Jessie van Eerden

Jessie van Eerden

Associate Professor

Jessie van Eerden Jessie van Eerden

Nonfiction editor for Orison Books, Jessie van Eerden is author of three novels: Glorybound (WordFarm, 2012), winner of the Foreword Editor’s Choice Fiction Prize; My Radio Radio (Vandalia Press, 2016); and Call It Horses, winner of the 2019 Dzanc Books Prize for Fiction (released 2021). She is also the author of the portrait essay collection The Long Weeping (Orison Books, 2017), winner of the Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award. Her work has appeared in Best American Spiritual Writing, Oxford American, New England Review, Image, and other magazines, and in several anthologies, including The River Teeth Reader and Walk Till the Dogs Get Mean: Meditations on the Forbidden from Contemporary Appalachia.

She has been awarded the Gulf Coast Prize in Nonfiction, the Milton Fellowship, a Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation Fellowship, and residencies at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Fundación Valparaíso, and the Sundress Academy for the Arts.

Areas of Expertise

  • Creative Writing (Fiction/Nonfiction)
  • Spiritual Writing
  • Appalachian Literature

Courses Taught

  • Graduate Tutorial in Prose
  • Advanced Seminar in Creative Writing
  • Intermediate Creative Writing
  • Advanced Studies in Creative Nonfiction


  • Winner, Dzanc Books Prize for Fiction, 2019
  • Winner, Gulf Coast Prize in Nonfiction, 2018
  • Emory & Henry College Literary Festival Presentation: “The Midrashic Impulse: Appalachian Writers Engaging Biblical Narratives as Fresh Material,” 2018

Research Interests

  • Personal essay, lyric essay, cross-genre writers (Ilya Kaminsky, CD Wright, Anne Carson), biblical and midrashic narratives, how the philosophical thought of Simone Weil and Emmanuel Levinas informs creative work