Deborah Taffa (Quechan/Laguna Pueblo/Chicana) settled in Saint Louis, Missouri, after she earned her MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Iowa. Originally from the beautiful red rock and sandstone region of northwestern New Mexico, Deborah loves canoeing, swimming, rowing, backcountry hiking, and travel. She is a proud mother to five incredible scholars and two half Hawaiian grandsons!
A citizen of the Yuma Nation and Laguna Pueblo, Deborah Taffa’s writing has appeared in The Rumpus, Boston Review,LARB,A Public Space, Salon, Huff Post, Best of Brevity: Twenty Groundbreaking Years of Flash Nonfiction, and The Best American Nonrequired Reading among other places. She earned her Creative Nonfiction MFA in Iowa City in 2013, and has been awarded fellowships from the New York State Summer Writers Institute, Tin House (2021), the Ellen Meloy Fund, the MacDowell Colony, A Public Space, and WNDB. Her play, “Parents Weekend,” was performed at the Autry Theater’s 8th Annual Short Play Festival in Los Angeles in 2018. She is co-president of the literary magazine, River Styx, and she was instrumental in starting a Native American Heritage Program in Missouri. Her manuscript, a memoir that interrogates historic injustices through a personal lens, was awarded the SFWP Lit Prize in December, 2019, though it is still being revised. She has been teaching Creative Nonfiction Writing for nearly a decade at Webster University and Washington University in St Louis as an adjunct with a passion for helping the next generation.
A cowriter with Stratigraphic Productions, Deborah provides a Native perspective on documentary films. She co-wrote Digadohi on the intersection of cultures during the Trail of Tears which has been featured in film festivals internationally and can be found streaming on local PBS channels.
As a performer, Deborah has had the incredible honor of reading a series of poetic interludes for the Chaco Symphony featuring the Grammy nominated flautist, R. Carlos Nakai through the years at several venues in Missouri. Their performance at the Lincoln Center in NYC in 2020 was canceled due to the pandemic. For the most up to date information about Deborah, please contact her at email@example.com. Also, check back in October when she has some exciting news coming!