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Studdard reading at Flintridge Bookstore and Coffeehouse in Los Angeles in 2012
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, U.S.
|Education||University of Houston,|
Sarah Lawrence College
|Known for||Six Weeks to Yehidah, I Ate the Cosmos for Breakfast|
Melissa Studdard was born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama and is an American author, poet, editor, book reviewer, talk show host, and professor. Her most recent book is the poetry collection I Ate the Cosmos for Breakfast. The title poem from this collection was produced as a short film and featured as an official selection at the Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival and the Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Film Festival . Her middle-grade novel, Six Weeks to Yehidah won a Forward National Literature Award and Pinnacle Book Achievement Award. The accompanying journal, My Yehidah, was released in December 2011 and was quickly adopted by art and play therapists for clinical use in adolescent therapy sessions.
Studdard is a full-time college professor at Lone Star College–Tomball and a former teaching artist for The Rooster Moans Poetry Cooperative. From 2010 to 2012, she was an editor for The Criterion: An International Journal in English. From 2010 to 2015 she served as an editor for Tiferet Journal and host of the blogtalkradio program Tiferet Talk,. Currently, she hosts and produces VIDA Voices & Views for Vida: Women in Literary Arts . In her work with the two podcasts she has interviewed such notable figures as Jane Hirshfield, Rita Dove, Julia Cameron, Robert Pinsky, Patricia Smith, Cheryl Strayed, Joy Harjo, and Krista Tippett. Studdard also currently serves as president of the Women's Caucus and moderates their annual caucus meeting at the Association of Writers & Writing Programs conference .
Melissa Studdard was born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, United States, and was raised in Texas. She received her B.A. (1991) and M.A. (1995) from the University of Houston, and her M.F.A. (1997) from Sarah Lawrence College. While at the University of Houston, Studdard worked on the college's literary journal, Gulf Coast, as a production editor, curated the Gulf Coast Reading Series, and taught college courses for the Houston Community College System. While at Sarah Lawrence College, she worked as an assistant editor at Chelsea (magazine) and taught for City University of New York at Baruch College, John Jay College, and Hunter College. She then briefly taught at San Jose State University and the University of Houston–Downtown, prior to accepting a full-time teaching position with Lone Star College in 2001.
- Six Weeks to Yehidah (2011)
- My Yehidah (2011)
- The Tiferet Talk Interviews (2013)
- I Ate the Cosmos for Breakfast (2014)
Selected short works
Studdard's work has been published in multiple journals, magazines, newspapers, blogs sites, and anthologies, including The New York Times,, The Guardian, The Academy of American Poets' Poem-a-Day, Southern Humanities Review, Cultural Weekly, Harvard Review, Verse Daily, and Psychology Today.
Awards and honors
- 2011: Winner: The Forward National Literature Award for Six Weeks to Yehidah
- 2012: Finalist: Readers Favorite Award for Six Weeks to Yehidah
- 2012: Finalist: The National Indie Excellence Award for Six Weeks to Yehidah
- 2012: Winner: The Pinnacle Book Achievement Award for Six Weeks to Yehidah
- 2013: Winner: Readers Favorite Award for The Tiferet Talk Interviews
- 2013: Winner: The Pinnacle Book Achievement Award for The Tiferet Talk Interviews
- 2013: Winner: International Book Award for 2013 Six Weeks to Yehidah
- 2015: Finalist: Readers’ Favorite Bronze Award for I Ate the Cosmos for Breakfast 
- 2015: Inclusion: Bettering American Poetry for "Respect" 
- 2018: Winner: Kathak Literary Award 2018/19. Dhaka International Poets Summit. 
- [http://motionpoems.org/episode/i-ate-the-cosmos-for-breakfast// Motionpoems I Ate the Cosmos for Breakfast
- Forward National Literature Archived 2012-04-25 at the Wayback Machine.
- Chiron Volume 31 Jung Foundation of Ontario
- About the Staff. Tiferet: A Global Community of Writers
- [https://www.vidaweb.org/about-vida-voices-views// About VIDA Voices & Views
- [https://www.awpwriter.org/awp_conference/event_detail/16170/ Conference Event Detail
- The Forward National Literature Award Winner -- 2011 Archived 2012-04-25 at the Wayback Machine.
- Readers Favorite Award Winner -- 2012
- Indie Excellence Award Winner -- 2012
- Pinnacle Book Award Winner -- 2012
- Readers Favorite Award Winner -- 2013
- Pinnacle Book Award Winner -- 2013
- International Book Award Winner -- 2013
- Readers’ Favorite Bronze Award--2015
- Bettering American Poetry--2015
- Kathak Literary Award--2018/19
- Author Website
- New York Times feature "Being Women"
- Bustle Article "8 Feminist Poems To Inspire You When The World Is Just Too Much"
- The Guardian Two Poems
- IndieWire article "Watch: Poetry Comes to Life in Exclusive ‘I Ate the Cosmos for Breakfast’ Short Film"
- Houston Public Media Radio interview "Houston Poet Melissa Studdard Discusses Rediscovering Her Love for Writing"
- CultureMap Houston article "It's a banner season in downtown Houston with quirky words of wisdom and Bayou City love"
- VIDA Voices & Views Show Page
- Psychology Today (article) "Gratitude and Passion: To Love One Thing""
- Tiferet Talk
- Three Poems at Moonday
- “Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust” (short story) at Wilderness House Literary Review
- “Integrating the Shadow” (poem) at Redheaded Stepchild
- Three Poems at Tryst
- “Vagabond” (poem) at The Toronto Quarterly
- Poets Corner Radio Reading (KUHF)
- Reading of “Serial Killers” short story excerpt at YouTube
- “A Journey into Fantasy” Radio Interview at It Matters Radio
- Article at The Banff Crag & Canyon
- “What about the Heroine?” Article at Elephant Journal
- The Minerva Institute Interview
- Worldwide Hippies Book Nook Article