Melissa Grunow is the author of I Don't Belong Here: Essays (New Meridian Arts Press, September 2018) and Realizing River City: A Memoir (Tumbleweed Books, 2016), which won the 2018 Book Excellence Award in Memoir, the 2017 Silver Medal in Nonfiction-Memoir from Readers' Favorite International Book Contest, and Second Place-Nonfiction in the 2016 Independent Author Network Book of the Year Awards. 

Melissa's essays have been nominated for the 2017 Best of the Net Anthology and the 2014 Pushcart Prize. Her work has been listed as a notable essay in The Best American Essays in both 2016 and 2018. She is a four-time recipient of the Detroit Working Writers creative nonfiction prize, first place winner of the Rochester Writers' 2016 Summer Award in the Michigan Memoir category, and a semi-finalist for the DISQUIET International Literary Lisbon Writing Program award in 2015 and 2016.

A book reviewer for The Coil, Melissa's work has also appeared in Creative Nonfiction, River Teeth, The Nervous Breakdown, New Plains Review, and Blue Lyra Review, among many others. She is also a live storyteller who participated in the 2016 Metro Detroit Listen to Your Mother show, occasionally competes in The Moth StorySLAM, and participates in local storytelling salons. 

Melissa holds a Bachelor of Science in English-creative writing and journalism from Central Michigan University, a Master of Arts in English from New Mexico State University, and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing with distinction from National University.

Melissa Grunow


Photo credit: Erin McConnell Images

about the author

Melissa Grunow