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Writing Certificate


Samina Ali
Samina Ali
Novel and Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Samina Ali’s novel Madras on Rainy Days received France's Prix du Premier Roman Etranger award, was a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award in Fiction, and was named a best debut novel by Poets & Writers. Among other places, her work has been featured in The Economist, The Guardian, and Vogue, and on NPR. Ali was also a featured presenter at the Nobel Women's Initiative 2017 International Conference. Her memoir, The Second Self, will be released in spring 2025.

Leslie Contreras-Schwartz
Leslie Contreras Schwartz
Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Leslie Contreras Schwartz is a multi-genre writer, a 2021 Academy of American Poets Laureate Fellow, the 2019-2021 Houston Poet Laureate, and the author of the 2022 C&R Press Nonfiction Prize Winner From the Womb of Sky and Earth. She is the author of five collections of poetry, including Black Dove / Paloma Negra (FlowerSong Press, 2020), a finalist for Texas Institute of Letters’ 2020 Best Book of Poetry. Her work has appeared in AGNI, EPOCH, Missouri Review, Iowa Review, [PANK], Verse Daily, Pleiades, and Houston Noir (Akashic Books, 2019). Contreras Schwartz is a poetry and nonfiction faculty member at Alma College's MFA low-residency program in creative writing. She is a graduate of The MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.

John Evans
John Evans
Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

John W. Evans is the author of four books. His latest, The Fight Journal (2023), received the Rattle Prize. Should I Still Wish: A Memoir was selected for the "American Lives" series. Young Widower: A Memoir received the River Teeth Literary Nonfiction Prize and a Foreword INDIES award. The Consolations: Poems was named the 2015 Peace Corps Writers Best Poetry Book. His work has appeared in Slate, The Missouri Review, Boston Review, Zyzzyva, Poets & Writers, and The Best American Essays
 

Laurel Flores Fantauzzo
Laurel Flores Fantauzzo
Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Laurel Flores Fantauzzo is the author of the young adult novel My Heart Underwater (Harper / Quill Tree Books, 2020) and the nonfiction narrative The First Impulse (Anvil, 2017). Her essays have appeared in CNN Philippines, The New York Times, The Baffler, and elsewhere. She has been named a Philippine National Book Award finalist, a PEN/FUSION Emerging Writers Prize finalist, and a grantee of the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice. She has taught writing and literature at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, Yale-NUS College in Singapore, and Ateneo de Manila University. She currently divides her time between Los Angeles and Metro Manila with her wife.

Rachel
Rachel Howard
Novel and Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Rachel Howard is the author of a memoir about her father’s unsolved murder, The Lost Night, and a novel, The Risk of Us. Her personal essays have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The New York Times "Draft" series, The Los Angeles Review of Books, StoryQuarterly, and O, The Oprah Magazine. She is the recipient of a 2024 National Endowment for the Arts literature fellowship and is working on a new memoir. Howard received an MFA in fiction from Warren Wilson College.

Deborah Johnson
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Deborah Johnson’s latest novel is The Secret Magic, which received the 2015 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction. Her previous novel, The Air Between Us, received the Mississippi Library Association Award for Fiction. She has been a translator and an editor, a broadcaster at Vatican Radio, and director of the Colom Foundation in Columbus, Mississippi.

Lauren Kate
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Lauren Kate is the author of nine novels, including the Fallen series, the Teardrop series, and The Betrayal of Natalie Hargrove. Her books have sold over 10 million copies worldwide and have been translated into over thirty languages. The feature film of Fallen was released by Sony Pictures in 2017. She received an MA in creative writing from UC Davis and is a former acquiring editor at HarperCollins.

Ammi Keller
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Ammi Keller’s work appears in American Short FictionJoyland, and The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2015. She has edited fiction, nonfiction, and poetry at Soft Skull Press and St. Martin’s Press, and has received residencies from the Norton Island Colony and Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Keller was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford.

Jack Livings
Jack Livings
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Jack Livings is the author of the novel The Blizzard Party, and the story collection The Dog, which was awarded the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize and the Rome Prize in Literature from the American Academy in Rome. His short fiction has appeared in The Best American Short Stories and Pushcart Prize anthologies. A former contributing editor at The Paris Review, he received an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Livings was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford.

Thomas McNeely
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Thomas McNeely’s stories have appeared in The AtlanticPloughsharesThe Virginia Quarterly Review, and a variety of other magazines and anthologies. His work has been short-listed for the Best American Short StoriesO. Henry Prize Stories, and the Pushcart Prize. In 2008, he received a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Prose. His first novel, Ghost Horse, was published in 2014. His story collection, Pictures of the Shark, was published in 2022 and received numerous awards. McNeely received an MFA from Emerson College. He was a Jones Lecturer and Stegner Fellow at Stanford.

Joshua Mohr
Novel and Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Joshua Mohr’s most recent memoir, Model Citizen, was published in March 2021. He is also the author of We Are All Together, Termite Parade (a New York Times Editors’ Choice), All This LifeFight SongDamascus, and Some Things That Meant the World to Me (an OThe Oprah Magazine Terrific Read of 2009 and a San Francisco Chronicle bestseller). His short stories and essays have appeared in The New York Times Book Review7x7, The Bay GuardianZYZZYVA, BuzzFeed, Literary HubThe Rumpus, and The Nervous Breakdown, among other publications. Mohr received an MFA from the University of San Francisco.

Liza Monroy
Liza Monroy
Novel and Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Liza Monroy's books include two that launched from The New York Times “Modern Love" columns. Her essays have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, O, Marie Claire, Longreads, Newsweek, Self, and Jezebel, among others. She received an MFA in nonfiction from the Columbia School of the Arts and has taught writing at Columbia and UC Santa Cruz.

Ron Nyren
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Ron Nyren’s fiction has appeared in The Paris Review, The Missouri Review, North American Review, Glimmer Train Stories, Mississippi Review, and elsewhere. He is the author of the novel The Book of Lost Light (which received Black Lawrence Press's 2019 Big Moose Prize), co-author of Deepening Fiction: A Practical Guide for Intermediate and Advanced Writers, and a former editor of Furious Fictions: The Magazine of Short-Short Stories. Nyren was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford.

Elizabeth Percer
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Elizabeth Percer is the author of two novels, All Stories Are Love Stories and An Uncommon Education, as well as Ultrasound, a book of poems. She has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and has received awards from the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Memorial Fund. She received a PhD in arts education from Stanford and a postdoctoral fellowship from the National Writing Project at UC Berkeley.

Angela Pneuman
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Angela Pneuman is the author of the novel Lay It on My Heart and the short story collection Home Remedies. Her fiction has appeared in The Best American Short Stories, Iowa Review, New England Review, Ploughshares, and The Los Angeles Review. She is a contributor to Salon, The Believer, and The Rumpus. She received an MFA in writing from Indiana University and a PhD in English from the State University of New York at Albany. Pneuman was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford.

Stephanie Reents
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Stephanie Reents received a BA from Amherst College, a second BA from Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, and an MFA from the University of Arizona. Her short stories have appeared in Epoch, StoryQuarterly, Gulf Coast, Pleiades, Denver Quarterly, New South, O. Henry Prize Stories 2006, and Best of the West, among other publications. Her collection of stories, The Kissing List, was published in 2012, and she has a novel forthcoming from Penguin Random House called We Loved to Run. Reents was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford.
 

Dominic Russ-Combs
Dominic Russ-Combs
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Dominic Russ-Combs’s fiction has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, the Kenyon ReviewThe Carolina Quarterly, and Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, among others. His poetry and creative nonfiction have appeared in Third Coast and Indiana Review. He received an Emerging Artist Award from the Kentucky Arts Council and a PhD in English from Texas Tech. Russ-Combs was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford.

 

Mike Scalise
Mike Scalise
Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Mike Scalise is the author of the memoir The Brand New Catastrophe (Sarabande, 2017) which received praise from The New York Times, The Baltimore Sun, The Kenyon Review, Buzzfeed, and elsewhere, and won the Christopher Doheny Award for excellence in illness writing from The Center for Fiction. His work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Bon Appétit, Agni, and elsewhere. He has received awards, grants, and fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, Art Omi, Bread Loaf, Yaddo, and Ucross, and he was the Philip Roth Writer in Residence at Bucknell University.

Julia Scheeres
Julia Scheeres
Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Julia Scheeres has written three books. Her memoir Jesus Land was a New York Times and London Times bestseller. Her narrative history of the Jonestown tragedy, A Thousand Lives, was named a "Best Book of the Year" by several papers and included in The Guardian's "Top 10 Books about the 1970s." Her most recent book, Listen, World!, is a critically acclaimed biography of Hearst columnist Elsie Robinson. A regular contributor to The New York Times Book Review, Scheeres works with private clients as a writing coach. She is a member of The Writers Grotto in San Francisco.

Nina Schuyler
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Nina Schuyler has taught creative writing for nearly two decades. Her novel Afterword was published in May 2023. Her short story collection, In This Ravishing World, received the W.S. Porter Prize and the Prism Prize for Climate Literature and will be published in 2024. Her novel The Translator won the Next Generation Indie Book Award for General Fiction and was a finalist for the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing. Her novel The Painting was a finalist for the Northern California Book Award. Her nonfiction book How to Write Stunning Sentences and her most recent craft book, Stunning Sentences: A Creative Writing Journal, are Small Press Distribution bestsellers. Schuyler received an MFA in creative writing from SF State, a JD from Hastings, and a BA in economics from Stanford.

Rachel Smith headshot
Rachel Smith
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Rachel Smith’s writing has appeared in The AtlanticThe Seattle TimesThe Rumpus, and The Coachella Review. She has received residencies and fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Marquette Residency, and the Elizabeth George Foundation and has taught creative writing at Stanford, the University of San Francisco, and the University of Mississippi, where she received an MFA in creative writing. Smith was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford.

Christine SneedChristine Sneed
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Christine Sneed is the author of three novels, Please Be Advised: A Novel in Memos; Paris, He Said; and Little Known Facts. In addition, she has published the story collections Portraits of a Few of the People I've Made Cry, The Virginity of Famous Men, and Direct Sunlight. She is the editor of the short fiction anthology Love in the Time of Time’s Up. She has received the Chicago Public Library Foundation's 21st Century Award and the Chicago Writers Association Book of the Year Award, among other honors. Her stories and essays have appeared in The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Ploughshares, and numerous other publications.

Sarah Stone
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Sarah Stone is the author of Hungry Ghost Theater and The True Sources of the Nile and co-author of Deepening Fiction: A Practical Guide for Intermediate and Advanced Writers. Her work has appeared in Ploughshares, StoryQuarterly, and The Writer’s Chronicle. She received an MFA in fiction from the University of Michigan, and is on faculty in the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.

Wendy Nelson Tokunaga
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Wendy Nelson Tokunaga is the author of Midori by Moonlight, Love in TranslationFalling UphillHis Wife and Daughters, and the self-published novel No Kidding, which received a Writer’s Digest award. She’s also written the nonfiction book Marriage in Translation: Foreign Wife, Japanese Husband. Her latest book is a collection of short stories, Postcards From Tokyo. Tokunaga received an MFA in writing from the University of San Francisco.

Malena Watrous
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor (Stanford Continuing Studies Writing Certificates Program Lead)

Malena Watrous is the author of the novel If You Follow Me, which received a Michener-Copernicus Award. She frequently reviews books for such publications as The New York Times and the San Francisco Chronicle. She received an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was a Truman Capote Fellow, and was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford.

Antoine Wilson
Antoine Wilson
Novel Writing Certificate Instructor

Antoine Wilson is the award-winning author of the novels Mouth to MouthPanorama City, and The Interloper. He has taught fiction writing at the University of Iowa, University of Wisconsin, UC San Diego, UCLA Extension, and Otis College of Art and Design. His work has appeared in The Paris ReviewStoryQuarterlyBest New American Voices, and he is a contributing editor at A Public Space.

Greg WrennGreg Wrenn
Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Greg Wrenn is the author of Mothership, a forthcoming memoir about using coral reefs and psychedelic plants to heal from trauma, and Centaur, which received the Brittingham Prize in Poetry. His work has appeared in The Best American Poetry, The Georgia Review, New England Review, AGNI, The American Poetry Review, The Kenyon Review, The New Republic, and elsewhere. He is completing Homesick, his second poetry collection. Wrenn was a Jones Lecturer and Stegner Fellow at Stanford and is an associate professor of English at James Madison University.

Anne Zimmerman
Memoir Writing Certificate Instructor

Anne Zimmerman’s first book was An Extravagant Hunger: The Passionate Years of M.F.K. Fisher. She has compiled and published two subsequent collections of Fisher’s work: Love in a Dish…and Other Culinary Delights and M.F.K. Fisher: Musings on Wine and Other Libations. She has written for Mix, TASTE, and Mother magazines, The Kitchn, Tasting Table, and Edible Communities.