The 2021 Mountain Words Writer-in-Residence Chris La Tray, Chelsey Johnson, Lee Anderson and Adam Valen Levinson read from work produced during their monthslong residency in Crested Butte. Drinks and bites included. In the Center’s Steddy Theater.
Chris La Tray is a Métis writer and storyteller. His first book, One-Sentence Journal: Short Poems and Essays From the World At Large (2018, Riverfeet Press) won the 2018 Montana Book Award and a 2019 High Plains Book Award. His next book, Becoming Little Shell, will be published by Milkweed Editions in Spring 2022. Chris is an enrolled member of the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians and lives near Missoula, Montana.
Chelsey Johnson’s debut novel Stray City came out with Custom House/HarperCollins in 2018, and her writing has appeared in Ploughshares, One Story, Gulf Coast, The New York Times, and NPR’s Selected Shorts, among others. She received an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a Stegner Fellowship from Stanford, as well as fellowships to the MacDowell Colony, the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, and Signal Fire Arts. Born and raised in rural northern Minnesota, she now lives in Flagstaff, Arizona, where she is an associate professor of fiction at Northern Arizona University’s MFA and undergraduate programs. A second novel is in the works.
Lee Anderson is a nonbinary MFA candidate at Northern Arizona University, where they are the Managing Editor of Thin Air Magazine. They have been published sporadically but with zest, with work appearing or forthcoming in The Rumpus, Columbia Journal, Unstamatic Magazine, and more.
Adam Valen Levinson is the author of the “nonfiction novel” The Abu Dhabi Bar Mitzvah (W. W. Norton, 2017) — dubbed “Eat, Pray, Laugh” by The New York Times but/and not without its controversy. National Book Critics Circle award winner for poetry Morgan Parker called him “an incredibly generous, compassionate, and thorough writer who gorgeously blends lyricism with reportage and philosophy with confession.” Adam has written, filmed, and photographed for Al Jazeera, The Paris Review, Haaretz, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, and VICE, and done college stints at the Meccas of real fake news: The Colbert Report and The Onion. He has an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Goucher College and an MPhil in Sociology from Yale University, where he is a fellow at the Center for Cultural Sociology. All of his stories are true.