Rachel Mennies, MFA

Hometown:  Philadelphia, PA
Joined Chatham:  2014


Poetry, Creative Nonfiction, Lyric Essay, Publishing, Literary Citizenship, Holocaust Studies  

Website1: https://www.rachelmennies.com


Rachel Mennies is the author of the poetry collections The Naomi Letters (BOA Editions, 2021); The Glad Hand of God Points Backwards, the 2014 winner of the Walt McDonald First-Book Prize in Poetry at Texas Tech University Press and finalist for a National Jewish Book Award; and No Silence in the Fields, a chapbook from Blue Hour Press. Her poetry has appeared at The Believer, Kenyon Review, American Poetry Review, and elsewhere. Her essays, criticism, and other articles have appeared at The Millions, The Poetry Foundation, LitHub, The Kitchn, and numerous other outlets.

Mennies took over in 2016 as the series editor of the Walt McDonald First-Book Prize in Poetry; she also serves as the reviews editor for AGNI. Alongside the poet Ruth Awad, she edited the anthology The Familiar Wild: On Dogs and Poetry for Sundress Publications (2020). As an adjunct professor, she's taught creative writing, rhetoric/composition, professional writing, and writing pedagogy at Carnegie Mellon University, Chatham University, Penn State University, and Loyola University Chicago.

Mennies currently works as a freelance editor, adjunct professor, and writer and lives in Chicago.

  • M.F.A., Poetry, Penn State University, 2011
  • B.A., English; B.A., Hispanic and Continental European Literatures, Boston University, 2008
  • National Jewish Book Award, Poetry (finalist), 2015
  • Walt McDonald First-Book Prize in Poetry (winner), 2014
  • The Naomi Letters (BOA Editions, 2021)
  • The Glad Hand of God Points Backwards (Texas Tech University Press, 2014)
  • No Silence in the Fields (Blue Hour Press, 2012)