Writer to Writer’s Fall 2019 Mentees

AWP celebrates the 44 writers selected to participate in the Fall 2019 session of Writer to Writer. We received hundreds of applications for this session. Mentors were each given several strong applications to choose from and selected their own mentees.

If you would like to apply for a mentor, mentee applications for the Spring 2020 session will be accepted January 1–17, 2020, via Submittable.

  • Diana Babineau

    Diana Babineau


    Diana Babineau is the managing editor of In These Times and a consulting editor for the Kenyon Review. She has copyedited books for the University of the West Indies Press and holds a BA in English from Amherst College. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in North American ReviewThe Common, and Terrain.org. She lives in Chicago.

    Diana Babineau is working with Shikha Malaviya.

  • Erin Bach

    Erin Bach


    Erin Bach was born and raised in Los Angeles, California, where she taught high school English for eight years before moving across the country and falling in love with the trees. Her writing centers around womanhood, desire, memory, voice, and the body. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Ashland University and currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with her husband. You can learn more about Erin at her website: www.erinbachwrites.com 

    Erin Bach is working with Michelle Menting.

  • Nathaniel Blaesing

    Nathaniel Blaesing


    Nathaniel Blaesing, upon redeployment to New Orleans after a year of flying helicopters in Iraq, evacuated survivors from the wake of Hurricane Katrina. He has been a recipient of a Lighthouse Writers Workshop Veterans Writing Award and the Carlisle Family Scholarship from the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley. His stories have been published in the Southeast Review, Midwestern Gothic, and Negative Capability. Now he is learning to piece his life together with his wife their young son.

    Nathaniel Blaesing is working with Phil Klay.

  • Judy Bolton-Fasman

    Judy Bolton-Fasman

    Creative Nonfiction

    Judy Bolton-Fasman has completed a memoir entitled Prayers and Trastiendas: A Daughter Tracks Down Her Parents’ Secrets. She has published in many literary venues and has an essay in the anthology The Shell Game: Writers Play with Borrowed Forms. Judy has an MFA from Columbia University. She is the recipient of fellowships from the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, the Mineral School in Mineral, Washington, and the Vermont Studio Center. She is most recently the recipient of the Alonzo G. Davis Fellowship awarded to a Latinx writer from the Virginia Center for Creative Arts and was the Erin Donovan Fellow in nonfiction at the Mineral School in 2018. Judy lives outside of Boston with her family.

    Judy Bolton-Fasman is working with Jessica Handler.

  • Rachel Borup

    Rachel Borup


    Rachel Borup holds a PhD in English from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and teaches at the University of Utah.  She is an alumna of the Tin House Writing Workshop, Aspen Summer Words, Squaw Valley Community of Writers, and the Chautauqua Institute.  Her short story, “Crash,” was a finalist for the Florida Review's Editors' Award in Fiction.  Other short stories of hers were finalists for the Colorado Review's Nelligan Prize, the Utah Original Writing Contest, and the New Orleans Review's Walker Percy Prize.  She facilitates the physicians’ Literature and Medicine Discussion Group at the University of Utah Hospital and is working on a novel.

    Rachel Borup is working with Alison Hammer.

  • Cori Bratby-Rudd

    Cori Bratby-Rudd


    Cori Bratby-Rudd is a queer LA-based writer and co-founder of Influx Collectiv(e)’s Queer Poetry Reading Series. She graduated cum laude from UCLA’s Gender Studies department, and received her MFA in creative writing from California Institute of the Arts. She has been published in Ms., the Gordian Review, Califragile, [PANK], Entropy, and Crab Fat magazine, among others. She won the Editorial Choice Award for her research paper in Audeamus academic journal and was nominated as one of Lambda Literary’s 2018 Emerging Writers. Her manuscript Dis/owned is a semifinalist for YesYes Books’ 2019 Pamet River Prize. You can find her at coribratbyrudd.com.

    Cori Bratby-Rudd is working with Marlena Chertock.

  • Luisa Caycedo-Kimura

    Luisa Caycedo-Kimura


    Luisa Caycedo-Kimura is a Colombian-born writer, translator, and educator. A former attorney, Luisa left the legal profession to pursue her passion for writing. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in the Cincinnati Review, Sunken Garden Poetry 1992-2011, Mid-American ReviewNashville Review, Jelly Bucket, Connecticut Review, and elsewhere. Luisa currently lives in Connecticut with her artist husband Aaron.

    Luisa Caycedo-Kimura is working with Dean Rader.

  • Eileen Cronin

    Eileen Cronin


    Eileen Cronin’s memoir, Mermaid, published by Norton in 2014, was translated into three foreign languages and was one of O magazine’s Best Memoirs of the year. She is a writing instructor at UCLA Extension. She’s finishing a novel and practicing psychology under UCLA’s Family Medicine Department.

    Eileen Cronin is working with James Tate Hill.

  • Angèle Devant

    Angèle Devant


    Angèle Devant received her Bachelor’s of Arts in English from Antioch University and her Masters of Fine Arts in English and creative writing from Queens University of Charlotte.

    Angèle Devant is working with Chinelo Okparanta.

  • Kianna Eberle

    Kianna Eberle

    Creative Nonfiction

    Kianna Eberle is a writer and mental health nurse residing in Cleveland, Ohio. She studied comparative American studies at Oberlin College. Currently, she feels most at home in creative nonfiction and strives to write essay and memoir that is interrogative, vulnerable, personal, and speaks truth to power and to the queer female experience. The themes she feels driven by are sexual violence, mental health, the development of queer identity, addiction, and the messiness of family, in all its meanings and forms. She works by night and writes, sleeps, and loves on her tiny pitbull, Lucy, by day. 

    Kianna Eberle is working with Erica Trabold.

  • Lynne Ellis

    Lynne Ellis


    Lynne Ellis writes in pen. Her words appear in WA 129, The Stars, Cascadia Rising Review, Papeachu Review, and PageBoy. Her chapbook, In these failing times I can forget, was recently published by Papeachu Press. She was a finalist for the Tucson Festival of Books Literary Awards and won the 2018 Red Wheelbarrow Poetry Prize. As a stagehand and member of IATSE Local 15 in Seattle, Lynne continues to try to bring poetry to the catwalks and craft to the page.

    Lynne Ellis is working with M.A. Vizsolyi.

  • Jenny Sue Gamboa

    Jenny Sue Gamboa


    Jenny Sue Gamboa writes young adult, sci-fi, and fantasy. She got her start in the first grade, where she composed such riveting tales as “At the Bus Stop” and “I’m Going to New York.” She has worked in photography, marketing, and gymnastic-mom-chauffeuring. She is fluent in Spanish and is married to her Mexican lover. They live in Salt Lake with their three children, three chickens, and one parakeet. Her main claim to fame is her ability to touch her nose with her tongue (which apparently only 10% of the general population can do.) Visit her at www.jennysuegamboa.com.

    Jenny Sue Gamboa is working with Kate Ristau.

  • Ivy Ge

    Ivy Ge


    Ivy Ge has been exploring ways to enrich her life, from being an aspiring actress to working for airline executives to becoming a pharmacy professor and a multigenre author . Currently, she is working on a political thriller about an American widow caught between personal conflict and national crisis in Colombia. Her self-help book The Art of Good Enough: The Working Mom’s Guilt-Free Guide to Thriving While Being Perfectly Imperfect will be released in January 2020. Visit http://ivyge.com for more information about Ivy and her book.

    Ivy Ge is working with Jennifer Steil.

  • Lucy Griffith

    Lucy Griffith


    Lucy Griffith is happiest on a tractor named Mabel (a muse of 55 horsepower) and lives on a ranch beside the Guadalupe River near Comfort, Texas. Her first collection of poems, We Make a Tiny Herd, was published by Main Street Rag as a finalist in their poetry book contest. She also has work in the anthologies Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems and Weaving the Terrain: 100-Word Southwestern Poems. She co-edited Echoes of the Cordillera: Attitudes and Latitudes along the Great Divide. She won the Donald Everett Axinn Returning Contributor Award in Poetry for the 2019 Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference.

    Lucy Griffith is working with Athena Kildegaard.

  • Shahnaz Habib

    Shahnaz Habib

    Creative Nonfiction

    Shahnaz Habib is a writer and translator based in Brooklyn, New York. Her book of subversive travel writing, Airplane Mode, is forthcoming from Catapult. Shahnaz is the translator of Jasmine Days, for which she and the author Benyamin won the JCB Prize. Her work has been published in Creative Nonfiction, Agni, Brevity, Elsewhere, the Harvard Divinity Bulletin, etc. Shahnaz consults for the United Nations and teaches writing at Bay Path University and the New School. 

    Shahnaz Habib is working with Kisha Schlegel.

  • Amy Widmoyer Hanson

    Amy Widmoyer Hanson


    Amy Widmoyer Hanson's work has been awarded the 2018 New Letters Prize for Fiction and the 2016 Iowa Review Award as judged by Kelly Link, nominated for the PEN/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize, and workshopped at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. She holds a degree in piano performance and has taught both privately and in the public schools. She writes from the Minneapolis home she shares with her husband and three children.

    Amy Widmoyer Hanson is working with Chris Cander.

  • Trish Hopkinson

    Trish Hopkinson


    Trish Hopkinson is a poet, blogger, and advocate for the literary arts. You can find her online at SelfishPoet.com and provisionally in Utah, where she runs the regional poetry group Rock Canyon Poets and folds poems to fill Poemball machines for Provo Poetry. Her poetry has been published in several lit mags and journals, including Tinderbox, Glass Poetry Press, and the Penn Review; her third chapbook, Footnote,was published by Lithic Press in 2017. Hopkinson will happily answer to labels such as atheist, feminist, and empty nester and enjoys traveling, live music, wine-tasting, and craft beer.

    Trish Hopkinson is working with Sandy Coomer.

  • Anna K. Jacobson

    Anna K. Jacobson


    Anna K. Jacobson is a teacher, poet and storyteller. In her 25-year teaching career, Anna has worked to develop curriculum with the Smithsonian Museum of American Art, the Royal Shakespeare Company, and the National Scholastic Press Association. Anna has been fortunate to study poetry with Joan Logghe and Anita Skeen at Ghost Ranch and Carl Phillips through the Kenyon Review summer program. As a storyteller, Anna performs in the Fall StorySlam Series at Bab’s Lab in the CORK Arts District in Jacksonville, Florida, her hometown.

    Anna K. Jacobson is working with Janée Baugher.

  • Kimberly Kaye

    Kimberly Kaye

    Creative Nonfiction

    Kimberly Kaye has a doctorate in human factors, which is the design of systems in consideration of humans’ capabilities and limitations. Her academic work analyzing ER nurses’ stories to identify requirements for medical devices has appeared in Ergonomics in Design and Health Systems. An alumna of Tin House, Kimberly is working on a memoir about her relationship with her mother, who was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease at 49 years old.

    Kimberly Kaye is working with Emily Maloney.

  • Cybele Garcia Kohel

    Cybele Garcia Kohel


    Cybele Garcia Kohel is a poet living in Pasadena, California. Born in Puerto Rico, she writes about life through the many lenses provided by her diverse background, Generation X upbringing, and the streets of Los Angeles. She is a cultural worker, community agitator, and serious dog lover. You can read her poems in Vine Leaves Journal (issue #15, 2015), These Fragile Lilacs Poetry Journal (the Women’s Voices issue, June 2017), the Altadena Poetry Review (2017, 2018), New American Legends (April 2019) and the upcoming Nightingale and Sparrow (2020).

    Cybele Garcia Kohel is working with Atar Hadari.

  • Alex Sujong Laughlin

    Alex Sujong Laughlin


    Alex Sujong Laughlin is a writer and journalist based in Brooklyn, New York. She has made podcasts for the New York Times, the Washington Post, and BuzzFeed. She also teaches at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY.

    Alex Sujong Laughlin is working with Marie Myung-Ok Lee.

  • Minyoung Lee

    Minyoung Lee


    Minyoung Lee writes fiction in San Francisco, CA. Her work appears in MoonPark Review, Vestal Review, JMWW, and others. She is a Tin House Summer Workshop alum and a Mendocino Coast Writers’ Conference–Hether Ludwick First Taste Scholar. She is writing a novel based on her experience working on an offshore oil platform off the Louisiana coast. Born in Seoul, South Korea, Minyoung also lived in New Zealand, Israel, and six US states. She shares her home with Matisse, an elderly calico cat from Texas. She currently works in the tech industry.

    Minyoung Lee is working with Soniah Kamal.

  • Amy Lerman

    Amy Lerman


    Amy Lerman was born and raised on Miami Beach, moved to the Midwest for many years, and now lives with her husband and very spoiled cats in the Arizona desert, where she is residential English faculty at Mesa Community College. She received her master’s and PhD in American literature from University of Kansas, and her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Rattle, Smartish Pace, Common Ground Review, Prime Number, and other publications.

    Amy Lerman is working with Michael Meyerhofer.

  • Masha Lisak

    Masha Lisak


    Masha Lisak is the editor-in-chief of Written Here 2018, a journal of the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley. She lives in Oakland, CA, where she works as a consultant for social sector organizations and occasionally walks dogs. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Sycamore Review, Knell, and elsewhere.

    Masha Lisak is working with David Eye.

  • Sakae Manning

    Sakae Manning


    Sakae Manning’s work centers on historical and contemporary alliances, solidarity, and intersectionality among women of color. Her work may be read in Carve Magazine, Dryland, Making Waves: An Anthology of Asian-American Women Writers, and the Salt River Review. Manning was writer-in-residence at the Annenberg Community Beach House, where she produced public programs focused on women writers of color. She is a member of Women Who Submit and the Mount Washington Writers Workshop. Manning is a 2019 Summer Fishtrap Writes Fellow and a returning resident at the Dorland Mountain Arts Colony and is currently working on a novel, Kimono Blues.

    Sakae Manning is working with Jenny Lee Ferguson.

  • Maureen McGuirk

    Maureen McGuirk


    Maureen McGuirk earned her bachelor's degree in writing for film and television from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. Her short story “Miss Fortunate” was published in quiet Shorts, a Seattle-based arts journal. Her one-act play “A Private Conversation” earned an honorable mention in the New Works of Merit Playwriting Contest in 2016, and was published in Two Sisters Writing & Publishing Second Annual Anthology in 2019. She lives in Cleveland, Ohio.

    Maureen McGuirk is working with Matt Bell.

  • Brian Michael Murphy

    Brian Michael Murphy

    Creative Nonfiction

    Brian Michael Murphy’s writings have appeared in NarrativeKenyon ReviewMississippi Review, WaxwingMedia-N, and in Italian translation in Ácoma. He is a faculty member in media studies at Bennington College, a staff blogger for the Kenyon Review, and an instructor in the Kenyon Review Young Writers Workshop. He holds a PhD in comparative studies from The Ohio State University, where he was a Presidential Fellow, and is currently writing a nonfiction book. He lives in Vermont with his family. 

    Brian Michael Murphy is working with Dawn Raffel.

  • Johnny Neill

    Johnny Neill

    Creative Nonfiction

    Johnny Neill is a husband and father of three who lives in Austin, Texas.  He sought out a mentor mentee relationship to help sort through a memoir/creative nonfiction project he has been pecking on for over a decade.  His other pastimes include cooking, home maintenance, and travel.

    Johnny Neill is working with Pat Willard.

  • Bruce Parker

    Bruce Parker


    Bruce Parker holds a BA in history from the University of Maryland Far East Division, Okinawa, Japan, and an MA in secondary education from the University of New Mexico.  He has taught English as a second language and worked as a technical editor and as a translator.  He reads for Boulevard, is the current president of the Oregon Poetry Association, and lives in Portland, Oregon.  His work has appeared in CIRQUE, The Inflectionist Review, Alembic, Cloudbank, Floyd County Moonshine, and elsewhere.

    Bruce Parker is working with Richard Terrill.

  • Lynn Pattison

    Lynn Pattison


    Lynn Pattison’s work has appeared in The Notre Dame Review, Rhino, Smartish Pace, Rattle, Tinderbox, and KYSO Flash, among others, and been anthologized in several venues, most recently in Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse, ed. Grace Bauer & Julie Kane (Lost Horse Press, University of Washington). She is the author of three poetry collections: tesla's daughter (March St. Press), Walking Back the Cat (Bright Hill Press), and Light That Sounds Like Breaking (Mayapple Press). Pattison’s work has been nominated for Pushcart recognition and inclusion in Best Small Fictions.

    Lynn Pattison is working with J. Kates.

  • Rachael Philipps-Shapiro

    Rachael Philipps-Shapiro


    Rachael Philipps-Shapiro is a British writer and journalist. She worked in the UK as a researcher and reporter for the BBC Food and Drink program and in print journalism as an editor at Time Out London and Elle UK. She moved to the US and freelanced for titles including Food and Wine, Time Out NY, and the New York Times. Most recently she has written for Edible Westchester. She was born in Wales and moved to the US fifteen years ago. Rachael received her BA and MA at Sussex University. She currently lives in Westchester, NY.

    Rachael Philipps-Shapiro is working with Sarah Carson.

  • A. Poythress

    A. Poythress


    A. Poythress is currently finishing their thesis at Columbia College Chicago towards an MFA in fiction. They've been published at Thresholds UK, the Lit Pub, Asymmetry Fiction, and the New Southern Fugitives and longlisted for the 2019 Online Writing Tips Short Fiction Contest. They primarily write surreal horror and fantasy focused on women and queer-identified people. @ap_mess on Twitter and Instagram.

    A. Poythress is working with Rose Andersen.

  • Casey Reiland

    Casey Reiland


    Casey Reiland 's work has previously appeared in the Headland Journal, The Puritan, and PULP Literature. She is the recipient of the Taube Award in Fiction from the University of Pittsburgh, where she received a BA in English writing. Originally hailing from a small town in central Pennsylvania, she now lives in the Washington, DC, area and is on a mission to find the best pho restaurant in the city.

    Casey Reiland is working with Rachel Swearingen.

  • Kimberly Ross

    Kimberly Ross


    Kimberly Ross comes from a long line of storytellers, stretching back to Ireland and to the first white settlers in New England. She also comes from politicians, soldiers, teachers, doctors, and serious devotees of fringe religions. There are farmers, too, but the story she’s dedicated her time to for the last few years belongs to another great storyteller, Mary Prickett, whose anecdotes about farm life in the 1930’s form the heart of Kimberly’s first novel, Deep Roots, Tall Sky. Kimberly lives on a lake east of Redmond, Washington, with a dog, two cats, and several chickens. www.kimrosswrites.com.

    Kimberly Ross is working with Kim Chinquee.

  • Tonesha Russell

    Tonesha Russell

    Creative Nonfiction

    Tonesha Russell is a dynamic communicator, writer, and educator with a master’s degree in English from Georgetown University. She has taught English composition for over 5 years and is passionate about bringing the voices of those on the margins to the center. Her love for writing and literature emerged after reading Mildred D. Taylor’s Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry. At just 12 years old, it was a poignant introduction to the life she would come to know as a black person in America. She is a wife to her husband, Samuel, and mother to 2 boys and 1 girl. She is a black girl knitter.

    Tonesha Russell is working with Joshunda Sanders.

  • Daniel Fergus Tamulonis

    Daniel Fergus Tamulonis


    Daniel Fergus Tamulonis’s life is filled with puppetry, the Peace Corps, theatre, music, children, and teaching. Writing has been part of all of these paths. Two essays on teaching in the Bronx have seen print, and a short story, Slung Mugs, published in 2018 online by the Society for Misfit Stories, will be included in the Society’s annual print anthology later this year. Writing and reading young adult novels with diverse heroes inspire him and give him hope. His years in the Congo, his African American husband, and their two African American children keep that hope burning bright.

    Daniel Fergus Tamulonis is working with Mark Jude Poirier.

  • Leah Tieger

    Leah Tieger


    Leah Tieger lives in a house with more windows than walls. She’s worked as a teaching artist for the Writer’s Garret, poetry contest editor for American Literary Review, and fiction reader for The Boiler. Her first chapbook has a really long title. You can find newer poems published or forthcoming in Pleiades, Colorado Review, RattleRedivider, and other places.  

    Leah Tieger is working with Allison Davis.

  • Michael Todd

    Michael Todd

    Creative Nonfiction

    Michael Todd is an essayist from Southwest Virginia. He currently lives in Madrid, Spain, where he studies Spanish and works as an ESL teacher. He earned his BFA in sculpture and extended media from Virginia Commonwealth University and since graduation has worked as a scenic designer, freelance journalist, figure model, and, of course, barista. His work engages with ideas of queer identity, bodies and intimacy, and free will and inheritance, among other themes. One of his recent favorite reads was Mothers by Rachel Zucker, and he continues to find new life with every read of Bluets by Maggie Nelson.

    Michael Todd is working with Lara Lillibridge.

  • Raksha Vasudevan

    Raksha Vasudevan

    Creative Nonfiction

    Raksha Vasudevan is a South Asian Canadian economist, writer, and former aid worker. Her essays have appeared in the Threepenny ReviewCatapult, Lit Hub, Los Angeles Review of BooksNYLONHigh Country NewsRoads & Kingdoms, Carve Magazine, and more. She is a James Houston Memorial Scholar of the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley and a Writing in Color Fellow of the Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing. She tweets @RakshaVasudevan.

    Raksha Vasudevan is working with Sayantani Dasgupta.

  • Terri Wise

    Terri Wise


    Terri Wise started writing fiction as a small child on her parents’ electric typewriter. She studied English literature at Skidmore College, where she was a writing tutor, and at the University of Westminster in London. Terri is a freelance editor working on her first novel. She has been taking fiction classes at GrubStreet in Boston for the last four years and is participating in their Novel Generator program in Fall 2019. She lives in Somerville, Massachusetts, with her son and their two cats.

    Terri Wise is working with Anne Leigh Parrish.

  • Mimi Wong

    Mimi Wong


    Mimi Wong is Editor in Chief of The Offing, a literary magazine dedicated to centering marginalized voices. Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in CatapultCrab Orchard ReviewDay OneElectric LiteratureHyperallergic, Literary Hub, Refinery29, and Wildness. She is an alumna of the Tin House Summer Workshop and the Autobiography & Fiction with Electric Literature residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, and a founding fellow of the Anaphora Writing Residency for Writers of Color. She graduated from New York University with a BA in English and American literature and minor in creative writing. She lives in Brooklyn.

    Mimi Wong is working with Angie Kim.

  • Hannah Yerington

    Hannah Yerington


    Hannah Yerington is published in The Fem, Algebra of Owls, Gyroscope Review, and Rogue Agent. She runs the Bolinas Poetry Camp for Girls every summer and is a spoken word artist and poet. She writes about many things: primarily the space between Judaism and feminism, as well as talking flowers, post-memory, and sometimes seals.

    Hannah Yerington is working with Rebecca Morgan Frank.

  • Julie Zigoris

    Julie Zigoris


    Julie Zigoris holds a PhD in Russian literature, and her book Belomor: Criminality and Creativity in Stalin’s Gulag was released as a paperback in 2018. Julie has taught literature at the University of Pittsburgh, Stanford University, San Quentin prison, and the Jewish Community High School of the Bay. She was a writing contet winner in the YA categories at the 2019 San Francisco Writers’ Conference and Mendocino Coast Writers’ Conference. A native Pennsylvanian, Julie now lives in San Francisco. Her first novel is a botanical-themed coming of age story about love and loss that features an eccentric Russian teacher. 

    Julie Zigoris is working with Meg Eden.

  • Kelsey Zimmerman

    Kelsey Zimmerman


    Kelsey Zimmerman is a writer and photographer living in Madison, Wisconsin. She is a native Michigander and alumna of the University of Michigan, where she earned her BA in English language and literature. She writes about resilience in all its forms. You can find her at her website (www.kelseyzimmerman.com) or on Twitter (@kelseypz). 

    Kelsey Zimmerman is working with Keith Kopka.

Previous Participants

See lists of previous Writer to Writer participants.