MFA Student Profiles
Spring 2013

MFA student Bridget Apfeld

Bridget Apfeld


hometown: Mequon, WI
BA: English, University of Notre Dame

Bridget is a teaching assistant in the creative writing department. Her work has appeared in various undergraduate literary and academic journals, as well as in Dislocate.

MFA student Ana Alvarez

Ana Cristina Alvarez


hometown: Miami, FL; St. Louis, MO; and most recently Durham, NC
BA: English, University of Missouri, St. Louis

Ana has worked in book publishing, bookstores (both big chains and indies), and is completing the trifecta with a MFA. She is a teaching assistant in The Publishing Laboratory. She is often seen with a cup of coffee or some sort of espresso-based beverage. This is the first time she has written of herself in the third person.


MFA student Jason Bradford

Jason Bradford


hometown: Center Point, IA
BA: English and creative writing, Coe College
MA: English and creative writing, University of Northern Iowa

Jason began writing poems around age 15, when he realized he wasn't going to be a rock star. Now he co-edits Cant Journal, an annual literary journal, and is creator and curator for Digital Roots Reading Series, an online poetry reading series. His poems have appeared in BloodLotus, Burner Magazine, and Psychic Meatloaf. His second chapbook of poems, The Inhabitants, was recently published by Final Thursday Press.

Garrard Conley

Garrard Conley

hometown: Mountain Home, AR
BA: English, Lyon College
MA: creative writing/English, Auburn University

Garrard spends most of his days in The Publishing Laboratory. A Returned Peace Corps Volunteer, he served as an English teacher in Ukraine for three years. Last year, he was invited to Bulgaria as a Sozopol Fiction Seminar Fellow, where his love for Eastern Europe grew. He currently serves as fiction editor of Absinthe: New European Writing. His stories can be found in Spork and Vagabond.

MFA student Michelle Crouch

Michelle E. Crouch

hometown: Raleigh, NC
BA: art history, Swarthmore College

Michelle is one of the co-founders of APIARY Magazine. She holds a master's degree in library science and has worked in a bookstore, an art library, and a museum dedicated to The Three Stooges. Her fiction has appeared in the Indiana Review.

MFA student Alexa Doran

Alexa Doran

hometown: Syracuse, NY
MA: English and creative writing, Austin Peay State University

Alexa is a second-year poet who awaits further confirmation that she is the female incarnation of Dante. In the meantime, she works both as a teaching assistant in the creative writing department and as a waitress. Her work has appeared recently in Ekphrasis, S/tick, and Petrichor Review.

Nicola DeRobertis-Theye

Nicola DeRobertis-Theye
creative nonfiction

hometown: Oakland, CA
BA: English and anthropology, UC Berkeley

Nicola has written for Bay Nature magazine. She is currently a coordinator for the Young Writers Workshop.

MFA student Jen Dotsey

Jen Dotsey

hometown: Clearfield, PA
BA: English and religion, Dartmouth College
MTS: theological studies, Harvard Divinity School

Jen is a teaching assistant in the creative writing department. Previously, she taught high school literature and social justice in Seattle, where she actually really liked the rain. She is at work on a novel.

Christine Hennessey

Christine Hennessey

hometown: Long Island, NY
BA: creative writing, SUNY Purchase

Before coming to Wilmington, Chrissy spent seven years in rural East Texas, where she became an academic librarian, played roller derby, adopted two 100-pound dogs, and hosted a Literary Reading Series at her best friend's yoga studio. She is a teaching assistant at UNCW and her fiction has appeared in LIT, Forge, and The Molotov Cocktail.

MFA student Kate Johnsen

Katharine Johnsen

hometown: West Newton, MA
BA: playwriting and French studies, Emory University

Katharine is the 2011–12 Bernice Kert Fellow and a teaching assistant in the creative writing department. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Birmingham Poetry Review, The Journal, Mid-American Review, cellpoems, and elsewhere. She is the recipient of a scholarship from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference and her plays have been performed in both of Emory’s new play festivals.

MFA student Sally Johnson

Sally J. Johnson

hometown: Grand Rapids, MI
BA: creative writing, Western Michigan University

Sally is the managing editor of Ecotone and the co-president of the CRW GSA. Formerly, she was the poetry editor for Atlantis as well as an instructor for both Writers in Action and UNCW's Young Writers Workshop. Her poetry and nonfiction can be read in The Pinch, Bodega, Sundog Lit, and Treehouse Magazine, among others.

MFA student Katie Jones

Kathleen (Katie) Jones

hometown: West Lafayette, IN
BA: English, Earlham College

Katie is a teaching assistant in The Publishing Laboratory. Her poems have appeared in Jones Av., morpheme, and Gesture.

MFA student Brent Livingood

Brent Livingood
creative nonfiction

hometown: Chattanooga, TN
BA: history and religion, Emory & Henry College
M.Div and Th.M: Duke University

Brent's cats, GoodKnight and HouseCat, read and write for Brent in exchange for a clean litter box, the right to stay up all night, an open window, and a continuous supply of cat food. GoodKnight and HouseCat are having a difficult time finding an agent to take them seriously.

Paul Maisano

Paul Maisano

hometown: San Francisco, CA
BA: Japanese sociocultural studies, Columbia University

Before Wilmington, and after a stint in the fashion industry, Paul was traipsing around five continents on a four-year joyride, during which he realized he should probably rejoin a writing community. He is at work on his second novel. Oh yeah, publishing—he’s going to try that, too.

MFA student Mitchell McGinnis

Mitchell McInnis

hometown: Portland, OR
BA: philosophy, Concordia College

Mitch McInnis was born and raised in Montana. More recently, he's lived in Minneapolis, St. Louis, Los Angeles, New York, and Portland, OR. In these locales, he's worked as a journalist, copywriter, private investigator, and coffee importer. Mitch is the co-founder and literary editor of the arts journal HoboEye.

His poems have appeared in Cold-Drill, So to Speak, and other publications. While promoting his first poetry collection, The Missing Shade of Blue, he was a featured author at the Montana Festival of the Book, High Plains Bookfest, and the Univeristy of Montana-Western's "Dances with Words" series.

Catey Miller

Catey Miller

hometown: Boone, NC
BFA: creative writing, UNCW

Catey enjoys working at UNCW as a writing tutor and graduate assistant. Her first literary love is contemporary young adult fiction, and she is at work on a YA novel. Her work is forthcoming in the Young Adult Review Network.

MFA student Jeremy Morris

Jeremy Francis Morris

hometown: Lake Gaston, Virginia
BFA: creative writing, UNC Wilmington

MFA student Ali Nolan

Alessandra (Ali) Nolan
creative nonfiction

hometown: Middletown, NJ
BA: English with a creative writing concentration, Wells College

MFA student Katie O'Reilly

Katie O'Reilly

creative nonfiction

hometown: Palos Park, IL
BS: journalism, Northwestern University

Before coming to Wilmington, Katie worked as a magazine editor for several years in Los Angeles. She's also done time as an editorial assistant for The Huffington Post, an intern for The Onion/A.V. Club, a tour guide with a Chicago-based ghosthunting bus, and as ESL teacher in the Czech Republic. When not working on a memoir, Katie can be found reporting around town as a graduate fellow serving the news department of WHQR, Wilmington's public radio station.

MFA student Leah Osowski

Leah Osowski


hometown: Massachusetts
BA: psychology, UNCW

Leah teaches gifted fourth graders with Writers in Action. Her poetry has appeared in The Boiler Journal. She was a nonfiction finalist in the Black Warrior Review's annual contest and her lyric nonfiction is forthcoming in their journal.

Katie Prince

Katie Prince

hometown: Southlake, TX
BA: English/creative writing, University of Missouri

Katie is a teaching assistant in The Publishing Laboratory. She has interned at Persea Books and The Missouri Review, and came to UNCW after some brief and unremarkable forays into journalism, news design, retail, and waitressing. Her poems have appeared in Prick of the Spindle and Epic.

MFA student Myra Tejada

Myra Tejada Rasmussen

hometown: Chicago, IL
BA: English, University of Notre Dame

Prior to coming to Wilmington, Myra worked in pharmaceutical advertising for over ten years in Chicago and NYC. She's an avid marathon and ultra marathon runner and when she's not writing poetry or running, she's working with her husband's adventure travel company as a co-race director for international marathons. They will not miss the Chicago winters but will miss deep-dish pizza, the Lakefront, and Greek Islands food!

MFA student Beth Roddy

Elizabeth Roddy

creative nonfiction

hometown: Sudbury, MA
BA: art history, Columbia University

Beth Roddy has participated as a switched up storyteller in "No, YOU Tell It!" nonfiction series, EARSHOT, The Gathering of the Tribes, and CCNY MFA Reading series. She has been published in Promethean.

MFA student Cathe Shubert

Cathe Shubert


hometown: West Bloomfield, MI
BA: English, Spanish, University of Michigan
MS: urban education, University of Pennsylvania

Cathe is a teaching assistant in the creative writing department and interns as a nonfiction and poetry reader at Ecotone. Her poetry has appeared in the inaugural issues of the Bread Loaf School of English literary journal, and her nonfiction won the Hopwood Undergraduate Award at Michigan. She's taught English abroad in Andorra on a Fulbright Scholarship, Spanish in Philadelphia with Teach for America, and creative writing Detroit with Inside/Out Literary Arts Project.

Erica Sklar

Erica Sklar
creative nonfiction

hometown: New York City, most recently
BA: creative writing, Columbia University

Erica Sklar is a teaching assistant in the creative writing department, and is also an associate editor of Chautauqua. Her work has been published in The Master's Review and is forthcoming in Barely South.

MFA student Kasey Thornton

Kasey Thornton

hometown: Wendell, NC
BA: English (creative writing and professional writing & rhetoric), Elon University.

Before landing at UNCW, Kasey worked four simultaneous jobs as an editor, a public relations specialist, a staff writer at a small college, and a music teacher. She was born in a small town, grew up in a small town, and writes about small towns.

MFA student Sophia Ulmer

Sophia Ulmer
creative nonfiction

hometown: Indiana
BA: creative nonfiction, Columbia College Chicago

Before moving to Wilmington, Sophia was both a reading tutor for dyslexic students and waitress extraordinaire. She hopes an MFA will ensure her future evasion of the latter occupation. Her work has appeared in the South Loop Review, on, and is forthcoming in several unsuspecting journals.

MFA student Carson Vaughan

Carson Vaughan
creative nonfiction

hometown: Broken Bow, NE
BA: English, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
BJ: University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Carson is the founding editor of The DailyER Nebraskan, UNL's first and only satirical news source. He has interned for The Onion and Variety Magazine, and regularly contributed freelance work to the Lincoln Journal Star and other regional publications until moving to North Carolina.

MFA student Ethan Warren

Ethan Warren

hometown: Boston, MA
BA: English and psychology, Bates College

Ethan has written for newspapers, magazines, and just for the hell of it.

MFA student Jillian Weiss

Jillian Weiss

creative nonfiction

hometown: Winston-Salem, NC; London, UK
BA: creative writing, Elon University

Jillian frequently finds herself working with middle schoolers in many different settings. She has interned as a youth worker in Memphis, taught sixth- and seventh-graders creative writing in Texas with Duke TIP, and before attending UNCW, she went back to sixth grade for a year as a shadow for an amazing autistic boy. Her nonfiction has appeared in The Pinch and The Susquehanna Review.

Laura Williams

Laura Williams

hometown: Wilmington, NC
BA: English/BFA: creative writing, UNCW

By day Laura is the business manager of Friends School of Wilmington. She says she has to keep working to support her school habit. She is very excited to be in such esteemed company here at UNCW.

Joe Worthen

Joe Worthen

hometown: Greenville, SC
BA: media arts, University of South Carolina

Joe's fiction has appeared in Wag's Revue, 971 Menu, Straight Teeth Zine, and The Lettered Olive. His website is

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