University of Rochester

EVENT: New Season of The Plutzik Reading Series Opens with Beverly Donofrio

August 31, 2005

Beverly Donofrio, author of the memoir-turned-movie Riding in Cars with Boys, will kick off the fall season of The Plutzik Series at the University of Rochester with a reading at 8 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19, in the Welles-Brown Room in Rush Rhees Library on the River Campus.

The Plutzik Series is one of the country's oldest and most prestigious literary reading programs and was established to honor the work of Hyam Plutzik, a distinguished poet and Deane Professor of Poetry and Rhetoric at the University. Events are free and open to the public.

This fall's schedule also features poet Michael Palmer on Tuesday, Sept. 27, and novelist Madison Smartt Bell on Saturday, Oct. 22.

A prolific essayist, Donofrio has published her work in numerous anthologies and in the New York Times, Washington Post Sunday Magazine, and The Village Voice as well as such magazines as Allure, Cosmopolitan, O, and Marie Claire.

Riding in Cars with Boys, which recounts the struggles and ambitions of a teenage mother, became a cult classic, was translated into 15 languages, and was made into a movie directed by Penny Marshall and starring Drew Barrymore. Donofrio's second memoir, Looking for Mary, or the Blessed Mother and Me, grew out of a documentary she produced for National Public Radio on the Virgin Mary and apparition sites. A third memoir, The Next Happy Ending, is planned.

Donofrio lives in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, where she is a founder of San Miguel Workshops and teaches memoir writing. She studied literature at Wesleyan University and received a Master of Fine Arts degree from Columbia University. She has taught writing at New York University and the University of Wyoming.

The Plutzik Series has featured more than 175 noted writers, including Pulitzer Prize winners Anthony Hecht, Elizabeth Bishop, and Galway Kinnell. The Plutzik Series is administered by the Department of English. For more information, call (585) 275-4092.