2019 Conference Faculty
- Melissa Bank
Melissa Bank is the author of the best-selling story collections T he Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing and The Wonder Spot . She received the Nelson Algren Award for short fiction from the Chicago Tribune and holds an M.F.A. from Cornell University. Her work has been translated into 33 languages.
- Karen E. Bender
Karen E. Bender is the author of the story collections Refund, which was a Finalist for the National Book Award and shortlisted for the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Prize, and The New Order, published in November by Counterpoint Press. Her novels are Like Normal People and A Town of Empty Rooms. Her fiction has appeared in magazines including The New Yorker, Granta, Ploughshares, The Yale Review, The Harvard Review, Guernica and others and has been anthologized in Best American Short Stories, Best American Mystery Stories, and won two Pushcart prizes. She is fiction editor of the journal Scoundrel Time. She has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Rona Jaffe Foundation and has taught creative writing at MFA programs including the University of Iowa, Warren Wilson College, Chatham University and Antioch Los Angeles; she is currently Distinguished Visiting Professor of Creative Writing at Hollins University. Visit her at www.karenebender.com.
- Jericho Brown
Jericho Brown is the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Brown’s first book, Please (New Issues 2008), won the American Book Award. His second book, The New Testament (Copper Canyon 2014), won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award. His most recent collection is The Tradition ( Copper Canyon in 2019). His poems have appeared in Buzzfeed, The New Republic, The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, TIME magazine, Tin House, and several volumes of The Best American Poetry . He is an associate professor and the director of the Creative Writing Program at Emory University.
- Alexander Chee
Alexander Chee is the bestselling author of The Queen of the Night, and most recently, the essay collection How to Write an Autobiographical Novel. He is a recipient of an NEA in fiction and the Whiting Award, and his essays and stories have appeared most recently in T Magazine, Tin House, The Sewanee Review, The New Yorker, the Yale Review, and Best Americans Essays 2016 and 2019 . He is an associate professor of creative writing at Dartmouth College.
- Billy Collins
Billy Collins is the author of 12 collections of poetry, most recently The Rain in Portugal (Random House, 2016). Others titles include Aimless Love, Horoscopes for the Dead, Questions About Angels, The Art of Drowning, Sailing Alone Around the Room, Nine Horses, Ballistics and Picnic, Lightning. He is also the editor of three anthologies: Poetry 180: A Turning Back to Poetry, 180 More: Extraordinary Poems for Everyday, and Bright Wings: An Illustrated Anthology of Bird Poems. His poems have been published in a variety of periodicals including The New Yorker, Harper's, The Atlantic, and The American Scholar, and his work appears regularly in Best American Poetry. A Guggenheim Fellow and a New York Public Library Literary Lion, he is a former Distinguished Professor at Lehman College, City University of New York, and a Distinguished Fellow of the Winter Park Institute at Rollins College. He served as New York State Poet (2004-5) and United States Poet Laureate (2001-2003). He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
- Ursula Hegi
A bi-cultural writer, Ursula Hegi didn’t plan to set nearly half of her novels in Germany and the other half in the Americas—but that's how the pages have opened for her, reflecting what it is like to be an immigrant. Her work has been translated into many languages. Ursula has published 12 books. Her Burgdorf Cycle includes 4 of her novels: Stones from the River, Floating in My Mother’s Palm, The Vision of Emma Blau, and Children and Fire. Her awards include the Italian Grinzane Cavour, an NEA Fellowship, and a PEN/Faulkner Award. She is on the faculty of Stony Brook University. She has taught at Barnard College, the University of California at Irvine, and Bread Loaf. She has also served as a juror for the National Book Awards and the National Book Critics Circle.
- Alan Kingsberg
Alan Kingsberg received his MFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts where his film Minors won an Academy Award as the top student film in the US. His television work includes writing the ACE Award-winning documentary Buy Me That for HBO, and writing and producing the BAFTA-nominated animated series Cubix for FOX. Kingsberg has also written for Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and kids' classics like Are You Afraid of the Dark?, S hining Time Station and Doug. He was a showrunner on five animated series for Fox, The CW and Cartoon Network, including the hits Cubix, Pokemon Chronicles and Winx Club. He has written or produced over 250 half-hours of television for major broadcast and cable networks and has written feature films for Disney and Universal Pictures. He is currently writing on a new Netflix Original animated series.
- Matthew Klam
Matthew Klam was named one of the twenty best fiction writers in America under 40 by The New Yorker. He’s a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Robert Bingham/PEN Award, a Whiting Writer’s Award, and a National Endowment of the Arts. His first book, Sam The Cat and Other Stories, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book of the Year in the category of first fiction, was selected as a Notable Book of the Year by The New York Times, Esquire Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, The Kansas City Star, and by the Borders for their New Voices series. His second book, Who Is Rich?, was selected as Notable Book of the Year by The New York Timesand The Washington Post, and was longlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize. His work has been featured in The New Yorker, Harper’s Magazine, Esquire, GQ Magazine, and The New York Times Magazine. He is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire and Hollins College, and has taught creative writing in many places including Johns Hopkins University, St. Albans School, American University, and Stockholm University in Sweden.
- Dawn Lundy Martin
Dawn Lundy Martin is a poet, essayist, and conceptual-video artist. She is the author of four books of poems: Good Stock Strange Blood (Coffee House, 2017); Life in a Box is a Pretty Life (Nightboat Books, 2015); which won the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Poetry; DISCIPLINE (Nightboat Books, 2011); A Gathering of Matter / A Matter of Gathering (University of Georgia Press, 2007); and three limited edition chapbooks. Most recently, she co-edited with Erica Hunt an anthology, Letters to the Future: BLACK WOMEN / Radical WRITING (Kore Press, 2018). Her nonfiction can be found in The New Yorker, Harper's , n+1, and elsewhere. Martin is a Professor of English in the writing program at the University of Pittsburgh and Co-director of the Center for African American Poetry and Poetics. She is also the recipient of a 2018 NEA Grant in Creative Writing.
- Roger Rosenblatt
Roger Rosenblatt, whose work has been published in 14 languages, is the author of five New York Times Notable Books of the Year, and three Times bestsellers, including the memoirs Kayak Morning , The Boy Detective and Making Toast , originally an essay in the New Yorker. He has also written six off-Broadway plays, notably Free Speech in America , a one-person performance at New York’s American Place Theater, named one of the Times “Ten Best Plays of 1991,” as well as the screenplay for his national bestselling novel, Lapham Rising , shooting begun this summer, and starring Frank Langella, Stockard Channing and Bobby Cannavale. The Distinguished Professor of English and Writing at Stony Brook University, he formerly held the Briggs-Copeland appointment in the teaching of writing at Harvard, where he earned his Ph.D. Among his honors are two George Polk Awards, the Peabody and the Emmy, for his work as an essayist at Time magazine and on PBS, the Robert F. Kennedy Book Prize, a Fulbright Scholarship to Ireland, where he played on the Irish International Basketball Team, seven honorary doctorates, the Kenyon Review Award for lifetime literary achievement, and the President’s Medal of the Chautauqua Institution for his body of work.
- Frederic Tuten
Frederic Tuten has published five novels including The Adventures of Mao on the Long March and Tintin in the New World as well as a book of interrelated short stories, Self-Portraits: Fictions.
His memoir My Young Life spans the journeys from his Sicilian immigrant family’s kitchen table in the Bronx, to the politically volatile corridors of The City College of New York, to the arms of Mexico’s art world and finally to the dangerous, exciting streets of Alphabet City in the 1960s.
He taught film and literature at the University of Paris 8, acted in a short film by Alain Resnais, co-wrote the cult film Possession, and conducted summer writing workshops with Paul Bowles in Tangiers. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship for Fiction and was given the Award for Distinguished Writing from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He has been awarded three Pushcart Prizes as well as the O. Henry prize.