William Henry Lewis

William Henry Lewis's picture
William Henry
  • Hybrid
  • Fiction
  • Nonfiction
  • Play/Screenwriting
  • Poetry
William Henry Lewis

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William Henry Lewis has published fiction, poetry, and non-fiction in many publications, including The Washington Post, O Magazine, Higher Issues In Education, Colorado Review, New Letters, African-American Review, Blackbird, Callaloo, Kenyon Review, and Ploughshares. His work has been commissioned for museum exhibition, and his stories have been reprinted in several anthologies, domestic and abroad. His work as a young playwright was selected by Edward Albee, and his fiction has been honored by America’s top literary entities, including the American Library Association, Fellowship of Southern Writers, National Endowment for the Arts, Best American Short Stories, and as finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Prize.

Lewis is the author of two books of stories, In the Arms of Our Elders (Carolina Wren Press;three printings), and I Got Somebody in Staunton (HarperCollins; two printings), which was listed among Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2005, and selected as the city of Richmond's Go Read book for 2006.  

His has been praised, among others, by David Eggers, Nikki Giovanni, Peter Matthiessen, Marita Golden, and Pulitzer Prize winner, Edward P. Jones and Lewis’s work has been highly acclaimed by The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, TimeOut, Washington Post, and O Magazine. The Los Angeles Times Book Review praised his fiction as "beautifully written and carefully crafted," while the Boston Globe noted his work as "moving, but unsentimental, these are stories of hard-won wisdom, potent intelligence, and compassion for the cadence of everyday life, establishing Lewis as a writer to be appreciated and admired."

What William Henry Lewis looks for in a Book Project mentee: I am open to working with nearly any writer who is interested in the long arc of developing as a wordsmith, committing to more than simply being validated through publication. Most of my experience is with literary fiction, but I am able and willing to work with any writer, in any genre, so long as their craft goals are focused on producing the finest work—not just the quickest way to a contest prize. Yes, I'm here to help folks get closer to sharing their work beyond an audience of one—which could range from public reading, to fellowships, to publication—but I appreciate writers who are willing to put in the work across multiple drafts, willing to be open to new approaches, willing to push their fiction beyond the seduction of the initial conceit, or an element they render so precious that it resists omission for the greater good of the work.  


William Henry Lewis's Published Work

Hank's knowledge of the craft and his ability to bring in relevant literary examples were so welcome and very effective at driving productive, inspiring discussions within the classroom. Outside of class, I found Hank to be extremely responsive to questions and his feedback on our writing was so thorough and on point. His ability to locate key parts of a piece and to suggest how to make them shine really took my writing to the next level.
Juliette Ling