Wednesday, March 18
Gary Soto, born and raised in Fresno, California, is the author of thirteen poetry collections for adults, most notably New and Selected Poems, a 1995 finalist for both the Los Angeles Times Award and the National Book Award. He has received the Discovery-The Nation Prize and the California Library Association's John and Patricia Beatty Award [twice], in addition to fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts [twice], and the Guggenheim Foundation. For ITVS, he produced the film "The Pool Party," which received the 1993 Andrew Carnegie Medal. In 1995, for his work with young people, he selected NBC Person of the Week. In 1999 he was honored with the Human and Civil Right Award from the American Education Association, the Literature Award from the Hispanic Heritage Foundation, and the PEN Center West Book Award for his young-adult short story collection Petty Crimes. For the Los Angeles Opera, he wrote the libretto to the opera Nerdlandia. In all, his books have sold nearly four million copies. The Gary Soto Literary Museum is located at Fresno City College, where he got his start as a poet in the early 1970s.