The Selection Committee of the
Edith Wharton-Straw Dog Writers Guild Writers-in-Residence
is pleased to announce nine residents in 2022:
Yasmine AmeliYasmine Ameli is a biracial Iranian-American poet and essayist based outside Boston. She holds a BA in English from Johns Hopkins University and an MFA in Creative Writing (Poetry) from Virginia Tech. She has been the recipient of four grants, including from MASSMoCA and the Roshan Institute for Persian Studies; a finalist for four fellowships, including the Miami Book Fair Emerging Writer Fellowship; and named a finalist for four poetry contests, including Narrative Magazine’s Twelfth Annual Poetry Contest and Nimrod’s Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry. Her poems and essays have been published or are forthcoming in Poetry, Ploughshares, AGNI, Black Warrior Review, ROOM Magazine, A Public Space, The Rumpus, Frontier Poetry, Mizna, Crazyhorse, Bitch Media, and elsewhere.
Jody Callahan, a Northampton-based writer, started her writing life in the theater. She’s had several short plays performed in theater festivals in the United States and the Netherlands. Her comedic piece Morality Laws for Wild Animals Aboard Noah’s Ark: aka How to Survive 40 Days and 40 Nights without Incurring the Wrath of God was featured by Liars’ Leagues in London and Hong Kong and was part of the Secret Forum, the literary aspect of the Wilderness Festival, an arts and camping festival in Oxfordshire, United Kingdom. A two-time finalist for Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers, Jody's work is in anthologies and journals, including a piece in Writer’s Digest Magazine about her years living next door to Nobel Prize laureate Derek Walcott.
Elyse Durham is a fiction writer living in Carmel, Indiana. She graduated from Kalamazoo College; in July 2022, she will graduate from the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. Additionally, Elyse is a freelance arts and culture journalist who has written about dance, film, and music for America Magazine and Bearings Online, the digital magazine of the Collegeville Institute. Her short fiction has appeared in Image, the LEON Literary Review, and the Cincinnati Review. In 2021, she was awarded a grant by the Elizabeth George Foundation for her first novel, Maya and Natasha, a historical epic about ballet and the arts in midcentury Soviet Russia.
Cheryl Isaac is an American writer, born and raised in Liberia, West Africa, who immigrated to the United States as a teenager. She has received fellowships from MacDowell, Tin House, and Disquiet International. Her fiction, nonfiction, and poetry have been published and are forthcoming in Chicago Quarterly Review, The Common, Ocean State Review, Forbes, Hawaii Pacific Review, South Writ Large, and more. She writes about issues that affect women and girls around the world. A survivor of the First Liberian Civil War, she focuses her writing on the interplay between culture, memory, and identity. She is currently working on a memoir about her experiences growing up during the First Liberian Civil War.
Ella Jacobson was born and raised in Fairbanks, Alaska. She studied literature and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics at Bard College. Post-graduation, Jacobson worked as a Global Academic Fellow in Writing for New York University in Abu Dhabi. As a Fellow, she conducted seminars and workshops for undergraduates and helped design and lead NYUAD’s first curriculum for adult English learners. Returning to Alaska in 2014, she spent one year working as a Protective Service Specialist to ensure the safety of children placed in state custody. In 2018, Jacobson earned a Master of Arts in Cultural Reporting and Criticism from New York University. Her writing has appeared in The Guardian, Slate, The Los Angeles Review of Books Blog, and Mother Jones, among other publications.
Liana Mack was born and raised in the Bronx. She received her Bachelor of Science in Visual Arts from the School of Art + Design at Purchase College, specializing in printmaking and bookmaking techniques. As part of the female collective The Bettys, Mack exhibited work at art book fairs and the group show “#GRLPARADISE” at Shuaspace in Jersey City, New Jersey. She was a popular columnist at The Cut (New York Magazine); other bylines have included a column with Heroine and early contributions to The Style Con. Her poetry has appeared in the dirt child.
Mack was awarded a residency at GilsfjodurArts in the Westfjords of Iceland, completed in October 2021. Her experiences of femininity and her life as a person of color deeply inform her work.
Jessica Provenz discovered playwriting as a student of John Logan’s at Northwestern University, where she received her Bachelor of Science. As Playwright-in-Residence, while pursuing her Artist’s Diploma at the Juilliard School, she studied with Christopher Durang and Marsha Norman. She is a two-time recipient of the Lecomte du Noüy Award for Emerging Playwrights. Provenz has produced eight full-length plays and several short plays, including A Wake on Chappaquiddick, inspired by Edith Wharton’s Ethan Frome.
She is currently writing a short film on the Knox Trail, commissioned by the Otis Cultural Council, and a one-person play for the Great Barrington Public Theatre to be performed in July. A member of a playwriting group, Berkshire Voices, and a contributor to Berkshire Magazine, Provenz lives in Lenox, MA, with her 10-year-old son.
Sarah Wang is a Chinese-American writer documenting cultural history, immigration, mass incarceration, surveillance, and the effects of trauma on the body. Her writing revolves around the central concern of what it means to be an immigrant woman struggling for equality and agency in a world that often denies a voice to such subjects. Her writing has been featured in numerous publications, including The London Review of Books, Harper’s Bazaar, and BOMB.
Wang is the winner of a Nelson Algren Prize for Fiction, a 2021-2022 PEN America Writing for Justice Fellow, a 2020 Tin House Scholar, a Kundiman Mentorship Lab Fellow, a 2019 Fellow at the Center for Fiction and the Asian American Writers' Workshop's Witness Program.
Dāshaun Washington is a poet living in Northampton, Massachusetts. He is a 2021 92Y Discovery Contest runner-up and Missouri Review 2020 Jeffrey E. Smith Editor’s Prize in Poetry finalist. His work has received support from Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, The Watering Hole, Tin House, Juniper Institute, Millay Arts, and other institutions. His work has appeared in Poem-a-Day, American Poetry Review, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Cosmonauts Avenue, Tinderbox, and elsewhere. He is a graduate of the University of Texas at Dallas and an MFA candidate at the University of Massachusetts Amherst; Washington teaches within the English Department and Writing Program.
The Edith Wharton-Straw Dog Writers Guild Writers-in-Residence Program
Natalie Gerich Brabson
Alyson Mosquera Dutemple
Anna Laura Falvay