UMass Amherst MFA for Poets and Writers

UMass Amherst MFA for Poets and Writers The MFA for Poets and Writers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is a three-year program dedicated to writing workshops and the completion of a book-length manuscript in prose or poetry.

Mark your calendars for this Thursday, January 28, 6pm EST / 9pm EST: #umassmfa @umassenglishdept @umasshfa poetry profe...
01/25/2021

Mark your calendars for this Thursday, January 28, 6pm EST / 9pm EST: #umassmfa @umassenglishdept @umasshfa poetry professor Peter Gizzi will read from his new book of poetry, NOW IT'S DARK. He will be joined in conversation by CAConrad. ⁠

Link to register in our bio.

The Juniper Initiative for Arts and Action is pleased to announce receipt of an $8,300 grant from the Mass Cultural Coun...
01/19/2021
Juniper Initiative for Arts and Action Receives $8,300 Grant from the Mass Cultural Council | MFA for Poets & Writers | UMass Amherst

The Juniper Initiative for Arts and Action is pleased to announce receipt of an $8,300 grant from the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency, through its Cultural Investment Portfolio Program. The Juniper Initiative for Arts and Action is part of the English Department and housed at the MFA for Poets and Writers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. This grant supports literary arts programming and helps attract private dollars for scholarships.

https://www.umass.edu/englishmfa/news/juniper-initiative-arts-and-action-receives-8300-grant-mass-cultural-council-0

The Juniper Initiative for Arts and Action is pleased to announce receipt of an $8,300 grant from the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency, through its Cultural Investment Portfolio Program. The Juniper Initiative for Arts and Action is part of the English Department and housed at the MFA for Poets...

#umassmfa alum Arisa White (MFA '06) reads with Meredith Clark this Thursday, December 17, 7pm EST -- this will be her f...
12/15/2020

#umassmfa alum Arisa White (MFA '06) reads with Meredith Clark this Thursday, December 17, 7pm EST -- this will be her first event reading from and discussing her new book, Who's Your Daddy. ⁠

Link to register below.

“What if poetry is how I practice my relationship with my whole body—bodies unknown and not yet born, bodies past, future bodies, bodies present. The father and mother of my poems are two pearls I nacre at any point in time.” — Arisa White

Join Antidote at 7 p.m. this Thursday 12/17 for a virtual reading and conversation with poet-memoirists Arisa White and Meredith Clark.

Register to attend at antidotebooks.com

Congratulations to #umassmfa professor Ocean Vuong and alum Karen Skolfield (‘98) for winning the 2020 Massachusetts Boo...
09/10/2020

Congratulations to #umassmfa professor Ocean Vuong and alum Karen Skolfield (‘98) for winning the 2020 Massachusetts Book Awards in Fiction and Poetry, respectively 🎉

Link in bio for the full list of award winners and runners up!

One week from today! A benefit reading for @majesticnoho featuring Alexander Chee, Ocean Vuong, Andrea Lawlor (‘12), CAC...
08/03/2020

One week from today! A benefit reading for @majesticnoho featuring Alexander Chee, Ocean Vuong, Andrea Lawlor (‘12), CAConrad, Cameron Awkward-Rich, Franny Choi, and Shira Erlichman. Link in bio for tickets #umassmfa #queerfutures

#umassmfa alum Gabriel Bump (‘17) is featured on the @penamerica PEN Pod - link to listen in bio. Posted @withregram • @...
06/29/2020

#umassmfa alum Gabriel Bump (‘17) is featured on the @penamerica PEN Pod - link to listen in bio.

Posted @withregram • @penamerica Today on #thePENpod, we talked to novelist @bumperg about his debut EVERYWHERE YOU DON'T BELONG, how its themes of Black identity and survival are relevant in our current moment, and the role of writers in battling social ills. Listen to this episode via the link in our bio or head to pen.org/thepenpod.

Reposted from @umass: "Today, I write to you with a range of emotions. Fear for protesters, some of whom encounter fierc...
06/03/2020

Reposted from @umass: "Today, I write to you with a range of emotions. Fear for protesters, some of whom encounter fierce violence. Disappointment in our country for not reckoning with our intimate relationship with anti-Black racism. Frustrated at our institutions for failing to undo the institutionalized racism that we know to be true. ⁣

[...]⁣

We have been repeatedly challenged by this violence and by other disturbing acts – increased anti-Asian racism, growing xenophobia and escalating anti-Semitic attacks. This cannot, and will not, be our normal at UMass. We are hopeful and encouraged by the work we have been doing to combat racism and will continue to work tirelessly to undo it in our community. ⁣

To that point, we are immediately getting to work." — A message from Nefertiti Walker, interim vice chancellor for diversity, equity and inclusion and chief diversity officer on taking action at UMass Amherst to combat racism. Full statement can be found in our bio.

Prose writer and #umassmfa alum Sara Jaffe ('09) is teaching an online prose workshop this summer geared towards student...
05/29/2020

Prose writer and #umassmfa alum Sara Jaffe ('09) is teaching an online prose workshop this summer geared towards students transitioning from writing within institutional settings to becoming writers in the world. Link in bio for more info and registration.⁠

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Sara Jaffe is a writer living in Portland, OR. She has taught creative writing at numerous colleges and universities, including Reed College, Rutgers-New Brunswick, and University of Oregon’s MFA program. Her first novel, Dryland, was published by Tin House Books in September 2015. Learn more at sarajaffewriter.com. ⁠

The Juniper Institute for Young Writers is going online this year! Juniper's Creative Writing Instructors (all are UMass...
05/20/2020

The Juniper Institute for Young Writers is going online this year! Juniper's Creative Writing Instructors (all are UMass MFA candidates!) are offering eight exciting Writing Labs for teens this summer. Deadline to apply is June 1.

https://www.umass.edu/juniperyoungwriters/writing-labs

This summer, Juniper’s online Writing Labs are workshop-style classes where you can share your writing with your classmates, receive feedback, and work from prompts and lessons provided by our Creative Writing Instructors. We are offering eight online Writing Labs this summer:

🖊Reclaiming the Self with Mark Bias
🖊Swarm with Sarah Coates
🖊Houston, we have a problem; it is the trips we take with Julio Cesar Diaz
🖊Writing for Justice: Social and Emotional Change with Vida James
🖊Collection, Collaboration, Collage with Laura S. Marshall
🖊Myth, Fantasy & Afrofuturism with Yvette Ndlovu
🖊Spectral Spaces with Alex Terrell
🖊Exploring the Body as a Vessel for the Voice with Dāshaun Washington

Remember to apply before the June 1 deadline!

https://www.umass.edu/juniperyoungwriters/writing-labs

The Juniper Summer Institutes will be taking over our Instagram stories today! Keep an eye out to learn more about the w...
04/06/2020

The Juniper Summer Institutes will be taking over our Instagram stories today! Keep an eye out to learn more about the wonderful writing communities they foster and how #umassmfa students can get involved 📝 @juniperyw @junipersummer

New poem by @ocean_vuong in the latest issue of POETRY magazine @poetryfoundation 🙌 #umassmfa
04/01/2020

New poem by @ocean_vuong in the latest issue of POETRY magazine @poetryfoundation 🙌 #umassmfa

👋 Hi, hello! Catch #umassmfa visiting faculty Mona Awad live tonight @mcswys
03/24/2020

👋 Hi, hello! Catch #umassmfa visiting faculty Mona Awad live tonight @mcswys

@odysseybookshop presents #umassmfa alum Gabriel Bump ('17)! @bumperg will be discussing his debut novel, Everywhere You...
02/21/2020

@odysseybookshop presents #umassmfa alum Gabriel Bump ('17)! @bumperg will be discussing his debut novel, Everywhere You Don't Belong, on Wednesday, February 26 at 7pm. Link to details in bio.

Looking for a place to call home: UMass alum Gabriel Bump has the reviewers buzzing about his debut novel, “Everywhere Y...
02/20/2020
Looking for a place to call home: UMass alum Gabriel Bump has the reviewers buzzing about his debut novel, “Everywhere You Don’t Belong”

Looking for a place to call home: UMass alum Gabriel Bump has the reviewers buzzing about his debut novel, “Everywhere You Don’t Belong”

When Gabriel Bump was a teenager on Chicago’s South Side, he saw two portraits of his neighborhood emerging in the media. There was the grim stuff, the crime and drug-related shootings, most often taking place between young black men. Then there was...

#umassmfa alum Marie Buck ('07) reads with Jina B. Kim and Vick Quezada on Saturday, February 22! Link to event details ...
02/20/2020

#umassmfa alum Marie Buck ('07) reads with Jina B. Kim and Vick Quezada on Saturday, February 22! Link to event details in bio @mutantbally @threshold.academy

Tomorrow! #umassmfa alum Hannah Brooks-Motl ('13) reads with @rescuepress poets Tessa Micaela, Caren Beilin, & Melissa D...
02/19/2020

Tomorrow! #umassmfa alum Hannah Brooks-Motl ('13) reads with @rescuepress poets Tessa Micaela, Caren Beilin, & Melissa Dickey, 7pm @amherstbooks

“The world is neon / in the gloaming quiet.” SONG by #umassmfa faculty Peter Gizzi is the Guardian’s poem of the week. I...
02/10/2020

“The world is neon / in the gloaming quiet.” SONG by #umassmfa faculty Peter Gizzi is the Guardian’s poem of the week. It comes from his New and Selected collection, SKY BURIAL. Link in bio to read. @guardian

"The American Dream is so worn, it’s nearly empty."⁠⁠A new piece by #umassmfa alumna Aliza Ali Khan ('18) is included in...
02/10/2020

"The American Dream is so worn, it’s nearly empty."⁠

A new piece by #umassmfa alumna Aliza Ali Khan ('18) is included in @ninthletter's Winter 2020 Web Edition: BORDLERLESSNESS. Link to read in bio!

New poems by John Goodhue (‘18), Emilie Menzel (‘19), and Alexander Scalfano (‘15) in the latest issue of @yalobusha_rev...
02/06/2020

New poems by John Goodhue (‘18), Emilie Menzel (‘19), and Alexander Scalfano (‘15) in the latest issue of @yalobusha_review #linkinbio to read👏👏👏 #umassmfa @ Amherst, Massachusetts

New poems by John Goodhue (‘18), Emilie Menzel (‘19), and Alexander Scalfano (‘15) in the latest issue of @yalobusha_rev...
02/06/2020

New poems by John Goodhue (‘18), Emilie Menzel (‘19), and Alexander Scalfano (‘15) in the latest issue of @yalobusha_review 👏👏👏 #umassmfa @ Amherst, Massachusetts

New poems by @steviebelchak (‘20) in @metatronpress’ #MicroMeta feature #umassmfa
02/05/2020

New poems by @steviebelchak (‘20) in @metatronpress’ #MicroMeta feature #umassmfa

Happy Pub Day to Gabriel Bump! Link to Tommy Orange’s @nytimes review of “Everywhere You Don’t Belong” in bio. Congrats ...
02/04/2020

Happy Pub Day to Gabriel Bump! Link to Tommy Orange’s @nytimes review of “Everywhere You Don’t Belong” in bio. Congrats @bumperg! 👏🎉 #umassmfa

This Thursday! We hope to see you there! #umassmfa
02/03/2020

This Thursday! We hope to see you there! #umassmfa

This Thursday! We hope to see you there! #umassmfa
02/03/2020

This Thursday! We hope to see you there! #umassmfa

HUT is back this Saturday, featuring movement by Tyler Rai, words by Julio Cesar Diaz (‘22), and sound by Ruth Garbus. C...
01/29/2020

HUT is back this Saturday, featuring movement by Tyler Rai, words by Julio Cesar Diaz (‘22), and sound by Ruth Garbus. Co-curated by Jay Keery (‘21). $10 #umassmfa #scdtnoho #hut @teta_cesarin @mostly_like_being_left_alone

Save the date! jubilat/Jones presents Heather Christle ('09) and Arisa White ('06) on Sunday, February 9, 3pm at the Jon...
01/28/2020

Save the date! jubilat/Jones presents Heather Christle ('09) and Arisa White ('06) on Sunday, February 9, 3pm at the Jones Library in Amherst. Link in bio for details. #umassmfa #jubilat #thecryingbook #beautifulthingsproject #joneslibrary @jubilat_ @heatherchristle @arisaawhite

Jung Yun ('07) will be reading in the Mount Holyoke College English Department's Prose Writing Series, Experience & Expe...
01/28/2020

Jung Yun ('07) will be reading in the Mount Holyoke College English Department's Prose Writing Series, Experience & Experiment, on Monday, February 3 at 4:30pm. Details in bio! @jungyun71 @mtholyoke #umassmfa #mountholyoke #prosewritingseries #experience #experiment

The first Visiting Writers Series event of the Spring 2020 season is 🔥🔥🔥 Join us on Thursday, February 6 at 8pm for a re...
01/23/2020

The first Visiting Writers Series event of the Spring 2020 season is 🔥🔥🔥 Join us on Thursday, February 6 at 8pm for a reading by poets CAConrad and Dawn Lundy Martin! #umassmfa #visitingwriters #dawnlundymartin #caconrad #somaticpoetics #goodstockstrangeblood #whilestandinginlinefordeath

Gabriel Bump’s (‘17) highly anticipated debut novel, Everywhere You Don’t Belong, comes out in two weeks! @electricliter...
01/22/2020

Gabriel Bump’s (‘17) highly anticipated debut novel, Everywhere You Don’t Belong, comes out in two weeks! @electricliterature has an excerpt up to hold us all over, with an introduction from our very own Jeff Parker. Link in bio to read. @bumperg @thebackoftheline #umassmfa

Gabriel Bump (‘17) is going on tour for his debut novel, Everywhere You Don’t Belong 📕 @bumperg #umassmfa
01/10/2020

Gabriel Bump (‘17) is going on tour for his debut novel, Everywhere You Don’t Belong 📕 @bumperg #umassmfa

"I wanted to write about history the way I used to write about care. Most humans I know are baffled by care, even if the...
01/08/2020

"I wanted to write about history the way I used to write about care. Most humans I know are baffled by care, even if they want it. They want to be cared for, but when the light of care turns upon them, a role is required and they aren’t prepared to play, to be taken in. So too history: the body taken in, washed through." New essay by Leora Fridman ('13) in Issue #6 of Protocols @prtcls #umassmfa

Sejal Shah's ('02) forthcoming debut memoir in essays is listed in @electricliterature's "56 Books By Women and Nonbinar...
01/08/2020

Sejal Shah's ('02) forthcoming debut memoir in essays is listed in @electricliterature's "56 Books By Women and Nonbinary Writers of Color to Read in 2020." THIS IS ONE WAY TO DANCE comes out in June from the University of Georgia Press @ugapress We can't wait to read it! @fictionalsejal #umassmfa #memoir #essays

New work by Joe Eichner (‘20) in the Brooklyn Review. Link in bio 🖥 #umassmfa #fiction #brooklynreview @bk_review
01/06/2020

New work by Joe Eichner (‘20) in the Brooklyn Review. Link in bio 🖥 #umassmfa #fiction #brooklynreview @bk_review

Two new poems by CAConrad in the January issue of Poetry Magazine @poetryfoundation - link to read in bio. @caconrad88 #...
01/03/2020

Two new poems by CAConrad in the January issue of Poetry Magazine @poetryfoundation - link to read in bio. @caconrad88 #umassmfa #umass #poetry #caconrad

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Amherst, MA
01003-9269

General information

Among the oldest and most respected MFA programs in the country, our acclaimed and aesthetically diverse faculty guide students to find their full range of artistic and literary potential. The MFA for Poets and Writers champions the creation of new and important writing, and for over fifty years has been a place for writers to concentrate on their work and to write their books. https://linkin.bio/umassmfa

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Our Story

The MFA for Poets and Writers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is a three-year program dedicated to writing workshops and the completion of a book-length manuscript in prose or poetry. Among the oldest and most respected MFA programs in the country, our acclaimed and aesthetically diverse faculty guide students to find their full range of artistic and literary potential. The MFA for Poets and Writers champions the creation of new and important writing, and for over fifty years has been a place for writers to concentrate on their work and to write their books.

The nationally renowned Visiting Writers Series at UMass Amherst presents emerging and established writers of poetry, fiction and non-fiction. The Series is sponsored by the MFA for Poets and Writers and the Juniper Initiative, and made possible by support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the University of Massachusetts Arts Council, the College of Humanities & Fine Arts, and the English Department.

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