Erika Meitner was born and raised in Queens and Long Island, New York. She is the author of five books of poems: Inventory at the All-Night Drugstore, Ideal Cities, Makeshift Instructions for Vigilant Girls, Copia, and Holy Moly Carry Me. In addition to teaching creative writing at UVA, UW-Madison, and UC-Santa Cruz, she has worked as a dating columnist, an office temp, a Hebrew school instructor, a computer programmer, a systems consultant, a lifeguard, a documentary film production assistant, and a middle school teacher in the New York City public school system.
Cara Robertson is the author of The Trial of Lizzie Borden. She is an attorney whose writing has appeared in The Boston Globe, the Raleigh News and Observer, and the Yale Journal of Law and the Humanities. She was educated at Harvard, Oxford, and Stanford Law School. A former Supreme Court law clerk, she served as a legal adviser to the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia at The Hague and a Visiting Scholar at Stanford Law School
David Means is the author of several short story collections including Instructions for a Funeral, The Secret Goldfish, and The Spot and the novel, Hystopia.
Susan Orlean is a staff writer at The New Yorker and her books include Rin Tin Tin, The Orchid Thief, and The Library Book, among others.
Jessica Soffer's work has appeared in Granta, The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Real Simple, Redbook, Saveur, The Wall Street Journal, Vogue and on NPR’s Selected Shorts. Her bestselling novel, Tomorrow There Will be Apricots, was published in twelve countries.
Sophie Mackintosh is the author of The Water Cure, which is on teh long list for the 2018 Man Booker Prize.
Eva Hagberg Fisher is the author of How to be Loved: A Memoir of Lifesaving Friendship.
Pam Houston is the author of Deep Creek: Finding Hope in the High Country.
Katrin Schumann is the author of the novel The Forgotten Hours. She is also the author of the non-fiction titles: The Secret Power of Middle Children and Mothers Need Time Outs, Too.
Valeria Luiselli is the author of The Lost Children Archive. She is a fiction writer, journalist, and essayist.
Madhuri Vijay is the author of the novel The Far Field.
Esmé Weijun Wang is the author of The Border of Paradise and The Collected Schizophrenias.
Merritt Tierce is the author of the novel Love Me Back. Merritt currently writes for the Netflix show Orange is the New Black. She lives in Los Angeles.
Juliet Lapidos is the author of the novel Talent and is a senior editor at The Atlantic.
Christy Stillwell earned a BA in English at the University of Georgia before moving west, first to Wyoming, then Montana. She holds an MA in Literature from the University of Wyoming, and an MFA from the Warren Wilson College Program for Writers. Her books include a chapbook of poetry called Amnesia and the novel, The Wolf Tone.
Tommy Caldwell is the author of The Push and is an accomplished rock climber. He made the first ascents of some of the United States' hardest sport routes including Kryptonite (5.14c/d) and Flex Luthor (5.15a) at the Fortress of Solitude, Colorado. In January 2015, Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson completed the first-ever free climb of the Dawn Wall of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park.