Steve Almond spent seven years as a newspaper reporter in Texas and Florida before writing his first book, the story collection My Life in Heavy Metal. His non-fiction book, Candyfreak, was a New York Times Bestseller. His short fiction has been included in The Best American Short Stories and Pushcart Prize anthologies, and his most recent collection, God Bless America, won the Paterson Prize for Fiction.
Faculty // 2013
Lan Samantha Chang is the author of Hunger, a novella and stories, and the novels Inheritance and All is Forgotten, Nothing is Lost. She is the recipient of fellowships from Stanford University, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Guggenheim Foundation. She lives in Iowa City, Iowa, where she is Professor of Creative Writing and Director of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.
Charles D’Ambrosio is the author of two collections of short stories, The Point and The Dead Fish Museum, which was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award, and the essay collections Orphans and Loitering. He teaches fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.
Anthony Doerr was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. He is the author of the story collections The Shell Collector and Memory Wall, the memoir Four Seasons in Rome, and the novels About Grace and All the Light We Cannot See, which was awarded the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for fiction and the 2015 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction.
Benjamin Percy is the author of two novels, Red Moon and The Wilding, as well as two books of short stories, Refresh, Refresh and The Language of Elk. He is the writer-in-residence at St. Olaf College and teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Pacific University. His latest novel The Dead Lands will be published by Grand Central Publishing in April, 2015.
Karen Russell is the author of the short story collections St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves and Vampires in the Lemon Grove , as well as the novel Swamplandia!. Her work has been featured in The New Yorker’s debut fiction issue and on The New Yorker’s 20 Under 40 list, and was chosen as one of Granta’s Best Young American Novelists.
Jim Shepard is the author of seven novels, including the forthcoming The Book of Aron, and four story collections, including Like You’d Understand, Anyway, which was a finalist for the National Book Award and won The Story Prize. His short fiction has appeared in, among other magazines, Harper’s, McSweeney’s, The Paris Review, The Atlantic Monthly, Esquire, Tin House, the New Yorker, Granta, Zoetrope: All Story, and Playboy, and five of his stories have been chosen for the Best American Short Stories.
Karen Shepard is the author of the novels, An Empire of Women, The Bad Boy’s Wife, Don’t I Know You?, and The Celestials. Her short fiction has been published in The Atlantic Monthly, Tin House, Bomb, Ploughshares, Failbetter, Glimmertrain, Mississippi Review, and Southwest Review, among others. Her nonfiction has appeared in Self, More, The Boston Globe, and USA Today, among others.
Dana Spiotta is the author of four novels: Innocents and Others; Stone Arabia, a National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist in fiction; Eat the Document, a finalist for the National Book Award and a recipient of the Rosenthal Foundation Award; and Lightning Field. Spiotta was a Guggenheim Fellow and a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow. She currently teaches in the Syracuse University MFA program.
Luis Alberto Urrea is the author of 13 books, including The Hummingbird’s Daughter, winner of the Kiriyama Prize in fiction, and his most recent novel, Into the Beautiful North. His collection of short stories, Six Kinds of Sky, was named the 2002 small-press Book of the Year in fiction by the editors of ForeWord magazine. He has also won an Edgar award from the Mystery Writers of America for best short story, among other honors.
Jess Walter is the author of six novels, one nonfiction book and his most recent book of short stories, We Live in Water. He is a former National Book Award finalist and winner of the Edgar Allan Poe Award. His essays, short fiction, criticism and journalism have been widely published, in Best American Short Stories, Best American Nonrequired Reading, Harper’s, Esquire, McSweeney’s, and many others.
Major Jackson is the author of three collections of poetry: Holding Company, Hoops, and Leaving Saturn, a finalist for a National Book Critics Award Circle. A recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award, Jackson is the Richard Dennis Green and Gold Professor at the University of Vermont. He currently serves as the Poetry Editor of the Harvard Review.
Dorothea Lasky is the author of three books poetry, Thunderbird, Black Life, and AWE, all out from Wave Books. She has studied creativity and education at the University of Pennsylvania and has taught poetry at New York University, Columbia University, and Wesleyan University. She currently lives in New York City.
Dorianne Laux’s most recent collections are The Book of Men and Facts about the Moon, and she has co-authored a handbook on writing, The Poet’s Companion. Laux is also author of Awake, What We Carry, and Smoke. Recent poems appear in The American Poetry Review, Cimarron Review, Cerise Press, Margie, The Seattle Review, Tin House and Orion Magazine. Laux teaches poetry in the MFA Program at North Carolina State University and is founding faculty at Pacific University’s Low Residency MFA Program.
Karen Karbo is the author of the best-selling kick ass women trilogy, including The Gospel According to Coco Chanel and How Georgia Became O’Keefee. Her memoir, The Stuff of Life, was a New York Times Notable Book and a winner of the Oregon Book Award for Creative Nonfiction. Her essays have appeared in Tin House, the New York Times, Esquire, Elle, Vogue and salon.com.
Maggie Nelson’s books of nonfiction include The Art of Cruelty: A Reckoning, Bluets, and The Red Parts: A Memoir. Recent books of poetry include Something Bright, Then Holes , and Jane: A Murder, a finalist, the PEN/ Martha Albrand Award for the Art of the Memoir. She is the recipient of a 2010 Guggenheim Fellowship in Nonfiction, and a 2011 NEA grant in poetry. The Argonauts, a work of autobiography/theory forthcoming from Graywolf Press in May 2015.
Cheryl Strayed is the bestselling author of the memoir Wild, the novel Torch, and Tiny Beautiful Things, a collection of the “Dear Sugar” advice columns she writes for The Rumpus. Her personal essays have been published in Best American Essays, the New York Times, the Washington Post, The Sun, Vogue and elsewhere. She lives in Portland, Oregon.
Jodi Angel is the author of two collections of short stories. Her first collection, The History of Vegas, was published in 2005 and was named a San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of 2005 as well as a Los Angeles Times Book Review Discovery. Her second collection, You Only Get Letters from Jail, (2013), was named as a Best Book of 2013 by Esquire. Her work has appeared in Esquire, Tin House, One Story, Zoetrope: All-Story, and Byliner, among other publications and anthologies.
Claudia Ballard has been an agent at WME since 2008. She represents mainly literary fiction, from established short-story writers to debut novelists and beyond, as well as voice-driven nonfiction and memoir. She works with authors such as Amelia Gray, Alexandra Kleeman, Alice Sola Kim, Julie Buntin, Marie-Helene Bertino, Rachel B. Glaser, and Emma Straub amongst many others.
Matthew Dickman is the author of All-American Poem and Mayakovsky’s Revolver. He is the recipient of the Honickman First Book Prize, the May Sarton Award from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the 2009 Oregon Book Award, a 2015 Guggenheim fellowship and two fellowships from Literary Arts of Oregon. His poems have appeared in Tin House, McSweeney’s, Ploughshares, and the New Yorker, among others. He is the Poetry Editor of Tin House Magazine.
Meredith Kaffel Simonoff is a literary agent and British Rights Director at DeFiore & Company. She holds a B.A. in Renaissance Studies from Yale University and is a member of the AAR and PEN. Meredith focuses on literary fiction (novels & stories), upmarket fiction, creative nonfiction and narrative cartoonists. She is drawn to narratives steeped in ferocity of language, intellect and heart. Among her clients are Melissa Broder, Liana Finck, Maryse Meijer, Sean Michaels, Robin Wasserman and Leni Zumas.
Ayesha Pande has worked in the publishing industry for over twenty years. Before becoming an agent, Ayesha was a senior editor at Farrar Straus & Giroux. She has also held editorial positions at HarperCollins and Crown Publishers. She is a member of AAR (Association of Author’s Representatives), PEN, the Asian American Writer’s Workshop, and sits on the advisory board of the German Book Office.
Elissa Schappell is the author of the collection Blueprints For Building Better Girls, as well as the novel Use Me, which was a finalist for the PEN Hemingway award. She is co-editor with Jenny Offill of the anthologies, The Friend Who Got Away and Money Changes Everything. She is co-founder and editor-at-large of Tin House magazine, and teaches creative writing at NYU and in the the low-residency MFA program at Queens in Charlotte, NC.
Brandon Shimoda is the author of four books of poetry—most recently Portuguese (Tin House & Octopus Books) and O Bon (Litmus Press)—as well as several limited editions of collaborations, drawings, writings and songs. He is currently working on his first book of nonfiction, and co-editing, with poet-critic Thom Donovan, the selected writings of Lebanese-American poet Etel Adnan. Born in California, he has lived most recently in Maine, Taiwan, and Arizona.
Matthew Specktor is the author of the novels American Dream Machine and That Summertime Sound, as well as a book of criticism. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The Paris Review, The Believer, Tin House, Black Clock and Salon, among other periodicals. He is a senior editor and founding member of The Los Angeles Review of Books.
Pauls Toutonghi’s second novel, Evel Knievel Days, was published by Random House in 2012. His first — Red Weather — was published in 2006. His work has appeared in Harper’s, The New York Times, Sports Illustrated, Zoetrope: All-Story, One Story Magazine, The Boston Review, Glimmer Train, and numerous other periodicals. He teaches at Lewis and Clark College.