Critical Hits: Writers Playing Video Games

Sat, May 18, 2024
Van Dyke Performance Space
Greensboro Cultural Center

From the stereotypical vision of adolescent teenage boys playing video games in darkened bedrooms to the colorfully-lit gender-inclusive arenas of esports competitions, gaming and gaming culture have become increasingly more mainstream. From the earliest computers to the smartphones in our pockets, video games have been on our screens and part of our lives for over fifty years. Here we bring together four writers who game to discuss their contributions to Critical Hits: Writer Playing Video Games: the book’s editors J. ROBERT LENNON and CARMEN MARIA MACHADO with contributor NANA KWAME ADJEI-BRENYAH in a discussion and celebration of this ubiquitous medium to consider its lasting impact on our culture and ourselves. Due to unforeseen circumstances, Ander Monson is no longer able to join us.

This event is made possible by the generous support of the UNCG Esports Program.


CARMEN MARIA MACHADO is the author of the bestselling memoir In the Dream House and the award-winning short story collection Her Body and Other Parties. She has been a finalist for the National Book Award and the winner of the Bard Fiction Prize, the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Fiction, and the National Book Critics Circle's John Leonard Prize, among others. Her essays, fiction, and criticism have appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Times, Granta, Vogue, This American Life, The Believer, Guernica, and elsewhere. She holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has been awarded fellowships and residencies from the Guggenheim Foundation, Yaddo, Hedgebrook, and the Millay Colony for the Arts. LEARN MORE

J ROBERT LENNON J. Robert Lennon is the author of three story collections and ten novels. He lives in Ithaca, New York. LEARN MORE

NANA KWAME ADJEI-BRENYAH Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah was raised in Spring Valley, New York, and now lives in the Bronx. His debut collection, Friday Black, was a New York Times bestseller, won the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award and the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing, and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Award and the Dylan Thomas Prize. His first novel Chain-Gang All-Stars was a finalist for the National Book Award for Fiction, shortlisted for the Waterstones Debut Fiction Prize and the Books Are My Bag Awards, and selected as a New York Times Top Ten Books of the Year. Adjei-Brenyah is a National Book Foundation’s ‘5 Under 35’ honoree. LEARN MORE