MFA Faculty

Jennifer Atkinson

Jennifer Atkinson

Professor

Jennifer Atkinson is the author of five collections of poetry--The Dogwood Tree, The Drowned CityDrift IceCanticle of the Night Path, and most recently, The Thinking Eye. Her poetry can be seen in Field, The Cincinnati Review, The Missouri Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Bennington Review, Image, and elsewhere. Both her poetry and her nonfiction have been honored with Pushcart Prizes. She taught in Nepal and Japan and at the University of Iowa and Washington University before joining the faculty of George Mason University, where she usually teaches Creative Writing, Poetry Writing (at the graduate and undergraduate levels), and recent and contemporary American poetry.

Courtney Angela Brkic

Courtney Angela Brkic

Associate Professor

Courtney Angela Brkic (M.F.A., New York University, 2001) is the author of The First Rule of Swimming (Little, Brown, and Company, 2013), Stillness: and Other Stories (FSG, 2003) and The Stone Fields (FSG, 2004). Her work has also appeared in Zoetrope, The New York Times, The Washington Post Magazine, Harpers & Queen, the Utne Reader, TriQuarterly Review, Guernica, National Geographic, and others. Brkic has been the recipient of a Fulbright scholarship, a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and a Whiting Writer’s Award. Stillness, her short fiction collection about the wars in Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, was named a Barnes and Noble Discover pick, a 2003 Chicago Tribune "Best Book" and a 2003 New York Times "Notable Book". The Stone Fields records her work on mass gravesites around Srebrenica, as well as her family's history during the Second World War in Sarajevo, and was shortlisted for a Freedom of Expression Award by the Index on Censorship.

 

Timothy Denevi

Timothy Denevi

Assistant Professor

Timothy Denevi's most recent book is Freak Kingdom: Hunter S. Thompson's Manic Ten-Year Crusade Against American Fascism(2018, Hachette/PublicAffairs). He is also the author of Hyper (2014, Simon & Schuster). His essays on politics, sport, and religion have recently appeared in New York, CNN.com, Literary Hub, and Salon, where he writes about politics.

Stephen Goodwin

Stephen Goodwin

Professor

Stephen Goodwin (M.A., University of Virginia, 1969) is the author of three novels, Breaking Her Fall, The Blood of Paradise, and Kin.  His short fiction has appeared in Gentleman's Quarterly, Shenandoah, Sewanee Review, and the Georgia Review; and his articles, reviews and essays have appeared in a number of magazines and newspapers, including the Washington Post, American Scholar, and Virginia Quarterly Review.  He has also written extensively about golf for regional and national magazines, focusing -- as he does in his book, Dream Golf -- on the history and current practice of golf course architecture.  For two years, Goodwin directed the Literature Program at the National Endowment for the Arts, and he has received fellowships from the NEA, the Ingram Merrill Foundation, and the Guggenheim Foundation. In addition, he has served as the president of the foundation for the PEN/Faulkner literary prize. He teaches traditional workshops, courses in modern and contemporary American literature, and an online writing course that tries to keep up with the the rapidly changing environment of online writing and publishing.

Tania Rachel James

Tania Rachel James

Associate Professor

Tania James is the author of the novel The Tusk That Did the Damage (Knopf, 2015), Aerogrammes and Other Stories (Knopf, 2012), and the novel Atlas of Unknowns (Knopf 2009). Tusk was a New York Times Editor’s Choice, and named a Best Book of 2015 by The San Francisco Chronicle and NPR, and was shortlisted for the International Dylan Thomas Prize and longlisted for the Financial Times Oppenheimer Award. Her short stories, essays, and reviews have appeared in The New York Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, Granta, Kenyon Review, One Story, and A Public Space. She has received fellowships from the Ragdale Foundation, the Macdowell Colony, the Sustainable Arts Foundation, and the Fulbright Program.

Sally Keith

Sally Keith

Professor

Sally Keith graduated from the Iowa Writers Workshop in 2000 and holds a B.A. from Bucknell. She has published four collections of poetry, most recently River House (Milkweed Editions 2015). She has published individual poems in journals and anthologies, including Colorado Review, Conjunctions, New American Writing, and A Public Space. Keith, a 2016 Guggenheim Fellow, has been awarded fellowships to the BreadLoaf Writers' Conference, a Pushcart Prize, and the Denver Quarterly's Lynda Hull Award. 

Listen to Sally reading a poem from The Fact of the Matter on PBS Art Beat, here.  

 

Kyoko Mori

Kyoko Mori

Professor

Kyoko Mori is the author of three nonfiction books (Yarn; Polite Lies; The Dream of Water).  The title essay from her book, “Yarn,” was selected for The Best American Essays 2004, and Polite Lies was short-listed for PEN’s Martha Albrand Nonfiction Award.  She has also published novels (Barn Cat; Stone Field, True Arrow; One Bird; Shizuko’s Daughter).  Her essays have appeared in journals such as Ploughshares, the American Scholar, the Missouri Review, and Harvard Review.  Prior to joining the faculty at Mason, Mori taught nonfiction writing at Harvard as a Briggs-Copeland Lecturer in Creative Writing.

Helon Habila Ngalabak

Helon Habila Ngalabak

Professor

Helon Habila's current book is The Chibok Girls: The Boko Haram Kidnappings and Islamist Militancy in Nigeria, a nonfiction investigation into the kidnapping of 276 girls in Nigeria by Islamist militants in 2014. His first novel, Waiting for an Angel, has been translated into many langauges including Dutch, Italian, Swedish, and French.  His writing has won many prizes including the Caine Prize, 2001; the Commonweath Writers Prize, Africa region, 2003; the Emily Balch Prize, 2008, and the Windham-Campbell Prize for Fiction, 2015.

He is a contributing editor to the Virginia Quarterly Review.  His second novel, Measuring Time, published in 2007, won the Virginia Library Foundation Fiction Award, 2008, and was shortlisted for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, 2008.  His third novel, Oil on Water, was published in the U.S. in 2011.  His stories, articles, reviews, and poems have appeared in various magazines and papers including Granta, AGNI, The Virginia Quarterly Review, Guernica, and the London Guardian.  His short story, The Hotel Malogo, was selected for the Best American Non-required Reading Anthology.  Habila is the editor of the Granta Book of African Short Story, 2011.

Eric Pankey

Eric Pankey

Professor

Eric Pankey (MFA, University of Iowa, 1983) is the author of many collections of poems: For the New Year (Atheneum 1984),which was selected as the winner of the Walt Whitman, Heartwood (Atheneum 1988), which was reissued by Orchises Press in 1998,  Apocrypha (Alfred A. Knopf 1991), The Late Romances (Alfred A. Knopf 1997), Cenotaph (Alfred A. Knopf 2000), Oracle Figures (Ausable Press 2003), Reliquaries (Ausable Press 2005), The Pear as One Example: New and Selected Poems (Ausable Press 2008), Trace (Milkweed Editions 2013), Dismantling the Angel (Free Verse Editions 2013), which won the New Measures Prize, Crow-Work (Milkweed Editions 2015), and Augury (Milkweed Editions 2017) His poetry, essays, and reviews have appeared widely in such journals as The Iowa Review, The Harvard Review, The Kenyon Review,The New Yorker, The New Republic, The New Yorker, and The Yale Review,and .  His work has been supported by fellowships from John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, the Ingram Merrill Foundation, and the Brown Foundation.  He teaches poetry workshops and courses on modern and contemporary poetry. He is the Heritage Chair in Writing at George Mason University. A new collection of poetry, The Owl of Minerva, is forthcoming from Milkweed Editions in 2019. A collection of prose poems, Alias, and a collection of essays, Vestiges: Notes, Responses, and Essays 1988-2018 are both forthcoming from Free Verse Editions in 2019

Susan R Shreve

Susan R Shreve

Professor

         Susan Shreve is the author of fourteen novels, most recently YOU ARE THE LOVE OF MY LIFE published by WWNorton in  2012, reprinted in paperback in 2013. Norton will publish her next novel MORE NEWS TOMORROW in 2017.

         In 2007, Houghton Mifflin published her memoir WARM SPRINGS: TRACES OF A CHILDHOOD.  She has written thirty books for children published primarily by Knopf  and Arthur A.Levine Books/Scholastic, the latest of which /lScholastic.

       In 2013 PLUM&JAGGERS (published initially by FSG in 2000 and in paperback in 2001) was selected by Book Lusts (10 out of print books selected by Nancy Perl, Librarian)  to be reprinted with an introduction for hard/soft distribution in conjunction with Houghton/Harcourt.

        Her novel A COUNTRY OF STRANGERS is under option for film and DAUGHTERS OF THE NEW WORLD was an NBC mini series under the title A WILL OF THEIR OWN.

        She is the co-editor or editor of five anthologies including DREAM ME HOME SAFELY published by Beacon Press and Houghton Mifflin for which she was the co- editor with Porter Shreve, OUTSIDE THE LAW. TALES OUT OF SCHOOL and HOW WE WANT TO LIVE.  She was co-editor with Marita Golden of SKIN DEEP, black and white women write about race. She has published several essays in magazines, some collected in anthologies.

        Co-founder of the Master of Fine Arts Degree at George Mason University where she is a Professor of English, she is Chairman of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation. She serves on the advisory board of 826 DC and Poets and Writers. 

      She has received a Guggenheim Award for Fiction and a National Endowment grant for Fiction, the Jenny Moore Chair in Creative Writing at George Washington University and has won both the Grub Street Prize for non-fiction and the Service award from Poets and Writers. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with an M.A. from the University of Virginia, she taught fiction for eight years in the MFA at Columbia Graduate School of the Arts and for three years at Princeton University. She was a part time visitor at Goucher College for three years from 2008-2010.

Peter Streckfus

Peter Streckfus

Associate Professor

Peter Streckfus is the author of two poetry books: Errings, winner of Fordham University Press’s 2013 POL Editor’s Prize, and The Cuckoo, winner of the Yale Series of Younger Poets competition in 2003. His awards include fellowships and grants from the Breadloaf Writers' Conference, the Peter S. Reed Foundation, the University of Alabama, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the American Academy in Rome, where he a Brodsky Rome Prize Fellow In Literature.

He is the Mason editorial director of Poetry Daily, an online anthology of poetry. 

Photo © Don Usner.

Read an interview in which Peter speaks about teaching at GMU, here.