UA Distinguished Visitor Series in Creative Writing presents MFA Alumni Reading featuring Howard Axelrod, Danielle Geller, Kati Standefer, Justin St. Germain, and Courtney Zoffness
Howard Axelrod is the author of The Stars in Our Pockets (2020) and The Point of Vanishing (2015), which was named one of the best books of 2015 by Slate, the Chicago Tribune, and Entropy Magazine. His essays have appeared in the New York Times, O Magazine, Politico, Salon, the Paris Review online, and VQR. He is the director of the Creative Writing Program at Loyola University in Chicago.
Danielle Geller is a writer of personal essays and memoir. Her first book, Dog Flowers, is forthcoming from One World/Random House in 2020. She received her MFA in creative writing for nonfiction at the University of Arizona, and a Rona Jaffe Writers’ Award in 2016. Her work has appeared in The Paris Review, The New Yorker, Brevity, and Arizona Highways, and has been anthologized in This Is the Place. She lives with her husband and two cats in British Columbia, where she teaches creative writing at the University of Victoria. She is also a faculty mentor for the low-residency MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts. She is a member of the Navajo Nation: born to the Tsi’naajinii, born for the white man.
Katherine E. Standefer is the author of Lightning Flowers: My Journey to Uncover the Cost of Saving A Life (Little, Brown Spark). The book was shortlisted for the 2018 J. Anthony Lukas Works-in-Progress Award from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism and the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. Lightning Flowers was named one of O, The Oprah Magazine’s Best Books of Fall 2020, was featured in People Magazine and on NPR’s Fresh Air, and received a Kirkus starred review. Lightning Flowers is the November 2020 New York Times Book Review Group Text pick and was an Editor’s Choice/Staff Pick in the 11/29/20 edition of the New York Times Book Review.
Justin St. Germain is the author of A Great Love Affair: Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood (IG Publishing, March 2021). His previous book, Son of a Gun (Random House, 2013), won the Barnes & Noble Discover Award, was a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice, and was named a best book of the year by Amazon, Publishers Weekly, Salon, Library Journal, and BookPage, among others. His short writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, Tin House, New England Review, and many other journals, and has been appeared in anthologies including Best of the West and The Pushcart Prize. He was a Wallace Stegner Fellow and Marsh McCall Lecturer at Stanford University, and has received fellowships from Bread Loaf, Sewanee, and Yaddo. He grew up in Tombstone, Arizona, “The Town Too Tough to Die,” and received his BA and MFA from the University of Arizona. He lives in Oregon, teaches at Oregon State University and the Rainier Writers Workshop, and co-hosts I'll Find Myself When I'm Dead, a podcast about the literary essay.
Courtney Zoffness won the Sunday Times Short Story Award, the largest international prize for short fiction, as well as fellowships from the Center for Fiction and MacDowell. Her work has appeared in the Paris Review Daily, The Southern Review, Longreads, and several anthologies, and she had Notable Best American Essays in 2018 and 2019. Her first book, Spilt Milk: Memoirs (McSweeney's, 3/2/21), was named a Most Anticipated Book of 2021 by LitHub, Refinery29, The Millions, and Books Are Magic, and received a starred review from Publishers Weekly. She directs the Creative Writing Program at Drew University and lives with her family in Brooklyn, New York.