Creative Writing BA - Faculty
Here’s a look at our faculty:
He could stop me now if he wanted to. He could have me forever, despite it all. Even forever. Winslow breathed quietly, steadily. I waited. He was not breathing the way he did when he slept, and I walked recklessly out of the bedroom.
--Rebecca Chace, from Leaving Rock Harbor
Rebecca Chace is the director of the Fairleigh Dickinson’s undergraduate Creative Writing Program. The author of the novel Leaving Rock Harbor, which was an Editor’s Choice in the New York Times Book Review, and finalist for the 2010 New England Book Award. Her memoir, Chautauqua Summer, was a New York Times Book Review Notable Book and Editor’s Choice. She adapted her novel, Capture the Flag, for the screen with director Lisanne Skyler. The adaptation won the showtime Tony Cox screenwriting award in the short film category at the Nantucket Film Festival, 2010. She has written for the New York Times Magazine, New York Times Sunday Book Review, the Huffington Post, NPR’s “All Things Considered,” and other publications. Rebecca teaches undergraduate workshops in fiction, creative nonfiction, as well as playwriting and dramatic structure.
Years ago, deep in Louisiana’s nature, I dove
To catch a salt and pepper kingsnake as it slid into the earth,
And I pulled it up. Then it bit me over and over until I could
Calm it, pin its head to the ground: It said, as all prophets do:
“You, my love, are easy to catch. Write something
And remember how scared you are right now and always--now let me go.”
The snake leapt to its hole and poured in.
--David Daniel, from “The Naturalist”
David Daniel’s book of poems, Seven-Star Bird (Graywolf Press), led Harold Bloom to call him “an authentic heir to Hart Crane” and won the Larry Levis Prize for the best first or second book of the year. Many of the poems from his forthcoming collection, Ornaments and Other Assorted Love Songs, have been featured in The American Poetry Review, where he’s a regular contributor. His poems and essays have recently appeared in A Field Guide to Prose Poetry, The Poetics of American Song Lyrics; The Library of America’s Anthology of American Religious Poetry, Connotation Press, APR, and Memorius. Daniel was also poetry editor of “Ploughshares “ for more than a decade while teaching at Emerson College. He is also the creator and producer of WAMFEST: the words and music festival. WAMFEST has been celebrated for its progressive arts programming by the National Endowment for the Arts.
Daniel was also poetry editor of Ploughshares for more than a decade while teaching at Emerson College.
David Grand’s third novel, Mount Terminus, was published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in March 2014. He is the author of Louse, a New York Times Notable Book and a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year, and The Disappearing Body, which Bookforum described as “satirical noir at its mesmerizing best.” Jonathan Lethem has described Grand as “a stealth operator, a magician-architect in prose, building elegant mysterious structures.” He received his MFA from New York University, where he held the Fellowship in Fiction and studied with E.L. Doctorow. His writing has appeared in anthologies as well as The New York Times Magazine, Travel and Leisure, BlackBook, and elsewhere. David Grand teaches workshops in fiction writing and the course “Reading as Writers.”
Calling is a word we use instinctively to define something vaguely that we feel specifically. I might claim that I have a calling to be a writer--meaning, I write because I want to, because if I didn't, I wouldn't know where to put all the words that haunt my brain. But it's also not simply that ephemeral. I've decided to write, rather than paint or become a physicist, and because of that decision, I've also cultivated a habit by which my thoughts construct themselves as sentences to be expressed with written words--the same words that I'll eventually describe as haunting my brain.
– Minna Proctor, from Do you Hear What I Hear.
Minna Proctor is a magazine editor and essayist. She is the author of Do You Hear What I Hear? (Viking), an invesitagion of the idea of religious calling. Her translation of Federigo Tozzi’s short stories, Love In Vain (New Directions), won the 2001 PEN Poggioli Prize for a work in progress. She has written for Bookforum, The American Scholar, The Nation, Aperture, NPR.org, The New York Times Book Review, Salon, LA Times Book Review, Time Out, New York, and others. In addition to writing, she has worked in magazine publishing for many years. She was the Editor of COLORS, and Managing Editor at BOMB Magazine. She is the editor of The Literary Review, and teaches “The Personal Essay.”
Smoke has as many different scents as skin. Part of the pleasure is not knowing what it will be--sulfurous or closer to incense or airier and sweet as I imagine the smell of clouds. –Rene Steinke, from The Fires
Rene Steinke's most recent novel, Friendswood, was named one of National Public Radio's "Great Reads" of 2014, and it was shortlisted for the St. Francis Literary Prize. It was also an Amazon Book of the Month, and one of O Magazine's Fall Book Picks.Her novel Holy Skirts was a finalist for the 2005 national book award and was listed among the Best Books of 2005 by the Chicago Tribune and the Washington Post. Translated editions of the novel have been published in Italy and Spain. She is also the author of the The Fires. Her writing has appeared in anthologies and in the New York Times, Vogue, Bookforum, TriQuarterly, and elsewhere. She served as judge on the 2013 National Book Awards in Fiction, is the Director of the MFA program in Creative Writing at FDU, and regularly teaches undergraduate fiction and literature courses at FDU.
We might have predicted that Wesley Stace—a fine novelist and a fine musician—would one day write a novel about music, but could we have predicted that it would be so brilliant?
--Jonathan Coe writing about Wesley Stace’s new novel, Charles Jessold, Considered as a Murderer.
Wesley Stace/John Wesley Harding’s fourth novel, Wonder-Kid, was released in 2014 by Overlook Books. Stace has been Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Visiting Writer and is currently the Wamfest Artist-in- Residence. The host of all our wamfest events, Stace is an important part of our community. As John Wesley Harding, he’s made seventeen critically-aclaimed albums. As Wesley Stace, he’s the author of three critically- acclaimed novels, reviews for The New York Times and The Times Literary Supplement in London. He is a guest artist in the Creative Writing at FDU.