Author April Linder was the featured speaker for the Bluffton University English Festival Oct. 20.
By Megan Good
Bluffton University held its 32nd annual English Festival Oct. 20. Each year, the festival provides an opportunity for on-campus students and local high school students to come together to celebrate literary works.
Several workshops were offered this year, and the guest speaker was April Linder, author of “Jane,” a retelling of the novel “Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Brontë.
The day started with workshops, one of which Linder led. Jenna Paul, a sophomore, attended the event.
“There was an introduction to [Linder]’s book and how it is different from the original,” Paul said. “[Linder] gave us character sheets that had 40 questions. We created characters and shared it with the class.”
Forum followed the workshop. Linder also spoke in the afternoon. She discussed the young adult genre of writing and the history of retelling popular novels. Linder also explained why readers are drawn to these retellings.
“These are stories that have proved themselves able to withstand the test of time,” Linder said at the forum. “There’s something about them that is essentially memorable.”
Later that evening Linder held a reading in the library on campus. She read poems from two of her published books and also read a portion from one of her novels.
Although this year’s English festival has ended, it left students, faculty and staff who attended feeling inspired and ready for the next event.