• MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults

  •  MFAC faculty books

    Residency Visiting Writers & Faculty

    Each residency, our distinguished faculty are joined by special guests. The line up of special guests typically features locally published authors as well as writers from around the country, including a very special guest author chosen by the graduating class to give the commencement address. Guests also come from the business side of the writing and publishing world, including agents, editors, and publishers.


    Geoff Herbach is the author of the award-winning Stupid Fast YA series: Stupid Fast, Nothing Special, and I’m With Stupid. His first book, an adult novel, was The Miracle Letters of T. Rimberg. His books have been given the 2011 Cybils Award for Best YA Novel and listed in the year’s best lists by the American Library Association, the American Booksellers’ Association, and numerous state library associations. He has produced radio comedy and currently teaches creative writing at Minnesota State, Mankato. He has an MFA from Hamline University.

    Deborah Kovacs is a senior vice president and editorial director of Walden Pond Press, a joint imprint of HarperCollins and Walden Media, specializing in middle-grade fiction. Notable recent books include Breadcrumbs and The Real Boy by Anne Ursu, The Guys Read library series edited by Jon Scieszka, the Fourth Stall series by Chris Rylander, and Platypus Police Squad by Jaarrett J. Krosoczka. Deborah has also been responsible for Walden Media’s partnership with Penguin Books for Young Readers. She is the author of more than thirty children’s books in fiction and nonfiction. 

    Mary Logue writes poetry, nonfiction, mystery, and picture books. She is also an accomplished quiltmaker. Her mysteries include the Claire Watkins Mystery series and the Killer Librarian series for adults and, with her partner Pete Hautman, the Bloodwater Mystery series for young adults. She has also written the YA novel, Dancing with an Alien, an ALA Best Book for Young Adults and New York Public Library Best Book for the Teen Age. Her picture book, Sleep Like a Tiger, illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski, won Caldecott Honor and Charlotte Zolotow Honor Awards. Her novel for adults, Giving Up the Ghost, was serialized in the Star Tribune. Mary teaches in the regular MFA program at Hamline and periodically in the MFAC program.

    Vauna Micheaux Nelson is the author of ten books of fiction and nonfiction for young readers. Her most recent book, No Crystal Stair, a documentary novel, won the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Fiction. She was awarded the 2010 Coretta Scott King Award and the Gelett Burgess Children’s Book Award for Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves, Deputy U.S. Marshall. Other awards include a Notable Children’s Trade Book in the field of social studies for Always Gramma and a Parents’ Choice Gold Award for Beyond Mayfield. Ms. Nelson has been a teacher, newspaper reporter, bookseller, school librarian, and twice a member of the Newbery Award Committee. She is currently a youth services librarian at the public library in Rio Rancho, New Mexico.

    Anita Silvey is the author of 100 Best Books for Children, and 500 Great Books for Teens. She has appeared frequently on NPR, The Today Show, 60 Minutes, and numerous radio programs. She is the former editor-in-chief of The Horn Book Magazine and former publisher of children’s books for Houghton Mifflin, where she worked with such authors as H.A. and Margaret Rey, Virginia Lee Burton, David Macaulay, Lois Lowry, Allen Say, Linda Sue Park, and Chris Van Allsburg. Her creative work for young readers includes I’ll Pass for Your Comrade: Women Soldiers in the Civil War, Henry Knox: Bookseller, Soldier, Patriot, and The Plant Hunters. Currently she is a member of the editorial board of Cricket Magazine and teaches at Simmons College and St. Michael’s College in Burlington, Vermont. This is her fourth visit to Hamline.

    Jane Yolen is the author or editor of over 280 books for children and adults. Many are works of fantasy, science fiction, and poetry. She is also a songwriter, storyteller, and folklorist. Her most well-known books include The Devil’s Arithmetic, Owl Moon, How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight?, the Pit Dragon Chronicles, and the Commander Toad series. Her numerous awards include the Caldecott Medal, two Nebula Awards, three Mythopoeic Awards, the Kerlan Award, two Christopher Awards, and several World Fantasy Awards, including a special award for Life Achievement, and one for Favorite Folktales from Around the World, which she edited. She lives in Massachusetts and St. Andews, Scotland. This is her second visit as a guest author to Hamline’s MFAC program. She is this residency's graduation speaker.


    Anne Ursu, Phyllis Root, Marsha Qualey, Marsha Chall, Laura Ruby, Swati Avasthi, Emily Jenkins, Jane Resh Thomas, Kelly Easton, Liza Ketchum, and Claire Rudolf Murphy.  

    [ View Faculty Profiles ]


    From the Archives: Special guest  

    In July 2012, Chris Crutcher was one of our special guests, along with David Small and Anita Silvey. Watch Chris Crutcher's commencement address:



    Visit the Residency Archives for guests from previous residencies.


    RECENT Residency Guests 

    Guest Authors  

    Will Alexander
    Franny Billingsley
    John Coy
    Kate DiCamillo
    Jon Scieszka
    Nancy Carlson
    Chris Crutcher
    David Small
    Anita Slivey
    Alison McGhee
    Lin Oliver
    Patricia MacLachlan
    T.A. Barron
    Jane Yolen
    Kate DiCamillo

    Agents, Editors, Publishers

    Zareen Jaffery
    Vicki & Steve Palmquist (CLN)
    Jordan Brown
    Kendra Marcus
    Sarah Davies
    Roger Sutton
    Wendy Lamb
    Jennifer Flannery
    Brian Farrey
    Virginia Buckley
    Deborah Kovacs
    Andrew Karre
    Joy Neaves
    Sean McCarthy

    Visit the Residency Archives for full list