RADHIYAH AYOBAMI holds a certificate in poetics from the Bowery Arts and Science Center, New York. She is a finalist for the 2004 Hurston- Wright College Writers Award and a Cave Canem Fellow. She has also been published in South Loop Review and is currently working on her first novel. She lives in Brooklyn.

EULA BISS is the author of The Balloonists. She teaches nonfiction writing at Northwestern University. Her essays have recently appeared in Columbia, Ninth Letter, the Seneca Review, the North American Review, and Harper’s. She lives in Chicago.

EMMA BLACK graduated from Oglethorpe University with a double major in English and education. Emma won the Anne Rivers Siddons Prize for Short Fiction (2004) and has been published in Ophelia Speaks (2000) and various other local publications. She lives in Birmingham, Alabama, where she still teaches third grade.

KATHERINE DYKSTRA is the senior editor at The Independent: Film and Video Monthly, a contributor for The New York Post’s Home section, a frequent freelancer, and a writer of personal essays. She is also a recent graduate of the New School University’s MFA program. She lives in Manhattan.

Proud aunt MARY BETH ELLIS is a freelance writer masquerading as a college professor in central Florida. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, she obtained her undergraduate degree at Saint Mary’s College and was the first SMC student invited to read at her brother school’s marquee literary event, the University of Notre Dame’s Sophomore Literary Festival. Her vast and frightening array of day jobs after completing an MFA in nonfiction writing at Bennington College have included bodyguarding Jimmy Buffett, working in education at the Kennedy Space Center, and sports-reporting for the Thoroughbred racing industry. She currently writes for BlondeChampagne.com, a kinda daily updated humor site.

ELRENA EVANS holds an MFA in creative writing from the Pennsylvania State University where, she regrets to say, she was not offered classes in truly important subjects such as Typing with One Hand While Nursing. She is currently working on a Ph.D. in education. In her free time, she likes to write proposals to major clothing manufacturers asking them to design and carry nursing wear.

ELI JAMES lives in New York City, where he plies his trade as an actor, writer, and musician. He was a writer/performer in the sketch comedy group Quiet Library and the front man for the adolescent pop group Eli and the Indoor Boys. His plays have been produced in festivals around the country, and for five years he did silly voices on a British TV show called So Graham Norton. “Finding the Beat” is Part One of his upcoming serial, “The East Side Diaries.” www.elisongs.com.

JOHN FISCHER is an advertising wonk on the long road to recovery. Born and raised in scenic Long Island, John majored in music composition at Vassar College before discovering that he needed a real job. He currently lives in Brooklyn with a hairy roommate.

MIELLYN FITZWATER writes and produces television promos for TLC and, in her unpaid time, writes, designs some of her own clothes, and goes to too many concerts. The daughter of a novelist and a computer scientist, and the sister of a pop-culture professor, she has an awful lot to say. She lives in Washington, D.C., with her brilliant man friend and their three plants.

MARY KATE FRANK was born and raised in New Jersey. She has a master’s in journalism from NYU. She and her pink armchair currently reside in New York.

JOEY FRANKLIN is an English major at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. Outside of class, he spends much of his time helping his wife, Melissa, chase around their two-year-old son, Callan. He plans to study creative writing and literature in graduate school in fall 2007. He no longer works at Wendy’s.

At present, JENNIFER GLASER lives the nomadic life fantastic, trekking between Philadelphia, where she is a graduate student studying American Jewish literature and intellectual history in the comparative literature program at the University of Pennsylvania, and New York and Boston, where she engages in more clandestine writerly pursuits. She has written for the Columbia Journalism Review and Beliefnet, and has a chapter on Bernard Malamud and an essay on the Lower East Side forthcoming in other anthologies. She plans to expand her essay on Neil’s death into a full-length memoir.

SHAHNAZ HABIB is not good at writing bios. She is Indian, Muslim, a woman, a writer, and addicted to coffee and the Internet. Everything else is in a state of flux.

RACHEL KEMPF recently graduated with a BA in English from Truman State University. She has had had her plays, Projections and Just Like the Ones I Used to Know, performed professionally in Chicago, Bloomington, and Kirksville.

COLLEEN KINDER was born and raised in Buffalo, New York. She graduated from Yale and spent a year doing a President’s Public Service Fellowship in Havana, Cuba. She is the author of Delaying the Real World: A Twentysomething’s Guide to Seeking Adventure (www .delayingthereal world.com) and editor of Confessions of a Word Nerd. She is currently living in Iowa City, where she is getting her MFA and has found a new palm reader named Spirit Wolf.

JESS LACHER is a Northwestern graduate whose plays have been performed in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles. In addition to writing, Jess builds puppets for the New York children’s theater company the Striking Viking Story Pirates; she also performs improv and sketch comedy. She has just moved to New York City to work with the Delicious Theater Group, of which she is cofounder. She is of strong midwestern stock.

BRONSON LEMER was born and raised in Harvey, North Dakota. He spent six years with the North Dakota Army National Guard, including deployments to Kosovo and Iraq. He is currently a MFA candidate at Minnesota State University, Mankato. He still can’t grow a mustache.

MARISA McCARTHY is the only child of Thomas and Cathleen McCarthy. Marisa was born and raised in San Francisco. She studied English at Boston College, graduating with a BA in 2003. Marisa currently lives and works in Manhattan. This is Marisa’s first published work. She plans to continue writing and hopes her next piece will be something her entire family can read and enjoy.

KATE McGOVERN, a native of Cambridge, MA, is spending her twenties in New York City, where she writes, performs, and works as a middle school Language Arts Specialist. She has performed her solo show, Dreaming of Kitchens, at several venues around town. Kate received her BA from Yale in 2003.

KYLE MINOR’s fiction, essays, and reviews have appeared in the Carolina Quarterly, Mid-American Review, Quarterly West, River Teeth, The Antioch Review, and many other magazines and journals. He placed second in the 2004 Atlantic Monthly Student Writing Contest for nonfiction and was awarded honorable mentions in the same contest in 2005 for both fiction and poetry. He lives in Columbus, Ohio, where he is completing a book-length memoir for which “You Shall Go Out with Joy and Be Led Forth with Peace” is the first chapter.

LAUREN MONROE can sense her thirtieth birthday looming ominously, but she feels all right about it. She lives in suburban New York with her daughter, lover, two cats, and a collection of old Polaroid cameras. Asparagus, magenta, and the guitar stylings of Django Reinhardt keep her going.

LUKE MULLINS graduated from Boston College in 2000, spent two years in the Peace Corps in Mauritania, West Africa, before spending eighteen months in the Dominican Republic working as a baseball coach at an elementary school. He then earned a master’s degree in journalism at Syracuse University. He now lives in Washington, D.C., where he grew up, working as a reporter at a financial daily paper and as a freelance writer.

BRENDAN PARK was born in 1979 and has spent his twenty-some-odd years since, in chronological order, pursuing higher education, working minimum-wage jobs, traveling, and inventing creative ways to avoid responsibility, always delighted simply to be a part of the magic.

CHRISTOPHER POLING is a twenty-five-year-old second-year law student and an aspiring screenwriter who lives in California. He played football for three years at UCLA, where he picked up his BA in political science. In addition, he worked at a gym for a year, was Jay Hernandez’s stunt double in the movie Friday Night Lights, and scored four touchdowns in a single game in high school (in honor of Al Bundy). Christopher gets annoyed when middle-aged white guys try to pick up chicks by mixing Spanish and English (i.e.: “I’m looking for a gorgeous Señorita!”).

KATHLEEN ROONEY’s first book, Reading with Oprah, was published by the University of Arkansas Press in 2005. A winner of a Ruth Lilly Fellowship from Poetry magazine, she has published poems in Crab Orchard Review, Smartish Pace, and Passages North.

TRAVIS SENTELL holds degrees in religion/philosophy and psychology from Emory University, and an MLitt in creative writing from St. Andrews University in Scotland. He currently resides in Los Angeles, California.

THEODORA STITES grew up in Connecticut and the Florida Keys. After attending boarding school at Northfield Mount Hermon, she studied anthropology at Connecticut College. She lives in New York City and works in advertising. Her blog is www.zoogomza.blogspot.com.

BURLEE VANG is currently pursuing an MFA in poetry at California State University, Fresno. He is working on a memoir and facilitates biweekly creative writing workshops for Hmong college students on the weekends.

Antelope Valley native J. W. YOUNG earned her MFA in fiction from the University of Mississippi in 2003. She is an assistant professor at Middle Georgia College and is currently at work on her first novel, set in the Southern California desert.


MATT KELLOGG and JILLIAN QUINT are proud twentysomethings and indentured servants, er, assistants in the Random House editorial department. They both own iPods and have never seen an episode of Welcome Back, Kotter.