Faculty Accomplishments

First-Year Writing

Emily Axelrod

In 2015, Emily Axelrod published her book of poems Minor Injuries. Click here for more information. 

Carole Bruzzano

In 2014, Carole presented a workshop for K-12 Faculty on developing Student Growth Objective (SGOs).

Paul Caruso

Paul was honored with the 2014 AFT Outstanding Service Award from the Montclair State Federation of Adjunct Faculty, AFT Local 6025. The award recognizes adjunct professors for their outstanding service to students and their support of union representation and focuses attention on the essential role adjuncts play in the success of Montclair State University.

Claudia Cortese 

In 2014, Claudia had five poems -- “Next to Godliness”, "Strawberry Boone's Holy,” "Lucy lives in her gauze house," “Dear Claudia,” and “Lucy” -- and an essay published in the anthology Poets on Growth (Math Paper Press, 2015). Also, a poem entitled "Tinnitus" appeared in the November 2014 issue of Swarm Literary Journal. Finally, a chapbook of Claudia's poems entitled Blood Medals was published by Thrush Poetry Press. Claudia's poems "Lucy tells the boy to suck," "Bowl of Cheetos Holy," and "The girl plants knives" were all nominated for Puschart Prizes and her full-length poetry manuscript, Cut a Hole and Pull You Through, was a seminfinalist for Crab Orchard Series 2013 First Book Award and a finalist for the St. Lawrence Award. Claudia also published a book review in the Iowa Review, a personal essay in the Mid-American Review, poems in Sixth Finch, Weave, and Revolution House.

Alex Csedrik

In 2015, Alex Csedrik's short story "Writer's Block" will be published in the next issue of Big Pond. Also, the comedy show he hosts and produces, WOW Comedy at the Brightside Tavern (Jersey City, NJ), will be featured in the 2015 Jersey City Comedy Festival. 

Kathy Curto

In 2015, Kathy's essay "Bread and Belonging" was featured in the Spring 2015 edition of Italian Americana and she is on the evening program and will be reading from her manuscript for the March 24th monthly reading at The Inner Loop, a Washington DC-based literary reading series for creative writers. For more information:  http://www.theinnerlooplit.com/. In Spring 2015 Listen to Your Mother: What She Said Then, What We're Saying Now, an anthology of motherhood stories is scheduled for release. The Listen To Your Mother book hits shelves April 7, 2015 and is already available for pre-sale on AmazonIndiBound, and iTunes). In 2014, Kathy's tribute essay, "Happy Twentieth Birthday, Bird by Bird," was featured in the Fall 2014 issue of Talking Writing: A Magazine for Creative Writers and Readers and "Red, Brown and Navy Blue" was published in Junk and in August 2014 aired on WAMC.

Jen DeGregorio

In 2015, Jen has had several publications, including an essay at Salon.com and a poem at PANK. She has also had two poems accepted for publication at Convergence, an online literary magazine. In January, Jen launched Cross Review & Reading Series, a new online poetry journal and reading series that aims to bring New Jersey and New York poets together west of the Hudson. You can find Cross's first issue as well as information about readings (at WORD book store in Jersey City) and submissions at www.crosspoetry.com.

Erica Dolson

In 2015, Erica's personal essay, "Blind Spots," is forthcoming in Full-Stop Magazine. Click here to read.

Leslie Doyle

In 2015, Leslie's story "Red, Right, Return" appeared in Cobalt Review's annual print edition. In 2014, Leslie's flash story "The Cousins" was a finalist in the River Styx Micro-Fiction Contest.

Laura Field

In 2014, Laura attended the Conference of Writing Program Administrators (CWPA) in July to present the paper "Re-Imagining Time, Space and 'Efficiency:' Work and The Writing Studio Pilot Project" with Jessica Restaino.

Sarah Ghoshal

In 2015, Sarah's chapbook, "Changing the Grid," will be published by Finishing Line Press in June and she has recently published poems in Empty Mirror, Stone Highway Review, Hermeneutic Chaos Literary Journal and penwheel.lit. Sarah also has poems forthcoming in Reunion: The Dallas Review, Winter Tangerine Review and Eunoia Review. In 2014, Sarah published two poems, "Love Letter to the Jersey Shore" and "Suppose," in an anthology inspired by Hurricane Sandy and read them at an event in Long Branch on October 29th, 2014, the two-year anniversary of the storm. Sarah also published two poems, "Changing the Grid" and "High Class Fences," in the upcoming issue of Hermeneutic Chaos Literary Journal and another poem, "Poem, Heavy Air," was published in Stone Highway Review. Sarah also published her poem "The Lonely One in the Back" in Broad! Magazine and her article "My Terminal Degree is Better than Yours: A Brief Examination of Creative Writer as Contingent Faculty" in the Fall 2013 issue of the CCCC Forum. She also edited Vincent Macraven's Unsettling: Three Novellas. Sarah's poems "For Chris," "The Sharp Edges of Trees," and "Garage Sale" were published in Tic Toc, an anthology by Kind of a Hurricane Press and another poem "He Told Me" was published in Shampoo Magazine. Finally, Sarah's poem "A MOSQUITO" was selected as a Semi-Finalist for the Kind of a Hurricane Press Annual Poetry Award and her Conference Proposal, "Making Parallels Between the Corporate World and the Teaching of Academic Writing" was accepted for NJWA 2014.

Michelle Greco

In 2015, Michelle's first chapbook, Field Guide to Fire, will be published by Finishing Line Press in March. Click here for more information.

John Hodges

In 2015, John published multiple stories including "Bristles" in Compose, "The State of the Bagel" in The Great American Literary Magazine, "Kkamdoongi" in Gravel, "Pam" in Knee-Jerk Magazine, "Sea Roots" in SN Review, "Omar's Children" in White Whale Review, as well as a novella, "Anchorage," with Novella-T. In 2014, John published the stories “Ethel’s Mountain” in The Writing Disorder, “Anguish” in The Insomniac Propagandist, “Rescue Harvey” in Apple Valley Review, “Dude” in Toad, "Raw" for Akashic Press, and "Leaf: A Monologue” in Negative Suck. Also, a found photo with commentary, “Four Asian Girls In Plastic Keychain” appeared in Diagram and three non-fiction works, including “In Search of the Complete Revolutionary,” "Colin Powell, Elvis Presley, and Mario Cuomo," and "Christmas Morning," were published by Shout Out UK and Mr. Beller’s Neighborhood respectively. Finally, a photography work, "10 Photos" appeared in JB Magazine. Finally, John's story "Save Sophie!" appeared in Crossed Out Magazine and a portfolio of his photography was featured in Juxtapoz magazine.

Jennifer Holly-Wells

In 2014, Jennifer published "From Silos to Synergies: Institutional Contexts for Writing Fellows" with Sandra Jamieson and Maya Sanyal in the Fall 2014 special issue of Praxis: A Writing Center Journal.

Catherine Keohane

In 2014, Catherine will be presented her paper entitled “‘I Can Relate’: Teaching Swift’s Story of the Injured Lady” at the East-Central American Society for Eighteenth Century Studies conference in early November and presented her paper "Contingent Faculty: Changing Labels but Continued Divisions?" at MLA. Catherine also presented her paper "Redefining the Self in Scott’s Millenium Hall" at the East/Central-American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies.

Mike Laser

In 2015, Mike's article "A Cynical Idealist's Advice to His Children" appeared in the online magazine Grounded. Click here to read. In 2014, Mike's novel My Impending Death was published by The Permanent Press in May.

Henry Margenau

In 2015, Henry recently received a PEP (Professional Equity Project) grant from NCTE to go to the 2015 CCCCs conference. In 2014, Henry's story "It's the Noise You Miss the Most in this Giant New World" appeared in the June issue of Cleaver Magazine.

Liz Martin

In 2014, Liz's poem "Little Poetic Interludes" appeared in the Eunoia Review. Her poems also appeared in Menacing Hedge and Drunk Monkeys.

Nancy Mendez-Booth

In 2014, Nancy was the recipient of an Author & Poet Scholarship to attend the Martha's Vineyard Institute for Creative Writing in July and was the first-place winner of the 2014 "I Am Latina" Essay Competition sponsored by Latina Magazine and Shebooks Publishing. "I Am Latina" appeared in the November 2014 issue of Latina and will be included in a future anthology to be published by Shebooks. Lastly, The Packinghouse Review published her non-fiction essay "With Deepest Gratitude." Also, Nancy's "With Deepest Gratitude" received first place in the Healing Voices Literary Contest sponsored by Montclair State University and the Atlantic Health System. She received invitations and grants for the Vermont Studio Center and the 2014 Summer Literary Seminars.

Carrie Lee O'Dell

In 2014, Carrie served as production dramaturg for Richard Schechner's "Imagining O," presented at MSU's Kasser Theater as part of the Peak Performances series. The play received excellent reviews in the New York Times and the Montclair Times. Carrie spoke about her experience with "Imagining O" at the Re-imagining Dramaturgy Symposium at the Snapple Theatre Center in Manhattan on October 17th. Carrie also served as Production Dramaturg for HiveMind Theater's production of Anton Chekhov's "Three Sisters" in March.

Michelle Ovalle

In 2014, Michelle's poem, "I Woke Up on the Wrong Side of the Cosmos," was published in the fall issue of the Edison Literary Review and her poem, "Guessing History," will be published next year in the Paterson Literary Review as part of a feature on poets under 40. Michelle read her work at a contributor reading on November 8th at Passaic Community College as part of a celebration of that feature.

Shelagh Patterson

In 2015, Shelagh, with Stacie McCormick and Tatum Petrich, will be co-chairing the roundtable, "Alterity and the Body in 20th and 21st Century American Literature and Culture" at NeMLA in Toronto, ON on May 2, 2015. She will also be leading a workshop at NeMLA entitled "Live Writing NeMLA 2015: The Poetry of Taking Note" and is recently a co-founder, with Saretta Morgan and Robert Whitehead, of SHIRLEY: A Monthly Reading Series at The Joint in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn. Visit SHIRLEY's Facebook page here. In 2014, Shelagh earned her PhD in English from the University of Pittsburgh and was the featured reader at the louderArts Project reading series on Monday, February 10th at the 13 Bar and Lounge in NYC.

Tatum Petrich

In 2015, Tatum, along with Shelagh Patterson and Stacie McCormick, have organized and are presenting on a roundtable for the 2015 NeMLA conference in Toronto: "Alterity and the Body in 20th- and 21st-Century American Literature and Culture." In 2014, Tatum presented a paper, "The Usual Public Attraction: Interracial Motherhood in Hetti Jones' Short Fiction," as well as chaired another panel, "Beat Writing and the American Counterculture" at the 2014 American Literature Association Conference in May.

Jessica Restaino

In 2014, Jessica's essay entitled, "Writing Together: An Arendtian Framework for Collaboration" appeared in Composition Forum (Fall 2014). Also, on October 16th, Jessica gave a talk at the University of Delaware entitled, "Surrender as Method: Research, Writing, Rhetoric, Love," that is based upon her collaboration with Susan Maute. Finally, Jessica visited two graduate classes -- a virtual visit to Marquette University and in person at University of Delaware - -as a guest speaker/author to discuss her book First Semester.

Jen Russo

In October of 2014, Jen presented a paper entitled "COINTELPROsody" at American Poetry: A Symposium sponsored by the American Literature Association on the panel "Performance, Activism, and Ritual" in Savannah, Georgia.

Nick Samaras

In 2015, poems of Nick's have appeared in Virginia Quarterly Review, Poetry Daily, The Southwestern Review, The Comstock Review, Prairie Schooner, and his poem "Hungry" has been anthologized in Joys of the Table. Nick also has poems forthcoming from Cimmarron Review, Upstreet, The Ilanot Review, Arts & Letters: Journal of Contemporary Culture, Agni, The Massachusetts Review, and Rock and Sling. In 2014, Nick's book of poetry, American Psalm, World Psalm, came out from Ashland Poetry Press. Nick also had multiple poems including "The Resurrected Body," "Colophon," "Ghazal for the Naming of Theft," "Hades," "Rising Away From Me," "Ars Poetica as Reconstruction," "The Bridle Path," "Apocalypse Island," "The Translation of Georg Trakl" and many others published in the Bellevue Literary Review, and the Denver Quarterly. Also, his poem "The Bomb of My Body that is My Body" was anthologised in The Burden of Light: Poems on Illness and Loss (Foreword Literary, 2014).

Shil Sen

In 2014, Shil was a visiting faculty member at Jadavpur University in Kolkata, India where he taught their Renaissance Drama course for MA final year students and gave a talk on "Renaissance Metatheater: Stage, Audience and Theatrical Space." Shil also chaired a panel at the Renaissance Society of America conference in New York and will be presenting a paper at the Shakespeare Association of America Conference in St. Louis.

Nancy Toomey

In 2014, Nancy's non-fiction book, If I Could Paint the Moon Black, was published in September by Lakeshore Press Books. The book is the result of several years of interviews with 83-year old Imbi Peebo Truumees who escaped from the Soviet takeover of her home country of Estonia during World War II. Nancy read from this work at the Live Lit event on October 8th, 2014 (10am) and at Watchung Booksellers in Montclair on Tuesday, October 21st (at 7pm) as well as other appearances at libraries and bookstores.

Boris Tsessarksy

In 2014, Boris published a short story in Folio, a nationally recognized literary journal, and a short story appeared in winter in the online journal Lunch Ticket that is published through Antioch University.

Christa Verem nee Setteducati

In 2015, Christa's poem "My teeth are falling out" appeared in The Wide Shore: A Journal of Global Women's Poetry.


For information or additions to the First-Year Writing faculty accomplishments page, please contact Rick Reid.