Read about some of our dynamic Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and Poetics students, their educational backgrounds, and writing interests.

2016 Cohort

Jacquelyn BabbJacquelyn Babb

Undergraduate Institution: California State University Fresno
Undergraduate Degree: Theatre Arts

Writing Interests: Kintsukuroi​ -​ things more beautiful for having been broken​​

Other Interests: Dog snuggling, bed lounging, word singing, song writing, city walking, nature viewing, googling​

Mike BagbyMike Bagby

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Seattle
Undergraduate Degree: English (Creative Writing)

Writing Interests: Everything, but especially Screenwriting, Fiction, and Poetry with a Horror/Fantasy/Golden Age Sci-Fi bent as well as developing randomized story/quest generation for video games and using creative writing to help people develop their empathy skills

Other Interests: Filmmaking, Music, Revolution

Cristina CortezCristina Cortez

Undergraduate Institution: Hofstra University
Undergraduate Degree: Double Major: English, Creative Writing & Literature, and History. Minor: Latin American & Caribbean Studies

Writing Interests: Narrative: Drama, Fairy tale, Fiction narrative, Fiction in verse, Folklore, Legend, Magical realism, Mythology, Biography/Autobiography, Adventure novel, Epic, Historical fiction, Saga, Fantasy, Epic / High fantasy,  and Alternative history. Poetry: Sonnets, Ghazal, Narrative poetry, Epic poetry, Dramatic poetry Light poetry, Oral tradition, The Metaphysical poets, The Danrin school, Romanticism, Symbolism, The Harlem Renaissance, The New York School, The Black Mountain poets, and The San Francisco Renaissance

Other Interests: Professional Speaker, Blogger, Humanities: English, Creative Writing, History, Art History, Music Theory, Irish Studies, and Latin American & Caribbean Studies. Fluent in English, Spanish and Italian. Traveled to: London, England; Doolin, Galway and Dublin, Ireland; Milan,Verona, and Venice, Italy; Mielno, Poland; Kiev, Ukraine,  Mexico City and the Mayan Riviera, Mexico; San Juan, Puerto Rico, and many Caribbean Islands, etc.

Taesung EomTaesung Eom

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Bothell
Undergraduate Degree: Culture,literature, and the Arts

Writing Interests: Fantasy, drama

Other Interests: Making sushi, reading, solitary walks in nature

Donna GriggsDonna Griggs

Undergraduate Institution: University of California at Berkeley
Undergraduate Degree: English
Other Degrees or Certificates: Minor in Creative Writing, AA in Liberal Arts, AA in English

Writing Interests: Prose Non-fiction, Poetry and Essay writing

Other Interests: Candlelit dinners, long walks on the beach, and tongue-in-cheek humor. Long, boring documentaries, LGBTQ advocacy, cheesy 80's movies, and not taking myself too seriously. Oh, and chocolate. There must always be chocolate.

Jessica HagyJessica Hagy

Undergraduate Institution: Ohio University Honors Tutorial College
Undergraduate Degree: Journalism
Other Degrees or Certificates: Otterbein University, MBA

Writing Interests: Creative nonfiction, Cartooning, Allegorical Fiction

Other Interests: Calligraphy, Data Visualization, Digital Art

Dylan HoganDylan Hogan

Undergraduate Institution: Washington College
Undergraduate Degree: Philosophy

Writing Interests: Lyrical prose, poetry, compressed memoir, what it means to have a queer body, Catholic theology and religion/the divine in the mundane

Other Interests: Funky music, good vibes, playing the guitar, cooking up tasty food, stirring the political pot, refusing to get a smartphone, keeping out the riff-raff

Mitchell KoptichMitchell Koptich

Undergraduate Institution: Azusa Pacific University
Undergraduate Degree: English - Writing Concentration

Writing Interests: Fiction (both short and long), Science Fiction & Fantasy, Memoir, along with some Screenwriting, Stageplay, Meta, and Experimental writing. Major themes often include identity, depression, loss, ostracism, regret, dreams, nature, gender, and usually are self-referential and/or involve character studies.

Other Interests: Anything with a narrative. From books, film, anime, and video games; always on the lookout for an engaging story, or a compelling aesthetic. In addition to this, being a fan of the classic coffee, couch, and fireplace scene (albeit with hot chocolate instead of coffee), and good company.

Amanda LybeckAmanda Lybeck

Undergraduate Institution: Seattle University
Undergraduate Degree: English Literature, minor in Women and Gender Studies

Writing Interests: Writing for children, poetry, history + literature, the hero(ine)s journey, diving in and seeing where my words can take me

Other Interests: camping, live music, nature, spending time with my husband and son

Tomm McCarthyTomm McCarthy

Undergraduate Institution: The Evergreen State College
Undergraduate Degree: Creative Writing

Writing Interests: Science Fiction and Fantasy, Speculative Fiction and Fabulism, Secret History and Folk Tales

Other Interests: Film-making, board-gaming, and coffee-drinking

Subha NairSubha Nair

Undergraduate Institution: National Institute of Technology, India
Undergraduate Degree: Bachelor of Technology in Electrical and Electronics Engineering
Other Degrees or Certificates: Certificate of Excellence, Bangalore Writers Workshop

Writing Interests: Short Stories, Articles

Other Interests: Molecular Science, Particle Theory, Mythology, Swimming, Cycling, Listening to the Smiths

Katelyn OppegardKatelyn Oppegard

Undergraduate Institution: California State University, Long Beach
Undergraduate Degree: Double major in English, Creative Writing and English, Literature

Writing Interests: Creative nonfiction, prose poetry, lists

Other Interests: Harry Potter, dogs, travel, daydreaming about seeing Hamilton, trivia, naps in the sun, reading, Love, and watermelon beer (actually, all beer)

Samantha SicilianoSamantha Siciliano

Undergraduate Institution: The Evergreen State College
Undergraduate Degree: 20th Century French Literature, Poetics

Writing Interests: Gastropoetics, confessionalism, notions of the body, multilingual poetry, flarf

Other Interests: Wildcrafting, French, baking, gardening, performance art, lake-swimming, toe-tapping

Jennifer TreadoJennifer Treado

Undergraduate Institution: Alverno College
Undergraduate Degree: Computing and Information Technology
Other Degrees or Certificates: Certificate in Creative Writing from Northwestern University

Writing Interests: Personal and lyric essay, flash creative nonfiction and the importance of the quotidian, cross-genre, erasure, DIY/handmade books, zines, game writing, technical writing

Other Interests: video games, cats, learning German, painting, crochet, fantasy fiction/sci-fi, Beat literature (specifically the female Beats), surrealism and postmodern art

2015 Cohort

Yohandra CabelloYohandra Cabello

Undergraduate Institution: Florida International University
Undergraduate Degree: Art History

Writing Interests: futuristic, medieval, adventure

Other Interests: books and shopping for books, the beach, travel, art. Also, Yohandra is a HUGE movie buff.

Brent CoxBrent Cox

Undergraduate Institution: UCLA
Undergraduate Degree: English, emphasis on Creative Writing (Poetry)

Writing Interests: Innovative Writing/Art

Other Interests: Coffee

Terrell FoxTerrell Fox

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Seattle
Undergraduate Degree: History

Writing Interests: Military history, horror, humor, and science fiction (or various combinations thereof)

Other Interests: Hiking, physical fitness, astrophysics, and bad movies

Liezel Moraleja HackettLiezel Moraleja Hackett

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Seattle
Undergraduate Degree: English Creative Writing

Writing Interests: Fiction, writing for screen or stage, magic realism

Other Interests: Filipino folk dance, music, mythology and folklore, time and relative dimension in space, and pictures of dogs on paddle boards.

Amanda HurtadoAmanda Hurtado

Undergraduate Institution: University of Utah
Undergraduate Degree: English

Writing Interests: Experimental poetry, conceptual writing, transmediation, critical essay

Other Interests: Art, film, cooking, reading, hiking, biking, camping, yurting, skiing, rollerskating

Corbin LouisCorbin Louis

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Bothell
Undergraduate Degree: Culture, Literature and the Arts

Writing Interests: Spoken Word, Graphic Poetry, Visual Art, Performance, Music and Ontology

Other Interests: Freestyle rapper and romantic, Neo-Noir, Southern Gothic, and generally living in a fury of inspiration

Nicole McCarthyNicole McCarthy

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Tacoma
Undergraduate Degree: Writing Studies (Creative Writing focus)

Writing Interests: Experimental: erasures in poetry and imagery; digital presentations; deconstructing structure; interactive writing & exhibitions; poetry performances; utilizing any medium of space to add meaning. Working in themes of identity, place, illusions of reality, feminism, and gender performance.

Other Interests: Reading, editing, coffee, chiefing journals, her love affair with Tacoma, wondering what exists in the dark crevices of our galaxy…did she say coffee?

Allison MortonAllison Morton

Undergraduate Institution: Ringling College of Art and Design
Undergraduate Degree: Digital Filmmaking

Writing Interests: Screenplays, poetry, experimental hybrids of the two, language as visual art, journalism (personal and political), fiction, spoken word

Other Interests: Film-making, sci-fi, teaching, photography, painting, dog training, video games, travel, television

Joshua OsbornJoshua Osborn

Undergraduate Institution: Washington State University
Undergraduate Degree: English - Creative Writing

Writing Interests: The ether of poetry revels between the crevice of meaning and understanding. Many people approach poems searching for something; their minds already made up. What does this mean? they ask themselves. I’ve come to realize that poetry has very little to do with meaning. A much more proper question one might ask is, what is this doing? Still, I couldn’t get past the preconceived ideas of language and how it’s traditionally structured to make sense; to give meaning to our realities. I’ve come to realize, again, that poetry is not as much concerned with making sense and giving meaning as it is playing with our senses, understanding the limits of our realities, and breaking them. Breaking. Rules. Because when rulse be broke fract/churred we are freed. I listened to Gertrude Stein give an interview about her book Tender Buttons, and when questioned about it’s meaning, she simply said, “If you enjoy it, then you understand it.” I thought, how true it is, to understand something.

Meaning searches for the words to define and limit, whereas understanding simply lets things do as they please, and enjoys the chaos.

I ask that as you read, instead of looking for meaning: enjoy it. Read it out loud, in funny voices, at rampant obnoxious speeds, or quaint slow peeps. Read with goo-goo eyes, or lisps; become the poem. Have fun, create characters with your words, and perform them with your body, as a way of being, rather than simply reading for meaning. It’s hard to understand sitting down. This way the language on the page comes to life, takes a form, something physical and protean. Surprise a colleague, surprise yourself, make it your own.

Other Interests: Go Sounders FC!

Elisabeth SecorElisabeth Secor

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Bothell
Undergraduate Degree: Culture, Literature and the Arts

Writing Interests: All of it

Other Interests: Beauty, truth, dismantling systems of oppression and inequality, and really good French rosé

Jason TentorJason Tentor

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Bothell
Undergraduate Degree: American Studies
Other Degrees or Certificates: Master of Arts in Cultural Studies, University of Washington Bothell

Writing Interests: Hip Hop, short fiction

Other Interests: Socially engaged art

September ThorlinSeptember Thorlin

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Seattle / University of Washington Bothell
Undergraduate Degree: Political Science and German Cultural Studies / Community Psychology

Writing Interests: Poetics out of linguistic and social interests, and experiments with multilingual and narrative poetry

Other Interests: September studies a variety of dance forms, as a dance company member and soloist. She combines this practice with her poetics to create a multisensory experience of her work.

Cora WalkerCora Walker

Undergraduate Institution: University of Washington Bothell
Undergraduate Degree: Interactive Media Design

Writing Interests: Fiction in all genres and forms, including but not limited to prose, poetry, comics, and games in the fantasy, Gothic, literary, science fiction, and heroic traditions. She has a particular interest in how the form of a medium modifies the way a story is told and how people connect with it. Dabbles in poetic pop surrealism. If there's a way to tell people about something that didn't really happen, but maybe they can still relate to, she's there. Cora is a Social Justice Ranger and cares as much about issues of representation as she does about finding art in everyday things.

Other Interests: Works at the Digital Future Lab as a designer and tester for games. Loves reading, crochet, spending time with her dogs, tea, and sharing her Dragon Age opinions.


Contact a Student Ambassador

Connect with current MFA students, ask questions, arrange a campus tour, and learn about the student experience from our Student Ambassadors.