The Radical Power of Personal Narrative

Out March 15 & available for pre-order

"The most necessary book about memoir I’ve read. Daring, honest, psychologically insightful, and absolutely whip smart. A must read for anybody shoving a pen across paper or staring into a screen or a past."          —Mary Karr


Body Work FINAL.jpg
Photo by Beowulf Sheehan

Melissa Febos is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir, WHIP SMART (St. Martin’s Press 2010), and the essay collection, ABANDON ME (Bloomsbury 2017), which was a LAMBDA Literary Award finalist, a Publishing Triangle Award finalist, an Indie Next Pick, and was widely named a Best Book of 2017. Her second essay collection, GIRLHOOD, a national bestseller, was published by Bloomsbury on March 30. A craft book, BODY WORK, will be published by Catapult on March 15, 2022.

The inaugural winner of the Jeanne Córdova Nonfiction Award from LAMBDA Literary and a 2022 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellow, her work has appeared in publications including The Paris Review, The Sun, The Kenyon Review, Tin House, Granta, The Believer, McSweeney’s, The New York Times Magazine, The Guardian, Elle, and Vogue. Her essays have won prizes from Prairie Schooner, Story Quarterly, The Sewanee Review, and The Center for Women Writers at Salem College. She is a four-time MacDowell fellow and has also received fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference, Virginia Center for Creative Arts, Vermont Studio Center, The Barbara Deming Memorial Foundation, The BAU Institute at The Camargo Foundation, The Ragdale Foundation, and The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, which named her the 2018 recipient of the Sarah Verdone Writing Award.

She co-curated the Mixer Reading and Music Series in Manhattan for ten years and served on the Board of Directors for VIDA: Women in Literary Arts for five. The recipient of an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College, she is an associate professor at the University of Iowa, where she teaches in the Nonfiction Writing Program.



February 11, 2022

Please Miss virtual launch 

in conversation w/Grace Lavery

Prairie Lights Books, 7pm CT

Register here

February 19, 2022

The Art of Navel-Gazing

A three-hour seminar, via Corporeal Writing

11 a.m. - 2 p.m. PST

Register here

March 12, 2022

The Art of Confession

A three-hour seminar, via Hugo House

10 a.m. - 1 p.m. PST

Register here

March 15, 2022

BODY WORK Virtual Launch

w/Mary Karr & Leslie Jamison

via Books Are Magic

March 22, 2022

Prairie Lights Books

w/Elissa Washuta

7 p.m. CST

March 23-26, 2022

AWP Conference

Philadelphia, PA

March 29, 2022

SUNY Binghamton

Distinguished Writers Series

7 p.m. EST

Register here

April 2, 2022

Storyhouse BookPub

Des Moines, IA

April 23-24, 2022

LA Times Festival of Books

June 2-5, 2022

Indiana University Writers' Conference

Apply here

June 10-19, 2022

Lighthouse LitFest

Denver, CO

Apply here

July 17-24, 2022

Port Townsend Writers' Conference

August 17-27 2022

Bread Loaf Writers' Conference

Middlebury, VT

Apply here



For Body Work inquiries, Alisha Gorder: alisha.gorder [at]

For Girlhood inquiries, Emily Fishman: Emily.Fishman [at]


For bookings: Elaine Trevorrow, at EMT Agency: Elaine [at]

Melissa’s agent, Ethan Bassoff, at Ross Yoon Agency: Ethan [at]

Melissa: Melissa.Febos [at]

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