SLS DIRECTORS & EMPLOYEES
Founder and Executive Program Director. Mikhail Iossel was born in Leningrad, USSR, where
he worked as an electromagnetic engineer and belonged to a circle of
underground ("samizdat") writers, and emigrated to the United States
in 1986. After receiving an MA degree in English/Creative Writing from
the University of New Hampshire, he was awarded a Wallace Stegner fellowship
in fiction at Stanford University. He subsequently taught creative writing,
both on the undergraduate and graduate levels, at the University of
Minnesota, New York University, the New School, St. Lawrence University,
Union College and currently is on the faculty of the Concordia University
(Montreal, Canada) writing program. Numerous publications in samizdat
magazines in the former Soviet Union. Author of Every Hunter Wants to
Know, a collection of stories (W.W. Norton) and co-editor (with Jeff
Parker) of Amerika: Russian Writers View the United States (Dalkey Archive,
2004). a book of essays. Stories published in literary magazines in
the US and abroad, translated in several foreign languages, anthologized
in Best American Short Stories and elsewhere. Recipient of the NEA (1993)
and the Guggenheim Foundation fellowships (1999). Founder (in 1998)
and executive director of the Summer Literary Seminars, Inc., program--one
of the world's largest international literary conferences (St. Petersburg,
Russia; Nairobi-Lamu, Kenya; Vilnius, Lithuania; Montreal, Canada).
Ann Ward, Program Director. Originally from Kingston, Ontario, Ann Ward is co-creator of Montreal’s WithWords Press and a graduate of the English and Creative Writing Program at Concordia University. Her poetry has appeared in MsGuided, CV2 and Feathertale, and her fiction has appeared in Branch, and was chosen by Colum McCann to appear in the 2009 Fish Anthology in Ireland. Ann lives in Montreal.
Soren Stockman, Program Coordinator. Soren was born in Boston, Massachusetts. His writing has appeared in Playboy, La Fovea, and Pieces Of Cake, and is forthcoming in Narrative Magazine and Tiferet Journal. He was awarded a full scholarship at the New York State Summer Writer’s Institute in 2011, and a fellowship at the Ucross Foundation in the Spring of 2012. Stockman is currently an MFA candidate at New York University.
Eglė Kačkutė, Senior Academic Coordinator, is a Vilnius born cultural journalist and literary critic. She studied English, European Literature and General and Comparative Literature at Vilnius University, the University of Cambridge and Paris III-Sorbonne Nouvelle respectively and has been awarded the Open Society Institute, Chevening, French Government, the Lithuanian State Science and Studies Foundation Scholarships and a UNESCO Fellowship. She is a regular contributor to a number of Lithuanian cultural newspapers and has published academic papers in Lithuania, UK and France. She collaborates with the Lithuanian National Radio. Since 2006 she has lived in Geneva, Switzerland where she enjoys promoting Lithuanian literature and culture. Her monograph Savos ir svetimos on identity in contemporary British and French women’s writing has just come out with the Vilnius University Press.
Ursule Gedaite, Lithuania Ground Coordinator.
Mike Spry, Program Advisor, is a graduate of the Concordia University Creative Writing program, and the author of the short story collection Distellery Songs. (Insomniac Press 2011). He is also the author of Jack (Snare Books, 2008), which was shortlisted for the Quebec Writer's Federation A. M. Klein Prize for Poetry.
Thomas Burke, Program Advisor. Mr. Burke grew up outside Chicago and writes fiction and nonfiction. He received a BA from Union College and an MFA from UMASS Amherst. He has lived in Asia and Europe, and spent time in South America, Central America, and Africa . He teaches writing and lives in New York City.
Jeff Parker, Program Advisor. Jeff Parker is the author of the novel Ovenman and the collection of stories The Taste of Penny. His short fiction and nonfiction have appeared in The Walrus, The Best American Nonrequired Reading, Ploughshares, Indiana Review, Matrix, and others. He co-edited the anthologies Rasskazy: New Fiction from a New Russia and Amerika: Russian Writers View the United States. For his work in hypermedia, he
received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities in 2001. Parker has a BA
in Journalism from the University of Florida and an MFA in Creative
Writing from Syracuse University. He teaches at the University of Toronto.
John Goldbach, Program Advisor. He is the author of Selected Blackouts (Insomniac Press, 2009) and received his MA from Concordia University in Montreal, where he lives.
Melissa Bull, French-language liaison, government supplicant and grant writer. A graduate of Concordia's creative writing program and a native Montrealer, Melissa works as a writer and editor for a handful of mags and as a translator for the Musée d'art de Joliette. Her poetry and fiction have been published in a variety of anthologies and a chapbook of her stories, Eating Out, was published in 2009.
Ian Sullivan Cant is a writer, artist, and graphic designer. He designed the logos for SLS and would like to design things for you too: email@example.com @iansullivancant"