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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 publications such as 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 Award and a Best American Spiritual Writing Award, and two Pushcart Prizes. Her most recent books are the memoir "Morningstar: Growing Up with Books" and the young adult novel "She Loves You Yeah Yeah Yeah."

Mary-Kim Arnold

Mary-Kim Arnold is the author of "Litany for the Long Moment," which was awarded the 2016 Essay Press Open Book Prize, and the chapbook "Between Night and Night" (Artifact Press). Her full-length poetry collection, "The Fish & The Dove," is forthcoming from Noemi Press in 2020. A multidisciplinary artist and writer, Arnold's work has appeared in a number of literary and art journals, including The Georgia Review, Hyperallergic and The Rumpus, where she serves on the advisory committee. She holds graduate degrees from Vermont College of Fine Arts and Brown University, where she teaches in the nonfiction writing program.

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 three books: the travel memoir "The Blind Masseuse," the story collection "Unaccompanied Minors" and "The Wanting Was a Wilderness," a hybrid work of literary criticism and personal essays. Her awards include the New American Fiction Prize, the Lascaux Book Prize, two Independent Publisher Book Awards, the Foreword Book of the Year Award and the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogal Award long list. She is the co-founder and co-director of the Cuba Writers Program, an annual trip to Cuba during the month of May.

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.

Bernadette Murphy

Bernadette Murphy has published four books of creative nonfiction, most recently "Harley and Me," a hybrid narrative that combines memoir with research into neuroscience and biology to explore female risk-taking, as well as the best-selling "Zen and the Art of Knitting." Her essays on life and literature have appeared in Salon, Ms. Magazine, the Rumpus, Palm Springs Life, New York Observer, Climbing Magazine, the Los Angeles Times Magazine, Newsday, Literary Hub, San Francisco Chronicle, MUTHA, the Nervous Breakdown and elsewhere. Murphy is a former weekly book critic for the Los Angeles Times, and ran the nonfiction genre for the Antioch University MFA program for over a decade. She is working on a novel that draws on her parents' hardscrabble childhoods in Ireland and includes apparitions of the Virgin Mary.

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.

Melissa Febos

Guest Faculty (June 2020)

Melissa Febos is the author of the memoir "Whip Smart" and the essay collection "Abandon Me," which was a LAMBDA Literary Award finalist, a Publishing Triangle Award finalist, an Indie Next Pick and was widely named a best book of 2017. Her third book, "Girlhood," an illustrated essay collection, is forthcoming in 2021 from Bloomsbury. In 2018, Febos was the recipient of the Jeanne Cordova Nonfiction Award from LAMBDA Literary and the Sarah Verdone Writing Award from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. She has been awarded fellowships and prizes from the MacDowell Colony, Bread Loaf Writer's Conference, Virginia Center for Creative Arts, Vermont Studio Center, The Barbara Deming Memorial Foundation, The BAU Institute, Ragdale, Prairie Schooner and others. Her essays have recently appeared in Tin House, Granta, McSweeney's, The Believer, The Sewanee Review and The New York Times. She is an associate professor at the University of Iowa, where she teaches in the nonfiction writing program.

Beth Ann Fennelly

Guest Faculty (June 2020)

Beth Ann Fennelly has published three poetry books: "Open House," "Tender Hooks" and "Unmentionables," all with W.W. Norton. She is also the author of three books of prose: "Heating & Cooling: 52 Micro-Memoirs," "Great With Child: Letters to a Young Mother" and "The Tilted World," a novel co-authored with her husband Tom Franklin. Fennelly's poetry has been included in more than 50 anthologies, including "Best American Poetry," "The Book of Irish American Poetry from the Eighteenth Century to the Present," "Poets of the New Century" and "The Penguin Book of the Sonnet." She teaches in the MFA program at the University of Mississippi, where she was named outstanding teacher of the year.

Daniel Jones

Guest Faculty (June 2020)

Daniel Jones has edited the New York Times' "Modern Love" column since its inception in 2004 and now manages the franchise it has become: two weekly columns, three books ("Modern Love," "Love Illuminated" and "Tiny Love Stories," a forthcoming collection of the column's 100-word features), a weekly podcast with nearly 100 million downloads in its first four years, "Modern Love Live" events and an Amazon TV series entering its second season. Jones lives with his wife, writer Cathi Hanauer, in Massachusetts and New York City.

Past Guest Faculty

January 2020
Chard deNiord
Marie Myung-Ok Lee
Francisco Sedita
Dani Shapiro

June 2019
Jill Bialosky
Garrard Conley
Didi Jackson
Major Jackson

January 2019
Mary-Kim Arnold
Bill Roorbach
Alice Hoffman

June 2018
Andre Dubus III
Sheila Weller