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'The Chronic Question: Writing About Illness'

Emerging literary genre about chronic illness is topic of discussion Oct. 15

EVANSTON, Ill. --- On Tuesday, Oct. 15, four writers known for their writings on chronic illness will discuss this growing literary topic at a roundtable at Northwestern University.

“The Chronic Question: Writing about Illness,” will take place from 6 to 7:15 p.m. in the Peggy Dow Helmerich Auditorium of Annie May Swift Hall, 1920 Campus Drive, on Northwestern’s Evanston campus. It is free and open to the public.

The event will feature Jenni Prokopy, creator of the well-read blog,, Laurie Edwards, author of “In the Kingdom of the Sick: A Social History of Chronic Illness in America,” “Adventures of Cancer Bitch” author and blogger S.L. Wisenberg and playwright and “All in My Head” author Paula Kamen. 

Kamen’s “All in My Head” has been called an essential reading for anyone suffering from chronic pain or who enjoys a bit of wit in their memoir reading. Booklist referred to Edwards’ “In the Kingdom of the Sick” as “an indispensible book for anyone with or concerned about chronic disease and everyone interested in the health professions.”

Audrey Niffenegger, author of “The Time Traveler’s Wife,” described “The Adventures of Cancer Bitch” by Wisenberg -- who is co-director of Northwestern’s MA/MFA in Creative Writing program -- as a witty, relentless, surprising and honest walk through the Valley of Cancer. Prokopy’s includes health resources, a biweekly e-newsletter, a podcast series featuring interviews with experts and practical advice.

A question-and-answer session and book signing will follow the event, which is sponsored by Northwestern’s Center for the Writing Arts and the department of performance studies in Northwestern’s School of Communication.

For further information, call (847) 467-4099, email, visit the Center for the Writing Arts (CWA) or follow CWA on Twitter at WritingNU

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