All SNU courses are now 100% online through the summer.
CURRENT COVID-19 INFORMATION for STUDENTS, PARENTS, FACULTY, & STAFF >
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 MFA 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 the option for every fifth residency overseas. Our August 2014 residency was in Doolin, Ireland, and our January 2017 residency was in Jamaica. The 2019 summer overseas residency will return to Doolin.
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.
Each of our faculty members is an experienced writer and an incredible teacher of their art. Here are a few:
John Murillo is the author of the poetry collection, Up Jump the Boogie, which was finalist for both the Kate Tufts Discovery Award and the Pen Open Book Award. His honors include the J. Howard and Barbara M.J. Wood Prize from the Poetry Foundation, a Pushcart Prize, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Times, Bread Loaf Writers Conference, Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Cave Canem Foundation, and the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing.
Recent poems have been published in Poetry, Prairie Schooner, Ploughshares, and in the anthology Angles of Ascent: A Norton Anthology of African-American Poetry. He has taught in the creative writing programs at Cornell University, the University of Miami, Columbia College Chicago, and currently teaches at Hampshire College and New York University.
- BA, Washington University in St. Louis
David Lamb is an assistant editor at Hachette Books, where he acquires memoirs, narrative nonfiction projects, and a range of titles across other genres. At Hachette Books and in his prior role at Scribner, he has worked on acclaimed and bestselling books including two-time National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward’s The Fire This Time; MacArthur Fellow Angela Duckworth’s Grit; Kate Hennessy’s Dorothy Day; Lindy West’s Shrill; Sandrone Dazieri’s Kill the Father; Assaf Gavron’s The Hilltop; and Baird Harper’s Red Light Run, which was a Barnes & Noble Discover Pick. He enjoys helping bold writers hone their voices and build stories that will connect strongly with readers in the marketplace. He lives in New York City.
Writing for Children & Young Adults
- BA in English, California State University, San Bernardino
- MA in English Composition, California State University, San Bernardino
Isabel Quintero is a writer and the daughter of Mexican immigrants. She was born, raised, and resides in the Inland Empire of Southern California. She earned her BA in English and her MA in English Composition at California State University, San Bernardino. Isabel also sits on on the board for a non-profit literary arts organization, PoetrIE.
Gabi, A Girl in Pieces from Cinco Puntos Press, her first novel, is the recipient of the 2015 William C. Morris Award for Debut YA Novel, the 2015 Tomas Rivera Mexican American Children’s Book Award, the California Book Award Gold Medal for Young Adult, the 2015 Paterson Prize for Books for Young People, Grades 7-12, and the 2015 Peggy Miller Award for Young Adult Literature. Gabi was a finalist for the 2015 Elizabeth Walden Award, the 2015 Cybils Award, and received an honorable mention from the NACCS Tejas Young Adult Fiction FOCO Award. In addition, the book has been included on the Amelia Bloomer Project List of Recommended Feminist Reading for ages 0-18, one of School Library Journal’s Best Books of 2014, 2015 Capitol Choices: Noteworthy Books for Children and Teens, is one of Booklist’s Best Books of 2014, one of Kirkus’ Best Teen Books of 2014, and a 2015 YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults, among other lists.
Her forthcoming chapter books, the first two in a series for young readers, Ugly Cat and Pablo, will be released in Spring 2017 from Scholastic, Inc. Her first graphic novel, Photographic: The Life of Graciela Iturbide a biography about photographer Graciela Iturbide, will be released by Getty Publications Fall 2017. In addition to writing fiction, she also writes poetry and her work can be found in The Great American Literary Magazine, Huizache, As/Us Journal, The Acentos Review, The Pacific Review, and others.
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.