In choosing our faculty we select only internationally celebrated authors of color who are known for their excellence as writers and their sensibilities toward political and cultural issues. All of our workshop leaders are inspiring and proven teachers experienced with diverse populations.

For VONA 2018, we are excited to announce the following faculty
To see about their workshops, check out the VONA Workshop Page

Elmaz AbinaderMemoir, Week One
Faith Adiele: Travel Writer, Week Two
Jeffery Renard Allen: Political Content, Week One
Samiya Bashir: Poetry, Week Two
Tananarive Due: Speculative Fiction, Week Two
M. Evelina Galang: Fiction, Week Two
Kiese Laymon: Essay, Week Two
Marjorie Liu, Genre Writing, Week One
David Mura, Residency/Prose, Week One
Bich Minh Nguyen: Memoir, Week Two
Willie Perdomo: Poetry, Week One
Craig Santos Perez, Residency/Poetry, Week Two
Patricia Smith, Poetry, Week One
Shay Youngblood, Fiction, Week One



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Marjorie is AWESOME. She was very engaged in every single student’s piece. She had insight into blindspots and could explain them well. She was also able to handle how emotional the workshop got sometimes with deftness and to talk really frankly about the issues that PoC writers face. She’s funny, smart, and is genuinely interested in her students. Genre 2017

Kiese was amazing. start to finish. the end. the person surpasses the legend. Essay 2017

I learned to give and receive love within a classroom environment that encouraged my voice, challenged my craft, and related to my experiences. Faculty and staff really held themselves accountable, especially my workshop leader, who gave and received feedback. The environment was “we,” but the work was represented of “me.”