Faculty Bios

We proudly offer the bios of our accomplished teachers.

Jennifer Keishin Armstrong is the co-founder and editor of the website Sexy Feminist, and co-author of the nonfiction book Sexy Feminism  (Mariner Books) and author of the nonfiction books Mary and Lou and Rhoda and Ted  (Simon & Schuster) and Why? Because We Still Like You (Grand Central Publishing). She served as senior writer for Entertainment Weekly, and she has written for Glamour, SalonA.V. Club, Details, O, New York‘s Vulture, as well as numerous daily newspapers. Her work is included in the anthologies Altared and Coffee At Luke's. She holds a BS from Northwestern University.

Nora Raleigh Baskin is the author of the middle grade novels Ruby on the Outside (Simon & Schuster), What Every Girl (except me) Knows, Almost Home (Little, Brown and Company), Basketball (or Something Like It), In the Company of Crazies (HarperCollins), and The Truth About My Bat Mitzvah and Runt (Simon & Schuster), as well as the YA novels Subway Love, Surfacing, All We Know Of Love (Candlewick), Anything But Typical, and The Summer Before Boys (Simon & Schuster). She has also published short stories and personal essays in the Boston Globe Sunday Magazine and The Writer. She has taught at the Writers Center in Sleepy Hollow, NY. She holds a BA from SUNY Purchase.

Carole Bugge is the author of the novels The Star of India, (re-released by Titan Press), The Haunting of Torre Abbey (St. Martin's Press), as well as Who Killed Blanche Dubois?, Who Killed Dorian Gray?, Who Killed Mona Lisa? (all with Berkely Prime Crime for the Claire Rawlings mystery series), and, under the pen name C.E. Lawrence, Silent Screams, Silent VictimSilent Kills, and Silent Slaughter (a thriller series from Kensington Publishing). Her short fiction has appeared in anthologies from St. Martin’s Press, Doubleday, and the Mystery Writers of America. Her plays and musicals have been presented regionally and in New York City. She has taught at NYU, Duke University, the Royal Court Repertory Theatre, and the American Comedy Institute. Carole holds a BA from Duke University.

Matthew Cody is the author of the middle grade novels Villainous (Knopf), Powerless (Yearling), The Dead Gentleman (Yearling), among others. He has published pieces in McSweeney’s and Opium Magazine. He has taught at Laguardia Community College. He holds a BFA from Webster University and an MFA in Theater from the University of Alabama.

Shari Goldhagen is the author of the novels Some Other World, Maybe (St. Martins) and Family and Other Accidents (Random House). She has published fiction in Indiana Review, Prism International, Beacon Street Review, and Wascana Review, and she has published articles in the National Enquirer, Complete Woman, teenStyle, Ohioana, and Restaurants and Institutions. She has taught at Ohio State University. She holds a BSJ from Northwestern University and an MFA in Fiction from Ohio State University.

Tamara Guirado has published fiction in StoryQuartlerly, Best New American Voices, Rainbow Curve, Comet Magazine, and 580 Split. She has taught at Kansas State University, University of Wisconsin, and the Academy of Art in San Francisco. She holds a BS from Southern Oregon State University and an MFA from Mills College, and she was a Wallace Stegner Fiction Fellow at Stanford University.

Pamela Harris created Married by the Hour, a half-hour comedy (Howard Stern Productions) and served as a staff writer for Life on the Line, a one-hour drama (Oxygen Network). She has also written and optioned feature screenplays. She is an award-winning visual artist and has shown her art all over the U.S. She holds a BFA from the Hartford Art School.

Pete Jensen has developed original TV series for diverse production companies and he wrote the feature screenplay Derwin's Shadow, which won a development grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. He wrote and directed the award-winning short film "Charlie Primitive," which screened at over twenty festivals across the U.S. and Europe. His prose has been published in such literary magazines as Swink. He holds an MFA in Screenwriting and Directing from Columbia University.

Colleen Kinder s the author of the guidebook Delaying the Real World (Running Press), and she co-edited the essay anthology Confessions of a High School Nerd (Penguin). Her essay "Blot Out" was included in the Best American Travel Writing, and her articles and essays have been published in the New York TimesNational GeographicSalonCreative Nonfiction, the New RepublicTransitions Abroad, Ms., Gettysburg Review, Kenyon Review, Quarterly WestNinth LetterA Public Space, and Prairie Schooner.  She also contributed to the anthologies A Woman's World Again (Traveler's Tales) and 20-Something Essays by 20-Something Writers (Random House). She has taught at the University of Iowa. She holds a BA from Yale University and an MFA in Nonfiction Writing from the University of Iowa.

Michael Leviton is the author of the children's picture book My First Ghost (Hyperion). He has published numerous illustrated paperbacks for Scholastic's READ 180 Literacy Program, and has worked as a celebrity picture book ghostwriter at HarperCollins, and as a screenwriter at RKO Pictures. He guest-lectures at the Parsons Pre-College Academy. He holds a BA from Wesleyan University.

Francesca Ochoa has published fiction and nonfiction in This, That, Those; Art XX; and Aorta.  She is the author of chapbooks Love/ Smut and Pictograph, and she has served as editor at Apogee Journal. She holds a BA from the University of California, San Diego and an MFA in Fiction from Columbia University.

Stacy Pershall is the author of the memoir Loud in the House of Myself  (W.W. Norton), selected for the Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers Program, and her work is included in the anthology Lost and Found (W.W. Norton).  She has taught at Writopia, Pratt Manhattan, and City College of New York. She holds a BA from the University of Arkansas and an MFA in Performance Art from the University of Cincinnati. 

Melissa Petro has published nonfiction in New York Magazine, Poets & Writers, Salon, Daily Beast, Narratively, Jezebel, xoJane, Frisky, The Fix, and Rumpus. She is the editor of two anthologies: Pros(e): Writings by Individuals with Experiences in the Sex Industries and Corner Stories: Writings by the Washington Heights CORNER Project Community. She is a PEN/Fusion Emerging Writers Prize finalist. She holds a BA from Antioch, an MS in Education from Fordham, and an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from the New School. 

Jane Ratcliffe is the author of the novel, The Free Fall (Henry Holt), and co-author of the nonfiction books One Can Make a Difference (Adams Media) and Totally Vegetarian (De Capo). She has written fiction and nonfiction for Guernica, New England Review, The Sun, Vogue, Huffington PostInterview, VH1, the Detroit News, and is included in the anthology Lost and Found: Stories From New York. She has taught at the New School, Rutgers University, and Washtenaw Community College. She holds a BFA from the University of Michigan and an MFA in Fiction Writing from Columbia University.

Lisa Reardon is the author of the novels The Mercy Killers (Counterpoint Press), Blameless (Random House), and Billy Dead (Viking), which was named one of 20 Top First Novels by Booklist. She has also written numerous plays which have been produced throughout the country. She has taught at the Circle Repertory School, St. Luke's-Roosevelt Division of Adolescent Psychiatry, and the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center. She holds a BA from the University of Michigan and an MFA in Playwriting from Yale.

Emily Taylor has published fiction in Inkwell, Crate, Baltimore Review, Green Mountains Review, Lost, and Hobart, and she served as the prose editor for LIT. She holds a BA from Colgate and an MFA in Creative Writing from the New School.

Cullen Thomas is the author of the memoir Brother One Cell (Viking). His work has also appeared in the New York Times Magazine, the Washington Post, Salon, World Hum, Current Biography, and Penthouse. He holds a BA from Binghamton University.

David Yoo is the author of the YA novels Stop Me If You've Heard This One Before (Hyperion) and Girls for Breakfast (Delacorte), the middle grade novel The Detention Club (Balzer + Bray), and the essay collection The Choke Artist (Grand Central). He has published fiction and nonfiction in Massachusetts Review, Rush Hour, Maryland Review, and the anthology Guys Write for Guys Read (Viking). He is also a columnist for KoreAm Journal. He has taught at Pine Manor College, Eckerd College, and CU-Boulder. He holds a BA from Skidmore College and an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Colorado, Boulder.