Members of The Writers’ Room are poets, novelists, journalists, graphic novelists, translators, librettists, playwrights, memoirists, and historians. We pride ourselves not just on our vibrant creative diversity, but on our cultural and socioeconomic diversity, too. Below is a sample of our current members:
Arthur Bloom is a writer recently returned to his native Boston after 20 years in Paris. A graduate of Boston Latin School and Harvard College, he is a physician-scientist who studied the effects of the atomic bombs in Japan, and was professor of genetics and pediatrics at the University of Michigan and at Columbia University. While on the medical faculty at Columbia he studied creative writing, and when he went to Paris to pursue his research into environmental health effects in Eastern Europe, he changed careers and became a full-time writer. His most recent publication, pursued to completion at the Writers’ Room which he joined in 2014, is: Last Man Standing, a book of fifteen stories, and available at the Harvard Book Shop and on Amazon.
Mary Bonina is the author of My Father’s Eyes: A Memoir ( 2013) and the poetry collections Clear Eye Tea (2010), Living Proof(2007) published by Cervena Barva Press, and Lunch in Chinatown, a poetry chapbook inspired by teaching English to recent immigrants. Winner of the Boston Contemporary Authors UrbanArtsAward, her poem “Drift” is a public art installation in the City, carved in a granite monolith and permanently installed outside Green St. MBTA Station on the Orange Line, Jamaica Plain. Commissioned by composer Paul Sayed, she wrote a set of three poems, Grace in the Wind, which inspired Sayed’s composition for piano, cello, and soprano voice; the piece had its premiere November 2012 at the Longy School of Music of Bard College, Cambridge, MA. Bonina’s poetry and prose has been featured in Salamander, Hanging Loose, English Journal,Gulf Stream, The Worcester Review, in many other journals and anthologies, including Entering the Real World: VCCA Poets on Mt. San Angelo. Bonina has had a residency at Vermont Studio Center, and she has been a fellow at VCCA since 2001 when she was named finalist for the VCCA Goldfarb Fellowship in non-fiction. She works as a narrator for Talking Books for the Blind at the Clive V. Lacey Recording Studio at the Perkins School in Watertown, MA. She is a graduate of the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College and she serves on the Board of Directors of the Writers Room of Boston, where she is at work on a novel.
Debka Colson was the Ivan Gold Fiction Fellow in 2013 and is now the Administrator for the Writers’ Room of Boston. Debka writes fiction, poetry, essays and creative nonfiction. Her work has been published in a range of literary magazines, including: Slab, North American Review, SOL: English Writing in Mexico, Construction, and Roar, among others, and in two anthologies: Open to Interpretation: Fading Light, a juried art book of photography, poetry and prose, and Poetry Cram: The Ultimate Chicago Poetry Anthology. In 2013 she was a 2013 Finalist for the Nancy D. Hargrove Editor’s Prize for Fiction and a Finalist for the 5th Annual (2014) Fiction Normal Prize. Debka is also the Flash Fiction Contest Coordinator for JP Reads—an annual community literary celebration in Boston. She has taught creative writing at Emerson College, the Boston Public Library, Brookline Adult & Community Education, Meridian Academy, and through the Urban Scholars Program at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. www.DebkaColson.com
Robert Dall is a fiction writer from Cambridge, Massachusetts. His short stories have been published in Hunger Mountain, the Evansville Review, the Blue Moon Review, Acorn Whistle, and the Beacon Street Review. He received his MFA from Emerson College, has completed two residencies at the Vermont Studio Center, and has been a member of the Writers’ Room of Boston since 2001 (and a board member since 2009). Currently, he is working on new pieces of short fiction while hoping to find a home for his novel In the Box, the dystopian tale of a New England fishing town that decides to mix 17th-century punishments with 21st-century media saturation.
Alexander Danner is co-author of two textbooks about comics: Comics: A Global History, 1968 — Present with Dan Mazur (Thames & Hudson, 2014) and Character Design for Graphic Novels with Steven Withrow (Rotovision/Focal Press, 2007). He is author of the graphic novel Gingerbread Houses (illustrated by Edward J. Grug III) and many short comics, including Web Cartoonist’s Choice Award winners “The Discovery of Spoons” and “Five Ways to Love a Cockroach.” He teaches online courses in Graphic Novel writing and literature at Emerson College, in addition to providing guest lectures on comics and graphic novels to various schools and libraries. His comics and other writing can be found at TwentySevenLetters.com. Alexander joined The Writers’ Room in 2005, and is a past recipient of the Ivan Gold Fellowship.
Camille DeAngelis is the author of the crossover-YA novel Bones & All as well as two novels for adults, Mary Modern and Petty Magic. She wrote and revised her forthcoming novel (tentatively titled Immaculate Heart, coming 2016) at the Writers’ Room. Camille is also a certified vegan lifestyle coach and educator, and veganizing an 18th-century Scottish cookbook is one of her pet side projects. Camille also serves on the Board for the Writers’ Room.
Danielle Legros Georges is writer and educator, and the author of a book of poems, Maroon (2001). Her essays, interviews, poems, and reviews have appeared in publications including The Boston Globe, Callaloo, Consequence, Salamander, spoKe, sx salon, Transition, World Literature Today, and the Women’s Review of Books. Her poems have appeared in numerous anthologies. She is the recipient of a 2014 Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship in poetry, a Professor at Lesley University, and the new Poet Laureate of Boston.
Kate Gilbert is a children’s fiction writer with advanced degrees in medieval and Roman history. She works as a freelance editor specializing in works on premodern history and is the associate author of The Bayeux Tapestry and Its Contexts. Prior publications include a historic preservation activity workbook for children and an English village history. She is currently writing a middle-grade historical novel set in medieval Scandinavia and revising her first novel, a middle-grade fantasy/adventure. She has also worked as an AM-radio DJ, a janitor in an English boarding school, a children’s librarian, and a high school Latin teacher. Kate can be found at www.kategilbertwriter.com and as a blogger at www.readersunbound.com.
Jason Kaufman is working at the Writers’ Room on a historical novel about Prohibition and the 1921 World Series. Born & raised in Syracuse, NY, he was educated at Harvard, Princeton, and the Curtis Institute of Music. He was formerly John L. Loeb Associate Professor of the Social Sciences at Harvard University. Jason joined The Writers’ Room in 2012.
Geoff Kronik got his BA in 1983 and an MFA in 2012. He spent the twenty-nine years in between in a business career. His fiction and essays have appeared in Salamander, Opium, SmokeLong Quarterly, Litro, The Boston Globe and elsewhere. He is at work on a collection of short stories titled Vendor. Selected recent publications: “Haben Sie Schleim?” The Common, “A Second Bowl of Jook,” Litro (winner of “China” Flash Fiction Contest), “Three Thousand Lunches”, Boston Globe Magazine. Allwere written partially in the Room. Geoff joined The Writers’ Room in 2012.
Kendall Kulper writes historical fiction with a fantasy twist and is the author of Salt & Storm (YALSA 2015 Best Fiction for Young Adults) and Drift & Dagger. She graduated from Harvard University with a degree in history and literature in 2008 and spent several years as a journalist before deciding to write full-time. She grew up in the wilds of New Jersey and now lives in Boston with her husband, daughter, and chronically-anxious Australian Shepherd mix, Abby. You can follow her online atwww.kendallkulper.com and on Twitter at @Kendall_Kulper.
Mackenzi Lee holds a BA in history and an MFA from Simmons College in writing for children and young adults. Her debut novel, This Monstrous Thing, which won the PEN-New England Susan P. Bloom Children’s Book Discovery Award, will be published on September 22, 2015 by Katherine Tegen Books, an imprint of HarperCollins. She loves Diet Coke, sweater weather, and Star Wars. On a perfect day, she can be found enjoying all three. Visit her online at www.mackenzilee.com or @themackenzilee on Twitter.
Raised by martial artists, Katie Li grew up with fascinating stories and an eclectic cast of characters. She continues this tradition in her work, writing fiction and narrative non-fiction about personal transformation and unlikely possibilities. Her work has appeared in The Huffington Post, Write From Wrong, The Nexus, and performed by the Boston based theatre company, TC Squared. Katie is the co-founder of Social Artists & Writers, Assistant Editor at Novella-T, and is a regular contributor to Xenith’s advice column, “Writers on Writing.” She is currently working on her first novel. Learn more at www.katieliwriter.com.
Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich is writing a book of combined family memoir and literary journalism about a Louisiana murder and death penalty case. An essay adapted from the book appears in the new anthology TRUE CRIME (InFact Books, 2013). In support of her book, Alexandria has received a Rona Jaffe Award and fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and the Millay Colony for the Arts, among others. Currently, she lives just outside of Boston and teaches Grub Street’s new Memoir Incubator, an innovative year-long program in the memoir.
Wendy Mnookin‘s most recent book of poetry is The Moon Makes Its Own Plea, published by BOA Editions in 2008. Her other collections are What He Took (2002) and To Get Here(1999), also from BOA, and Guenever Speaks ((1991), a book of persona poems. Widely published in journals and anthologies, Mnookin has had poems featured on Poetry Dailyand The Writer’s Almanac. She has taught poetry at Emerson College, Boston College, Grub Street, and at workshops around the country, including including The Writers’ Center in Chautauqua, New York, Music of Words in Bend, Oregon, and The Writers’ Garret in Dallas, Texas. She also taught as poet-in-the-schools in both public and private schools in the Boston area. The recipient of an NEA Fellowship in Poetry, Mnookin received the Sheila Motton Book Prize from The New England Poetry Club for What He Took. A graduate of Radcliffe College (BA) and Vermont College (MFA), Mnookin lives with her husband in Newton, where they raised their three children. You can learn more about her work at www.wendymnookin.com.
Rebecca Givens Rolland is a writer, educator, photographer and consultant. She has a doctorate from Harvard in Human Development and Education and is also a speech-language pathologist and learning specialist, with a focus on early childhood. She won the 2011 Dana Award in Short Fiction and has fiction published or forthcoming in The Literary Review, Slice, and Hobart. Her nonfiction has appeared in Brain, Child Magazine, The Harvard Education Letter, and is forthcoming in Education Week. Her first book of poetry won the May Sarton New Hampshire First Book Award and was published by Bauhan Publishing.
Ben Russell is an emerging fiction writer from South Boston. After two decades as a human resources executive in the technology sector, Ben has taken a step back from corporate America to pursue a career in writing. In May of 2015 he joined the Writer’s Room of Boston, where he is working on his first works of short fiction. Ben holds a BA in history from Colby College.
Laura van den Berg is the author of the short story collections What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves Us, a Barnes & Noble “Discover Great New Writers” selection, and The Isle of Youth, which won the Rosenthal Family Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts & Letters and The Bard Fiction Prize. Both collections were shortlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award. Find Me, Laura’s first novel, was published by FSG in February.
Val Wang is an author and multimedia storyteller. Her memoir Beijing Bastard was published by Gotham in October 2014. Starting in the fall, she will teach in the English and Media Studies department of Bentley University. Member since 2013. www.valwang.com
Pui Ying Wong was born in Hong Kong. She is the author of a full length book of poetry Yellow Plum Season (New York Quarterly Books, 2010), two chapbooks: Mementos (Finishing Line Press, 2007), Sonnet for a New Country (Pudding House Press, 2008) and her poems have appeared in Angle Poetry (U.K.), The Brooklyner, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal (Hong Kong), Connotation Press: An Online Artifact, Crannog (Ireland), Prairie Schooner, The Southampton Review and 2Bridges Review among others. She lives in Cambridge, MA with her husband, the poet Tim Suermondt.