born and raised in Harlem, New York, Sullivan brings a unique and authentic voice to her writing, rooted in her experiences and rich cultural background. Her research and scholarship have received support from prestigious institutions such as the Mellon-Mays Foundation, the Social Sciences Research Council, and the Institute for Citizens and Scholars.

The November installment of the Dr. Carl Calendar Visiting Writers Series promises an engaging and thought-provoking evening. Attendees can look forward to an illuminating discussion of her work, artistic process, and the power of literature to challenge and transform the world.

Sullivan will read at 11:45 a.m. and following at 1:30 p.m. will talk about writing fiction and the writing life.

Don’t miss this opportunity to hear from one of the most exciting voices in contemporary literature. The event will take place in the Student Life Center (SLC) on Thursday, November 9, at Brookdale Community College Lincroft campus, 765 Newman Springs Road.

Parking Lot #7 will take you to the Reading in the SLC, lower level, and Parking Lot #2 will take you to the Writing Craft Talk, in Larrison Hall, 108.

It is free and open to the public. No reservation is necessary.

About the Dr. Carl Calendar Visiting Writers Series
The Dr. Carl Calendar Visiting Writers Series is a prestigious literary event that brings accomplished authors to our community to engage with audiences and share their unique perspectives on the world of literature.