Faculty

Faculty

Grace BonnerGrace Bonner is the MFA Program Director of the Writer’s Foundry and a Lecturer at St. Joseph’s College. She is a former Director of the 92nd Street Y Unterberg Poetry Center, where she now teaches poetry. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Columbia University and a BA from Sarah Lawrence College. Round Lake, her first collection of poetry, was published by Four Way Books in October 2016. Her poems have appeared in The New RepublicThe Paris ReviewParnassusPoetry DailyThe Southampton Review and in other publications. Excerpts from her memoir, Ghost Tracks, have been published in The Brooklyn Quarterly. She is a MacDowell fellow, and has taught literature and creative writing at the Pierrepont School in Westport, Conn. and in Paros, Greece. She is a mentor in PEN’s Prison Writing Program. 


N. Jamiyla ChisholmN. Jamiyla Chisholm is a Brooklyn native who moonlights as a travel visa collector. She has worked as a professional journalist for more than ten years, with various print and television media companies, and is currently the communications writer and editor for Barnard College. Jamiyla earned her MAT in teaching from the University of Southern California and an MFA from St. Joseph's College Foundry program. She is working on two long-form projects: A memoir and a novel.


Cathryn DwyreCathryn Dwyre received a Master of Landscape Architecture degree from the University of Pennsylvania, where she was the Managing Editor of ViaBooks with a volume published by MIT Press entitled Dirt. She completed her undergraduate degree at Colgate University, where she completed a double major in Philosophy and Geology. Early in her career, Dwyre dealt in rare books at Ursus Rare Books, with a specialization in aesthetics, livres d’artistes, garden history and architecture, where she wrote and designed chapbooks and catalogues. Previously, Dwyre worked as a field scientist for the United States Geological Survey under the Department of the Interior, doing geological mapping in the Cascade Mountains. Her current practice pneumastudio, with partner Chris Perry, has been featured in numerous publications and exhibitions, most recently in XXL-XS: New Directions in Ecological Design by Mitchell Joachim and Michael Silver, ACTAR, 2017. Their work was most recently exhibited in the show Tomorrows in Athens, Greece, in May of 2017. Her current work moves between aesthetics and landscape strategy, to writing and design around the topic of the picturesque and ecology, with a general interest in the dialectical exchange between architecture and landscape architectural design. Dwyre is the recipient of the MacDowell Colony fellowship 2013 with her partner in pneumastudio, Chris Perry. Dwyre currently teaches 4th year studios, 5th year thesis design studios and elective seminars at Pratt Institute School of Architecture in Brooklyn, N.Y. as an Adjunct Associate Professor.


Lee Clay JohnsonLee Clay Johnson is the author of the novel Nitro Mountain (Knopf), which won the 2017 Sue Kaufman Prize for First Fiction from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His work has appeared in Lit Hub, the Oxford AmericanThe CommonAppalachian Heritage, Salamander, and the Mississippi Review.  He holds a BA from Bennington College and an MFA from the University of Virginia. He grew up around Nashville in a family of bluegrass musicians, and currently lives in St. Louis and Charlottesville, Virginia.


Nathan McClainNathan McClain’s debut collection is Scale (Four Way Books, 2017). He is a recipient of scholarships from The Frost Place and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and a graduate of Warren Wilson’s MFA Program for Writers. A Cave Canem fellow, his poems have recently appeared or are forthcoming in Callaloo, Ploughshares, Sou’wester, Iron Horse Literary Review, Southern Humanities Review, Waxwing and elsewhere. He lives in Brooklyn.


Taylor PlimptonTaylor Plimpton is the author of Notes from the Night: A Life After Dark (Crown) and the co-editor of The Dreaded Feast: Writers on Enduring the Holidays (Abrams). A former editor at Men’s JournalManhattan and Beach magazines, he’s had his writing published there, as well as in Sports IllustratedTown & CountryTricycle: The Buddhist Reviewnewyorker.comTheRumpus.net, and in many other places. He’s been teaching at the Writer’s Foundry since 2013.


Joel WhitneyJoel Whitney is a Brooklyn-based writer, the author of Finks: How the CIA Tricked the World's Best Writers and a founder of Guernica: A Magazine of Global Arts & Politics.  Finks, his first book, has been called "riveting" (Kirkus), "ingeniously researched..." (Pankaj Mishra in The Guardian's Best of the Year Roundup), “a fascinating mix of political history [and] literary history” (New York Times), “an essential book” (Los Angeles Review of Books) and “a powerful warning” (The New Republic). His writing appears in  The New York TimesThe Daily BeastThe BafflerThe Wall Street JournalBoston ReviewSalonThe Sun MagazineThe San Francisco Chronicle, NPR, World Policy JournalThe New RepublicDissentNew York Magazine, The Wire (India) and The Village Voice. He is a former features editor at Al Jazeera America and a founder and former editor-in-chief of Guernica, for which he won a 2017 PEN/Nora Magid Award for magazine editing. He co-presents a literary series at Brooklyn Public Library's BPL Presents. Joel has taught English and writing at such universities as Fordham University, Cooper Union and John Jay College. A graduate of Columbia University's School of the Arts/Writing Program, his poetry has appeared in The Paris ReviewThe Nation, and Agni, and he was awarded a “Discovery”/The Nation Prize in 2003 by the 92nd Street Y and The Nation. Joel's writing has been translated into French, Russian, Romanian and German. With photographer Brett Van Ort, he also co-authored the 2013 TED Talks ebook on landmine eradication, Minescape. Joel's essays in Dissent and Salon were cited as Notables, respectively, in Best American Essays 2015 and in the Best American Essays 2013. Joel is currently working on a novel.


Leah Nanako WinklerLeah Nanako Winkler is a Japanese-American playwright from Kamakura, Japan and Lexington Kentucky. Her play KENTUCKY  was among the top 10 on the 2015 Kilroys List and recently received an Off-Broadway Premiere at Ensemble Studio Theatre in coproduction with Page 73 and the Radio Drama Network. It subsequently received a West Coast Premiere at East West Players  in November-December 2016. Leah is also the author of Two Mile Hollow (2017 Kilroys List,  Upcoming Simultaneous World Premiere at Artists At Play in La, Mixed Blood/Theater Mu in Minneapolis, First Floor Theater in Chicago  and Ferocious Lotus in San Francisco, Death For Sydney Black (terraNova Collective, Thinking Cap Theater, 2014 Kilroys Honorable Mention)  Diversity Awareness Picnic (2014 Kilroys Honorable Mention) , Double Suicide At Ueno Park (EST/Marathon 2015), Linus and Murray (EST/Marathon 2017) and The Adventures of Minami: The Robot From Japan Who Makes You Feel Safe When Loneliness Is Palpable (The Brick).  With playwright Teddy Nicholas, she cowrote Flying Snakes in 3-D!!!  which enjoyed performances in 2011-2012 at Ars Nova (ANT Fest), The Brick Theater and the New Ohio Theatre (Ice Factory ). Leah’s work has been developed at Playwrights Horizons, Clubbed Thumb, New Georges, New York Theatre Workshop, The Bushwick Starr, The Flea Theatre, Primary Stages, Artists at Play and more. Her experimental stuff has been performed all throughout the city at places like little theatre @ Dixon Place, Prelude Festival, Bowery Poetry Club and more. Her collections of short plays, NAGORIYUKI & Other Short Plays and The Lowest Form Of Writing are available on Amazon and have been performed all over the US, France and Asia. Her plays have also been published in Nanjing University’s Stage and Screen Reviews, Smith and Krauss, Sam French and Dramatists Play Service.  She was an artist in residence at New Group/Urban Arts Initiative , a winner of the 2015 Samuel French OOB Short Play Festival, a 2015 and 2016 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize nominee, a two time recipient of the A/P/A commission for the Japanese American National Museum, a recipient of the Truman Capote Fellowship for Creative Writing, a member of the Dorothy Strelsin New American Playwrights Group, Ma Yi Lab, a 2016-2017 Sloan Commission recipient with the Ensemble Studio Theatre, a commissioned writer with 2G, a 2016-2018 Time Warner fellow at the Women’s Project, an alumnus of Youngblood and a 2017 Sundance/Ucross Fellow. In 2017 she will be among the first ten playwrights to receive a commission from Audible to develop a radio theater piece. The New York Times called her a “distinctive new voice.”

Faculty Mentors

Steven Hobbs was born and raised on the Gulf Coast of Florida, a setting that serves as the backdrop for much of his writing. His story, “At the Turn,” was recently published in a new literary journal out of Yale University called Letters and another, “The Prophet,” was selected as a finalist for this year’s J.F. Powers Short Story Prize. In addition to his work as a writer, Steven teaches creative writing and literature at the College of New Rochelle. He has also created and taught courses on religious themes in contemporary short fiction at Yale University. He serves on the committee for the Prison Writing Program at PEN American Center and holds an MA in religion and literature from Yale as well as an MFA in creative writing from The New School.


Sophie McManus is the author of the critically acclaimed novel, The Unfortunates, which was a finalist for the Barnes & Noble 2015 Great Writers Discover Award, the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize, the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize, and named a notable book by The Washington PostEntertainment WeeklyTimePaste, and Time Out (New York) among others. Her work has appeared in American Short FictionMemoriousTin House, and elsewhere. She is a recipient of fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, the Saltonstall Foundation, and the Jentel Foundation. She was born and raised in New York City and teaches writing in Brooklyn, New York.