Visitors & Lecturers
Editors and Publishers
Anna Lena Phillips Bell (Ecotone and Lookout Books)
Anna Lena Phillips Bell is the author of Ornament, winner of the Vassar Miller Prize in Poetry. Her poems have recently appeared in the Southern Review, 32 Poems, Michigan Quarterly Review, and Colorado Review. The recipient of a North Carolina Arts Council Fellowship in literature, she served as senior editor at American Scientist before joining UNC Wilmington’s creative writing department as editor of Ecotone and its sister imprint, Lookout Books. She lives with her family near the Cape Fear River.
Millicent Bennett (Grand Central Publishing)
Millicent Bennett is an executive editor at Grand Central Publishing. Authors she has edited include Will Allison, Susannah Cahalan, Siri Hustvedt, Katie Kitamura, Phillip Lopate, David James Poissant, Douglas Preston, Liesl Schillinger, Brando Skyhorse, Steve Toltz, Lara Vapnyar, and Teddy Wayne. In recent years, her authors have won or been nominated for the Man Booker Prize, the Man Asian Literary Prize, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the Whiting Award, the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize, the PEN/Hemingway Award, the NYPL Young Lions Fiction Award, the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize, the Rona Jaffe Award, the Kirkus Award, the B&N Discover Award, and the Giller Prize, among others. Before joining Grand Central, Bennett worked at S&S, Free Press, Random House, Ecco, and Knopf, where she was lucky enough to work with, and learn from, some of the most distinguished authors in the business.
George David Clark (32 Poems)
George David Clark has served as editor and publisher of 32 Poems since 2011. His collection Reveille (Arkansas) received the Miller Williams Prize and his more recent poems appear in AGNI, The Gettysburg Review, Image, The Southern Review, and elsewhere. David has previously held the Olive B. O’Connor Fellowship in Poetry at Colgate University and the Lilly Postdoctoral Fellowship at Valparaiso University, and he is currently an assistant professor of English at Washington & Jefferson College.
David Scott Cunningham (University of Arkansas Press)
David Scott Cunningham is editor-in-chief at the University of Arkansas Press, home to writers such as Frank Stanford, John Williams, Ellen Gilchrist, Robert Mezey, R. S. Thomas, Billy Collins, and John Ciardi and the recent publisher of work from Patricia Smith, Steve Scafidi, Jennifer Givhan, Jess Rizkallah, and Jacob Shores-Argüello. He acquires broadly in the humanities and social sciences, bringing in both literature and serious nonfiction for the press’s front list of approximately twenty-five books per year. He directs the poetry program, established by Miller Williams in the early eighties, and manages the eponymous poetry series edited by Billy Collins as well as the recently inaugurated Etel Adnan Poetry Series (edited by Hayan Charara and Fady Joudah) and the CantoMundo Poetry Series (edited by Deborah Paredez and Celeste Mendoza).
Barbara Epler (New Directions)
Barbara Epler grew up in Evanston, Illinois, started working at New Directions after graduating from college in 1984, and is now editor-in-chief, president, and publisher. Her two chief responsibilities are keeping New Directions in good shape overall and acquiring new authors, and she has been lucky to find W.G. Sebald and Roberto Bolaño, as well as other great writers like Laszlo Krasnahorkhai, César Aira, Victor Pelevin, Inger Christensen, Yoel Hoffmann, Yoko Tawada, and Javier Marías. Independent since 1936, New Directions publishes about 35 new books a year and maintains more than 1,200 titles on its backlist, publishing a great deal of fiction and poetry in translation as well as a very strong list of American experimental poets.
Jessica Faust (The Southern Review)
Jessica Faust is the coeditor and poetry editor of The Southern Review. She taught for many years before joining The Southern Review in 2004 as assistant editor, and in 2011 became the journal’s poetry editor. Poems from the journal perennially are selected for Best American Poetry, Best American Nonrequired Reading, and the Pushcart Prize anthology. She most recently published an essay with Emily Nemens that appeared in Literary Publishing in the 21st Century. She lives with her young daughter in New Orleans, where she builds and operates puppets.
Gary Fisketjon (Alfred A. Knopf)
Gary Fisketjon worked at Random House, Vintage Books, and the Atlantic Monthly Press until 1990, when he joined Alfred A. Knopf, where he is Vice President and Editor at Large. Authors he has published have won the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Booker Prize, and a host of other honors.
Mary Flinn (Blackbird)
Mary Flinn is senior editor of Blackbird: an online journal of literature and the arts. She is the co-editor, with George Garrett, of Elvis in Oz: New Stories and Poems from the Hollins Creative Writing Program and facilitated the editing of The Gazer Within, a collection of essays by Larry Levis. Flinn served as the poetry and fiction editor of 64 and the editor of New Virginia Review and received the inaugural Theresa Pollak Award for Words from Richmond Magazine.
Parneshia Jones (Northwestern University Press)
Parneshia Jones is the author of Vessel: Poems (Milkweed Editions), winner of the Midwest Book Award for Poetry. Jones earned an MFA from Spalding University, and studied publishing at Yale University. Jones has been honored with the Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Award, the Margaret Walker Short Story Award, and the Aquarius Press Legacy Award. Her work has also been anthologized in She Walks in Beauty: A Woman’s Journey Through Poems, edited by Caroline Kennedy and The Ringing Ear: Black Poets Lean South, edited by Nikky Finney. A member of the Affrilachian Poets, she serves on the board of Cave Canem and Global Writes. She currently holds positions as Sales and Subsidiary Rights Manager and Poetry Editor at Northwestern University Press.
Allison Joseph (Crab Orchard Review)
Allison Joseph lives, writes, and teaches in Carbondale, Illinois, where she is part of the creative writing faculty at Southern Illinois University. She serves as editor and poetry editor of Crab Orchard Review, moderator of the Creative Writers Opportunities List, and director of Writers In Common, a writers conference for teens and adults. Her books and chapbooks include What Keeps Us Here (Ampersand Press), Soul Train (Carnegie Mellon University Press), In Every Seam (University of Pittsburgh Press), Worldly Pleasures (Word Tech Communications), Imitation of Life (Carnegie Mellon UP), Voice: Poems (Mayapple Press), My Father's Kites (Steel Toe Books), Trace Particles (Backbone Press), Mercurial (Mayapple Press), Mortal Rewards (White Violet Press), Multitudes (Word Poetry), The Purpose of Hands (Glass Lyre Press), Corporal Muse (forthcoming, Sibling Rivarly Press), Double Identity (Singing Bone Press) and What Once You Loved (Barefoot Muse Press). Her latest full-length collection, Confessions of a Barefaced Woman, was published by Red Hen Press in 2018. She is the literary partner and wife of Jon Tribble.
David Lynn (Kenyon Review)
David Lynn has been the editor of The Kenyon Review, an international journal of literature, culture and the arts, since 1994. In 2016 he won an O. Henry Award for the story "Divergence." His latest collection of short stories, Year of Fire, was published by Harcourt. In a review, Publisher’s Weekly said that “the stories of this collection occupy the gray borderland where betrayal mixes with trust, violence with affection, humiliation with lust. The effect is quietly haunting." He is also the author of the novel Wrestling with Gabriel, an earlier collection of stories, Fortune Telling, and The Hero's Tale: Narrators in the Early Modern Novel, a critical study. His stories and essays have appeared in magazines and journals in America, England, India, and Australia. David Lynn lives in Gambier, Ohio with his wife, Wendy Singer, a distinguished historian of India. He is also Professor of English at Kenyon College.
Speer Morgan (The Missouri Review)
Speer Morgan is the editor of The Missouri Review and teaches fiction writing at the University of Missouri-Columbia. He is the author of a collection of short stories, Frog Gig and Other Stories (University of Missouri Press), and five novels, Belle Starr: A Novel (Little Brown), Brother Enemy (Little Brown), The Assemblers (Dutton), The Whipping Boy (Houghton Mifflin), and The Freshour Cylinders (Macmurray and Beck, winner of the American Book Award). He is also the co-editor of The Best of the Missouri Review (University of Missouri Press) and For Our Beloved Country: Diaries of Americans in War (Atlantic Monthly Press).
Emily Nemens (The Southern Review)
Emily Nemens is the coeditor and prose editor of The Southern Review, a position she has held since 2013. In recent years, stories from the journal have been selected for the Pushcart Prize anthology, Best American Mystery Stories, Best American Nonrequired Reading, and the inaugural edition of PEN America Best Debut Fiction. Her stories and illustration have appeared in The Gettysburg Review, n+1, and the New Yorker.
Kathy Pories (Algonquin Books)
Kathy Pories is an Executive Editor at Algonquin Books. She has edited the last six winners of the PEN/Bellwether Prize, for which she is also a judge. Her authors have been Alex Award winners and finalists for the National Book Award, the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, the Kirkus Prize, the Story Prize, the Barnes & Noble Discover Award, and the First Novel Prize. Authors she has worked with include Dan Rather, Gabrielle Zevin, Lisa Ko, Lee Smith, Rebecca Lee, Bill Roorbach, Lauren Grodstein, Hillary Jordan, Robert Olmstead, Heidi Durrow, Larry Watson, and others. She received her Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Adam Ross (The Sewanee Review)
Adam Ross is the author of Mr. Peanut, a 2010 New York Times Notable Book that was also named one of the best books of the year by The New Yorker, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The New Republic, and The Economist. It has been published in 16 countries. Ladies and Gentlemen, his short story collection, was included in Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2011 and included "In the Basement," a finalist for the 2012 BBC International Story Award. Ross was a 2013–2014 Hodder Fellow at Princeton University and the Mary Ellen von der Heyden Fellow in Fiction at The American Academy in Berlin. He is the editor of The Sewanee Review.
Elisabeth Schmitz (Grove Atlantic)
Elisabeth Schmitz is Vice President and Editorial Director of Grove Atlantic. Since joining the company in 1995, she has worked with Rabih Alameddine, Sherman Alexie, Patricia Engel, Emily Fridlund, Charles Frazier, Francisco Goldman, Lily King, Helen Macdonald, and Jeanette Winterson among others. Their prizes include the National Book Award, National Book Critics Circle Award, Kirkus Prize, PEN/Faulkner, Dublin IMPAC Award, Dayton Literary Peace Prize, Sue Kaufman Prize and have been selected by The New York Times Book Review as Top Ten Books of the Year. She has edited books by a number of Sewanee writers including, Jamie Quatro, Christine Schutt, Lily Tuck, and Josh Weil.
Liz Van Hoose (5E)
Liz Van Hoose worked in the editorial departments of Viking Penguin and Alfred A. Knopf for more than a decade, editing a wide range of fiction and nonfiction, including works by Martin Clark, Kim Edwards, Alex Gilvarry, Garrison Keillor, William Kittredge, Dan Morrison, Haruki Murakami, Jim Shepard, Amor Towles, Jessica Maria Tuccelli, and Danielle Trussoni. Now an independent editor with 5E, she enjoys working with writers at various stages on their journeys toward publication. Visit her website at www.lizvanhoose.com.
Michael Wiegers (Copper Canyon Press)
Michael Wiegers is the Editor in Chief of Copper Canyon Press. Among the collections he has edited are award winning books by poets such as W.S. Merwin, Ted Kooser, Ruth Stone and Frank Stanford as well as major works in translation by Pablo Neruda, Taha Muhammad Ali, and Ho Xuan Huong, and books by authors as varied as Roger Reeves, Natalie Diaz, Ocean Vuong, Richard Siken and Olena Kalytiak Davis, among many others. He additionally serves as poetry editor for Narrative Magazine.
Robert Wilson (The American Scholar)
Robert Wilson has been editor of The American Scholar since 2004. Before that, he was editor of Preservation, founding literary editor of Civilization, book editor and book columnist at USA Today, and an assistant editor at The Washington Post. He has taught writing at the University of Virginia, George Mason University, American University, and Johns Hopkins University. He is the author of two biographies: The Explorer King (Scribner) and Mathew Brady, Portraits of a Nation (Bloomsbury). His biography of P. T. Barnum will be published by Simon & Schuster in the fall.
David Yezzi (The Hopkins Review and The New Criterion)
David Yezzi’s most recent books of poems are Birds of the Air and, forthcoming in spring 2018, Black Sea, both from Carnegie Mellon. He is the editor of The Swallow Anthology of New American Poets. A former director of the Unterberg Poetry Center of the 92nd Street Y in New York, he is chair of the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins and editor of The Hopkins Review.
Jin Auh (The Wylie Agency)
Jin Auh is a literary agent at The Wylie Agency, which was founded over 35 years ago and operates out of offices in New York and London. A full author list is available on www.wylieagency.com. She serves on the Board of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop. She was born in Seoul and lives in New York.
Valerie Borchardt (Georges Borchardt Literary Agency)
Valerie Borchardt is an agent, vice president, and the foreign rights director for Georges Borchardt, Inc. Several of her clients have appeared on The New York Times bestseller list. She has a BA from Wesleyan University and a Masters in Slavic Language and Literature from Columbia University.
Michelle Brower (Aevitas Creative Management)
Michelle Brower is an agent at Aevitas Creative Management (formerly Zachary Shuster Harmsworth and Kuhn Projects), where she represents a diverse group of authors. She previously worked for six years as a senior vice president at Folio Literary Management. Prior to that, she was an agent at Wendy Sherman Associates. She earned her BA from The College of New Jersey and her MA in English literature from New York University. Michelle represents fiction that seeks to make the world a bigger place, combines a strong voice and a strong story, and explores the many ways in which people connect to each other. She has a weakness for literary suspense of any kind. She also represents select narrative non-fiction projects. Authors include Erika Swyler, Tara Conklin, Clare Beams, Viet Dinh and Sarah Domet, among others.
Sarah Burnes (The Gernert Company)
Sarah Burnes became an agent in 2001, after stints in the editorial departments of Houghton Mifflin, the Knopf group, and Little, Brown. Joining The Gernert Company in 2005, she now represents adult fiction writers (Sewanee’s Alice McDermott and Tony Earley among them); children’s fiction writers (New York Times bestsellers Pseudonymous Bosch and Margaret Stohl); and journalists and critics (The Idea Factory’s Jon Gertner and Freeman's editor John Freeman). Her writers have either won or been shortlisted for the National Book Award, the Pulitzer Prize, the Story Prize, the Los Angeles Times First Book Prize, the Whiting Writer’s Award, and the Barnes & Noble Discover Award, and they have received grants and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, the Cullman Center at the New York Public Library, and the National Endowment for the Arts, among others. Sarah sits on the board of the non-profit progressive publisher The New Press and the Digital Public Library of America. She lives with her husband and three children in Brooklyn, NY.
Emily Forland (Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents)
Emily Forland represents voice-driven literary fiction and non-fiction, among them bestsellers and prize winners, and has a special place in her heart for original sentences that jump off the page. Equally drawn to a traditional domestic novel as she is to more idiosyncratic work, she seeks out beautifully crafted writing, characters that seem to live and breathe, and stories rooted strongly in their setting. She has a soft spot for humor. In addition to literary fiction, she represents memoir, narrative nonfiction, history, biography, food writing, cultural criticism, graphic novels, and young adult fiction. She was an agent at The Wendy Weil Agency, Inc, for fifteen years before moving to Brandt & Hochman in 2013.
Gail Hochman (Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents)
Gail Hochman has been a literary agent since 1977, and is currently President of New York-based Brandt & Hochman Literary Agency, and the President of the Association of Authors' Representatives (AAR), the largest professional organization of literary agents in the US. She specialized in literary fiction, serious nonfiction, and memoir as well as children's books. Her clients include novelist Scott Turow; National Book Award winner Julia Glass; Ursula Hegi; Ann Hood; Jules Feiffer; Christine Schutt; Craig Johnson (Longmire series); Terry Tempest Williams; Jacki Lyden; Caroline Leavitt; and numerous notable children's authors including Mary Pope Osborne (Magic Tree House series), Avi, Norton Juster, and Lauren Tarshis (I Survived series).
Jeff Kleinman (Folio Literary Management)
Jeff Kleinman is a founding partner at Folio Literary Management. He loves unique voices, magnificently strong characters, unusual premises, and books that offer up some new perspective on something he thought he already knew something about or never even dreamed existed. He represents bestselling authors Garth Stein, Eowyn Ivey, Jacqueline Mitchard, Elizabeth Letts, Karen Dionne, and Charles Shields; as well as many first novels, including Benjamin Ludwig’s Ginny Moon, Val Emmich’s The Reminders, and Rhiannon Navin’s Only Child.
Anna Stein (ICM Partners)
Anna Stein has been a literary agent since 2003, and at ICM Partners since 2015. Her clients include Ben Lerner, Maria Semple, Hanya Yanagihara, Garth Greenwell, and Jamie Quatro. She is drawn to highly original, voice-driven literary fiction and non-fiction.
Amy Williams (The Williams Company)
Amy Williams has been a literary agent since 1996 and was a founding partner of the literary agency McCormick & Williams. In April of 2015, Amy opened the doors to her own agency, The Williams Company. Her authors have won or been shortlisted for numerous awards and honors, including the Whiting Writers' Award, the PEN/O. Henry Prize, the New York Times Notable Book Award, the Guardian First Book Award, the Orange Prize for New Writers, and awards from the Guggenheim Fellowship and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Renée Zuckerbrot (Massie & McQuilkin Literary Agents)
Renée Zuckerbrot worked as an editor at Doubleday before becoming a literary agent. Her authors include Kelly Link, Dan Chaon, Daniel Wallace, Shawn Vestal, Keith Lee Morris, Karin Tidbeck, Nathan Ballingrud, Eric Lundgren, Eric Sanderson, author of Mannahatta: A Natural History of New York City, and Sewanee alums M.O. "Neal" Walsh (My Sunshine Away) and Andrew Malan Milward (I Was a Revolutionary). They have won or been nominated for the National Book Award, PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for debut fiction, the National Magazine Award, the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing, the NYPL Young Lions Fiction Award, B&N Discover Great New Writers Award, the Story Prize, the PEN/O. Henry Prize, the Shirley Jackson Award, the Locus, the Hugo, the Nebula, and the Pushcart, among others.
Beth Blickers (APA)
Beth Blickers is an agent at APA, where she represents artists who work in theatre, opera, television and film. She started her career at the William Morris Agency, where she began work after graduating from New York University. She is a board member of Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas and is the Board Chair Emeritus of Theatre Breaking Through Barriers, a New York company that works with artists with disabilities.
Les Waters (Actors Theatre of Louisville)
Les Waters has directed The Glory of the World, Luna Gale, At the Vanishing Point, The Christians, Our Town, Gnit, Girlfriend, Long Day’s Journey into Night, Macbeth, and For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday at Actors Theatre of Louisville, where he is artistic director. Waters previously directed Big Love by Charles Mee at the Humana Festival and BAM’s Next Wave Festival (Obie Award), and countless productions in New York at Playwrights Horizons, Signature Theatre Company, The Public Theater, Second Stage Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club, Connelly Theater, Clubbed Thumb, and Soho Rep, and regionally at the Mark Taper Forum, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Goodman Theatre, Yale Repertory Theatre, American Conservatory Theater, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, and La Jolla Playhouse.
N.S. Thompson has translated Italian crime fiction for Quercus Books and most recently Paolo Sorrentino's novel of his film Youth (Maclehose). His translations of Italian poetry have appeared in The Penguin Montale, The Faber Book of 20th-Century Italian Poems, Centres of Cataclysm: Fifty Years of Modern Poetry in Translation (Bloodaxe, 2016) and many publications such as Agenda, The Journal of Italian Translation, Modern Poetry in Translation and Stand. He is currently working on the poetry of Théophile Gautier to be published by Carcanet in 2018. His most recent poetry collection is Mr Larkin on Photography and Other Poems (Red Squirrel, 2016) and he is a non-fiction editor of Able Muse.