Faculty and Mentors

Residential MFA Faculty


Cris Cheek

PhD, University of Lancaster, 2004
Professor of English
Areas: Performance Writing, Digital posthumanities, 20th & 21st Century Poetics,
Electronic Literature, Live Voice, Poetry and Film, Sound Art

Tim Melley

PhD, English and American Literature, Cornell, 1995
Professor of English and Affiliate of American Studies, Director of the Miami University Humanities Center
Areas: U.S. Literary and Cultural History Since 1950, Cold War Studies, Postmodernism, Fiction Writing

Brian Roley 

JD, University of California, Los Angeles and MFA, Creative Writing, Cornell University, 1998
Professor of English and Affiliate of Global and Intercultural Studies
Areas: Creative Writing; Film, Theatre and Literature Adaptations; Disability / Medical Narratives; Contemporary and Twentieth Century Literature; Asian American Literature; Literature and the Law

Keith Tuma

PhD, University of Chicago, 1987
Professor of English, Director of Low Residency MFA, and Editor of the Miami University Press
Areas: Modern and Contemporary British, Irish, American, and Anglophone Literature, Creative and Performance Writing, Poetry and Poetics, Anecdotes and Ephemera, Travel Writing

Cathy Wagner

PhD, University of Utah, 2000
Professor of English
Areas: Creative Writing, Poetry Writing, Contemporary and Modern American Poetry and Poetics, Contemporary and Modern British Poetry and Poetics, Poetry and Politics

Associate Professors

Margaret Luongo

MFA, Creative Writing, University of Florida, 2001
Associate Professor of English, Director of Creative Writing
Areas: Short Fiction, Historical Fiction, Contemporary Literature, and Forms of the Novel

Eric Melbye

PhD, Creative Writing, University of Denver, 2001
Associate Professor of English (Middletown Campus)
Areas: Community-Based Learning, Creative Writing, Creative Writing Pedagogy, Exile Studies

Assistant Professors

Joseph Bates

(PhD, University of Cincinnati, 2006)
Assistant Professor of English
Areas: Narratology, Creative Writing Pedagogy, Fantastic, Absurd, and Grotesque Literatures; Southern Literature, Film Studies, Religion and Literature

Daisy Hernández

Daisy Hernández

(MFA, University of Miami, 2013)
Assistant Professor of English
Areas: Creative Nonfiction, Memoir, Personal Essay, Literary Journalism, Latina Narratives

TaraShea Nesbit

(PhD, University of Denver, 2015)
Assistant Professor of English
Areas: 20th and 21st Century Fiction and Creative Nonfiction, Historical Fiction, Lyric Essays, Multi-Genre Texts, Creative Writing Pedagogy.


Low-Residency MFA Mentors

Lee Martin

Lee Martin is the author of the novels, Yours, JeanThe Bright Forever, River of HeavenQuakertown; Break the Skin; and Late One Night. He has also published three memoirs, From Our House,; Turning Bones, and Such a Life, in addition to a craft book, Telling Stories: The Craft of Narrative and the Writing Life. His first book was the short story collection, The Least You Need To Know, and his most recent book is another story collection, The Mutual UFO Network. He is the co-editor of Passing the Word: Writers on Their Mentors. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in such places as Harper’s, Ms., Creative Nonfiction, The Georgia Review, The Kenyon Review, Fourth Genre, River Teeth, The Southern Review, Prairie Schooner, andGlimmer Train. He is the winner of the Mary McCarthy Prize in Short Fiction and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Ohio Arts Council. He teaches in the MFA Program at The Ohio State University, where he is a College of Arts & Sciences Distinguished Professor, and where he was also the winner of the 2006 Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching.

Jacquelyn Mitchard

Jacquelyn Mitchard has written twelve novels for adults, including several New York Times bestsellers. She has also written seven novels for young adults, five children’s books, a memoir, Mother Less Child, and a collection of essays, The Rest of UsDispatches from the Mother Ship. Mitchard’s work in Shadow Show, the anthology of short stories honoring her mentor, Ray Bradbury, won the Bram Stoker Award and Shirley Jackson Award, and was short-listed for the Audie Award. She served on the Fiction jury for the 2003 National Book Awards, and her first novel, The Deep End of the Ocean, was the inaugural selection of the Oprah Winfrey Book Club and later adapted for a feature film starring and produced by Michelle Pfeiffer.

Hoa Nguyen

Born in the Mekong Delta and raised in the Washington, D.C. area, Hoa Nguyen is the author of five books of poetry, including As Long As Trees Last, and Red Juice: Poems 1998-2008. Her book Violet Energy Ingots, also from Wave Books, received a 2017 Griffin Prize for poetry nomination. Her sixth book of poetry, A Thousand Times You Lose Your Treasure, is forthcoming from Wave Books in April 2021. As a public proponent and advocate of contemporary poetry, Nguyen has been featured as writer for Harriet, a blog of the Poetry Foundation, and has had her work profiled on the PBS News Hour. Additional attention to her writing has been promoted through publications in Granta, PEN American Center, Boston Review, The Best Canadian Poetry series, The WalrusThe New York Times, and the Academy of American Poets. Additionally, Nguyen was a finalist for the 2017 K. M. Hunter Artist Award for Literature and recipient of a 2016 Works in Progress Grant from the Ontario Arts Council. She has performed and lectured at numerous institutions, including Princeton University, the Bagley Wright Lecture series, Bard College, Poet’s House, St. Mary’s College of California, the University of Colorado, and Brown University.

Alissa Nutting

Alissa Nutting

Alissa Nutting is the author of the novels Made for Love, a New York Times editor's choice selection, and Tampa, which was translated into over 15 languages, as well as the story collection Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls, an expanded/revised version of which was rereleased in Summer 2018 as part of Ecco's "Art of the Story" series. A nonfiction book of her comedic essays is forthcoming from Ecco. Her fiction and essays have appeared in publications such as Tin House, BOMB, Elle, Real SimpleBuzzfeed, and many others. She currently has television projects in development with Cartoon Network and Paramount Studios. She is an assistant professor of English and writer-in-residence at Grinnell College.

Hugh Sheehy

Hugh Sheehy is the author of The Invisibles (University of Georgia Press), winner of the 2012 Flannery O'Connor Award for short fiction. His stories, reviews, and essays have appeared in a number of journals and magazines, including The Kenyon Review, Five Points, Glimmer Train, Southwest Review , Guernica, The Cincinnati ReviewThe LA Review of Books, as well as in The Best American Mystery Stories 2008. He teaches courses in creative writing and literature at Ramapo College of New Jersey.

Laura Van Prooyen

Laura Van Prooyen is author of three collections of poetry, Frances of the Wider Fields (Lily Poetry Review, forthcoming March,2021), Our House Was on Fire (Ashland Poetry Press 2015) nominated by Philip Levine and winner of the McGovern Prize, and Inkblot and Altar (Pecan Grove Press 2006). Her poems have appeared in APRBoston ReviewPloughshares, Prairie Schooner, and The Southern Review among others. She is co-author, with Gretchen Bernabei, of Text Structures from Poetry: 50 Lessons and Contemporary and Classic Poetry Mentor Texts For Writers in Grades 6-12 (Corwin Literacy 2020). Van Prooyen lives in San Antonio, TX.