Contributors' Notes

Leslie Absher lives in Oakland, California but grew up moving around the United States and abroad. Her writing practice has led her to a deep sense of compassion for herself and the world. An essay about how she found out her father worked for the CIA was published in the Los Angeles Times and a second father/daughter essay was published by Ms. Magazine. She has recently completed a memoir about her relationship with her father. (

Louise Aronson is a geriatrician, writer, and associate professor at the University of California, San Francisco. Her writing appears in literary and medical journals and in the lay press, including the New York Times, Narrative Magazine, the New England Journal of Medicine, and the Lancet. Her first book, A History of the Present Illness, was published by Bloomsbury in 2013.

Hannah Baggott is a Nashville native currently pursuing an MFA in poetry at Oregon State University and teaching writing courses. She is particularly interested in empathy and body, creatively and academically. Her work can be found in Tupelo Quarterly, Contrary Magazine, Stockholm Review of Literature, r.kv.r.y Quarterly, and other journals. (

Jen Bergmark has published fiction has appeared in Indiana Review, Cream City Review, Harpur Palate, Puerto del Sol, and The Drum, among other journals, and was anthologized in New California Writing 2013 (Heyday Books). She was a Poets and Writers California Exchange Award finalist, received the John Gardner Memorial Prize for Fiction, and has twice been a resident at the KHN Center for the Arts. (

Kimberly Burwick is the author of Has No Kinsmen (Red Hen Press, 2006) and Horses in the Cathedral (Anhinga Press, 2011), which won the Robert Dana Prize. Her book Goodnight Brother won the Burnside Review book prize. She teaches creative writing at Washington State University and at UCLA-extension Writer’s Program. She lives in Moscow, Idaho with her husband and three-year-old son.

Philip Cawkwell is a member of the class of 2016 at the New York University School of Medicine. Originally from Durham, North Carolina, Philip grew up in Bedford, New York. He attended University of Pennsylvania, where he was co-captain of the track and cross-country teams. His clinical interests include pediatrics and child psychiatry. In his spare time, Philip enjoys running, creative writing, and spending time with his family.

Gemma Cooper-Novack is a writer, writing coach, and arts educator. Her poetry and fiction have appeared in more than a dozen journals, including Ballard Street Poetry Journal (Pushcart Prize nomination), Cider Press Review, Hanging Loose, Santa Fe Writers’ Project, and Printer’s Devil Review, where she is a fiction editor. Gemma’s plays have been produced in Chicago and New York. She has been awarded artists’ residencies in Catalonia, Miami Beach, and New York, and enjoys baking cookies and walking on stilts (ed. note: but not at the same time).

Steve Cushman has worked as an X-ray technologist for twenty years. He received an MFA from UNC-Greensboro and currently works at Moses Cone Memorial Hospital in Greensboro, His debut novel, Portisville, was the winner of the 2004 Novello Literary Award. He has published a second novel, Heart With Joy; a short story collection, Fracture City; and most recently a poetry chapbook, Hospital Work.

Scott Dalgarno has published poems in American Poetry Review, Yale Review, Antioch Review, America Magazine, and The Merton Seasonal. He taught World Religions and Introduction to Film Studies at Southern Oregon University, and is currently pastor of Wasatch Presbyterian Church in Salt Lake City.

Zacc Dukowitz has published fiction in The American Literary Review, the Red Savina Review, and the Blue Bonnet Review. He contributed dialogue to and played the lead in an independent film titled I Am Death, which won “Best Dramatic Screenplay” at the Williamsburg International Film Festival (WILLiFEST) in 2013. He currently lives on Lake Atitlan in rural Guatemala with his wife and two dogs, Scout and Boo Radley.

Dan Gemmer is a retired Older Adult Protective Service investigator. He was required to write very detailed, factual, but succinct case notes, which partially explains his writing style. Previous to this he was a department store manager for many years. He is also a Vietnam War combat veteran. He has no formal training in fiction writing, but he loves to write and read great fiction. He recently won the New Millennium Short-Short Fiction prize.

Ting Gou is the recipient of awards from The Lewis Center for the Arts, Best Undergraduate Writing 2011, and The DeBakey Medical Foundation, and received a Pushcart nomination in 2014. Her poems also appear in the Nassau Literary Review, Best Undergraduate Writing 2009, CHEST, and Ghost Ocean Magazine. She is a student at the University of Michigan Medical School.

Carla Hartenberger is currently completing a Masters in Public Policy in Toronto. She was a finalist for Descant Magazine’s Winston Collins Prize for Best Canadian Poem in 2011 for her poem “Naked in the Sun.”

Michele Lent Hirsch is a journalist and former magazine editor as well as a writer of poetry and essays. A 2014 Tent: Creative Writing fellow and recipient of a scholarship from the American Society of Journalists and Authors, her work has appeared in The Atlantic online, Psychology Today, Canary, and #24MAG. She is currently writing a book about illness.

Ted Kooser has two new books, Splitting an Order (poems) from Copper Canyon Press, and The Wheeling Year (prose vignettes) from University of Nebraska Press. His most recent children’s books, Bag in the Wind (2010) and House Held Up By Trees (2012), are both from Candlewick Press. He served two terms as US Poet Laureate and lives in rural Nebraska.

Carrie L. Krucinski lives in Elyria, Ohio with her husband, Steven, and bulldog, Watson. She teaches and tutors English at Lorain County Community College. Her poems have been published in the Minetta Review, Prole, rkvry Quarterly, and the North Coast Review.

Toni Martin is an internist and writer who lives in Berkeley. Her group memoir, When the Personal Was Political: Five Women Doctors Look Back, was published in 2008. Her essays and fiction have appeared in the East Bay Monthly, the Threepenny Review, ZYZZYVA, and Persimmon Tree. In 2013, she won the Orlando prize in the AROHO fall fiction contest and was a finalist for the Microfiction Award.

Danielle Mitchell is a recipient of the Editor’s Choice Award from the Mas Tequila Review. Her work has appeared in Union Station Magazine, decomP, Map Literary, and Connotation Press. Danielle is an alumna of the Squaw Valley Community of Writers and poetry editor at Wherewithal. She lives in Long Beach, California where she is director of The Poetry Lab.

Rachel Morgan is the poetry editor for the North American Review and teaches creative writing at the University of Northern Iowa. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She co-edited Fire Under the Moon: An Anthology of Contemporary Slovene Poetry (Black Dirt Press). Recently her work has appeared in Crazyhorse, Mid-American Review, Fence, Barrow Street, Denver Quarterly, Volt, B O D Y, and DIAGRAM.

Jon Mozes has published fiction in Lumina’s online journal, nonfiction in Under the Sun, and poetry at In addition, his story “Nothing” won The Monti’s 2011 Hippo Award for Best Overall Story. He has also been a finalist for several other writing awards and fellowships, including “Family Matters” in Glimmer Train Stories and River Styx’s microfiction contest. Jon has an MFA in creative writing from Washington University in St. Louis.He works sometimes as an actor and most of the time in the School of Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Woods Nash is a postdoc fellow in the McGovern Center for Humanities and Ethics at The University of Texas Medical School–Houston. His research examines illness and medicine in works by Cormac McCarthy, Walker Percy, Albert Camus, and others. His articles have appeared in Literature and Medicine and Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics, and his poems in JAMA and Annals of Internal Medicine. He is guest editor for a special issue of Journal of Medical Humanities.

Carly Nugent is an Australian writer who currently lives in Phnom Penh. In 2009 her script Shots was awarded the R.E. Ross Trust Playwrights’ Script Development Award. Her short story “Jeremy” won the Olvar Wood Competition, and was published by Melbourne Books in 2013 as part of their collection Award Winning Australian Writing. Carly is currently working on a novel for young adults and coordinating a writing workshop.

Michael O’Connor is the author of the plays Dance Therapy, Testimony and Phone Sex, which was called “hilarious and disturbing” by the New York Times. This is his first work of short fiction. He lives with his wife and family in Manhattan.

Antonina Palisano is an MFA candidate at Boston University. Her work has been recently published in the Massachusetts Review, Electric Cereal, Washington Square, Winter Tangerine Review, and the Poetry Daily anthology. She lives with two other poets in Medford, Massachusetts.

Alison Palmer’s poetry appears in FIELD, the Laurel Review, Cannibal, Best New Poets 2010, Box of Jars, Natural Bridge, and Folio Literary Journal. She was a finalist for the Poet’s Billow’s Bermuda Triangle Prize, as well as the Pangaea Prize. Alison received her MFA from Washington University in St. Louis where she was nominated for the 2007 and 2008 AWP Journals Project. She studied creative writing at Oberlin College and received their Emma Howell Memorial Poetry Prize.

Dannye Romine Powell is the author of three collections from the University of Arkansas Press. The Ecstasy of Regret and A Necklace of Bees each won the Brockman-Campbell Award for the best book of poems by a North Carolinian in the preceding year. Recent poems appear in Harvard Review Online, Southern Poetry Review, and Crab Creek Review. She writes about books and authors for the Charlotte Observer.

Gita Ralleigh is a breast-screening radiologist with two children. She has completed an MA in Creative Writing at Birkbeck College, University of London and is working on her first novel for young adults.

Christopher Robinson’s debut novel, War of the Encyclopaedists, co-authored with Gavin Kovite, will be published by Scribner in May 2015. His work has appeared in the Missouri Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Kenyon Review, McSweeney’s Online, and elsewhere. He is a MacDowell Colony fellow and a Yale Younger Poets Prize finalist. He earned an MA in poetry from Boston University and an MFA from Hunter College. His secret underground lair is located somewhere in Seattle.

Kevin Scollan lives in central Connecticut and works as a writer/editor for a New York-based online financial services company. He is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford.

Maureen Seaton’s new and selected poems, Fibonacci Batman, is out from Carnegie Mellon University Press (2013). She is the author of fifteen poetry collections, both solo and collaborative. Her awards include the Iowa Prize, two Lambda Literary Awards, an NEA fellowship, and the Pushcart Prize. She teaches poetry at the University of Miami and lives in Florida and New Mexico.

Colby Cedar Smith holds degrees from Colorado College and Harvard University. She is the author of two chapbooks: Seven Seeds of the Pomegranate (The Penny Press, 2006) and Transplanted (Bokbinderigatan Press, 2013). Her poems have appeared in Harpur Palate, Memorious, Perigee, Potomac Review, RUNES, Saranac Review, and the Iowa Review. She critiques poetry and fiction for ForeWord Reviews and teaches creative writing in Princeton, New Jersey.

Soren Stockman’s poems have recently appeared in the Iowa Review, PEN Poetry Series, H.O.W. Journal, St. Petersburg Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, the Paris-American, and Narrative Magazine, which awarded him first place in the 2013 Narrative 30 Below Story and Poetry Contest. He is the recipient of fellowships from the Ucross Foundation, the New York State Summer Writers Institute, and New York University. He works as Program Coordinator for Summer Literary Seminars, and lives in New York.

Carole Stone’s last collections of poems were American Rhapsody (CavanKerry Press, 2012) and Hurt, the Shadow (Dos Madres Press, 2013). Professor of English Emerita, Montclair State University, she received fellowships from Rothermere Instititute, Oxford University, England; Hawthornden Castle, Scotland; and the Chateau de Lavigny, Switzerland. Her poems have appeared in Cavewall, the Beloit Poetry Journal, Southern Poetry Review and Nimrod among others. She divides her time between Springs, New York and Verona, New Jersey.

Adina Talve-Goodman, a native of St. Louis, now lives in Brooklyn, where she is the managing editor of both One Story and One Teen Story.

Catherine G. Wolf studied language development in graduate school, and was fascinated by this unique human ability. In 1997, when she was stricken with Lou Gehrig’s disease, her ability to speak was taken away by this disease. She found poetry had a special capability to express her innermost feelings. By losing her physical voice, Catherine found her poetic voice. She writes blogs and articles about living with Lou Gehrig’s disease. She is studying poetry at the