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Biography

Donna is the author of The Silver Baron’s Wife (PEN/New England Discovery Award, Bronze Winner in Foreword Reviews 2017 Book of the Year, and Finalist in Paterson Prize for Fiction), Sympathetic People (Iowa Fiction Award Finalist and 2015 Next Generation Indie Book Awards Finalist in Short Fiction), Sometimes You Sense the Difference (poetry chapbook), and Letting Rain Have Its Say (poetry). She was a Founding Editor of Bellevue Literary Review and founded and publishes Tiferet Journal. She has received a Bread Loaf Scholarship, Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars Fellowship, grants from the New Jersey Council on the Arts and Poetry Society of Virginia, a Scholarship from the Summer Literary Seminars, and more.

Donna’s stories and poems have appeared in Virginia Quarterly Review, Confrontation, Prairie Schooner, New York Quarterly, Washingtonian, New Ohio Review, Ascent, Puerto del Sol, Gargoyle, and many other journals as well as in the anthologies I’ve Always Meant to Tell You (Pocket Books), To Fathers: What I’ve Never Said (featured in O Magazine), Men and Women: Together and Alone from Spirit That Moves Us Press. Her story “A Landing Called Compromise was Runner-up in the 2018 Saturday Evening Post Fiction Contest.

The Fellowship she received from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts led to a highlight in her writing career: seeing the story she had submitted with her Fellowship application performed by Tony-award winning actress Maryann Plunkett at the Playwrights Theatre in Madison, NJ.

For many years, Donna also worked as a freelance direct mail copywriter, working primarily for environmental groups and membership organizations like World Wildlife Fund, The Nature Conservancy, Smithsonian, and more. During those years, she published two nonfiction books on copywriting with McGraw-Hill and Thomson Publishing Group.

At age 40, she took a sabbatical to get her MFA in Fiction from the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins, where she studied with John Barth, Steve Dixon, and Peter Sacks. Her thesis became a collection of stories that was a Finalist in the Iowa Fiction Awards judged by Marilynne Robinson.