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Faculty/Staff Members



JoAnna Novak

Associate Professor, Creative Writing



Novak’s debut memoir Contradiction Days will be published in 2022. Her short story collection, Meaningful Work, won the 2020 Ronald Sukenick Innovative Fiction Contest and will be published by FC2. New Life, her third book of poetry, is forthcoming from Black Lawrence Press, and her fifth chapbook, Knife with Oral Greed, will be published by above/ground press. She is the author of the novel I Must Have You and two previous books of poetry: Noirmania and Abeyance, North America. Twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize, her work has appeared in The Paris Review, The New York Times, The Atlantic, and other publications. She is a co-founder of the literary journal and chapbook publisher, Tammy. Novak teaches workshops in fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry, as well as seminars on creative practice, fairy tales, autofiction, short prose forms, and food writing. She curates the MFA program's reading series, The Parlor. 

Teaching Statement
"You can't draw a perfect circle, but in your mind, there is a perfect circle, that you draw towards," wrote painter Agnes Martin. In my teaching, I empower students to work towards the perfection in their minds by guiding them through all stages of the writing process. With an emphasis on experimentation and play in both drafting and revision, my courses offer students a supportive space in which to practice their craft while creating a sustainable enlivening writing practice that will serve them over their lives as artists.