By Writers, For Writers
Our program was built entirely by writers, to guide authors organically through the exploration of their craft and thorough preparation for a sustainable life of creation and publication. No other program nurtures a writer from line and sentence to essay, story, poetry collection or novel like ours does.
Our editing semester is a uniquely practical experience in crafting work which is both thrilling and publishable. Our gifted faculty are here because they want to launch unique, individual voices within a global dialogue; to see risks taken, new moves in language braved, and students grow into professional and artistic peers.
Come lean toward our fire and tell us your stories, poems, essays. We’re listening.
How does a low-residency program work?
We’ve made this program so that people who are unable to walk away from jobs and families and service can still become masters of their craft . . . NOW.
Over four distance-learning semesters punctuated by five week-long residencies, students will focus on their chosen genre (be it fiction, poetry, or creative nonfiction) while exploring new territories of artistic expression.
Faculty meet with their students one-on-one during each residency to set plans, then work with them intensively throughout the semester providing written critiques. With a student-to-mentor ratio never greater than 5:1, students receive creative, focused, individualized feedback.
Each residency is an eight-day intensive period of workshops, seminars, readings and more, in which we explore the wide landscape of the writing life from practical tricks-of-the-trade to subtleties of conceptual nuance. Residencies take place in early January and early August, with one of every five residencies (for the program as a whole) located overseas. Our August 2014 residency was in Doolin, Ireland – our January 2017 residency will be in Jamaica.
Meet Our Faculty
Honorary Creative Writing Faculty
Carolyn Forché: Born in Detroit, Michigan in 1950, poet, teacher and activist Carolyn Forché has witnessed, thought about, and put into poetry some of the most devastating events of twentieth-century world history. According to Joyce Carol Oates in the New York Times Book Review, Forché’s ability to wed the “political” with the “personal” places her in the company of such poets as Pablo Neruda, Philip Levine, and Denise Levertov.
Upcoming Writer in Residence
Sonnet Mondal (Kolkata, India) is the author eight books of poetry, and editor-in-chief of The Enchanting Verses Literary Review (www.theenchantingverses.org). His most recent book, Ink and Line, was co-authored with Sukrita Paul Kumar. He has read, and represented India, at festivals in Macedonia; Cork, Ireland; Istanbul, Turkey; Granada, Nicaragua; and Slovakia. His poetry has been translated into Hindi, Italian, Slovenian, Slovakian, Turkish, Macedonian, Bengali and Arabic, and published across Asia, Europe, and North America.
Each of our faculty members is an experienced writer and an incredible teacher of their art. Here are a few:
- BA, Political Science, California State University at Fresno
- MFA, University of Oregon
Daniel Chacón is author of Hotel Juárez: Stories, Rooms, and Loops (2013). His collection of short stories, Unending Rooms, won the 2008 Hudson Prize. He also has a novel, And the shadows took him, and another collection of stories called Chicano Chicanery. His fiction has appeared in the anthologies Latino Boom; Latino Sudden Fiction; Lengua Fresca: Latinos Writing on the Edge; Caliente: The Best Erotic Writing in Latin American Fiction; and Best of the West 2009: New Stories from the West Side of the Missouri. He co-edited The Last Supper of Chicano Heroes: The Selected Work of José Anontio Burciaga. He is also editor of Colón-ization: The Posthmous Poems of Andrés Montoya, forthcoming in 2014 from Bilingual Press and The Institute for Latino Studies at Notre Dame.
Chacón is recipient of The Hudson Prize, a Chris Isherwood Foundation Grant, The American Book Award, and the Peter and Jean de Main Emerging Writers Award, among others. He teaches courses in Borges, Kafka, Physics as Metaphor, and Fiction Writing workshops. He has a literary radio show called Words on a Wire (KTEP.org) which he co-hosts with Benjamin Alire Sáenz. He is also a photographer/blogger, and his work can be seen at http://www.soychacon.blogspot.com.
- M.F.A., University of Southern Maine, Stonecoast
Patricia Smith is the author of eight books of poetry, including: Incendiary Art; Shoulda Been Jimi Savannah, winner of the 2013 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize; Blood Dazzler, finalist for the National Book Award and one of NPR’s top five books of the year; and Gotta Go, Gotta Flow, a collaboration with award-winning photographer Michael Abramson. She is almost the author of Africans in America, the companion book to the groundbreaking PBS series, the children book Janna and the Kings, the editor of the crime fiction anthology Staten Island Noir and co-editor of The Golden Shovel: Poems Honoring Gwendolyn Brooks. Her work has appeared in Poetry, The Paris Review, TriQuarterly, Tin House, and in Best American Poetry, Best American Essays, and Best American Mystery Stories.
Smith is a 2017 Civitella Ranieri fellow, a Neustadt Prize finalist, a 2012 fellow at both the MacDowell Colony and Yadoo, a two-time Pushcart Prize winner and four-time champion of the National Poetry Slam, the most successful poet in the competition’s history. She is a professor at the City University of New York, a Cave Canem faculty member, and was the Writer-in-Residence at SNC for 2013-2014.
Faculty & Student News
MFA Faculty Lee Herrick has his book of poems, Scar and Flower, accepted to be published by Word Poetry Press in 2019.
MFA Alumni Brooke King has her memoir, Full Battle Rattle, accepted by the University of Nebraska Press and Potomac Books with a publication date of 2019.
MFA Faculty Gayle Brandeis has published two new books, The Selfless Bliss of the Body, with Finishing Line Press, and a memoir, The Art of Misdiagnosis: Surviving My Mother's Suicide, with Beacon Press.
MFA Creative Nonfiction Writing Student, Rebecca Evans has her essay, "Harnessed," published in Gravel Literary Journal. https://www.gravelmag.com/rebecca-evans.html. Her essay, "Writing Me," is forthcoming in Fiction Southeast in 2018.
MFA Creative Nonfiction Writing Student Wendy Hill has her essay, "Archaeology," published in The Sun Magazine. https://www.thesunmagazine.org/issues/500/archaeology.
We want artists who will write for the rest of their lives. If you are interested in adding your voice to this transformative conversation and intrigued by the possibility of working with teachers and peers who are passionate about the art they love, then please contact us — we look forward to meeting you.