Skip to Content


No results


No results


No results

Search Results


No results
Search events using: keywords, sponsors, locations or event type
When / Where
All occurrences of this event have passed.
This listing is displayed for historical purposes.

Zell Visiting Writers Series pres.

Craft Lecture: The Mystery of the Story

Tea Obreht, Zell Visiting Writers Series

Tea Obreht Tea Obreht
Tea Obreht
Login here (no pre-registration needed):

This craft lecture will center on how every story is actually a mystery, the telling of which is dependent on a pact of exchange between writer and reader. Techniques of withholding and misdirection help us keep suspense alive in literary fiction.

Tea Obreht’s New York Times bestselling novel, Inland, is grounded in true but little-known history of the lawless, drought-ridden lands of the Arizona Territory in 1893. Mythical, lyrical, and sweeping in scope, the novel subverts and reimagines the myths of the American West.

Arriving onto the literary scene with her first bestselling novel, The Tiger’s Wife, Téa Obreht writes fiction that explores themes of narrative, myth and memory. Weaving a brilliant latticework of family legend, loss, and love, Obreht’s stunning debut novel links the past and present by stories and anecdotes in an unnamed Balkan country mending from war. Rapturously received, The Tiger’s Wife won the 2011 Orange Prize for Fiction, was a 2011 National Book Award finalist, was an international bestseller, and was named one of the best books of the year by numerous publications including The New York Times Book Review, Publisher's Weekly, Vogue, The Wall Street Journal, and O: The Oprah Magazine.

In Inland, Obreht's second novel, Obreht takes on the sweeping mythology of the American West, reimagining myths and forging new truths about the American West. An Editor's Choice, The New York Times Book Review praised Inland, "Obreht’s simple but rich prose captures and luxuriates in the West’s beauty and sudden menace. Remarkable in a novel with such a sprawling cast, Obreht also has a poetic touch for writing intricate and precise character descriptions.” The book was named among President Obama’s summer reading list for 2019.

Obreht's work has been anthologized in The Best American Short Stories and The Best American Non-Required Reading, and has appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's, The Atlantic, Vogue, Esquire and Zoetrope: All-Story, among many others. A recipient of fellowships from the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library and the National Endowment for the Arts, Obreht. was named by The New Yorker as one of the twenty best American fiction writers under forty. She lives in New York with her husband, and teaches at Hunter College.

The Zell Visiting Writers Series brings outstanding writers to campus each semester. The Series is made possible through a generous gift from U-M alumna Helen Zell (BA ’64, LLDHon ’13). For more information, please visit the Zell Visiting Writers Program webpage:

For any questions about the event or to share accommodation needs, please email we are eager to help ensure that this event is inclusive to you. Copies of the readings and live, high quality auto-captions/transcriptions will be provided at all events.

Explore Similar Events

  •  Loading Similar Events...
Report Event As Inappropriate Contact Event Organizers
Back to Main Content