You are here

Alumni News

Marilyn Abildskov, NWP ’97, published short stories in StoryQuarterly and Prairie Schooner and essays in The Southern Review and Colorado Review. Her short story “Chosen” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

Sandy Allen, NWP ’12, published their debut book A Kind of Mirraculas Paradise: A True Story about Schizophrenia with Scribner in 2018; the paperback launched at Prairie Lights Books in January 2019. A semi-finalist for the PEN Writing for Justice Fellowship, they recently published or have forthcoming work on BuzzFeed News, CNN Opinion, Bon Appétit's Healthyish, them., Pacific Standard and Narratively.

Mary Margaret (“Mia”) Alvarado, NWP ’06, published “Copper Wheels Bronze” in the first issue of COAST/no COAST. Her essay “On Memory With No Devices” (Cagibi) was nominated for “Best of the Net,” and she has work forthcoming in America

Barret Baumgart, NWP ’14, will publish an essay on the giant sequoia (“Go Be Forgotten”) in The Arkansas International, in Spring 2019. Older news: his book China Lake was named best nonfiction of 2017 by Kirkus and Brooklyn Rail.

Brittany Borghi, NWP ’18, was hired as a lecturer in the department of Rhetoric at the University of Iowa.

Drew Bratcher, NWP ’16, published a series of essays about country music–“It’s Strange the Way the Lord Does Move,” “Lonesome Together,” “The Ones About Flowers,” and “To Be At Home Everywhere”–in The Paris Review.

Amy E. Butcher, NWP ’12, sold her second book, MOTHERTRUCKER, on proposal to Little A, Amazon’s literary fiction/nonfiction press in October 2018. Her Brevity essay, “Women These Days,” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and for inclusion in Best American Essays 2019 by the editors of Brevity. “Consolation Puppies,” her graphic essay co-produced with illustrator Martha Park, appeared in GRANTA, and “Bare Necessities” was published in Harper’s. She also published the essays “Gun Violence: America’s Great Denominator” and “MIA: The Liberal Men We Love” in LitHub and was awarded a sabbatical during the Spring 2018 semester by the faculty of Ohio Wesleyan University.

Lina María Ferreira Cabeza-Vanegas, NWP ’12, published the essay “Sing Queen City Pain” in the Oxford American.

Frances Cannon, NWP ’17, is publishing a book of graphic literature in April with MIT Press titled Walter Benjamin Reimagined: A Graphic Translation of Prose, Poems, Aphorisms, and Dreams. She teaches creative writing and fiction workshop courses at Champlain College in Burlington, VT and visual art and creative writing courses at the historic Shelburne Craft School in Vermont.

Felicia Rose Chavez, NWP ’12, is at work on a dual contract with Haymarket Books to co-edit a Latinx BreakBeat poetry anthology in partnership with Willie Perdomo and José Olivarez, and write her debut book, The Anti-Racist Writing Workshop, a hybrid work of memoir and creative writing pedagogy. She published the essay “The Mental Load” in Brevity, the essay “Translating Otherness” in Proximity Magazine, and her essay “Memory Loop” is forthcoming in The Kenyon Review

Jennifer S. Cheng, NWP ’09, published the hybrid book MOON: LETTERS, MAPS, POEMS (Tarpaulin Sky), named one of the “Best Books of 2018” by Publishers Weekly and long-listed for the Northern California Book Awards. She published new work in the Los Angeles Review of Books Quarterly Journal and Fourteen Hills and had work featured on Poetry Daily.

Andy Douglas, NWP ’05, will publish his second book, Redemption Songs, about singing in a choir with prisoners, in 2019 with Innerworld Publishing.

Micah Fields, NWP ’18, sold his first book, about Houston, Texas, to W.W. Norton.

Susan Futrell, NWP ’04, published her debut book Good Apples (UI Press, 2017), and also received a fellowship that brought her to the Kashmir Valley. She spent two weeks in Kashmir in October, visiting apple orchards, markets, and schools, and meeting with apple growers, university researchers, journalists and NGOs. She’ll return for a second research trip next year. Meanwhile she writes about Kashmir, apples, and the day to day realities and future for people growing apples in a conflict zone, amidst climate change, political turmoil, and global markets.

A. Kendra Greene, NWP, ’11, is Visiting Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at The University of Texas at Dallas. Her chapbook Vagrants and Uncommon Visitors was a CLMP Firecracker Finalist for indie lit.

Kerry Howley, NWP, ’11, Assistant Professor in the NWP, wrote about Larry Nassar for New York Magazine in the piece “The Fall of USA Gymnastics.”

Jeremy B. Jones, NWP ’09, and Elena Passarello, NWP ’08, co-edit a nonfiction book series called In Place (from Western Virginia University Press), and in the spring two books will be published: Greg BottomsLowest White Boy and Cassandra Kircher’s Far Flung: Improvisations on National Parks, Driving to Russia, Not Marrying a Ranger, the Language of Heartbreak, and Other Natural Disasters. Kircher took nonfiction courses in the NWP while completing her PhD in English at the University of Iowa.

Kevin Koch, NWP ’83, published a new book, The Thin Places: A Celtic Landscape from Ireland to the Driftless (Wipf & Stock, 2018). The work links places in Ireland to places in the Driftless Area of the American Midwest along themes of a Celtic spirituality of nature. Koch is a Professor of English at Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa, where he teaches such courses as Nature Writing, Writing the Midwest Landscape, and the Nature of Nature in Ireland.

Taney Kurth, NWP ’18, was hired to teach a series of courses on professionalization for undergraduate writing majors within The Nonfiction Writing Program.

Lucas Mann, NWP ’12, published his third book, Captive Audience: On Love and Reality TV (Vintage), which was named one of the best nonfiction books of 2018 from Kirkus. He won a 2018 National Endowment for the Arts fellowship and a 2018 United States Artists fellowship.

Spenser Mestel, NWP ’16, is covering voting rights for The Intercept and gay fitness for VICE. He also provided coverage of New Year’s Eve celebrations in Times Square for The New York Times.

Emily Mester, NWP ’18, was hired as a lecturer in the department of Rhetoric at the University of Iowa.

Cheyenne Nimes, NWP ’10, published a nonfiction piece in The Shell Game: Writers Play with Borrowed Forms (University of Nebraska Press, 2018), as well as the postscript to the anthology.

José Orduña, NWP ’13, will publish the essay titled “A Nation of Laws, A People of Compassion” in Timothy McSweeney's Quarterly Concern #55, due out in February/March.

Robert Peck, NWP ’18, was hired as a lecturer in the Department of Rhetoric at the University of Iowa.

Dina Peone, NWP ’18, taught the NWP’s first-ever online course this fall, inspiring a number of UIowa students to take more nonfiction courses and/or apply to the NWP. The University of Chicago has hired her as a lecturer to teach a nonfiction workshop this spring. Her essay “Freddy Krueger Is Not Real: The Dream of a Burn Survivor” has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize by The Lascaux Review and her essay “Ode to the Flickering, Fly-Zapping Neon Sign to Which I am Tethered” will be published in Hippocampus’s second print anthology, Greasy Spoon: Bottomless Coffee, Homefries & Pie (And Other Things We Love About Roadside Diners)

Andre Perry, NWP ’08, will publish his essay collection Some of Us Are Very Hungry Now with Two Dollar Radio in November 2019.

Katie Prout, NWP ’18, was hired by the International Writing Program as a Youth Programs Coordinator.

Helen Rubinstein, NWP ’15, published the personal essay “At the Shiva” in Gulf Coast, the criticism “Forms and Fractures: A Non-Mother’s Hunger for the Writing of Motherhood” in LA Review of Books and “Not Another Holocaust Book” in Jewish Currents, and an essay on teaching—“Practice Imagining Change: A Workshop Manifesto”—in Poets & Writers, later republished in LitHub.

Deborah Taffa, NWP ’13, co-wrote “Digadohi: Lands, Cherokee, and the Trail of Tears,” a documentary for public television that will air in 2019. She also was hired to co-produce and co-write season three of “America from the Ground Up” on PBS. Her play, “Parent’s Weekend,” was performed at the Autry Theater in Los Angeles in November.

Inara Verzemnieks, NWP ’13, Assistant Professor in the NWP, published Among the Living and the Dead (Norton, 2017), which was named by The Times (of London) one of the best books of the year in 2018.

Sarah Viren, NWP ’11, published her debut essay collection MINE (University of New Mexico Press), which was included on the PEN America longlist for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay.

Joshua Wheeler, NWP ’15, published “The Lost Apocalypse of Romaine Fielding,” a feature about the production (and destruction) of America’s first apocalyptic, sci-fi blockbuster in 1913. He teaches on the faculty of the programs in Creative Writing and Screen Arts at Louisiana State University.

Larry Ypil, NWP ’15, will publish his second book this spring, There, which will be released under an imprint with the literary nonprofit Singapore Unbound.