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Keeping Chicago's Literary Scene Vibrant

Reginald Gibbons, Jane Bunker part of New City’s Lit 50 list

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June 10, 2013 | by Wendy Leopold

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Kudos to Northwestern University Press director Jane Bunker and Northwestern Center for the Writing Arts director and professor Reginald Gibbons. Newcity, the popular website at newcity.com, this month named both among 50 people who keep Chicago’s literary scene vibrant.

Lit 50: Who Really Books in Chicago” describes Gibbons as “a man of many literary pursuits” -- professor, prolific writer, translator, editor and columnist. It points to his part in creating two major new events in 2013: the widely anticipated Brooksday, which this month celebrated the life and work of poet Gwendolyn Brooks, and a tribute to poet Sterling Plumpp. 

Newcity cites Jane Bunker of Northwestern University Press for continuing its tradition of publishing award-winning work. That includes Nikky Finney’s 2011 National Book Award-winning poetry collection, “Head Off & Split,” and A.E. Stallings’ “Olives,” a 2012 National Book Critics Circle Award finalist.

Other names familiar to Northwestern on the Lit 50 list include OV Books executive editor Gina Frangello and novelist Christine Sneed, who both teach creative writing in the School of Continuing Studies; writer and Authors Guild president Scott Turow, who taught at the Center for the Writing Arts; and Booklist senior editor Donna Seaman, who has guest edited Northwestern’s celebrated literary magazine, TriQuarterly.