Joyce Dyer

Joyce DyerProfessor of English Emerita

B.A., Wittenberg University
Ph.D., Kent State University


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Author website:




  • Creative Nonfiction
  • Advanced Creative Nonfiction
  • Memoir
  • Basics of Creative Writing

Research Interests

  • Literary nonfiction
  • American literature and history
  • Appalachian culture and literature
  • Western Reserve and Akron history


  • "The Awakening": A Novel of Beginnings (Twayne, MacMillan, 1993)
  • In a Tangled Wood: An Alzheimer's Journey (Southern Methodist University Press, 1996)
  • Bloodroot: Reflections on Place by Appalachian Women Writers (University of Kentucky Press, 1998)
  • Gum-Dipped: A Daughter Remembers Rubber Town (University of Akron Press, 2003)
  • Goosetown: Reconstructing an Akron Neighborhood (University of Akron Press, 2010)
  • Essays in magazines such as The New York Times, Writer’s Chronicle, North American Review, High Plains Literary Magazine, Seventeen, Cream CityReview, Stoneboat, and Southern Literary Journal
  • Essays in books, including Writing into the Forbidden; Politics, Gender, and the Arts; Contemporary Poets, Dramatists, Essayists, and Novelists of the South; After the Bell: Contemporary American Prose about School; What's Normal: Narratives of Mental and Emotional Disorders; Twentieth Century Literary Criticism; Body Outlaws; We All Live Downstream;  Motif Volume 2:  Come What May (An Anthology of Writings About Chance)Motif Volume 3:  All the Livelong Day (An Anthology of Writings About Work); From Curlers to Chainsaws:  Women and Their Machines

Recent Presentations

  • Breaking Genre II at Case Western Reserve University (2014)
  • Breaking Genre I at Case Western Reserve University (2013)
  • Reading at Wright State University (2012)
  • Featured Writer, Great Lakes Writers Festival, Sheboygan, Wisconsin (2011)
  • Visiting Writer at Muskingum University (2011)
  • Nonfiction Instructor, The Twenty:  A Kentucky Writers Advance (2011, 2012, 2013)
  • Workshop Leader at 826michigan Writers Conference, Ann Arbor (2011, 2012)
  • Visiting Writer, VOICES Reading Series, St. Mary's College of Maryland (2010)
  • Visiting Writer at Appalachian State University (2009)
  • Mercantile Library of Cincinnati, Creative Nonfiction Lecture (2007, 2009)
  • Writers Series, Otterbein College (2007)
  • Writer-in-residence at the Antioch Writers' Workshop (Memoir), Yellow Springs, Ohio (2005, 2006, 2009, 2011)
  • Eleanor Mincks Wolf Lecturer, Mount Union College (2005)
  • Featured speaker at the 5th Annual Akron Traditions, E.J. Thomas Hall (2004)
  • Speaker at Author, Author luncheon, Akron (October 2003)
  • Workshop leader at Wright State Institute on Writing and Teaching (2003, 2004)
  • Writer-in-residence at the 22nd, 25th, 26th, 30th, and 35th Appalachian Writers Workshop at Hindman Settlement School in Kentucky


  • Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award (2007, 2014)
  • Goosetown named a finalist for the Ohioana Book Award (2011)
  • David B. Saunders Award in Creative Nonfiction (Cream City Review, 2009, judged by Lee Martin)
  • Co-winner of a chapbook sponsored by Word of Mouth Books (2009)
  • NEOMFA Visiting Writer (2007)
  • Vencl-Carr Award for Excellence in Teaching (2006)
  • Distinguished Alumna Award, Kent State University English Department (2004)
  • Gum-Dipped selected as required reading for all in-coming freshmen at University of Akron (2004)
  • Pushcart nominations in essay (2001, 2006, 2009, 2011, 2012)
  • Appalachian Writers Association 1999 Book of the Year
  • Michael Starr Award for Teaching Excellence, Hiram College (1996)

Current Writing and Presentations

I am co-editing a collection of essays for Michigan State University Press titled From Curlers to Chainsaws:  Women and Their Machines and writing a book about John Brown.

(Complete biography may be found in Contemporary Authors, volume 146, and Contemporary Authors New Revision Series, volume 91)


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