Meet our 2022 Faculty

FALL 2022

   

Gwen E. Kirby

Gwen E. Kirby is the author of the short story collection Shit Cassandra Saw, which was released by Penguin in 2021. Claire Oshetsky of the New York Times described the collection as "stories [that] will defy all your expectations." Kirby's book was also featured on NPR's All Things Considered, and author Kevin Wilson said of the collection, "Kirby writes with boundless humor, confidence and ease, and yet there is always that flash of a fang." Kirby’s stories appear or are forthcoming in One StoryTin House, GuernicaMississippi Review, Ninth Letter, Blackbird, SmokeLong Quarterly, and elsewhere. Her story “Midwestern Girl Is Tired of Appearing in Your Short Stories” won the 2017 DISQUIET Literary Prize for Fiction. She has received two Pushcart Prize special mentions and has been awarded scholarships to the Rivendell Writers’ Colony and the Sundress Academy for the Arts. She was the 2018-2019 George Bennett Fellow at Phillips Exeter Academy. Kirby is teaching our Fall 2022 fiction workshop. She said of teaching, "I love discovering what obsessions and passions and questions my students have brought into the room and how I can help them bring those to life through fiction."

She hails from San Diego and is a proud graduate of Carleton College. She has an MFA from Johns Hopkins University and a PhD from the University of Cincinnati. Currently, she is the Associate Director of Programs and Finance for the Sewanee Writers’ Conference at the University of the South, where she also teaches creative writing. Kirby will appear at the Southern Festival of Books in Nashville in October.

 

 

SUMMER 2022

    

Chris Bachelder

Chris Bachelder is the author of the novels The Throwback Special, Abbott Awaits, U.S.!, Bear v. Shark, and Lessons in Virtual Photography. His short fiction and essays have appeared in a number of magazines and journals, including The Paris Review, Harper's, McSweeney's, The Believer, Oxford American, American Short Fiction, Mother Jones, The Cincinnati Review, and New Stories from the South. His novel Abbott Awaits was published in 2011, to strong reviews: “Not since John Cheever,” said novelist Brock Clark, “has an American male fiction writer written so ingeniously, so beautifully, so heartbreakingly about the pain and sweetness of domestic life.'' His acclaimed novel The Throwback Special was a finalist for the National Book Award. The book follows twenty-two men who meet each year to reenact the 1985 Joe Theismann football injury. Bachelder was awarded the prestigious Terry Southern Prize in 2016. He received an MFA in fiction from the University of Florida and taught at New Mexico State, Colorado College, and the University of Massachusetts before joining the creative writing faculty of the University of Cincinnati in 2011.

Nickole Brown

Nickole Brown received her MFA from the Vermont College, studied literature at Oxford University, and was the editorial assistant for the late Hunter S. Thompson. She worked at Sarabande Books for ten years. Her first collection, Sister, a novel-in-poems, was first published in 2007 by Red Hen Press and a new edition was reissued by Sibling Rivalry Press in 2018. Her second book, a biography-in-poems called Fanny Says, came out from BOA Editions in 2015 and won the Weatherford Award for Appalachian Poetry. The audiobook of that collection became available in 2017. She was an assistant professor at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock for four years until she gave up her beloved position there in hope of writing full time. She has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Kentucky Foundation for Women, and the Kentucky Arts Council. Currently, she is the editor for the Marie Alexander Poetry Series and teaches periodically at a number of places in addition to the Sewanee School of Letters, including the Great Smokies Writing Program at UNCA and the Hindman Settlement School. Nickole Brown lives with her wife, poet Jessica Jacobs, in Asheville, NC, where she volunteers at two different animal sanctuaries. She’s at work on a bestiary of sorts about these animals. A chapbook featuring some of these poems called To Those Who Were Our First Gods won the 2018 Rattle Chapbook Prize, and another sequence called The Donkey Elegies was published as a chapbook by Sibling Rivalry Press in 2020. In 2020, Spruce Books of Penguin Random House published Write It! 100 Poetry Prompts to Inspire, a book she co-authored with Jessica, and they regularly teach generative writing sessions together as part of their SunJune Literary Collaborative.

Ryan Chapman

Ryan Chapman is the author of Riots I Have Known (Simon & Schuster), which was longlisted for The Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize and named a best book of 2019 by Electric Literature and The Marshall Project. NPR praised it as "one of the smartest—and best—novels of the year," and The Washington Post called it "a compact cluster bomb of satire that kills widely and indiscriminately." He's published criticism and short humor pieces at The New Yorker, The Guardian, GQ, Bookforum, BOMB, McSweeney’s, and The Believer, and interviewed writers and visual artists for Guernica, Esquire, Frieze, and elsewhere. He has guest-lectured at The New School, Bard College, and Columbia University, and held residencies at Vermont Studio Center, the Millay Colony for the Arts, and the James Merrill House. A graduate of the University of Puget Sound, he currently lives in Kingston, New York.

 

Tiana Clark

Tiana Clark is the author of the poetry collection, I Can’t Talk About the Trees Without the Blood (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2018), winner of the 2017 Agnes Lynch Starrett Prize, and Equilibrium (Bull City Press, 2016), selected by Afaa Michael Weaver for the 2016 Frost Place Chapbook Competition. Clark is a winner for the 2020 Kate Tufts Discovery Award (Claremont Graduate University), a 2019 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellow, a recipient of a 2019 Pushcart Prize, a winner of the 2017 Furious Flower’s Gwendolyn Brooks Centennial Poetry Prize, and the 2015 Rattle Poetry Prize. She was the 2017-2018 Jay C. and Ruth Halls Poetry Fellow at the Wisconsin Institute of Creative Writing. Clark is the recipient of scholarships and fellowships to the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, Sewanee Writers' Conference, and Kenyon Review Writers Workshop. She is a graduate of Vanderbilt University (M.F.A) and Tennessee State University (B.A.) where she studied Africana and Women's studies. Her writing has appeared in or is forthcoming from The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Poetry Magazine, The Washington Post, Tin House Online, Kenyon Review, BuzzFeed News, American Poetry Review, Oxford American, and elsewhere. She is the Grace Hazard Conkling Writer-in-Residence at Smith College. She has recently been awarded the Amy Lowell Travelling Poetry Scholarship.

Jamie Quatro

Jamie Quatro's debut novel, Fire Sermon, published in 2018 with Grove Press (U.S.), Picador (U.K.), and House of Anansi (Canada). Selected as one of the Top Seven Novels of 2018 by The Economist, and named a Book of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle, LitHub, Bloomberg, and the Times Literary Supplement, Fire Sermon is a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers book, Indie Next pick, and New York Times Editors' Choice. Quatro's story collection, I Want To Show You More, was a New York Times Notable Book, NPR Best Book of 2013, and was chosen as a favorite book of 2013 by James Wood in The New Yorker. The collection was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award, the Townsend Fiction Prize, and the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize.
Quatro’s books are published in translation in Spain, Italy, Slovakia, Poland, and the Netherlands. A contributing editor at Oxford American, her work has appeared in Ploughshares, The Guardian, The Paris Review, The New York Review of Books, and elsewhere. Recent essays have appeared in The New Yorker, Oxford American, and as part of the Greenpeace Climate Visionaries series. Her stories are anthologized in the O. Henry Prize Stories 2013, The Story and Its Writer, and the 2018 Pushcart Prize Anthology. She is a recipient of fellowships from Yaddo and MacDowell and lives with her family in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Allen Reddick

Allen Reddick is the author of The Making of Johnson’s Dictionary, 1746-1773 (1996) and the editor of Johnson's Unpublished Revisions of his Dictionary: A Facsimile Edition with Commentary and Analysis (2005), both published by Cambridge University Press, as well as articles concerning English literature from the 17th through the 18th century. A graduate of Sewanee, he earned an MA from Cambridge, a PhD from Columbia, and began his teaching career in 1985 at Harvard, where he served as assistant, then associate professor of English. In 1993 he took up his current post as professor of English literature at the University of Zurich. His scholarly work has been supported by the American Council of Learned Societies, the British Academy, the Swiss National Science Foundation, and the American Society for 18th-Century Studies, among others. He is currently tracing the vast book distribution activities of the 18th-century radical Thomas Hollis. He was elected a Fellow of the Linnean Society of London for his work on the library of Carl Linnaeus.

Meera Subramanian

Meera Subramanian is an award-winning independent journalist whose work has been published in national and international publications including the New York TimesNew YorkerNatureVirginia Quarterly Review, and Orion, where she serves as a contributing editor. Her book A River Runs Again: India's Natural World in Crisis, from the Barren Cliffs of Rajasthan to the Farmlands of Karnataka, published by PublicAffairs in 2015, was short-listed for the 2016 Orion Book Award. Through her work, she has explored the disappearance of India’s vultures, questioned the “Good Anthropocene,” sought out fragile shorelines, and investigated perceptions of climate change among conservative Americans. Her essays have been anthologized in Best American Science and Nature Writing, as well as multiple editions of The Best Women’s Travel Writing. She was an MIT Knight Science Journalism Fellow (2016-17) and Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Fellow (2013-14) and earned an MA in Journalism from New York University. She is currently a co-director of the Religion & Environment Story Project and a contributing editor of Orion, and she recently taught at Princeton University as the Currie C. and Thomas A. Barron Visiting Professor in the Environment and Humanities.

Justin Taylor

Taylor has taught writing at the graduate and undergraduate level in programs across the U.S., including most recently in the University of Montana M.F.A. program and at Willamette University as the 2018-2019 Presidential Distinguished Visiting Scholar. Taylor is the author of the story collections Everything Here Is the Best Thing Ever and Flings, and the novel The Gospel of Anarchy. His newest book, the memoir Riding with the Ghost, was published in 2020. Lauren Groff said the memoir was "gorgeously layered and deeply felt." He serves as the fiction editor at the Literary Review. Taylor’s work has appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s, and the Sewanee Review, among other publications. Taylor will appear at the Southern Festival of Books in October.

 

SPRING 2022

     

Katy Simpson Smith

Katy Simpson Smith was born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi. She received a PhD in history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars. She is the author of We Have Raised All of You: Motherhood in the South, 1750-1835, and the novels The Story of Land and SeaFree Men, and The Everlasting, which the New York Times named among the Top 10 Historical Fiction of 2020. Her writing has also appeared in the New York Times Book ReviewParis ReviewLos Angeles Review of BooksOxford AmericanGranta, and Literary Hub. She lives in New Orleans, and recently served as the Eudora Welty Chair for Southern Literature at Millsaps College. 

Sidik Fofana

Sidik Fofana is an author from New York, where he lives with his wife and son and teaches. Fofana's novel Stories from our Tenants Downstairs forthcoming from Scribner in the US in August 2022. Essence said this book "It's impossible not to get sucked in." His work has appeared in the Sewanee Review and Granta. He received his MFA at New York University.