National Willa Cather Center News

Read All About It

Visit this page often for the latest Cather-related news as well as information about the Willa Cather Foundation's programs, collections, and events.

Registration is Open for Prairie Writers' Workshop with John T. Price

April 13, 2010

The Willa Cather Foundation would like to invite you to attend this year's Prairie Writers' Workshop scheduled for May 20-23. This is an exceptional opportunity for aspiring writers to gain insight from author, John T. Price. Four-hour workshops will be held throughout the residency. Participants will be encouraged to visit the Willa Cather Memorial Prairie to gain inspiration from the land and its rare forbs and grasses. The workshop will conclude with a public reception hosted by the Willa Cather Foundation Sunday afternoon at 3:00 p.m.

My Willa Cather

March 26, 2010

The 12th International Seminar focused on Willa Cather's relationship to broader formations of cultural and literary modernism. Held in June, 2009, the Seminar took place in the downtown 'University Center', Chicago, IL, and included events focused on specific literary/cultural sites within that area. Bradford Morrow was in attendance as the 2009 International Seminar keynote speaker. Morrow is the author of the novels Come Sunday, The Almanac Branch, Trinity Fields, Giovanni's Gift, Ariel's Crossing, The Fifth Turning and a short story collection, Lush.

Small Town Big Dreams

March 3, 2010

"On my way East I broke my journey at Hastings, in Nebraska, and set off with an open buggy and a fairly good livery team to find the Cuzak farm.

Registration for Willa Cather Spring Conference in Now Open!

March 2, 2010

"Food and Drink in Willa Cather's Writing" takes place June 3-5,
2010, in Red Cloud, Nebraska, and features Susan Meyer from Wellesley College as keynote speaker.

Our biggest event of the year, The Willa Cather Spring Conference, is
online now, and registration is underway!

An amazing lineup of presenters and performers will join us, including:

Coming Soon to Cather Web Site

January 15, 2010

NET Television interviewed more than a dozen Cather scholars for the American Masters TV special Willa Cather—The Road is All. Highlights from these interviews will be coming soon to the Cather Web Site, including:

From the Award-Winning Documentary Willa Cather-- The Road is All

January 15, 2010

NEW! From the award-winning NET documentary Willa Cather—The Road is All, we are posting some of the best interview quotes from the primary scholars that were interviewed. Currently featured are four provocative quotes from Pulitzer Prize winning historian, David McCullough, author of New York Times best sellers, John Adams and Truman. Also featured are two quotes from the internationally renowned University of Nebraska scholar, Susan Rosowski. Most of these clips have never been seen before.

Call for Papers on Willa on Willa Cather: ALA 2010, May 27-30, San Francisco

November 2, 2009

The Willa Cather Foundation is now seeking 20-minute papers for presentation in two panels devoted specifically to Cather scholarship at the American Literature Association meeting in San Francisco, May 27-30, 2010.

Topics: We seek the best and most innovative of ongoing Cather scholarship, and all topics and approaches are welcomed.

Contact: Please send abstracts or proposals (preferably electronically) of 300-500 words to John Swift (, ECLS Department, Occidental College, Los Angeles CA 90041 (phone 323 259 2804).

Coming Soon, Wm. Cather M.D. and "The Mental Portrait Album"

November 2, 2009

In 1888, the fourteen-year-old Willa Cather made a memorable entry in a friendship album owned by her schoolmate Serena White. Cather signed herself "Wm. Cather M.D." Among her observations, our young Dr. Cather's "idea of perfect happiness" was "Amputating Limbs."

Cather's two-page entry in the album appeared in Mildred R. Bennett's The World of Willa Cather, originally published in 1951. Soon, and for the first time, the full album will be reproduced here for the enjoyment of readers and scholars and anyone interested in the late 19th century world of Cather's youth.

Reflections from the Prairie Writers' Workshop by Timothy Schaffert

July 24, 2009

Willa Cather taught in a writers' workshop in  1922, at Middlebury College, while working on  her novel A Lost Lady. Upon the completion of her five-session course, her students saluted her with a witless poem: "Oh Miss Cather, when we gather/ For your talks so wise and clear/ Now you're going we're all hoping/ You'll come back another year." Perhaps because of the poem, Cather did not come back another year. As a matter of fact, she never again taught a creative writing workshop and stood lifelong in moral opposition to the whole endeavor.