Creative Writing
Department Chairs:
Sylvia Watanabe (Sem. I)
Dan Chaon (Sem. II)

Administrative Assistant:
Suzanne Overstreet

Department Email:

Phone: (440) 775-6567
Fax: (440) 775-6677

153 W. Lorain Street

Oberlin, OH, 44074

Sylvia Watanabe

Sylvia Watanabe

Co-director (Semester I)
Associate Professor

Contact Information


153 W. Lorain Street, Room 205
(440) 775-8611

Sylvia Watanabe

Educational Background

  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Hawaii at Manoa, 1980
  • Master of Arts, SUNY Binghamton, 1985

It Began in Hawaii...

Sylvia Watanabe's short story cycle, Talking to the Dead, was a finalist for the 1993 PEN Faulkner Award. She is the recipient of an NEA fellowship, a Josephine Miles Pen Oakland award in fiction and an Ohio Arts Council grant in nonfiction. Watanabe's fiction and nonfiction have appeared in many anthologies, including the O'Henry Prize and Pushcart Prize collections. During the 90's she co-edited two volumes of Asian American fiction, Home to Stay and Into the Fire, with Carol Bruchac, of the Greenfield Review Press. Home to Stay was the first anthology of Asian American women's fiction to be published in the U.S. In 2007-08, she received an Oberlin College award for excellence in teaching. Her current book-length fiction project is about the survivors of the American nuclear testing in the Pacific.

Aloha Shorts

Michigan Writers Series

Choice Magazine

 Home to Stay   
 Talking to the Dead
   Order from at:
Greenfield Review Press
   Order online at



BERNARD FARAI MATAMBO is an Assistant Professor in the Creative Writing Program at Oberlin College. He teaches courses in fiction, nonfiction, transitional prose forms as well as poetry and internationally-focused electives in Creative Writing. He received his BA from Oberlin College, OH, and an MFA from Brown University, RI, where his writing received both the Beth Lisa Feldman Award for Fiction and the Matthew Assatly Award from the Literary Arts Program. His work has been published in Witness, Pleiades, AGNI, Cincinnati Review, The Journal, Laurel Review and plume poetry among others, and has been nominated for the Pushchart Prizes and Caine Prize for African Writing. He has received residency fellowships from The Blue Mountain Center and the I-Park Foundation and has served as visiting artist at the Delta Gallery in Harare, Zimbabwe. An excerpt from his forthcoming novel was awarded the Walter Rumsey Marvin Grant by Ohioana Library. Bernard is a recent recipient of an international arts education grant from the Minneapolis Foundation to develop a course study of community arts and arts education in Zimbabwe.