Before reading from his most recent novel, “The Stolen Bride,” A&M-Commerce alumnus Tony Hays tells his audience, “I first came to this campus in 1981. Back then I was working housing. A few years later I came back to get my master’s from literature and languages.” Hays was also the editor for the campus literary journal, then called, Forthcoming. “I’m the one who changed it to The Mayo Review.” Hays’ book is a detective novel set in Arthurian England and part of a series.
Tony Hays was the first speaker for a new visiting author series initiated by Dr. Hunter Hayes. That series includes the bestselling novelist, Will Self.
Will Self, the subject of much of Dr. Hayes’ research, joked during his reading of “Umbrella,” “[Dr. Hayes] knows my life better than I do.” Self’s audience included fans driving in from Dallas and surrounding towns to meet the British writer. Self is on tour promoting what he calls his newest “book baby.” Between Self’s animated reading, complete with half a dozen distinct voices, and his friendly repartee with Dr. Hayes during Q & A, the audience was completely won-over. Self’s light tone closed out the reading; after giving some heartfelt advice about writing, psycho-geographic exploration, and what role we all play in the grand scheme, he quipped, “The homily is done. The bishop is leaving.”