Affiliated Faculty

The Newport MFA in Creative Writing

Ann Hood

Founding Director

Ann Hood is the best-selling author of the novels "The Knitting Circle," "The Obituary Writer" and "The Book That Matters Most" and the memoir "Comfort: A Journey Through Grief," which was a New York Times Editor’s Choice and named one of the top 10 nonfiction books of 2008 by Entertainment Weekly. Her essays and short stories have appeared in many publications, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Paris Review, Tin House, National Geographic Traveler, Food and Wine and the Atlantic. Hood has won two Best American Food Writing Awards, a Best American Travel Writing and a Best American Spiritual Writing Award, and two Pushcart Prizes. Her most recent book is the memoir "Morningstar: Growing Up with Books." Her young adult novel, "She Loves You Yeah Yeah Yeah," will be published in June 2018 by Penguin.

Andre Dubus III

Guest Faculty (Summer 2018)

Andre Dubus III is the author of "The Cage Keeper and Other Stories," "Bluesman" and the New York Times best-sellers "House of Sand and Fog," "The Garden of Last Days" (soon to be a major motion picture) and his memoir "Townie," a New York Times "Editors Choice." His work has been included in The Best American Essays and The Best Spiritual Writing anthologies, and "House of Sand and Fog" was a finalist for the National Book Award and was made into an Academy Award-nominated film starring Ben Kingsley and Jennifer Connelly. His novella collection, "Dirty Love," was published in 2013 and has been listed as a New York Times "Notable Book," a New York Times "Editors Choice," a 2013 "Notable Fiction" choice from the Washington Post and a Kirkus "Starred Best Book of 2013." His new novel, "Gone So Long," is forthcoming in October 2018. Dubus has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, The National Magazine Award for Fiction, two Pushcart Prizes and an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature. His books are published in more than 25 languages and he teaches full time at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

Sheila Weller

Guest Faculty (Summer 2018)

Sheila Weller is the author of seven books - three of them New York Times best-sellers - and numerous magazine articles for Vanity Fair, where she is a regular contributor of major features, as well as Glamour, New York, the New York Times and virtually every major women's magazine. She has won nine major magazine awards for her feminist investigatives and real-life narratives on pressing social, emotional and legal/justice issues. Weller's best-loved book is 2008's best-selling "Girls Like Us: Carole King, Joni Mitchell, Carly Simon - and the Journey of a Generation," which Billboard named No. 19 of the best music books of all time. Her most recent is 2014's "The News Sorority: Diane Sawyer, Katie Couric, Christiane Amanpour - and the Triumph of Women in TV News." Weller is also the author of the 2003 memoir "Dancing At Ciro's: A Family's Love, Loss and Scandal on the Sunset Strip" and 1995's best-seller on O.J. and Nicole Brown Simpson's marriage, "Raging Heart."

Charles Coe

Charles Coe has authored two books of poetry: "All Sins Forgiven: Poems for my Parents" and "Picnic on the Moon." His poems have been set by numerous composers. Coe is also the author of the novella "Spin Cycles," and his essay "Hill of Dreams," about singing with a jazz band traveling the Soviet Union, appears in "Inspired Journeys: Travels with the Muse." The winner of a fellowship in poetry from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, he is an artist fellow for the St. Botolph Club, an organization that supports arts and the humanities in greater Boston, and is also an artist-in-residence for the city of Boston. Coe has served as poet-in-residence at Wheaton College and the Chautauqua Institution and has taught in Ireland for the Bay Path University MFA abroad program.

Alden Jones

Alden Jones is the author of "The Blind Masseuse: A Traveler's Memoir from Costa Rica to Cambodia" and the story collection "Unaccompanied Minors." "The Blind Masseuse" was named a top 10 travel book by Publishers Weekly and the "best travel book of 2013" by the Huffington Post. "Unaccompanied Minors" won the New American Fiction Prize, the Lascaux Book Prize and an Independent Publisher book award in short fiction. Her hybrid work of memoir and literary criticism, "Cheryl Strayed's 'Wild': Afterwords; or, The Wanting Was a Wilderness," is forthcoming. Her stories and essays have appeared in Agni, Prairie Schooner, the Iowa Review, Gulf Coast, The Rumpus, Psychology Today, Post Road, The Believer and the Best American Travel Writing. She has taught at Emerson College, New York University, Semester at Sea and with the Cuba Writers Program, which she also co-directs.

Edgar Kunz

Edgar Kunz is the author of the forthcoming poetry collection "TAP OUT" (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2019). His work has received fellowships and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Academy of American Poets, the MacDowell Colony, the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, Vanderbilt University and Stanford University, where he was a Wallace Stegner Fellow. His poems appear widely, including in Ploughshares, AGNI, New England Review, Narrative, Gulf Coast and the Best New Poets series. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland, where he is a visiting lecturer in poetry and short fiction at Goucher College.

Allen Kurzweil

Allen Kurzweil is a novelist, journalist, teacher and inventor. Educated at Yale University and the University of Rome, he has written for numerous publications, including The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Vanity Fair, and has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, Fulbright Commission, National Endowment for the Humanities and the Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library. The most recent of his six books, "Whipping Boy: The Forty-Year Search for a Twelve-Year-Old Bully," was excerpted in the New Yorker and won the 2016 Edgar Award for best fact crime.

Taylor M. Polites

Taylor M. Polites' first novel "The Rebel Wife," was published by Simon & Schuster and his work has appeared in anthologies as well as arts and news publications. He is a partner with Ann Hood and Hester Kaplan in Goat Hill, a collaboration dedicated to bringing writers and writing professionals to southern New England, and works with local organizations to cultivate storytelling and community in his home city. He is a graduate of the Wilkes University creative writing M.A./MFA program, where he was awarded the Norris Church Mailer Fellowship. He teaches in the Wilkes University creative writing MFA program and at the Rhode Island School of Design.

Danielle Trussoni

Danielle Trussoni is a New York Times and international best-selling novelist and memoirist. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers Workshop and the recipient of the James Michener Award and the Dana Award in the Novel. Her first book, the memoir "Falling Through the Earth," was chosen by The New York Times as one of the 10 best books of the year. Her work has been translated into more than 30 languages.

Tim Weed

Tim Weed is the winner of a Writer's Digest popular fiction award and a Solas best travel writing award. His first novel, "Will Poole's Island," was named one of Bank Street College of Education's best books of the year. His short fiction collection, "A Field Guide to Murder & Fly Fishing," was a finalist in the short story category of the International Book Awards and has been shortlisted for the New Rivers Press Many Voices Project, the Autumn House Press fiction prize and the Lewis-Clark Press Discovery Award. Tim teaches a popular novel revision series at Grub Street in Boston, is the co-founder of the Cuba Writers Program, and occasionally works as a featured expert for National Geographic in Cuba, Spain and Patagonia.

Bernadette Murphy

Visiting Faculty

Bernadette Murphy is the author of four books of narrative nonfiction, most recently "Harley and Me: Embracing Risk on the Road to a More Authentic Life," a work that explores female risk-taking through the lens of her own experience learning to ride a motorcycle at age 48, and weaves together memoir with psychology and neuroscience. Her best-selling "Zen and the Art of Knitting" used memoir and reportage to explore the connection between fiber arts, creativity and spirituality. She is a former book critic for the Los Angeles Times, and her essays have appeared in Ms. magazine, Literary Hub, Salon, New York Observer, Climbing Magazine, San Francisco Chronicle, Newsday, The Rumpus, The Nervous Breakdown, Palm Springs Life, Lilith and more. She is currently at work on a novel that draws on her parents’ hardscrabble childhoods in Ireland and includes apparitions of the Virgin Mary.