Writer’s Voice Spotlight: Dimitri Keriotis

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CSU, Chico Writer’s Voice is proud to present author and alumni, Dimitri Keriotis, Thursday, April 30 at 7:30pm in Colusa 100B.

Coming up on the end of the semester and school year, I figure several of us would truly enjoy a little time for ourselves. I know, for me, being able to escape for a few moments here and there during the past week (thanks to Dimitri Keriotis and his collection of stories in The Quiet Time) I have been able to get out of my head, go to other places and be “away from it all”—have a little “quiet time” of my own. I have been fortunate. Unfortunately for the characters within the book, they don’t find themselves in such relaxing situations. They seem to be precisely entrenched in key moments where they must pause and take a drastic turn. Each short story in The Quiet Time is unique, different from the others, yet they all share this same, powerful similarity.

Most of the time, I didn’t necessarily like these characters or the positions they put themselves in, but I loved reading about where they would wind up. I loved getting to know them and what made them tick. I loved escaping into their self-made worlds of drama. Each complex character seemed to be searching, wanting to get it right or understand, but couldn’t quite get there. And if they did, their eventual decision made me cringe—but even at that, I couldn’t help but smile.

I was excited to discover some other things Dimitri Keriotis and I have in common. Keriotis teaches at Modesto Junior College and I grew up in Oakdale where MJC was my Junior College growing up. He is originally from Yuba City and I currently live in Yuba City. We both have worked with Paul Eggers and Rob Davidson here at Chico State as graduate students—he earned an MFA here and I am about to finish my MA. I am sure I am not alone in feeling truly pleased to have him present to us so we can applaud his writing, specifically his debut book The Quiet Time.

More about Dimitri Keriotis and his work can be found on his website. Also, take time to read more about his current projects, including the High Sierra Institute, which he co-founded and co-coordinates. Information, like the following, can be found there: The Quiet Time consists of eleven stories. Some of the pieces take place in foreign countries—Zaire (Congo) and Greece—and center on interactions between a host nation and an American visitor. Others, mainly set in the US, focus on human relationships. The Quiet Time was released by SFA Press. Keriotis’s stories have appeared or are forthcoming in Beloit Fiction Journal, Georgetown Review, Evening Street Review, Flyway, BorderSenses, and elsewhere. Raised in Northern California, he was educated at UC Santa Cruz, University of Nevada, Reno, and CSU Chico and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Zaire and Bolivia. He and his family live in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada.

I’m looking forward to hearing what Dimitri has to share with us and know you will all be “taken away” as well. Please join us for an exciting evening with him, Thursday, April 30th at 7:30 pm in Colusa 100B. Thanks to contributions made by the Department of English and the College of Humanities and Fine Arts, Writer’s Voice readings are free and open to the public.

By Tomie Bitton