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Brigitta Olubas on Shirley Hazzard: A Writing Life with Sheridan Hay

November 15, 2022

In Brigitta Olubas’s Shirley Hazzard: A Writing Life, the extraordinary life of the award-winning writer of The Transit of Venus is captured in full for the first time. The Center for Fiction was thrilled to welcome Olubas to the stage to celebrate a quintessential biography about a timeless, remarkable author. In Olubas’s thorough and artful chronicle, she draws on Hazzard’s fiction—which itself drew on her lived experiences—as well as her extensive archive of letters, diaries, and notebooks, and on memories of her surviving friends and family, to create this vibrant portrait of an exceptional woman. Sheridan Hay, writer of The Secret of Lost Things and leader of The Center for Fiction’s Shirley Hazzard reading groups, joined Olubas for a rich conversation on Hazzard’s extraordinary life and work.

In Conversation

  • Olubas, Brigitta (c) Amanda J. Hunt - Eliana Cohen-Orth - Eliana Cohen-Orth

    Brigitta Olubas

    Brigitta Olubas

    Brigitta Olubas is a professor of English at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. She published the first scholarly monograph of Shirley Hazzard’s writing and recently edited two volumes of Shirley Hazzard’s work: We Need Silence to Find Out What We Think: Selected Essays and Collected Stories.

    Photo Credit: Amanda J. Hunt

  • Sheridan Hay Photo

    Sheridan Hay

    Sheridan Hay

    Sheridan Hay holds an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars. Her first novel, The Secret of Lost Things (Doubleday/Anchor), which features a lost novel by Herman Melville, was a Booksense Pick, a Barnes and Noble Discover selection, shortlisted for the Borders Original Voices Fiction Prize, and nominated for the International Impac Award. A San Francisco Chronicle bestseller and a New York Times Editor’s Choice, foreign rights have been sold in fourteen countries. Along with the Shirley Hazzard reading groups, Sheridan has led The Center’s Moby-Dick reading group many times, as well as leading the popular Henry James reading groups.