Meet our talented family of teachers—each an accomplished writer and trustworthy guide. Leaf through our faculty bios, profiles, book excerpts, and writing advice articles. You’ll like the people you meet.
Leigh Michaels

Faculty Profile

Meet Leigh Michaels

By Britt Gambino

Gotham teacher Leigh Michaels wrote her first romance novel when she was fourteen-years-old. “What I knew about love and relationships back then could have fit on a postage stamp—and have room for the grocery list,” she says. Today, Leigh has more than 35 million copies of her romance novels in print, in 120 countries, in 25 languages.

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Jessie Sholl

Faculty Profile

Meet Jessie Sholl

By Britt Gambino
 
Gotham teacher Jessie Sholl didn’t think she’d enjoy writing a memoir as much as she enjoyed writing a novel.

Here’s how this fiction writer ended up switching gears and finding her Zen in nonfiction:

While her agent was shopping her novel to publishers, Jessie mentioned a personal story she had wanted to write about for a long time. After Jessie revealed the idea, her agent encouraged her to explore the territory she had been so fearful to tread: her mother’s compulsive hoarding. In the interim, her novel got turned down and her memoir proposal sold. It felt like a sign. And so Jessie finally wrote her memoir Dirty Secret: A Daughter Comes Clean about Her Mother’s Compulsive Hoarding.

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Try to imagine the Lord of the Rings trilogy without Gandalf. That's what my life was like before I met my instructor.

Rois Beal, housewife

Faculty Excerpts

<i>Twin of Blackness</i>

Twin of Blackness

Clifford Thompson
Gotham teacher Clifford Thompson has just seen the release of his memoir Twin of Blackness. It’s a coming-of-age story, but told through the lens of jazz, art, and the ever-changing American identity. National Book Award winner Charles Johnson calls the...
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<i>The Watchman of Eternity</i>

The Watchman of Eternity

Paul Witcover
Gotham teacher Paul Witcover recently saw the release of The Watchman of Eternity, the anticipated sequel to his previous book The Emperor of All Things. In this next installment, we return to the world of Daniel Quare and the Worshipful...
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Faculty Articles

Tony Conniff

How to Keep Focus in a Lyric…Or Not

Tony Conniff
Recently I heard some talented students record a song that I’ve always liked, and still do—“If I Ever Lose My Faith In You” by Sting. Great groove, strong chorus, interesting and unexpected chord changes and, as is usually the case...
Brandi Reissenweber

Where Do Stories Come From?

Brandi Reissenweber
There’s no one source, no wellspring of inspiration that the writer simply needs to find. Perhaps Andrea Barrett captures this best in her essay “The Sea of Information” when she writes, “Writing is mysterious; and it’s supposed to be.…any path...