Eli Cranor
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Award-Winning Author Eli Cranor Joins ATU as Writer in Residence and Instructor

2 Mins read

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Arkansas Tech University Welcomes Eli Cranor as Writer in Residence

Russellville native and acclaimed author, Eli Cranor, is set to join the Arkansas Tech University College of Arts and Humanities as a writer in residence and instructor in the ATU Department of English and World Languages, commencing from the fall semester of 2023. With an impressive background in both writing and teaching, Cranor is expected to be a guiding light for aspiring authors within the student community.

Celebrated Works and Teaching Experience

Eli Cranor has made a mark in the literary world with two highly acclaimed novels, “Don’t Know Tough” and “Ozark Dogs.” His debut novel, “Don’t Know Tough,” achieved recognition by winning the prestigious Peter Lovesey First Crime Novel Contest, landing a spot on USA Today’s Best Books of the Year list and being selected as one of the New York Times’ Best Crime Novels of 2022. The Mystery Writers of America also honored Cranor with the Edgar Allan Poe Award for best first novel by an American author.

A Thrilling Tale of the Ozarks

Cranor’s latest work, “Ozark Dogs,” dubbed a “Southern thriller,” delves into the aftermath of a murder that rattles two families in a small Arkansas town. The novel, published in April 2023, swiftly climbed the ranks to become a national bestseller, captivating readers with its gripping narrative and vivid portrayal of life in the Ozarks.

A Renowned Athlete and Coach

Before establishing himself as an accomplished author, Eli Cranor excelled in the realm of sports. He was a college football player at both Florida Atlantic University and Ouachita Baptist University, showcasing his determination and talent on the field. Following his athletic career, Cranor ventured into professional football and later became a high school football coach, imparting valuable life lessons to young athletes.

Bringing Real-Life Experiences to the Classroom

Hailing from his hometown, Eli Cranor is thrilled to join the ATU faculty and plans to draw from his diverse life experiences in his upcoming Introduction to Film course in the fall of 2023. By infusing personal insights and creativity, Cranor aims to inspire and empower students to explore the world of storytelling through the lens of filmmaking.

Shaping the Future of Regional Storytelling

Dr. Jeff Cass, dean of the ATU College of Arts and Humanities, expressed his enthusiasm for Cranor’s arrival, recognizing the significant impact he will have on aspiring writers within the university community. Cranor’s presence as a writer in residence and instructor will not only enrich the literary landscape of ATU but also foster a supportive environment for diverse voices to emerge and share the captivating stories of their region and times.


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