Alexandria Peary

Professional Details

Title Professor
Department English
Office Meier Hall 229
Phone 978.542.7256
Photo of Alexandria Peary

Recent and Upcoming Courses

ENG 818 Poetry Workshop
ENG 835 Mindful Writing: Theory and Practice
ENG 875 Directed Study
ENL 110 Foundations of Writing
ENL 220 Introduction to Creative Writing
ENL 221 Mindful Writing
ENL 321 The Craft of Poetry
ENL 423 Creative Writing Workshop: Poetry
ENL 424 Special Topics in English: Creative Writing
ENL 505 Creative Writing Thesis

Professional Biography


Ph.D.  English/Specialization:Composition Studies. University of New Hampshire

MFA   Poetry. University of Massachusetts, Amherst
MFA   Poetry. Iowa Writer's Workshop. University of Iowa

B.A.  English with a Concentration in Creative Writing. Colby College

Professional Interests

* Poetry and Creative Nonfiction
* Creative Writing History, Pedagogy, & Theory
* Theories of Writing Block and Anxiety
* Mindful Writing Pedagogy & Theory
* Writing Program Administration
* Classical and Contemporary Rhetoric
* Composition History & Theory
* Process Pedagogy


Between 2011 and 2019, I directed the First-Year Writing Program at Salem State University as well as teaching. I currently teach creative writing and composition at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Selected Publications


The Water Draft. Spuyten Duyvil. 2019.

Prolific Moment: Theory and Practice of Mindfulness for Writing. Routlege 2018. 

Control Bird Alt Delete. University of Iowa Press. Winner of 2013 Iowa Poetry Prize. 2014.

Creative Writing Studies: A Guide to Its Pedagogies. Co-edited with Tom C. Hunley. Southern Illinois University Press. Forthcoming, 2014.

Lid to the Shadow. Slope Editions. Winner of Slope Editions 2010 BookPrize. Selected by Franz Wright, 2011.

Fall Foliage Called Bathers & Dancers. Omaha, NE: Backwaters Press, 2008.


  • New Hampshire State Poet Laureate, 2019-2024.
  • Nomination, Conference of College Composition and Communication Outstanding Book Award, 2016.
  • Nomination for “Best of the Net” for Literary Journalism, “The Pill That Made Me a Poet,” 2019.
  • Nomination for Distinguished Teaching Award, Salem State University, 2014, 2019.
  • Nomination for Outstanding First-Year Advocate, Salem State University, 2014 and 2019.
  • Notable Essay, Best American Essays. 2014.
  • Iowa Poetry Prize, 2013.
  • Slope Editions 2010 Book Prize, 2010.
  • Academy of American Poets Joseph Langland Prize, 1998.

Selected Articles/Chapters:

“Histories and Historiography in Creative Writing Studies.” In Changing Creative Writing in America. Ed. Graeme Harper. Multilingual Matters Press (2017).

“The Role of Mindfulness in Kairos.Rhetoric Review. 35.1 (2016): 22-34.

“Walls with a Word Count: The Textrooms of the Extracurriculum.” College Composition and Communication. 66.1 (September 2014): 43-66. 

“The Terrain of Prewriting.” Journal of Creative Writing Studies. 2. 1 (2016). 

“The Hidden Ethos Inside Process Pedagogy.” Pedagogy. 14.2 (Winter 2014).

 “‘An Extremely Pleasant New Kind of World’: Hughes Mearns and the Open-Access Approach to Creative Writing.” New Writing: International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing. 10.3 (2013): 348-358.

“Taking Self-Help Books Seriously: The Informal Aesthetic Education of Writers.” The Journal of Aesthetic Education. Accepted for publication

"Eliza Leslie's 1854 The Behaviour Book and the Conduct of Women's Writing." Rhetoric Review. 31.3 (2012). Finalist for the 2012 Theresa J. Enos Anniversary Award.

“Spectators At Their Own Future: Creative Writing Assignments in the Disciplines and the Fostering of Critical Thinking.” WAC Journal, 23 (2012): 65-81.

"On Detail." Literary Imagination. Literary essay. 14(3) (2012): 354-364.

"Creative Writing Across the Curriculum." Chapter in Creative Writing Studies: A Guide to Its Pedagogies (Peary & Hunley, forthcoming).

The Privacy of Writing.” EDvance: A Digital Publication for the Advancement of             Developmental English.            1/Writing-Blocks

"The Licensing of the Poetic in Nineteenth-Century Composition-Rhetoric Textbooks." College Composition and Communication. 61.2 (December 2009).

"Increasing the Efficacy of Audience Instruction through the S.A.S.E." Chapter in Teaching Audience: Theory and Practice. Eds. Brian Fehler et al. Forward by Lisa Ede and Andrea Lunsford. NCTE, 2009.

"Bringing Creativity into the Classroom: Using Sociology to Write First Person Fiction" with Laurie Gordy. Teaching Sociology. 33.4 (October 2005).

Selected Poetry and Creative Nonfiction Publications:

Yale Review, Denver Quarterly, North American Review, Gettysburg Review, VOLT, New American Review, Cimarron Review, Meridian, The Chariton Review, Yew, Massachusetts Review, jubilat, Fine Madness, Brick, Verse, Fence, Crazyhorse, Poetry Northwest, Spoon River Review, Barrow Street, web Conjunctions

Selected Creative Nonfiction Publications:

"Green Controlled." Gettysburg Review. “Green Controlled.” 31.4 (Winter 2018). 

"The Pill That Made Me a Poet." Anomaly. Nominated for Best of the Net.

“Making Coffee In Lizzie Borden’s Kitchen.” Cimarron Review. Issue 204. Summer 2018. 

“Holes and Walls.” New England Review. Vol. 35. No. 3, 2014. 

“Where Particular People Congregate.” Meridian. Winter 2018. 

"The Control of Green." Flyway.

Selected Editorial Work:

  • History Section Editor, Journal of Creative Writing Studies. (2015-Present).
  • Guest Reviewer, College Composition and Communication. (Summer 2016, Winter 2019).
  • Head Poetry Reader. Baltic Writing Residency. (2016-2019).
  • Policy Analyst for National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) (2014-2016).


Selected Presentations

Other Information:

TEDx talk, "How Mindfulness Can Transform The Way You Write."

Follow @NHPoetLaureate

Represented by the Robert Lecker Literary Agency

Listed at Poetry Foundation:

Selected Conference Presentations:


“The Mindful Moment for Creative Writers and Teachers.” North Shore Young Writers Conference, Waring School, February 1, 2019.

"Creative Writing Pedagogy Symposium.” Keynote speaker. University of California, Merced. October 13, 2017.

“Your Ability to Write is Always Present: A Mindful Writing Session.” Authors Series:

"Contemplation, Community, Love, and Empowerment.” Labouré College, January 9, 2015.

“Creative Writing Pedagogies.” Presentation with Tom C. Hunley. Iowa Writer’s Workshop. University of Iowa. April 29, 2014.

“Mindful Writing & Overcoming Writing Blocks.” Presentation for MOOC for International Writing Program, University of Iowa. Recording, April 29, 2014.

“Peter Elbow, Walter Ong and Dorothy Sarnoff: A Discussion of Inner and Outer Rhetoric.”  Citizenship through Empowerment Lecture Series. Southern Vermont College. March 2011. 

“Digital Transactions and the Author(itative) Ethos.” Conference on College Composition and Communication. Las Vegas, NV, March 2013.

"Your Ability to Write a Poem Is Always Present: A Mindful Writing Workshop." May 3, 2013. Massachussetts Poetry Festival.

"Helping Faculty Overcome the Digital Divide Through Composition Pedagogies." Proposal Accepted. Conference on College Composition and Communication. St. Louis, MO, March 2012.

"Creative Writing WAC: Using the Imagination to Bridge Critical and DisciplinaryThinking." Third International Critical Thinking/Writing-Across-the-Curriculum Conference2010. Quinnipiac University. Hamden, CT, November 2010.

"Increasing the Efficacy of Audience Instruction through the Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope." Conference on College Composition and Communication. Louisville, KY, March 2010.

"Murray & Elbow's Ethos: Setting People Up to Write." Conference on College Composition and Communication. San Francisco, CA, March 2009.

Personal Interests

My family

Writing poetry & creative nonfiction

Mindful writing

New Hampshire and Massachusetts poets & writers

Helping people overcome writing blocks & anxiety