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Winter Welcome: What We've Been up to

It’s hard to believe we’re already four weeks into the semester. One of our favorite ways to slow down during the chaos that is spring semester is to grab a piece of writing and to indulge for a few hours. Luckily for us, there’s a bounty of great writing available and we’re happy to share what our own WVU MFA students have been up to as well as our alumni.  


Storey Clayton, a third-year MFA candidate in Nonfiction, most recently had his essay “Week Eighteen” published in Issue 25 of Blue Earth Review. This piece is part of his forthcoming thesis/book project that chronicles the pregnancy of his wife, Alex, and their child. The project is addressed to Graham, his son. Clayton’s working title for the book is “Forty Weeks in 2020: A Future Father Faces his Fears."

            Excerpt from "Week Eighteen" by Storey Clayton.           Issue 25 of Blue Earth Review where "Week Eighteen" is published.

Storey Clayton has been an aspiring writer for three of his four decades on the planet. He’s worked as a youth counselor, debate coach, strategic analyst, development director, rideshare driver, and poker player. In the past two years, his nonfiction has appeared in twenty literary journals, including Pleiades, Lunch Ticket, Mud Season Review, Typehouse Literary Magazine, Barely South Review, and North Dakota Quarterly. To check out his writing and learn more, visit

                        Visit to check out a list of title published by WVU alumni.

The WVU MFA program celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2021! As a way of celebrating, faculty and staff including Mary Ann Samyn, Katie Fallon, Marsha Bisset, and Alaina Duty have compiled a list of books written by West Virginia University alumni. To check out the many titles listed, visit We look forward to another 20 years of great writing! 


If your book is featured and you’d like to add information or if you’re a WVU Creative Writing graduate with a published, we'd love to hear from you! Please contact Marsha Bissett.

                    Mark your calendars! Lots of readings offered this spring!

But that’s not all! Perhaps you’re in the mood to attend a virtual reading! Get ready to mark your calendar because listed below are all the exciting readings we have to offer this Spring! To register for any of these readings go to

February 10, Amy Alvarez

Amy M. Alvarez is a poet, educator, and scholar. Her work focuses on race, ethnicity, gender, regionality, nationality, borderless-ness, and systemic injustice/social justice. Her poetry has appeared in Crazyhorse, The Missouri Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, PRISM international, Rattle, Sugar House Review, and elsewhere. She is both a CantoMundo and a VONA Fellow.  Amy was born and raised in Queens, New York to a Jamaican mother and Puerto Rican father. She has taught English, History, and Humanities at public high schools in the Bronx, New York and in Boston, Massachusetts. She now lives in Morgantown, West Virginia and teaches writing at West Virginia University.  To check out her writing and learn more, visit


February 18, Thursday, Madeline ffitch

Madeline ffitch writes and organizes in Appalachian Ohio. She was a founding member of The Missoula Oblongata, the punk theater company, and is the author of the story collection, Valparaiso, Round the Horn. Madeline has been awarded residencies at Yaddo and at the MacDowell Colony. She is the author of Stay and Fight from Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

March 4, Thursday, MFA alum Emily Moore, 7:30 pm

Emily Moore is associate professor of art history at CSU, where she teaches courses in Native American and American art history. She is also Associate Curator of North American Art at the Gregory Allicar Museum at CSU. Her book Proud Raven, Panting Wolf: Carving Alaska's New Deal Totem Parks was published by the University of Washington Press in 2018. It was nominated for Best 2018 First Book in Native American and Indigenous Studies by the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association.


March 9, Tuesday, Christa Parravani, 7:30 pm

Christa Parravani is the author of Loved and Wanted: A Memoir of Choice, Children, and Womanhood. Parravani is also the author of Indie bestselling Her: A Memoir, which shares Parravani's journey through grief after the loss of her identical twin sister Cara. Her was a Wall Street Journal, Salon, and Library Journal best book of the year. It was a Huffington Post best book of the last five years. Parravani's writing has appeared in Guernica, Catapult, Vogue, Hobart, Marie Claire, The Millions, Glamour, The Washington Post, Salon, The Rumpus, The Daily Beast, The London Times, The Daily Mail, The Guardian, and DAME, among other places.  She has been featured in Poets and Writers, on NPR's All Things Considered, and To The Best of Our Knowledge, and on PBS’s Well Read, among many other magazines, network television programs, and public radio programs. 


March 25, Thursday, MFA alum Heather Frese, 7:30 p

Heather Frese’s fiction, essays, and poetry have appeared in Michigan Quarterly Review, the Los Angeles Review, Front Porch, the Barely South Review, Switchback, and elsewhere, earning notable mention in the Pushcart Prize Anthology and Best American Essays. She received her master’s degree from Ohio University and her M.F.A. from West Virginia University. Coastal North Carolina is her longtime love and source of inspiration, her writing deeply influenced by the wild magic and history of the Outer Banks. She currently writes, edits, and wrangles three small children in Raleigh, North Carolina.