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NYS Summer Young Writers Institute

2016 Summer Young Writers Institute Visiting Authors

Baron Wormser

Baron Wormser

Baron Wormser is the author/co-author of 14 books and a poetry chapbook. He grew up in Baltimore and went to high school at Baltimore City College and to college at Johns Hopkins University. He did graduate studies at the University of California, Irvine and the University of Maine. In 1970 he moved to Maine with his wife Janet. For 25 years he worked as a librarian for SAD 59 in Madison, Maine. He also taught poetry writing at the University of Maine at Farmington. From 1975 to 1998 he lived with his family in Mercer, Maine, in an off-the-grid house on 48 acres. His memoir, The Road Washes Out in Spring: A Poet’s Memoir of Living Off the Grid, concerns that experience. In 2000 he was writer-in-residence at the University of South Dakota. From 2000 to 2006 he served as poet laureate of the state of Maine. His essay on Willem de Kooning appeared in Best American Essays 2014. His latest book of poetry, Unidentified Sighing Objects, (CavanKerry Press) came out in September, 2015.  Wormser has received the Frederick Bock Prize from Poetry and the Kathryn A. Morton Prize along with fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Bread Loaf, and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. He has taught in the Fairfield University MFA Program since 2009. He is also the Director of Educational Outreach for the Frost Place in Franconia, New Hampshire. He resides with his wife in Montpelier, Vermont, where he conducts numerous workshops in his house. 


Leah Nakano Winkler

Leah Nakano WinklerLeah Nanako Winkler, originally from Kamakura, Japan and Lexington, Kentucky, is a current member of Youngblood, an alumnus of Terra Nova Collective’s Groundbreakers Playwright Group, and an affiliated artist at New Georges. Her plays include Kentucky, Death for Sydney Black, The Internet, and Taisetsu na Hito, which was the winner of the Samuel French OOB Festival in 2014.  Her two collections, Nagoriyuki & Other Short Plays, and The Lowest Form of Writing, are both available at In addition, Leah’s plays have been developed at Playwrights Horizons/Clubbed Thumb, New York Theatre Workshop, The Bushwick Starr, and at The Flea Theatre. She is a recipient of the Capote Fellowship in Creative Writing and is currently an MFA candidate at Brooklyn College.