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Department of EnglishM.F.A. Core Faculty

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M.F.A. Core Faculty


The M.F.A. Core Faculty are talented and dedicated teachers as well as accomplished writers, having published many highly acclaimed and prize-winning books.


Luisa A. Igloria

Luisa A. Igloria

Professor

Originally from Baguio, Luisa A. Igloria was appointed Poet Laureate of the Commonwealth of Virginia (2020-22). The Academy of American Poets awarded her one of 23 Poet Laureate Fellowships in 2021, in support of public poetry projects. She is one of 2 Co-Winners of the 2019 Crab Orchard Poetry Prize for Maps for Migrants and Ghosts (Southern Illinois University Press, fall 2020). In April 2021, the Writers Union of the Philippines (UMPIL) conferred on her the Gawad Pambansang Alagad ni Balagtas lifetime achievement award (English poetry category). In 2015, she was the inaugural winner of the Resurgence Prize (UK), the world's first major award for ecopoetry, selected by former UK Poet Laureate Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. Former US Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey selected her chapbook What is Left of Wings, I Ask as the 2018 recipient of the Center for the Book Arts Letterpress Poetry Chapbook Prize. Other works include The Buddha Wonders if She is Having a Mid-Life Crisis (Phoenicia Publishing, Montreal, 2018), Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (2014 May Swenson Prize, Utah State University Press), and 12 other books. Her poems are widely published or appearing in national and international anthologies, print and online literary journals including Orion, Shenandoah, Indiana Review, Crab Orchard Review, Diode, Missouri Review, Rattle, Poetry East, Your Impossible Voice, Poetry, Shanghai Literary Review, Cha, Hotel Amerika, Spoon River Poetry Review, and others. Luisa served as the inaugural Glasgow Visiting Writer in Residence at Washington and Lee University in 2018. With over 40 years of experience teaching literature and creative writing, Luisa also leads workshops at The Muse Writers Center in Norfolk (and serves on the Muse Board). She is a Louis I. Jaffe Professor and University Professor of English and Creative Writing in the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University, which she directed from 2009-2015. For over eleven years, she's been writing (at least) a poem a day. www.luisaigloria.com


John McManus

John McManus

Professor

John McManus is the author of three short story collections-Fox Tooth Heart, Born on a Train, and Stop Breakin Down-and the novel Bitter Milk. His work has appeared in Tin House, McSweeney's, Ploughshares, American Short Fiction, Electric Literature, Oxford American, and elsewhere. He is the recipient of the Whiting Writers' Award, the Fellowship of Southern Writers' New Writing Award, and a Creative Capital Literature grant.


Benjamin Naka-Hasebe Kingsley

Benjamin Naka-Hasebe Kingsley

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR

Benjamín Naka-Hasebe Kingsley is not the Ben Kingsley best known for his Academy Award-winning role as Mahatma Gandhi. This Ben is a touch less famous, having not acted since his third-grade debut as the Undertaker in Music Man. Affrilachian author and Kundiman alum, Ben is recipient of the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center and Tickner Fellowships. He belongs to the Onondaga Nation of Indigenous Americans in New York. His first, second, and third books debut 2018, 2019, and 2020: Not Your Mama's Melting Pot (University of Nebraska Press), Colonize Me (Saturnalia Books), and Dēmos (Milkweed Editions). Peep his recent work in Poetry, Poets.org, FIELD, The Georgia Review, Kenyon Review, New England Review, Oxford American, & Tin House.


Molly McCully Brown

Molly McCully Brown

Assistant Professor

Molly McCully Brown is the author of the essay collection Places I've Taken My Body (Persea Books, 2020), which was named one of Kirkus' best nonfiction titles of 2020, and the poetry collection The Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded (Persea Books, 2017), which won the 2016 Lexi Rudnitsky First Book Prize and was a New York Times Critics' Top Book of 2017. With Susannah Nevision, she is also the coauthor of the poetry collection In the Field Between Us (Persea Books, 2020). The recipient of a United States Artists Fellowship, a Civitella Ranieri Foundation Fellowship, the Amy Lowell Poetry Traveling Scholarship, and the Jeff Baskin Writers Fellowship from the Oxford American magazine, her work has appeared in The Paris Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, Tin House, The New York Times, The Guardian and elsewhere.


Sheri Reynolds

Sheri Reynolds

Professor & Chair

Sheri Reynolds is the author of the novels Bitterroot Landing, The Rapture of Canaan (an Oprah Book club selection and New York Times bestseller), A Gracious Plenty, Firefly Cloak, The Sweet In-Between, The Homespun Wisdom of Myrtle T. Cribb, and the play Orabelle's Wheelbarrow. She teaches creative writing and literature courses at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, where she currently also serves as Department Chair.


Kent Wascom

Kent Wascom

Assistant Professor

Kent Wascom is the author of three novels--The Blood of Heaven (2013), Secessia (2015), and The New Inheritors (2018). He has been called "one of the most exhilarating historical novelists in the country" by the Washington Post. His work has appeared in Guernica, Literary Hub, The Believer, and elsewhere. He is the recipient of the 2012 Tennessee Williams Literary Festival prize for fiction.




The Mina Hohenberg Darden Chair in Creative Writing

The Mina Hohenberg Darden Chair in Creative Writing is an endowed English professorship initiative in 1997. It is a memorial to Mina Hohenberg Darden established by her family and friends. Darden received three master's degrees from Old Dominion. Previous Hohenberg Darden Chairs include poets Peter Meinke and Michael Blumenthai, and young adult author Sherri L. Smith..


Jaquira Díaz was born in Puerto Rico and raised in Miami. She is the author of Ordinary Girls: A Memoir, winner of a Whiting Award, a Florida Book Awards Gold Medal, and a Lambda Literary Awards finalist. Ordinary Girls was an Indies Introduce Selection, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Notable Selection, an Indie Next Pick, and a Library Reads pick. Díaz's work has been published in The Atlantic, The Guardian, Time Magazine, T: The New York Times Style Magazine, and The Best American Essays 2016, among other publications. She is the recipient of two Pushcart Prizes, an Elizabeth George Foundation grant, and fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Kenyon Review, and the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing. A former Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison's MFA Program in Creative Writing, she is currently the Mina Hohenberg Darden Chair in Creative Writing at Old Dominion University. She splits her time between Montréal, Miami Beach, and the UK with her spouse, the writer Lars Horn. Her second book, I Am Deliberate: A Novel, is forthcoming from Algonquin Books.

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