Derek Palacio holds an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from The Ohio State University. His short fiction has appeared, or is forthcoming in, the Kenyon Review and Puerto del Sol, and his poetry has appeared in The Los Angeles Review, The Pinch, Quarter After Eight and Thin Air Magazine. In spring 2013, Nouvella Books published his novella, How to Shake the Other Man. He has received awards from Puerto del Sol for his story “A History of Civility” and from The Ohio State University for Outstanding Graduate Work and Excellence in Teaching. In 2012 he was nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and his story "Sugarcane" was selected for inclusion in The O. Henry Prize Stories 2013. He is the co-director, with Claire Vaye Watkins, of the Mojave School, a non-profit creative writing workshop for teenagers in rural Nevada. Palacio has been an educator since graduating from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, in 2005. He has taught writing at the middle school, high school and college levels. Currently he is completing both a novel and a collection of short stories and teaching at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA.
"I was so impressed by the students of the Sewanee Young Writers’ Conference during my first summer in Tennessee. They were attentive, intelligent, engaged, and most importantly, desperately in love with fiction. They displayed the kind of passion for narrative and storytelling that I rarely see at the college level, let alone the high school. As a group we not only delved deeply and religiously into a number of stories by well-known authors – Oates, McGuane, Diaz, etc. – but we also engaged critically and thoroughly with the students’ original works. The stories they produced in our workshop were, to say the least, impressive: they explored character at a sub-textual level, utilized plot as a means to develop emotions and motive, and addressed a multitude of perspectives on the human condition. I have tremendous respect for those students, and it is with joy that I look forward to returning to Sewanee next summer."