Jessika Auerbach is a writer, winemaker, compulsive world traveller, and professional ex-pat. She holds a BA/MA from Oxford University, and an MFA from NYU/TischAsia. Her first book, And Nanny Makes Three, was published by St. Martin’s in 2007, and she is currently working on a memoir built around her experiences giving birth to four daughters on three continents. She has lived and worked in Germany, England, France, the Netherlands, New York, Connecticut, Hong Kong, Singapore, Italy and—currently—Brooklyn.
Susan Choi is the author of four novels. Her first novel, The Foreign Student, won the Asian-American Literary Award for fiction. Her second novel, American Woman, was a finalist for the 2004 Pulitzer Prize. Her third novel, A Person of Interest, was a finalist for the 2009 PEN/Faulkner Award. In 2010 she was named the inaugural recipient of the PEN/W.G. Sebald Award. Her most recent novel, My Education, received a 2014 Lammy Award. A recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation, she lives in Brooklyn, New York with her husband, Pete Wells, and their sons. www.susanchoi.com
Jan Clausen is the author of a dozen books in a range of genres, most recently the lyric hybrid Veiled Spill: A Sequence (Tarpaulin Sky Press, 2014). Her poetry collections include From a Glass House and If You Like Difficulty. Prose titles include Mother, Sister, Daughter, Lover (stories), and the novels Sinking, Stealing and The Prosperine Papers, in addition to the memoir Apples and Oranges: My Journey Through Sexual Identity (Houghton Mifflin). Clausen’s creative work has appeared widely in periodicals such as AGNI, Bloom, Drunken Boat, Fence, Hanging Loose, Hotel Amerika, Kenyon Review, Ploughshares, and the anthology Obsession: Sestinas in the 21st Century and Poems from the Women’s Movement. Reviews and literary journalism have appeared in Boston Review, Ms., The Nation, Poets & Writers, and The Women’s Review of Books. A resident of Brooklyn since the 1970s, Clausen maintains close ties to the Pacific Northwest, where she was born and raised. The recipient of an NEA Fiction Fellowship and a NYFA Poetry Fellowship, she teaches creative writing in the Goddard College MFA Writing Program and at New York University. www.ablationsite.org
Elizabeth Gaffney is a novelist, translator, teacher and a native Brooklynite. She graduated with honors from Vassar College and holds an M.F.A. in fiction from Brooklyn College; she also studied philosophy and German at Ludwig-Maximillian University in Munich. Her first novel, Metropolis, a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers selection, was published by Random House in 2005. Her second novel, When the World Was Young, was published by Random House in 2014. She has translated four books from German. Her short stories have appeared in many little magazines. www.elizabethgaffney.net
Gaffney has been a resident artist at Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony and Blue Mountain Center. She also teaches fiction workshops and serves as the editor-at-large of the literary magazine A Public Space.
Alison B. Hart‘s writing has appeared or is forthcoming in the Missouri Review, Bustle, Brain, Child Magazine, Hippocampus, Cosmopolitan, Babble, USA Today, and elsewhere. She is Director of Outreach for BinderCon, a professional development conference for women and gender non-conforming writers, and is the co-founder of the reading series at Pete’s Candy Store in Brooklyn. She is at work on a collection of linked stories called Strangers at Home.
Joan Hilty is an editor/book packager specializing in comics and graphic novels, and rusty cartoonist. Her clients include Viacom, Farrar Straus & Giroux, A&E Networks, and numerous authors, literary agencies, production companies, and nonprofits. She was an editor at DC Comics for 15 years, acquiring award-winning books such as Cairo and Cuba: My Revolution. She studied at Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design, and published comics extensively throughout the 1990s in the Village Voice, the Advocate and numerous independent titles; her comic strip Bitter Girl was internationally syndicated from 2001-2012. Her writing and cartoon essays have most recently appeared in The Brown Reader (Simon & Schuster, 2014), the Guardian, and the Women’s Review of Books. She teaches at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore and School of Visual Arts in NYC, and is a founding member of the independent editorial group 5E. www.joanhilty.net
Sheri Holman is a novelist and television writer. She has written four award-winning and bestselling novels published by Grove/Atlantic, including The Dress Lodger a New York Times Notable Book that was also longlisted for the Dublin IMPAC Award; The Mammoth Cheese, named a Publisher’s Weekly and San Francisco Chronicle Book of the Year and shortlisted for the UK’s Orange Prize; and, most recently, Witches On the Road Tonight (Grove/Atlantic, 2011), lauded by Cathleen Schine in the New York Review of Books, Jane Smiley in the Los Angeles Review of Books, and named a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice as well as the Independent Publisher’s Gold Medalist for Literary Fiction.
Sheri is currently a writer on the popular hour-long drama Longmire, scheduled to debut on Netflix in the fall of 2015. She is also a founding member of the story-telling collective The Moth and currently serves on its curatorial committee. www.sheriholman.com
Mira Jacob is the author of the critically acclaimed novel, The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing, which was released in 13 countries, translated into eight languages, and shortlisted for India’s Tata First Literature Award. It was also named one of best books of 2014 by Kirkus, the Boston Globe, Goodreads, and Bustle, and was listed as one of BuzzFeed’s 22 Most Exciting Literary Debuts.
She is the co-founder of the much-loved Pete’s Reading Series in Brooklyn, where she spent over a decade bringing literary fiction, non-fiction, and poetry to the city’s sweetest stage. Her recent writing and short stories have appeared in Guernica, Vogue, the Telegraph, and Bookanista, and earlier work has appeared in various magazines (RED, Redbook, i-D,Metropolis, STEP), books (Footnotes with Kenneth Cole; Simon & Schuster; Adios Barbie (Seal Press), on television (VH-1’s Pop-Up Video), and across the web. She has appeared on national and local television and radio, and has taught writing to students of all ages in New York, New Mexico, and Barcelona. She currently teaches fiction at NYU.
In September 2014, Mira was named the Emerging Novelist Honoree at Hudson Valley Writer’s Center, where she received a commendation from the U.S. Congress. www.mirajacob.com
Sharon Lerner, co-founder of PowderKeg, is an environmental journalist covering environmental crime for The Intercept. She is an author and radio producer and her work has also appeared in The New York Times, The Nation, and The Washington Post, among other publications, and has received awards from The Society for Environmental Journalists, The American Public Health Association, the Women and Politics Institute, and The Newswoman’s Club of New York. Follow her on Twitter @fastlerner. Read her recent stories here.
Holly Morris, co-founder of PowderKeg, is an award-winning author, filmmaker, writer, and global correspondent. Her new documentary, The Babushkas of Chernobyl, about a defiant community of women who live inside Ukraine’s radioactive “Exclusion Zone” is based on her widely syndicated essay “The Babushkas of Chernobyl,” (also published as “Ukraine: A Country of Women), and her popular TED Talk. She has written and directed several other films about politicos, activists and artists making change in their home cultures, including, Behind Closed Chadors (Iran), Holy Cow (India), Mana Wahines (New Zealand) and Paradox Found (Cuba), all broadcast nationally on PBS and in more than 20 countries worldwide as part of the Adventure Divas series.
She is the author of Adventure Divas: Searching the Globe for a New Kind of Heroine (Random House), a New York Times Editor’s Choice, and contributes to many national publications, including “O,” The New York Times, and MORE, SLATE and numerous anthologies.
Morris presents the television documentary series’ Treks in a Wild World, Adventure Divas, Outdoor Investigations, Tough Boats, and – for the past 15 years – the popular PBS series Globe Trekker.
Morris is the former Editorial Director of the book publishing company Seal Press, and an alum and long-time board member of the women writer’s residency Hedgebrook. Morris.firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.hollymorris.com
Kristabelle Munson‘s writing has appeared in Guernica/PEN American and other literary journals. Born in Manila, raised in NYC, MFA in Fiction from Stonecoast in Maine. Kristabelle is working on a debut novel.
Anna Noyes is a recent graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she received the 2013 Henfield Prize for Fiction. Her stories have appeared in Vice, A Public Space, and Guernica, among others. She has received the Aspen Words Emerging Writer Fellowship, the James Merrill House Fellowship, and The Lighthouse Works Fellowship, and has served as writer-in-residence at the Polli Talu Arts Center in Estonia. Her debut short story collection, Goodnight, Beautiful Women, will be published by Grove/Atlantic in 2016.
Julia Phillips writes about Russia. Her fiction has appeared in Crab Orchard Review, The Brooklyn Quarterly, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, The Toast, and The Rumpus, and is forthcoming in The Antioch Review. Her essays and articles have appeared in The Week, New York‘s The Cut, Jezebel, The Morning News, Drunken Boat, BuzzFeed News and The Moscow Times. Her work has been named notable in Best American Travel Writing. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee, Glimmer Train Short Story Award for New Writers finalist, and Fulbright grant recipient. www.juliaphillipswrites.com
Sarah Ruhl’s Plays include In the Next Room, or the vibrator play (Pulitzer Prize finalist, Tony Award nominee for best new play), The Clean House (Pulitzer Prize Finalist, 2005; The Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, 2004); Passion Play, a cycle (Pen American award, The Fourth Freedom Forum Playwriting Award from The Kennedy Center); Dead Man’s Cell Phone (Helen Hayes award); Melancholy Play; Eurydice; Orlando, Demeter in the City (NAACP nomination), Late: a cowboy song, Three Sisters, and most recently, Stage Kiss and Dear Elizabeth.
Her plays have been produced on Broadway at the Lyceum by Lincoln Center Theater, off-Broadway at Playwrights’ Horizons, Second Stage, and at Lincoln Center’s Mitzi Newhouse Theater, and downtown at Clubbed Thumb and Classic Stage Company. Her plays have been produced regionally all over the country, with premieres at Yale Repertory Theater, the Goodman Theater, Berkeley Repertory Theater, Arena Stage, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Madison Repertory Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Cornerstone Theater, and the Piven Theatre Workshop in Chicago.
Her plays have also been produced internationally in London, Germany, Australia, Canada and Israel, and have been translated into Polish, Russian, Spanish, Norwegian, Korean, German and Arabic.
Shelley Salamensky is a scholar and writer with nonfiction in The New York Review of Books, The Wall Street Journal, The Believer, The Paris Review, and more. Her novel, in progress, is entitled Last of the Schmohicans.
Monique Truong’s first novel, The Book of Salt (Houghton Mifflin, 2003), was a national bestseller, a New York Times Notable Fiction Book, the recipient of the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award, the Bard Fiction Prize, the Stonewall Book Award-Barbara Gittings Literature Award, and an Association for Asian American Studies Poetry/Prose Award. Her second novel, Bitter in the Mouth (Random House, 2010), received the Rosenthal Family Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and was named one of the 25 Best Fiction Books of 2010 by Barnes & Noble booksellers. Truong was a PEN/Robert Bingham Fellow, a Princeton University’s Hodder Fellow, a Guggenheim Fellow, a Visiting Writer at the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies, and a 2015 U.S.-Japan Creative Artist Fellow. A graduate of Yale University and Columbia University School of Law, Truong serves on the board of the Authors Guild, the Advisory Council for PEN American Center, and the Creative Advisory Council for Hedgebrook. www.monique-truong.com
Jessica Maria Tuccelli is a writer and filmmaker. The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance named Tuccelli’s debut novel, Glow (Viking 2012), an Okra Pick—their highest recognition. In film, Tuccelli’s lighting finesse can be seen in over 100 shorts, features, commercials, PSAs, and documentaries, most notably Sundance Film Festival Audience Favorite Hoop Dreams, Emmy Award-winning How Do You Spell God? (HBO), America’s Children Remember 9/11 (WGBH), and Campaign for the Library in the 21st Century (Gold Plaque winner, 42nd Chicago International Film Festival). She co-executive produced The Date, a film-short by Oscar-winner Luke Matheny. Passionate about girls’ education and women’s welfare in developing nations, she served on the executive board of The International HUG Foundation and is currently a sponsor of the Nyaka Aids Orphans Project. www.jessicamariatuccelli.com
Kamy Wicoff is the bestselling author of Wishful Thinking and the nonfiction book I Do But I Don’t: Why The Way We Marry Matters. She is the founder of one of the world’s largest communities for women writers, www.shewrites.com, and, with Brooke Warner, of She Writes Press, a “third way” publisher leading the way in creating alternative publishing companies for authors. She is on the board of Girls Write Now, a New York City nonprofit that pairs high school girls with professional women writers as their mentors. Recently she was named to the Experts Among Us Advisory Board by BlogHer and SheKnows.com. She lives with her two sons in Brooklyn, New York. To learn more, visit www.kamywicoff.com.