Karen Alea has her MFA from Bennington College, is an alumna of Sewanee Writers’ Conference, a Fellow at Virginia Center for Creative Arts, and the former director of Middle Tennessee State University’s non-degree writing program. Her short stories have been published in literary magazines including Eureka, Stickman Review, Riverwalk Journal and the anthology, Catch Fire in the Treetops. Her short story “The Next Guy” won The Nashville Scene fiction contest judged by Ann Patchett, which led to a guest column in the publication. She has written non-fiction for About.com, Huffington Post, The Establishment, Narratively and others. She freelances, coaches privately, and is on faculty for MTSU Write.