Alan Cheuse: 1940 - 2015

On Friday, July 31, 2015 we lost our dear friend, teacher, and board member, Alan Cheuse.

Alan first joined the staff of the Community of Writers in 1990 and returned every other year to lead workshops, offer lectures, and do everything he could to encourage younger writers. His stature as a major American author and book reviewer never overshadowed his generosity and his love of teaching.

In July, during his last visit, he read from his new novel, Prayers for the Living, and in the Follies, accompanied by a musical friend on guitar, belted out “Blind Willie McTell” with a blues singer’s intensity. Workshop 10, in particular, delighted in Alan this year. As always, we loved having him with us. It is hard to believe he is gone.

He was one of those who saw literature as more than just words on a page; to him, it was also a community. He devoted his life—as teacher, writer, reviewer—to creating friendships among writers and books, both new and established. His lasting influence on book culture in this country is profound and incalculable.

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