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Author Nathan Hill Launches Book Tour at Bradshaw Library

Jessica Piland

On Thursday, The Bradshaw Library hosted a launch event for Nathan Hill’s new book, “Wellness.” This event included dinner, a reading by Hill of the new book and a book signing for those who attended. This was the first stop on his new tour to promote the novel. 

Hill is widely known for his book “The Nix” but “Wellness” has been chosen as Oprah’s latest book club pick. 

The event kicked off with Jesse Millner, a close friend of Hill, giving praise and poking fun at Hill’s tennis skills. 

“Nathan used to teach here and I met him when he was teaching and we would play tennis and hang out,” said Millner. 

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Hill presented his writing process and the difficulties that come with writing a novel during a pandemic. 

“I was exhausted and needed a rest and be careful what you wish for, the pandemic happens,” said Hill. “I’m bursting to get back out there.”

He then introduced his new novel and explained the plot of the story. 

“Two young dreamers, Jack and Elizabeth who come from different places and are running away from their families, they meet each other in Chicago and instantly fall in love,” Hill said. “Fast forward 20 years and life has happened. They have a child and are overwhelmed and lonely missing the Romeo and Juliet they used to be.”

He further explained the twists and turns the story undergoes to try and figure out where they have gone and what they lost.

The event segwayed into a reading of one of the chapters in which Jack, one of the two main characters, attempts to start working out. He then goes on a journey trying to regain confidence and attraction with his spouse. Jack downloads an app “The System,” an overstimulating app filled with just about any information about the human body including information Jack would never want to know.

Jessica Piland

“He looked at all the other people doing Burpees. He felt like they were all in a club, The Burpee Club,” Hill read from the chapter. “He’s trying to catch someone’s eyes so that he could shrug and smile and make a face like I too think this is ridiculous.”

Hill then described the more serious topics of the book about trying to fit into society and the inner struggles the character faces about self-love. When the Q&A segment began, Hill was asked about how an inspiring author could get started in the world of writing.

“It depends on what stage they are aspiring at, one thing I tell very new writers is something I learned the hard way. Don’t worry about what is trending or popular. write the story only you can write,” said Hill. “Don’t worry about if you think anyone is going to like it or not.”

FGCU Senior Jonah Kalter found inspiration after listening to advice Hill gave out. 

“My professor who teaches a creative writing class inspired me to come tonight. I was kind of at a writer’s block and coming here gave me ideas,” Kalter said. “I hope the school brings in more people like him.”

Kalter was one of several students who felt inspired by “Wellness” and Hill’s ways of writing. Several staff members including Joel Ying came to attend the event and were fans of his previous book. 

“I met Nate before and I enjoyed his last book “The Nix” and wanted to check [“Wellness”] out,” Ying said. “I liked that he highlights realistic issues and makes it so you can laugh about them. I’m excited to read the rest of the book.”

The event closed off with everyone having the opportunity to have their books signed by Hill and to ask any further questions or comments they had. Hill plans to continue his book tour and is excited for what the future holds.


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Jessica Piland
Jessica Piland, Eagle News Photo Editor
Jessica Piland is a senior majoring in political science and minoring in global studies. She found her passion for photography during her senior year of high school after shooting some film for fun with her grandfather’s camera from the 80s. In addition to her work as photo editor for Eagle News, she works as a staff photographer for FGCU Athletics and is a photography intern with the University Marketing and Communications department. As she enters her third year as photo editor, she is excited for the fun stories, campus events, and breaking news that Eagle News will be covering!

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