Deborah Taffa (Paiute/Laguna Pueblo/Latina/Kwatsaan) 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 Southwest, Deborah loves canoeing, backcountry hiking, and travel.
Deborah is currently teaching creative nonfiction for the MFA program at Washington University in Saint Louis. She was named a fellow with the Brooklyn publisher A Public Space in February 2018, and received the Ellen Meloy Desert Writer’s Award the same year. Her play, Parents’ Weekend, was performed in Los Angeles at the Autry Theater’s 8th Annual Short Play Festival in November, 2018. Her writing has appeared in The Best Travel Writing, Salon, The Rumpus, Prairie Schooner, and other places. Upcoming publications include The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2019 and The Best of Brevity 2020.
A cowriter with Stratigraphic Productions, Deborah provides a Native perspective on documentaries. She co-wrote Digadohi which has been featured in film festivals internationally. A board member with the Missouri Humanities Council, she was instrumental in the creation of a Native American Heritage Program in the state. She is also a board member for St. Louis’ oldest literary magazine, A River Styx.
As a performer, Deborah reads poetic interludes for the Chaco Symphony featuring the Grammy nominated flautist, R. Carlos Nakai. Their next performance will be at the Lincoln Center in NYC in 2020. She was a fellow at the New York Writers Institute twice and has spoken at conferences and symposiums in Australia, France, the Philippines, and the United States.