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By Kathleen Driskell

All writers know that if bookstores are important, then independent bookstores are our lifeblood. For years, Louisville’s Carmichael’s Bookstore has been the best of partners for literary writers invited to the store to launch novels, memoirs, collections of poetry, picture books, and more—just last month, I was delighted to be in conversation with our MFA alumni member Crystal Wilkinson and a packed house of avid writers and readers who had come to hear about her new blockbuster memoir/cookbook Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts. That Carmichael’s event gave Louisvillians, and many others who’d driven in from other cities, a place to celebrate and for Crystal to sign her new book for them.

Carmichael’s will host book events involving a number of Spalding writers in the next few months. The Naslund-Mann team and Carmichael’s booksellers have had recent fruitful discussions about how we might strengthen our mutual support for each other.


I’m excited to announce that Carmichael’s is the new bookstore for our Naslund-Mann residencies on Spalding’s campus.


The booksellers have agreed to create a pop-up bookstore during each residency—remember the excitement of the Scholastic Book Fair in your school library? At our pop-up store on campus, Carmichael’s will sell books by our prize-winning faculty, guests of the residency, and alumni. Our colleagues at Carmichael’s will also provide on-site sales for special Naslund-Mann residency events.

Carmichael’s has added a Spalding Naslund-Mann Graduate School of Writing button on the landing page of the store’s website—click through and you’ll find a virtual bookshelf full of titles by Spalding writers. Naslund-Mann is grateful for this collaboration with Carmichael’s Bookstore, and their commitment to not only books by writers in the Spalding literary community, but for the world of literature. You can help us support Carmichael’s when you purchase books at residency, but also those titles needed for your independent studies. If you don’t live in Louisville, they’ll ship to your home wherever you are.


Kathleen Driskell is Chair of Naslund-Mann Graduate School of Writing at Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky, where she and her husband live in a country church built before the American Civil War. Her essays and poems have appeared in The New Yorker, River Teeth, Southern Review, Shenandoah, Appalachian Review, and other literary magazines. Goat-Footed Gods, her sixth collection of poetry is forthcoming from Carnegie Mellon University Press in 2025.


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