Prose, prayers, palindromes and 45 presidents

Prose, prayers, palindromes and 45 presidents

February 15, 20181 min read

If there’s one thing Colin Rafferty – a University of Mary Washington associate professor of English and teacher of creative nonfiction – knows better than prose, it’s the United States’ 45 presidents.

His current manuscript, a collection of essays about each of them, includes pieces that range from “The Fear” about Martin Van Buren and “Bully” about Theodore Roosevelt to “What They Said About Him” about Barack Obama and “The Imagineer Considers Tomorrow” about Trump.

Written as palindromes, death songs, prayers, movie scripts and more, Rafferty’s work has appeared in such prestigious publications as Brevity, Cobalt, Juked, Parcel and Waxwing, and he was recently featured on the Virginia Public Radio’s With Good Reason for a segment on “Getting to Know the Presidents.”

“Reading and writing about the presidents has let me explore both American history and the expansiveness of creative nonfiction,” said Rafferty, who read a biography of each president before penning his essays.

Colin is available to speak with media about his work and about President's Day. Simply click on his icon to arrange an interview.


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  • Colin Rafferty
    Colin Rafferty Associate Professor

    His research has taken him to the mountains of central Vietnam, the concentration camps of WWII, and the house of Rutherford B. Hayes.

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