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Dixon Professor of Creative Writing


Announced in the spring of 2013, the Kent and Mimi Dixon Professorship of Creative Writing is an endowed semester-long Writer-in-Residence program, designed to expand on the valuable contributions made by Mimi and Kent during their tenure here, and bring additional breadth and innovation to Wittenberg's Creative Writing program.


Heather Christle Heather Christle (Spring 2016)

The 2015-2016 Dixon Professor is Heather Christle, author of four poetry collections, including 2012 Believer Poetry Award-winning The Trees The Trees (2011) and What is Amazing (2012). Christle earned her BA from Tufts University and her MFA from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, and currently resides in Yellow Springs, Ohio.

Christle's poems are whimsical and complex, hauntingly beautiful and startlingly real. We were delighted and grateful to have her talents as an invaluable asset to our department and the university during her time here. In the spring of 2016, she taught ENGL 240, Intro to Creative Writing, as well as ENGL 341, Advanced Poetry Writing, and performed an enthralling reading of her poetry and prose as the opening English department colloquium of the semester.

R. Clifton Spargo R. Clifton Spargo (Fall 2014)

The inaugural Dixon Professor of Creative Writing was Iowa Writer's Workshop and Yale doctoral program in literature graduate R. Clifton Spargo. During the fall of 2014, Spargo taught two courses (ENGL 240, Intro to Creative Writing, and ENGL 403, Advanced Projects in Creative Writing, focused on writing historical fiction), and gave three colloquium presentations for the English, Psychology, and Philosophy departments and the Women's Studies program.

He came to us shortly after the publication of his novel, Beautiful Fools (2013), a work of historical fiction which imagines Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald's tumultuous "lost days" in Cuba. As an activist and teacher, Spargo also created "The Stories We Tell" writing program for the nonprofit The Voices and Faces Project which helps survivors of violence bring their testimonies to the attention of the public.

While at Wittenberg, Spargo shared his creative talents by working closely with students, editing assignments, providing valuable feedback, and encouraging original student ideas. The English department was extremely pleased with and deeply grateful for his many contributions during his semester here.

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