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Marylhurst Writing Professor Publishes “Raw” Memoir

Jay Ponteri's Initimate Account of Life, Love and Marriage Earning Early Acclaim

Daring and brave. Candid and raw. Beautiful and feverish.

Those are just a few of the adjectives being used to describe a powerful new memoir by Marylhurst University English professor Jay Ponteri, released in mid-March.

"Wedlocked" tells the highly personal story of Ponteri's infatuation with women other than his wife, his wife's discovery of the manuscript he has been writing to explore those feelings, and all of the emotions the discovery releases, including a sense that "the phrase married man suggests  . . . a man doomed to loneliness." Publisher Hawthorne Books describes "Wedlocked" as "an intimate, idiosyncratic view of a human institution that can so often fail, leaving its inhabitants lonely and adrift."

Ponteri directs the undergraduate creative writing program at Marylhurst, and is the founder of the university's show:tell summer workshop for teen writers and artists and two online literary magazines. He has published numerous essays and short stories; "Wedlocked" is his first book.

"Jay's publication speaks to the growing renown and quality of the creative writing program here at Marylhurst," said Meg Roland, chair of Marylhurst's Department of English. "Jay is an incredible teacher and mentor, as his students who move on to write and publish their own work will attest. His soulful writing is inspiring to all of us who know and work with him."

Natalie Serber, a Portland-based author who teaches fiction at Marylhurst, agrees.

"Jay Ponteri is a brave seeker with a capacious and conflicted heart. His deeply private memoir is fearless in its exploration of dark and uncomfortable corners in his marriage," Serber said.

"These beautifully crafted pages shine a light on loneliness, marriage, fatherhood and how we sustain ourselves in our lives of perfect ordinariness."

Ponteri will formally launch "Wedlocked" with a reading at Powell's City of Books, 1005 W. Burnside in Portland, at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, March 29.

For a complete listing of Ponteri's upcoming readings in Portland and Seattle, visit his blog at

About Marylhurst University

Marylhurst University, a private liberal arts university 10 miles south of Portland, Ore., on Highway 43, is regionally accredited and nationally recognized for innovation and academic excellence in serving adult learners. Founded in 1893, Oregon's oldest Catholic university serves more than 1,600 multigenerational students of all faiths and backgrounds. Marylhurst offers more than 50 undergraduate and graduate degrees and professional certificate programs on campus and online, all of which integrate the liberal arts with professional studies and prepare graduates to be ethical leaders who think critically and creatively.

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