Professor of Creative Writing; Director of the MFA in Creative Writing,
School of the Arts



  • Fiction Writing
  • Advanced Fiction Writing
  • Reading as Writers


  • Contemporary Fiction
  • Creative Writing
  • 20th-Century Literature


  • BA, Valparaiso University
  • MFA, University of Virginia
  • PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Academic Profile

René Steinke’s most recent novel, Friendswood, was named one of National Public Radio’s Great Reads of 2014, and Darin Strauss called it a large-hearted, big-brained book. Steinke is the recipient of a 2016 Guggenheim Fellowship. Her second novel, Holy Skirts, a fictionalized biography of the artist and poet, the Baroness Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven, was a Finalist for the National Book Award. Her first novel is The Fires. Her essays and book reviews have appeared in The New York Times, Vogue, O Magazine, Salon, 4Columns, Bookforum, and in anthologies. She is currently the Director of the MFA program in Creative Writing at Fairleigh Dickinson University, where she teaches in the undergraduate and graduate programs in the School of the Arts.

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