Jackson Bliss is a hapa writer of fiction and creative nonfiction. He has a MFA in fiction from the University of Notre Dame where he was the Fiction Fellow and the 2007 Sparks Prize Winner. He also has a PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from USC where he worked with TC Boyle, Aimee Bender, and Viet Thanh Nguyen as a College Merit Award Fellow, FLAS fellow in Japanese, and two-time ACE/Nikaido Fellow. Jackson was the 1st 2013 Runner-Up for the Poets & Writer’s California Exchange Award in fiction. His short stories and essays have appeared in Antioch Review, Guernica, Kenyon Review, Fiction, Santa Monica Review, Boston Review, Tin House Flash Fridays, Quarterly West, and ZYZZYVA, among others. Jackson teaches creative writing, literature, and rhetoric at the University of California Irvine and CSUN.
Vanessa Fabiano is the author of debut novel MY YOLANDA, a globetrotting suspense best described as Kill Bill meets Portrait of a Lady. Born in Switzerland to Spanish-Italian immigrant parents, Vanessa grew up fluent in six languages and has lived and worked in Europe, China and the US. An East Asian studies graduate, she earned an MBA and built a career in digital marketing before focusing on writing. Her stories have appeared in Lightship Publishing's 2011 anthology of prize-winning new fiction and on UK short story showcase East of the Web. She has studied writing with Man Booker International Prize nominee Josip Novakovich. Vanessa lives in Madrid with her husband and their daughter, and is at work on her second novel. Follow her @VanessaFabiano.
Joseph Fasano is the author of three books of poetry: Vincent (Cider Press, 2015), Inheritance (2014), and Fugue for Other Hands (2013). A winner of the RATTLE Poetry Prize, he has been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and the Poets' Prize, "awarded annually for the best book of verse published by a living American poet." His writing has appeared in The Yale Review, The Southern Review, Boston Review, The Times Literary Supplement, Tin House, FIELD, American Literary Review, and many other journals, as well as the anthologies Poem-a-Day: 365 Poems for Any Occasion (Abrams, 2015) and The Aeolian Harp (Glass Lyre Press, 2016). He teaches at Manhattanville College and in the undergraduate and graduate creative writing programs of Columbia University. Fasano is currently at work completing his first novel.
"Joseph Fasano has the heart and the ear and he puts them to magnificent use in [TITLE TK]. By turns mournful and thrilling, this story, told in precise and glorious prose, traverses the wild heights of grief, vengeance, tenderness, and love. It pierces."
- Sam Lipsyte, author of Home Land
Nikoletta Gjoni emigrated from Albania in 1990 at the age of three and was raised in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. She studied English Literature at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. As an undergraduate, she was one of 33 students selected to undertake university-funded research in Albania, where she focused on the censorship of news and literature under the Communist regime of the 1950s-1980s. After graduating, Gjoni worked in broadcast news for several years before leaving to focus on her writing and to pursue work in the nonprofit sector. She currently works as Director of Marketing for an economic not-for-profit organization in Baltimore. Gjoni's work has appeared in Bartleby and Kindling Volume III. Gjoni has recently completed a debut collection of linked short stories about people living in Communist Albania, spanning the 1970s through to the present day.
Jakki Kerubo has an MFA in Creative Writing from New York University. Her fiction has been published in the Golden Handcuffs Review and was an Artist-In-Residence at the Center for Faith and Works in New York City. She's also the founder of NALIF, a non-profit that promotes literary engagement in her native homeland, Kenya. She is currently at work on her first novel.
Emily Kiernan is the author of a novel, Great Divide (Unsolicited Press, 2014). Her work has appeared in American Short Fiction, Pank, The Collagist, Redivider, and other journals. She is a prose editor at Noemi Press and a fiction editor at Rivet: The Journal of Writing that Risks. She is presently at work on SWEETHEARTS: A HISTORY, a hybrid memoir about her grandparents, the twentieth century, and the making of the atomic bomb.
Dariel Suarez is a Cuban-born writer who’s lived in the U.S. since 1997. He’s the author of the chapbook, In The Land of Tropical Martyrs, available from Backbone Press. Dariel earned his M.F.A. in fiction at Boston University, where he was a Global Fellow. He has taught creative writing at Boston University, the Boston Arts Academy, and is now an instructor at GrubStreet. His writing has been taught through Brown University’s Latina/o Studies, and has appeared or is forthcoming in numerous journals and magazines, including Michigan Quarterly Review, Prairie Schooner, North American Review, Southern Humanities Review, and The Caribbean Writer, where his work was awarded the First Lady Cecile de Jongh Literary Prize. His short story collection, A Kind of Solitude, was a finalist for the New American Press Fiction Prize. Dariel’s debut novel, THE PLAYWRIGHT’S HOUSE, is a suspenseful and moving family story about life in contemporary Cuba.
"THE PLAYWRIGHT'S HOUSE is a bighearted novel, intricately embedded in the politics and daily life of contemporary Cuba. It is also a family story of love, sibling rivalry, courage, and redemption. Suarez writes with energy, exuberance, and psychological acuity. The straightforward prose adds gravity and earnestness to what is undoubtedly a remarkable novel.”
-Ha Jin, winner of the National Book Award and author of War Trash
K.C. Mead-Brewer is a writer and editor living in Baltimore, Maryland. Her writing appears in Carve Magazine, Cold Mountain Review, Fiction Southeast, and elsewhere. As an author and reader, she loves everything weird—science fiction, horror, surrealism, all the good stuff that plays with reality. All the good stuff that acknowledges that change is not only possible, but inevitable. She is currently finishing her debut novel THE FIRE EATERS, a work of feminist near-future science fiction and magical realism. K.C. has attended Master Classes at Hedgebrook with Gail Tsukiyama and Erica Bauermeister, and recently participated in a creative writing residency at the Vermont Studio Center. For more information, visit: kcmeadbrewer.com and follow her: @meadwriter