Meet the Writers

Iowa City is the home to Poets, Novelists, Playwrights, Essayists, Translators, Journalists, Screenwriters and more …

Full Collection of Writers

Poetry

Alice Notley

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Notley attended the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, first for fiction and then for poetry. She is the author of over 25 books of poetry, including ‘Grave of Light: New and Selected Poems’, which received the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize. [more]

Carolyn Kizer

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Carolyn Kizer was the author of eight books of poetry, including Yin, which won the Pulitzer Prize. She taught at the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, served as the Director of the Literature Program at the NEA, and won numerous awards. [more]

Cathy Park Hong

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Cathy Park Hong, author of Translating Mo’um, (Hanging Loose Press, 2002); Dance Dance Revolution (W.W. Norton, 2007) and Engine Empire (W.W. Norton, 2012), earned an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop in 2003. [more]

Charles Wright

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Charles Wright is an American poet. His work has been awarded the National Book Award in 1983 for Country Music: Selected Early Poems and the Pulitzer Prize in 1998 for Black Zodiac. From 2014 to 2015, he served as the 50th Poet Laureate of the United States. [more]

Donald Justice

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Donald Justice was born in 1925, and died in Iowa City, Iowa, on August 6, 2004. In 1952, he studied at the Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa, and later taught poetry at the Workshop from 1957 to 1967. He was awarded the 1980 Pulitzer Prize for his Selected Poems. [more]

Haki R. Madhubuti

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Haki R. Madhubuti, a renowned poet and activist, is the author of Don’t Cry, Scream (1969) and Groundwork: Selected Poems (1996). He received an MFA from the University of Iowa at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop in 1984. [more]

James Tate

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James Tate, a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, attended the Iowa Writer’s Workshop and received his M.F.A in 1967. In his first year at Iowa, his collection of poems “The Lost Pilot” won the Yale Younger Poets Award. [more]

John Berryman

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John Berryman (born John Allyn Smith, Jr.) was a major figure in American poetry. He taught at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop from 1950 – 1953. His best-known work is a series of poems entitled ‘The Dream Songs.’ [more]

Jorie Graham

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Jorie Graham is the author of numerous collections of poetry, including The Dream of the Unified Field: Selected Poems 1974-1994, which won the Pulitzer Prize. She received her MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and later returned to teach for the program. [more]

Juan Felipe Herrera

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Juan Felipe Herrera earned his MFA from the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop in 1990. In 2015 he was named U.S. Poet Laureate. [more]

Louise Glück

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Louise Glück is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American poet. She was appointed Poet Laureate to the Library of Congress in 2003, and won the National Book Award for Poetry in 2014. She was a member of the faculty of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. [more]

Margaret Walker

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Margaret Walker, acclaimed poet and author, was at the forefront of Chicago’s African American literary movement. She received an MA in 1940 from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a PhD in 1965 from the University of Iowa. [more]

Marvin Bell

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Marvin Bell received his MFA at the Iowa Writer’s Workshop and taught at the Workshop for forty years, as the Flannery O’Connor Professor of Letters. He was elected as Iowa’s first Poet Laureate in 2000. [more]

Paul Engle

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Paul Engle (October 12, 1908 – March 22, 1991) was a poet, literary critic, novelist, and playwright. He acted as the long-time director of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and was the founder of the International Writing Program, both at the University of Iowa. [more]

Philip Levine

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Philip Levine is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American poet best known for his poems about working-class Detroit. Levine taught at the University of Iowa from 1955 and 1957.  [more]

Ray Young Bear

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Ray Young Bear is the author of several award-winning books of poetry and fiction, including Black Eagle Child. He grew up on the Meskwaki (Red Earth People) Settlement in central Iowa and attended the University of Iowa. [more]

Raymond Carver

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Raymond Carver was a fiction writer and poet, author of several award-winning collections of short stories. He attended the Iowa Writers’ Workshop from 1963 – 1964, and returned to teach at the Workshop in 1973.  [more]

Rita Dove

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Rita Dove was born in Akron, Ohio. She received her MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop in 1977. She won the Pulitzer Prize in 1987 for her collection ‘Thomas and Beulah’. [more]

Robert Dana

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Robert Dana was an American poet, and author of many collections of poetry including. He attended the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, taught at Cornell College, and edited The North American Review. Dana was the Iowa poet laureate from 2004 – 2006. [more]

Robert Lowell

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Robert Lowell, a Pulitzer Prize winning poet and U.S. Poet Laureate, taught at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop from 1950 to 1953. His many collections include Lord Weary’s Castle, The Dolphin, and others.  [more]

Robert Penn Warren

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Robert Penn Warren was an American poet and novelist. He taught as a faculty member at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. He received the 1947 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1958 and 1979. [more]

Tomaž Šalamun

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Tomaž Šalamun was a participant in the University of Iowa’s International Writing Program in 1971. He has published 38 volumes of poems in his native Slovenia and has been translated into nearly two dozen languages. [more]

W.S. Merwin

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W. S. Merwin was an American poet and translator. His work received the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1971 and 2009; the National Book Award for Poetry in 2005, and the Tanning Prize. He was a visiting reader and professor at the University of Iowa. [more]