Harpeth Hall faculty, staff, and students were thrilled to welcome back to campus former faculty member Margaret Renkl as this year's Carell Visiting Writer.
The Ann and Monroe Carell Visiting Writer Series was established in 1997 by Ann and Monroe Carell and their daughters, Julie Carell Stadler '77, Edie Carell Johnson '80, and Kathryn Carell Brown. This annual series supports a writer for a week's residency of workshops, lectures, and classroom teaching.
Margaret Renkl is a graduate of Auburn University and the University of South Carolina. She taught English and Creative Writing in Harpeth Hall's Upper School from 1987 to 1997. Currently, she lives in Nashville and is a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, where her essays appear each Monday. Her work has appeared in Guernica, Literary Hub, Proximity, and River Teeth, among others. She serves as editor of Chapter 16, an online publication that provides coverage of literary news and events in Tennessee. Margaret is also the author of her upcoming debut novel Late Migrations: A Natural History of Love and Loss (forthcoming from Milkweed Editions in July 2019).
During Margaret's tenure as a faculty member at Harpeth Hall she was known and beloved for connecting with students through creative writing prompts and critical content analysis. She was able to share this gift with our current students last week in classes, workshops, and a reading on Thursday, during which she shared a timely and moving excerpt on "homesickness and Thanksgiving" from her upcoming book, Late Migrations: A Natural History of Love and Loss. She also revealed that as students worked on her writing prompts, she too responded to the prompts which resulted in her opinion essay that was published today in The New York Times, "How to Rake Leaves on a Windy Day: After the elections, a red-state liberal ponders futility — and against all odds, arrives at hope."
It was a pleasure to welcome Margaret Renkl back to campus and introduce her to our students. To see a full list of her New York Times columns, click here. To learn more about Late Migrations, click here.