Saku Ee currently scouts books and edits proposals and manuscripts for The Literary Group International. She has worked as a development assistant for New Line Cinema and Sony Pictures, where she learned how to analyze and develop scripts. She also worked as a production coordinator on independent features, learning about the practical realities of making movies. She has studied screenwriting at UCLA Extension and with Robert McKee and has learned about comedy, text analysis and character development from an actor's point of view at Lesly Kahn & Company. She received her M.F.A. in new genres from the San Francisco Art Institute, specializing in conceptual, performative and visual art. She is working on both a feature film script and a TV show pilot.
During the school year, Liz Bedell strives to balance writing and teaching English full-time, something of a juggling act. She has nearly completed a nonfiction manuscript about a course that integrates experiential service learning, literature and creative nonfiction writing. Currently at work on a novel set during and after World War I, she has taught writing to both adolescents and adults for twenty years. After 15 years at Concord Academy, Liz recently moved to Northampton, MA to focus on her writing.
Brooke Hauser has written for The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Allure, Parade and Premiere, among other publications. In September 2011, Simon & Schuster published her book, The New Kids: Big Dreams and Brave Journeys at a High School for Immigrant Teens.
For several years, Hauser covered the film industry as writer-at-large at Premiere, where she was also an editor. In 2005, her interest in profiling characters not usually featured in the mainstream media led her to the City section of The New York Times.
Since then, she has tried to dig deep and tread lightly in many different worlds, from New York's juvenile justice system to Harlem's spirited Baptist community. Originally from Miami, Florida, Hauser began her career as a reporter for The Miami Herald. She is a graduate of Kenyon College and now lives in Northampton, Mass.
Maureen Buchanan Jones
Maureen Buchanan Jones is the executive director of Amherst Writers & Artists and leads writing workshops in Northampton, Massachusetts, through her business, Writing Full Tilt. She has led workshops with women who have experienced domestic violence. Her poetry has appeared in Woman in Natural Resources, 13th Moon, Peregrine, North Dakota Quarterly, Letters from Daughters to Fathers, Writer Advice, Equinox, Calyx and Chrysalis. Her prose has appeared in Orion and on WFCR–NPR. Her book of poems, blessed are the menial chores, is available on her website: www.writingfulltilt.com. Jones' novel, Maud & Addie is with Writer's House of New York. Jones holds a doctorate in English literature from the University of Massachusetts, and she has been teaching literature as well as technical and creative writing for 24 years.
Troy David Mercier
Professional training includes work with Double Edge Theatre, SITI Company, Gardzienice Theatre of Poland, Serious Play Ensemble, Admiration Theatre Ensemble of London, New Century Theater, and PaintBox Theatre.
Troy has worked professionally as an actor in New York City and as movement director/consultant on several regional projects in the New England Pioneer Valley. His teaching experience includes work at Jane Hanson's Theatre Performance Summer Camp in Northampton MA, The Pioneer Valley Performing Arts High School in Hadley MA, UMASS Amherst, Hampshire College, Smith College, New York City, Chicago, and London. Troy's passion and strength is working to create original theatre pieces in collaboration with artists and ensembles.
Terra Elan McVoy has held a variety of jobs centered around reading and writing, from managing an independent children's bookstore, to teaching writing classes and even answering fan mail for Captain Underpants. She received her master of arts in Creative Writing from Florida State University in 2002. McVoy lives and works in the Atlanta neighborhood that provides the setting for her young adult novels After the Kiss, Being Friends with Boys and Pure. She is also the author of The Summer of Firsts and Lasts and Criminal (in press). To learn more about McVoy and her work, visit TerraElan.com and follow her on Twitter at @TerraMcVoy.
Phil O'Donoghue is Assistant of Theatre and English at Springfield Technical Community College, where he teaches playwrighting, acting, and theatre literature. In addition to directing at STCC, he has also directed at the Williston-Northampton Summer Theatre Program. He holds an M.F.A. in Playwrighting from Smith College, where he studied under Len Berkman, Anne Hesseltine Professor of Theatre. Phil has had plays produced in New York, Los Angeles, and Boston, and is an original member of the Northampton 24-Hour Theatre Project.
Steve Murphy has written numerous Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic books, novels, film and cartoon scripts, as well as the two comic book series Umbra and The Puma Blues. Upcoming projects include the graphic novels Sturgeon Creek and God's Dog. In 2007 Umbra received Harvey Award nominations for both Best Series and Best Writer.
Pamela Petro is the author of three books of travel-based nonfiction, including Travels in an Old Tongue, Sitting Up With the Dead and The Slow Breath of Stone. She teaches creative nonfiction at Smith College and in Lesley University's master of fine arts in creative writing program. She has written for many publications in the United States and the United Kingdom, including The New York Times, The Atlantic and Granta, and is writing a series of personal essays for The Paris Review Daily. Petro is also a visual artist who creates environmental installations with "petrographs," or photographs printed on stone. She is working on a novel set in Wales, a new nonfiction book about the Welsh concept of hiraeth (a kind of national longing) and an artist's book stemming from her recent artist's residency at the Grand Canyon.
Michael Carolan is the author of the novel Highway for Our God, which has been acquired by a New York literary agency. He is the author and editor of the memoir collection The Mass Deportation of Poles to Siberia, and appears regularly as a commentator on New England Public Radio. His work has appeared in the Massachusetts Review, The Pitch, Springfield Republican, Worcester Telegram Gazette, Kansas City Star, National Public Radio and the Philadelphia Inquirer. Named a Heritage Fellow in Fiction at George Mason University, Mr. Carolan received the Edgar Wolfe Short Story Writing Award, the Virginia Press Association Award, the Crossroads Irish-American Festival Prize, and a writing award from the Atlantic Monthly magazine. A graduate of the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Kansas Lawrence and the Master of Fine Arts Program for Poets and Writers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, he taught film, literature, and creative writing at the University of Massachusetts and Marlboro College. He currently teaches writing and literature at Clark University.
Peter Sapira received his bachelor of arts in English from San Francisco State University and his master of fine arts in English from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He has had short stories published in Anarchy, Inkwell, Meshuggah, The Black River Review, The Literary Review and Pleiades. The Literary Group International currently represents his first novel, Billy Hill. He has taught composition, literature and creative writing classes at colleges throughout the Pioneer Valley; he currently teaches at Smith College. He is also an avid tennis player, drummer and dog walker.
Melissa Walker is a magazine editor/writer and the co-founder of iheartdaily.com. She has written six YA novels: Violet on the Runway, Violet by Design and Violet in Private (Penguin), about a small-town girl who's scouted to become a model and finds herself in the crazy fashion world; Lovestruck Summer (HarperTeen), a beach read full of indie rock and cowboys; Small Town Sinners (Bloomsbury), the story of a girl who wants to star in her Evangelical community's Hell House production; Unbreak My Heart (Bloomsbury), about the year that broke Clementine's heart, and the summer that healed it...on a boat! Find her on twitter @melissacwalker or visit melissacwalker.com.