NORMAN — The Pioneer Library System has announced the finalists for the Big Read: Old School Short Story Writing Contest.
The winners for the high school division and college division will be selected by Tobias Wolff, the author of “Old School,” which is the featured novel in Big Read activities.
The contest mirrors a section of Wolff’s novel, where students at a private boarding school compete for the honor of meeting visiting authors by entering a writing contest — with the guest author selecting the winning entry.
The winners will be announced at the Big Read “Study Hall” panel discussion at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Old School Auditorium inside the Old School Business Center in Moore.
Each winner and a guest will be invited to a private reception Wolff will attend during his visit to Oklahoma later this month.
High school division finalists are Carrie O’Quinn, 18, a senior from Moore; Madolyn Phillips, 16, a junior from Norman; and Laura Smith, 17, a junior from Moore.
College division finalists are Matt Baker, of Rowley, Mass., an Oklahoma Baptist University senior double-majoring in English and anthropology; Andrea Johnson, of Shawnee, an OBU senior majoring in interdisciplinary digital cinema production; and Andrew Wright, of Chiayi, Taiwan, an OBU freshman majoring in creative writing.
The “Study Hall” panel discussion is a natural partnership for the library with Moore’s Old School Business Center, which in its early days served as the first school building in Moore.
William Bernhardt, author of dozens of books that have sold more than 10 million copies worldwide, will be the moderator.
Panelists are Dr. Tom Boyd, David Ross Boyd Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the University of Oklahoma; Dr. Bill Hagen, retired professor of English at OBU; Dr. Joe Foote, dean of the Gaylord College of Journalism at OU; and Robert A. French, a local attorney specializing in intellectual property rights.
The group will discuss the impact and significance of “Old School” and also answer questions from audience members. Book discussions are being offered at each PLS library, and are open to anyone who wishes to attend.
The Pioneer Library System began its annual Big Read event in 2007 featuring “The Grapes of Wrath,” followed by “Bless Me Ultima,” “To Kill a Mockingbird,” “The Maltese Falcon,” “The Things They Carried” and “The Joy Luck Club.”
For more information, go online to www.bigreadok.