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Writing Center | Consultants

Meet the Staff

Writing Center

When you come to the Writing Center, you will work with one of our writing consultants who are undergraduates and graduate students, mostly in the Department of Literature.

We're students too, so we're well-versed in writer's block! We've put together some of our favorite reads to get your creativity flowing.

Kathleen, Katie, Marilyn

Katie is a first-year MFA student, which is something that requires one's favorite books to be classy, like Pride and Prejudice or Catch-22. Katie's real favorite books are Winnie the Pooh and anything by Stephen King. When not reading or writing, she is usually watching copious amounts of Netflix or napping somewhere sunny.  

Beth, a first year MA student,  enjoys reading 20th century literature for school, and young adult or fantasy literature for pleasure. Her favorite authors include Mina Loy, V.C. Andrews, Virginia Woolf, Italo Calvino, and Richard Knaak. Her biggest problem with writing is getting motivated to start.

Kathleen is a senior Literature and Business major. She was born in Quezon City, Manila but grew up in North Wales, Pennsylvania. Her favorite writers include Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, E.E. Cummings and Ray Bradbury.

Writing Center

Simone is from Brooklyn, NY, and spent four years in Nowhere, PA for undergrad, so she's really glad to be in a real city again. She is a second-year MFA student, and her favorite poet is Sylvia Plath. Her biggest problem with writing is getting started.

Olympia  is a first-year Creative Writing MFA student who loves reading Tomas Tranströmer, Li-young lee, Mark Strand, the Brontë sisters and Thomas Hardy. She has previously been living in Brooklyn, New York. The most rewarding aspect of academic writing for her is shaping a creative, convincing thesis;and the most tedious, is making the final editing touches.

Hanna is a first-year MA student. She was born in Sandy Spring, Maryland, but spent several years in Amherst, Massachusetts, where she studied at Hampshire College. Her favorite books include Desde los blancos manicomios by Margarita Mateo Palmer, No Telephone to Heaven by Michelle Cliff, The Last World by Christoph Ransmyar, and The Secret History by Donna Tartt. Her greatest challenges with writing are getting started and finally, letting go.

Rachael is a junior Literature and Secondary Education double major in the Honors program from Pennsylvania.  She enjoys reading anything by Seamus Heaney, especially his translation of Beowulf, and loves the Lord of the Rings, A Grief Observed, Mansfield Park, the Black Cauldron, Blue Nights, and Thrall.  The hardest part of writing for her is working without a deadline.

Elise, Cameron

Elise is a first-year MFA student from Ohio. Her role model is Anne of Green Gables (from L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables) and her favorite writers include Vladimir Nabokov, Donald Barthelme and Barbara Kingsolver. She dislikes the beginning of any writing project but loves the wordplay once she gets started. 

Sarah is a first-year MFA student studying poetry. She is from Danville, IL. Her favorite authors include James Joyce, Louise Gluck, Mary Oliver, William Blake, Toni Morrison, and Harriet Jacobs. She loves learning about the technicalities associated with grammar as well as researching various topics in women’s and gender studies, although she still struggles with being too literal in her writing.

Brandon is a senior Journalism student hailing from Merrimack, New Hampshire. He revels in writing introductions but ironically has a hard time starting and considers the blank page a mortal enemy. His literary interests include essays, long-form journalism and cinema.

Writing Center

Hanna is a first year MFA-creative writing student. She grew up in Alexandria, VA, but has spent the past couple years living in Shepherdstown, WV while studying English at Shepherd University. She prefers literature from the mid-late 20 authors include J.D. Salinger, Salman Rushdie, John Kennedy Toole, Edward Abbey, and Kurt Vonnegut. Hanna also has a soft spot for children's and young-adult literature such as the works of Dr. Seuss, Shel Silverstein, Norton Juster, and Robert Cormier.

Marilyn is a first-year M.A. student in Literature from Herndon, Virginia. As she completed her undergraduate studies from AU's School of Communication, she considers this new master's student phase to be "AU part two." She enjoys the feeling of clarity throughout the writing process, and her favorite genres include historical fiction, science fiction, and memoir.

Lyndi is from New York (not the city) and received her undergrad at State University of New York at Potsdam, just two hours south of Canada. She is a first year poetry MFA student who thinks poetry is ridiculous. And she loves that writing can empower anyone and everyone regardless of their writing or reading level. 

Justine is thrilled to be a consultant at AU's Writing Center! Justine is a native Clevelander, but has spent the last 10 years in NYC. A graduate of Classical Theatre and Acting from Marymount Manhattan College, Justine has come to AU to pursue an MA in Lit and plans to teach Dramatic Lit at the University level. She loves all of those Irish Dramatists who wish desperately they were English - George Bernard Shaw, Oscar Wilde, and Sean O'Casey to name a few.

Join the Staff

The Writing Center is only as good as its staff of talented Writing Consultants. We train and support our staff and set up a schedule that is right for them. So if you are an AU student with an interest in writing and in helping other people, we have an internship for you!

If you are a rising junior or senior or a grad student here at AU, and you have a solid GPA and good writing skills, the Writing Center offers you 2 hrs. undergraduate or graduate course credit and a chance to try out a teaching interest.

After an initial intensive training period, interns work regularly scheduled hours each week in the Writing Center, meeting one-to-one with AU undergraduates to advise them on their writing projects.

Interns also complete a semester-long research project concerning an academic writing topic of their choice and present the results to Writing Center staff at an end-of-semester gathering.

For more information and an application, stop by the Center in Bender Library, first floor, or contact the Director, Dr. Janet Auten: jauten@american.edu.