When I applied to graduate school, I had to provide a sample of writing along with my application materials. I worked for a couple months on a piece before I was satisfied and was still dismayed when my applications to a few programs I was interested in were wait-listed or politely declined. I eventually found a place in a wonderful program at Sierra Nevada College in Lake Tahoe and it turned out to be probably one of the best experiences of my life thus far. I was challenged and I grew both as a writer and as a human being…


Last night, I found your headstone. The picture peered at me through digital haze, blurry from 36 years of tears unshed — or perhaps I merely need new glasses.

I made the picture bigger, searching the granite stone for the details of the childhood I lost far too soon. Maybe they were etched beneath the letters of your name. The name that still makes me squirm and fight the urge to hide. Details I could not find.

I made the picture small again, wanting to click it away, close the screen and forget-like I’d done so many times before. My…


As an undergrad student at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington I was once given an assignment based upon the amazing essay titled “Why I Write” by Terry Tempest Williams (which can be found here.) We were to write a personal manifesto based upon the question “Why do you write?” This was truly an eye opening assignment, and one that really forced me to look at the spirit within me that pushes me to write. I try to revisit this assignment at least once a year. Below is one of my more recent responses.

Before sharing the essay, I’d…

Melinda Kay

I write historical fiction, the weird, creepy stuff that is left under rocks and in shadows. I earned my MFA from Sierra Nevada University in 2016.

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