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Central Washington University

Vietnam Veteran, Acclaimed Author to Discuss His War Experiences at CWU

Author and Vietnam veteran Tim O’Brien understands the traumas of war—because he’s lived it.

Author Tim O'BrienBest known for his critically-acclaimed novel, The Things They Carried, O’Brien will discuss his work during public and private events at Central Washington University, which will be held April 25 through 27.

The Things They Carried is a fact-based, fictional account of stories about the war. He says it’s based on his experiences, which he described as a bizarre blending of fantasy and reality.

O’Brien hopes that his book and presentations will help others learn and understand what it is to be a soldier in combat.

“I hope that people would care more about current veterans and what they carry back from war—all the emotional psychological baggage that they carry,” O’Brien said.

The public is invited to attend two free events on Tuesday, April 25. A craft talk will take place at noon in McIntyre Recital Hall. Later in the day, O’Brien will read from his novel and discuss his writings during a presentation at 7:30 p.m. in McConnell Auditorium.

In addition to the public presentations, O’Brien will also speak to private audiences during his visit. An exclusive lunch with veterans is scheduled for April 27 at 11:30 a.m. Interested veterans, call 509-962-7252 to reserve a space.

O’Brien’s visit is the culmination of numerous events centered on his book The Things They Carried, in conjunction with the CWU Big Read. The National Endowment for the Arts-supported program is aimed at expanding public understanding through sharing a common reading.

Co-sponsors for Tim O’Brien’s events include Brooks Library, CWU Lion Rock Visiting WriterBook: The Things They Carried series, CWU English Department, and the CWU Veterans Center.

For more information on the NEA Big Read, visit A complete listing of CWU’s 2017 Big Read events is available online at

NEA Big Read Logo“NEA Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest.”

“El proyecto NEA Big Read es una iniciativa del National Endowment for the Arts (el Fondo Nacional para las Artes de Estados Unidos) en cooperación con Arts Midwest.”

Media contact: Dawn Alford, public affairs coordinator, 509-963-1484,

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