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Blake Kimzey, Founder & Executive Director

Blake Kimzey founded and directs Writing Workshops Detroit and is a graduate of the MFA Program at UC Irvine. He sits on the Board of the Elizabeth George Foundation and received a generous Emerging Writer Grant from the Foundation in 2013. His fiction has been broadcast on NPR, performed on stage in Los Angeles, and published by Tin House, McSweeney’s, VICE, Redivider, Green Mountains Review, Short Fiction, FiveChapters, The Lifted Brow, Hobart, Puerto del Sol, The Los Angeles Review, The Masters Review, Booth, Faultline, FLAUNT Magazine, Malibu Magazine, Day One, PANK, Fiction Southeast, Surreal South '13, and selected by Pulitzer Prize-winner Robert Olen Butler for inclusion in The Best Small Fictions 2015. Blake’s collection of short tales, Families Among Us, an Indie Bestseller, was published by Black Lawrence Press in 2014. He recently completed his first novel and is writing a TV Pilot with two of his writing friends. Blake has been awarded fellowships to attend the Squaw Valley Community of Writers and the Vermont Studio Center. He is proudly represented by Ryan Harbage at The Fischer-Harbage Agency. Follow him on Twitter @BlakeKimzey, find him online at, contact him at, or use the Contact link above.


Kelsey Ronan, Director of Writing Programs

Kelsey Ronan is the Director of Writing Programs at Writing Workshops Detroit. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Purdue University and is the former writer-in-residence of the Hub City Writers Project. She grew up in Flint, Michigan and lives in Detroit. Her stories and essays have appeared in many magazines and literary journals, including Michigan Quarterly Review, New Ohio ReviewUtne ReaderKenyon ReviewBelt MagazineIndiana Review, and others. Her essay on the Flint Water Crisis, "Blood and Water," was honored as a notable essay in Best American Essays 2017, and she was the winner of New Ohio Review's 2018 Nonfiction Contest, judged by Roxane Gay. She recently completed a collection of linked short stories set in Flint, and is working on a memoir. Find her online at


Desiree Cooper, Fiction

Desiree Cooper is a 2015 Kresge Artist Fellow, former attorney and Pulitzer Prize-nominated journalist. Her debut collection of flash fiction, Know the Mother (Wayne State University Press, 2016), is a 2017 Michigan Notable Book that has won numerous awards, including the 2017 Next Generation Indie Book Award. Cooper’s fiction, poetry and essays have appeared in The Best Small Fictions 2018, Callaloo, Hypertext Review, Best African American Fiction 2010 and This is the Place, among other online and print publications. Cooper was a founding board member of Cave Canem, a national residency for emerging black poets. She is currently a Kimbilio Fellow, a national residency for African American fiction writers. More info at


Katie Chase, Manuscript Critique

Katie Chase is the author of the story collection Man and Wife (A Strange Object), which was named a best book of 2016 by Entropy and Electric Literature. Her short fiction has appeared in such publications as the Missouri ReviewNarrativeZYZZYVAPrairie SchoonerMississippi Review, and the Best American Short Stories. The recipient of a Pushcart Prize and a Michener-Copernicus Award, she has also been a fellow at the MacDowell Colony and the Steinbeck Program at San José State University. She has evaluated fiction for various publications, awards, and admissions committees, including at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she earned her MFA and was a Teaching-Writing Fellow and a Provost’s Postgraduate Writing Fellow. Katie lives with her husband in Detroit and can be found at

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Sarah Carson, Poetry

Instructor Sarah Carson is the author of two poetry collections—Buick City (Mayapple Press) and Poems in which You Die (BatCat Press)—as well as four chapbooks. Her work has appeared in Cream City Review, Guernica, the Minnesota Review, the Nashville Review and New Ohio Review, among others. Her story “Self-portrait” appeared on Wigleaf’s Top 50 Short Fictions list, and her poem “How to Baptize a Child in Flint, Michigan” was awarded the Copper Nickel Editors Prize. She has been a recipient of a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a finalist for the Ruth Lilly Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation, and an Honorary Ringmaster of a Flint, Michigan circus. You can find her work at

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Matthew Fogarty, Fiction

Matthew Fogarty is the author of the story collection Maybe Mermaids & Robots Are Lonely. His work has appeared in Passages North, Fourteen Hills, PANK, The Rumpus, Midwestern Gothic, and elsewhere. He has twice been a finalist for the Write-a-House residency, and has received scholarships from the New Harmony Writers Workshop, the Wesleyan Writers Conference, and the Squaw Valley Community of Writers. He earned his MFA at the University of South Carolina, where he served as the Editor of Yemassee. He is originally from Troy, Michigan, one of the square-mile suburbs of Detroit.


Shaun Manning, Graphic Novel & Comics

Shaun Manning has written comic book stories for series including Star Wars Adventures, Garbage Pail Kids, Dark Horse Presents, and more. He is the writer and co-creator of three original graphic novels, most recently the historical fiction epic Macbeth: The Red King. Shaun has served in a number of roles in the comics community, notably as a journalist for leading industry website Comic Book Resources and as editor for Roads (Not) Taken, an anthology by up-and-coming and early-career comic creators funded on Kickstarter.

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Toni Cunningham, Screenwriting

Toni Cunningham graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in Media Arts and Studies, with a concentration in Film Studies. In 2018, she was awarded a Kresge Arts in Detroit Fellowship for her accomplishments in screenwriting. Toni worked as a script analyst in New York City for many high-profile screenwriting competitions and production companies, including Meryl Streep's The Writers Lab, BlueCat Screenplay Competition, and Goldcrest Films Production Company.  By reading hundreds of scripts, Toni taught herself not only how to critique and give coverage, but also to write screenplays herself. In 2018, she was commissioned to write a short to be filmed and entered into prominent film festivals. Toni has written 7 short screenplays, 1 pilot and is currently developing 2 feature length screenplays. She is an active member in the community and her dedication can be seen through her membership in many film and writing focused organizations such as the Detroit Film Society and Detroit Writers Collective.  


Connor Coyne, Fiction

Connor Coyne is a writer living and working in Flint, Michigan. His novel Urbantasm, Book One: The Dying City is the 2019 winner of the Next Generation Indie Book Awards for Young New Adult Fiction as well as the 2019 Kindle Book Awards for Young Adult Fiction. Coyne has authored two celebrated novels, Hungry Rats and Shattering Glass, as well as Atlas, a collection of short stories. His work has been published in VoxBelt Magazine, Santa Clara Review, and Voices from the Rust Belt. 


T.M. De Vos, Fiction

T.M. De Vos has taught at the University of Michigan, New York University, and in the New York City public school system. She holds an MFA from New York University and a Hopwood Award from the University of Michigan, and is currently inching toward a PhD at Wayne State University. De Vos is the recipient of fellowships by the Elizabeth Kostova Foundation, Murphy Writing Seminars, Summer Literary Seminars, and Cullman Center for Teachers at the New York Public Library. Her short story, 'The Wrong Sort of Woman,' received the 2018 Paper Darts Short Fiction Award, judged by Carmen Maria Machado. She is currently wrapping up Face Control, her first novel.


Lori Tucker-Sullivan, Nonfiction

Lori Tucker-Sullivan holds an MFA from Spalding University with a concentration in Creative Nonfiction. Her essays have appeared or been anthologized in The Washington Post, The Sun, Now and Then: The Journal of Appalachia, The Detroit Neighborhood Guidebook, Red State Blues, and other publications. Her essay “Detroit, 2015,” about her decision to return to Detroit after the death of her husband, appeared in Midwestern Gothic and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and honored as a Notable Essay of 2015 in Best American Essays, 2016. She spent eighteen years as the Executive Director of the Independent Booksellers Consortium, a group of large indie bookstores around the country. As such, she has a breadth of experience working with booksellers, publishers, and authors as they market and sell books.


Ted Houser, Screenwriting

Ted Houser is a screenwriter and independent filmmaker. After working in Hollywood where he developed scripted projects for The Hallmark Channel and Lifetime, Houser moved to Detroit to focus on independent filmmaking. His films have played in film festivals around the country. He is an active member of the Detroit filmmaking community, and sits on the board of DAFT (Digital Arts, Film & Television) and the Detroit Film Society, where he served as the founding Director from 2016 to 2018. Houser has taught dozens of writers through the screenwriting groups of the Detroit Film Society, and is passionate about helping local filmmakers turn their ideas into finished films. In 2018, he co-founded the Short Film Block Party, a quarterly film festival dedicated to screening locally made work. Follow him on Twitter @tedhouser.


Dan Tice, Screenwriting

Dan Tice is a Michigan-born filmmaker and screenwriter recently relocated from Los Angeles. His short films have screened at festivals including Sundance and the British Short Film Festival and his feature screenplays have been optioned by production companies including Plan B, Davis Entertainment and Schorr Pictures. He has recently received awards from the PAGE International Screenwriting Competition, Shore Scripts and the CineStory Foundation.

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Lynne Meredith Golodner, Nonfiction & Poetry

Lynne Meredith Golodner is an award-winning author and entrepreneur with thousands of articles and eight books, including The Flavors of Faith: Holy Breads (2013). Her public relations and business messaging development firm, Your People provides strategic storytelling, relationship-building and higher purpose as the keys to success. In 2016, Lynne formed One Earth Writing, a 501c3 public charity that uses writing to build confidence in teens while connecting them with peers from different races, religions and socioeconomic origins. A Fulbright Specialist, Lynne is a graduate of the University of Michigan and Goddard College. Find her online at


Diana Spechler, Nonfiction

Diana Spechler is the author of the novels Who by Fire and Skinny, of the New York Times column Going Off, and of a nonfiction book forthcoming from Crown Publishing. Her work has appeared in GQ, the Wall Street Journal, Harper's, Esquire, Harper's Bazaar, Tin House Open Bar, Paris Review Daily, Travel & Leisure, Glimmer Train Stories,  The Southern Review, Lenny Letter, Playboy, and many other publications. She is the recipient of a number of awards and fellowships, including a Hawthornden Castle Residency and the Orlando Creative Nonfiction Prize from A Room of Her Own Foundation. She is also a seven-time Moth Story Slam winner who has been featured on NPR.


Zachary Tyler Vickers , Fiction

Zachary Tyler Vickers is the author of Congratulations on Your Martyrdom! [Indiana University Press]. He is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop where he was the Provost's Fellow. He is the recipient of the Richard Yates Prize and the Clark Fisher Ansley Prize for excellence in fiction. He has been a finalist for the Calvino Prize, the Gertrude Stein Award, and the ProForma Prize. His work has appeared in numerous journals. You can learn more at


Robin Myrick, Grant Review & Mentoring

Robin Myrick is a writer, visual artist, educator, and consultant. She holds an MFA in Writing and Critical Studies from California Institute of the Arts and is in progress on a doctorate in Aesthetic Studies at the University of Texas at Dallas. She is a Contributing Editor at Entropy. She has taught poetry, fiction, and playwriting at UT Dallas and through the CalArts Community Arts Partnership. Robin has also enjoyed a long career as a grant writer and development consultant, training and working with nonprofits at the local, state, and national level, and raising more than $14 million for nonprofits. Her creative work has been most frequently shown, read, and performed in the excellent city of Los Angeles and throughout the great state of Texas, and her poems and essays have also appeared in fine places such as Entropy, semigloss, [out of nothing], and the anthologies Any Way You Like 'Em and You've Probably Read This Before. She has also written for newspapers across Texas and the mercurial South, including the Austin American-Statesman, Austin Chronicle, Dallas Morning News, Dallas Observer, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Houston Press, New Times Miami and Broward-Palm Beach, and Houston's original alt-weekly, Public News.  You can reach Robin via the Contact link above.

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Janée J. Baugher, Poetry

Janée J. Baugher is the author of two ekphrastic poetry collections, Coördinates of Yes (Ahadada Books) and The Body’s Physics (Tebot Bach). Baugher’s books are collected in libraries around the world, including the British Library. She holds an MFA from Eastern Washington University, and her writing has been published (or forthcoming) in 100 journals, including Tin House, The Southern Review, The American Journal of Poetry, Nimrod International Journal of Prose and Poetry, Boulevard, Nano Fiction, and The Writer’s Chronicle. Her work has twice been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, as well as Best of the Net. She’s taught at Northeastern University; University of Phoenix; Seattle Public Library; Port Townsend Writers’ Conference; Richard Hugo House; Interlochen Center for the Arts; University of Washington–Experimental College; and Eastern State Hospital, among other places. Her interdisciplinary collaborations include work with visual artists, composers, dancers, and choreographers. Her poems have been adapted for the stage and set to music at University of Cincinnati, Contemporary Dance Theatre (OH), Interlochen Center for the Arts, Dance Now! Ensemble (Florida), and University of North Carolina-Penbroke. As a spoken-word artist, Baugher has performed at arts festivals around Seattle, and in 2011 she presented her poetry at the Library of Congress. Baugher is a Poetry Reader for Boulevard Magazine and teaches in the graduate program at Southern New Hampshire University.


Jaye Wells, Fiction

Jaye Wells is a USA Today-bestselling author of nineteen speculative fiction books, including Red-Headed Stepchild, Dirty Magic, and High Lonesome Sound, as well as several short stories. She is the recipient of the RT Book Reviews’ Reviewers’ Choice Award (2012), and a nominee for the Golden Stake Award (2017) by the International Vampire Film & Arts Festival. She holds an MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University and a BA in art history from Southern Methodist University. She has served as faculty for the Paradise Lost Writing Workshop, special workshop guest of honor for FenCon, and mentor for Horror Writers Association. She belongs to Romance Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers, and Horror Writers Association. Learn more about Jaye and her writing at

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Ethan Chatagnier, Fiction

Ethan Chatagnier is the author of Warnings from the Future, a short story collection forthcoming from Acre Books in fall 2018. His stories have been awarded a 2018 Pushcart Prize and named a notable story of the year in the 2011 Million Writers Award. His work has been published or is forthcoming in literary magazines including the New England Review, Glimmer Train, Georgia Review, Cincinnati Review, Five Points, Kenyon Review Online, Michigan Quarterly Review, Witness, Barrelhouse, Ascent, and Necessary Fiction. He is a graduate of California State University Fresno, where he won the Larry Levis prize in poetry, and of Emerson College, where he completed his M.A. in Publishing and Writing. Find him online at

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