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 teaches creative nonfiction writing at Webster University during the school year, and for the Summer Writers Institute at Washington University in Saint Louis during the summer. 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 American Travel Writing, as well as other anthologies, literary magazines, newspapers, and scholarly journals nationwide. Upcoming publications include The Best American Nonrequired Reading and The Best of Brevity in 2020.
A cowriter with Stratigraphic Productions, Deborah provides a Native perspective on documentaries and a history series that airs on PBS. A board member with the Missouri Humanities Council, she was instrumental in the creation of a Native American Heritage Program and a Native American Heritage Fund in the state. She is also a board member for St. Louis’ oldest literary magazine, A River Styx.
As a performer, Deborah has read poetic interludes for the Chaco Symphony featuring the world renowned flautist, R. Carlos Nakai. She will appear in KTG’s rendition of August: Osage County in 2019 and she will deliver a monologue for KDHX Campfire radio podcast the same year. She was a fellow at the New York Writers Institute twice and has spoken at conferences and symposiums in Australia, France, the Philippines, and all over the United States.