Roxane Gay

Location Central Illinois
Occupation Assistant Professor of English at Eastern Illinois University.

About Me

My writing appears or is forthcoming in Black Warrior Review, Mid-American Review, Cream City Review, Annalemma, McSweeney's (online), and others. I am the co-editor of PANK, an assistant professor of English at Eastern Illinois University, a regular contributor to HTMLGIANT and can be found at My first collection, Ayiti, will be released in 2011.
More importantly, I am obsessed with movies, celebrity gossip, One Tree Hill and other quality television fare.

Why do you write?

I am an extraordinarily lazy writer. Having said that, writing makes me happy. I find it fun. Holla!

Any favorite authors? Books?

Michael Chabon, Mary Miller, Matt Bell, Richard Russo, Rebecca Curtis, Mary Gaitskill, me, John Sandford + Clive Cussler (Yes, really), Michael Pollan, Junot Diaz, Karl Iagnemma, Hanne Blank, Steve Martin, Poppy Z. Brite, Nicole Krauss, and so on.

Roxane Gay's Wall

Sturla Grey – Dec 25, 2012

Congrats on your place in Best American Short Stories Forthcoming. That's a holla!

Yasmin Elaine Waring – Feb 15, 2011

Roxane, thank you for such a thoughtful critique. It's much needed insight. Now, back to the drawing board!

Yasmin Elaine Waring – Feb 05, 2011

I just love your honesty. Smitten.

Robert Vaughan – Jun 11, 2010

Hi Roxanne, just a fan note. I love your shit. Period. Have a great day!

Cherise Wolas – May 07, 2010


Via Ann Bogle, I got to Women Writers: a Zine and read your "Sex in a Sleep Number Bed." I thought it was really terrific.

LynnAlexander – Mar 17, 2010

Roxane! I can't believe how many familiar names and faces! Nice to see you.

Amber Sparks – Feb 19, 2010

Thanks! I have sort of no idea what to do in here so I'm just wandering around figuring it out. Accepted your invite--thank you for that!

David Erlewine – Oct 30, 2009

Oh and I just saw Nicole Krauss is on your list. She's fantastic. I saw her and JSF read in '02, when they had just started "going out." She read from Man Walks Into a Room. Great stuff.

David Erlewine – Oct 30, 2009

Hey Roxane, congratulations (I'd say kudos but Laura Ellen would have to drink) on Mid-American Review and thanks for checking out my novel excerpt.

David Erlewine – Oct 24, 2009

just sent some questions to your email. thx

Larry Strattner – Sep 27, 2009

I guess I never read your bio. I love Richard Russo (The Risk Pool) and John Sanford.
I too am a movie freak - a little. (The original Femme Nikita. Diabolique. Like that.)
And tell me Wired is on your quality TV list. I was blown away by Wired.
Right now I am reading Stieg Larsson's books about Lisbeth Salander. If you haven't already - get one. They are a pisser.

Scott Garson – Sep 14, 2009

hey Roxane! (and, um, anyone else who might be around): "How It Is" just went up. Yippidy Trep!

Erin Fitzgerald – Sep 10, 2009

Roxane, always glad to have your feedback. Thank you.

And while I'm thinking of it? Yeah, that skunk in the garage just slayed me.

Ben White – Sep 07, 2009

Thanks for the invite Roxane!

J.S. Graustein – Sep 07, 2009

Thanks for the invite, Roxane:-)

Katrina Gray – Sep 05, 2009

I appreciate you reading my story, Roxanne. Thanks also for your too-too-kind words.

Darryl Price – Jul 27, 2009

Roxane--thank you for visiting my poem. Your comments are very much appreciated.

Gary Percesepe – Jul 19, 2009

Yo, Roxane,

Just stopping by to say hi--& i like your stuff.

All best,


Steven Seighman – Jun 26, 2009

Chip Kidd is indeed amazing, Roxane. He's the reason I went to art school and now design books for a living. I've discovered a lot of other really brilliant book designers along the way, too.

David Erlewine – Jun 26, 2009

ha! yeah the envelope thing beats me every time. years ago i used to spend so much time mailing/post officing/licking envelopes. ha, i was sending shitty, bloated stories to places that would never have taken any event, good on you. i suspect, based on your writing, you have a pretty high acceptance rate. and good on you re anderbo personal rejection. ha, as far as i know, they are robots there when i send things in.

David Erlewine – Jun 26, 2009

um, duotrope updates don't seem to support the characterization of a lazy writer. but i'll say HOLLER (irony intended) because of all of your awesome successes.

M.H. – Jun 20, 2009

Thanks Roxane for your close reading of my story. Your comments are very insightful and helpful for me!

Laura Ellen Scott – Jun 06, 2009

thanks for the feedback re:Social Aid & Pleasure--I yanked the section after a day because I figured out how to streamline the opening and cut down on the expo.

Brandon Hobson – May 24, 2009

Thanks for the nice words about "Other Rooms." Much appreciated!

Lauren Becker – May 10, 2009

hey roxane! nice to see you here -- what took you so long?!

Laura Ellen Scott – May 10, 2009

oh hey! howdy--

David Erlewine – May 10, 2009

Hey Roxane! GREAT to have you here. Kudos on all of your successes!

Richard Cooper – May 09, 2009

Hi Roxane, I'm glad to see you here! Enjoy these writers, they're quite good.

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