Elise Juska

Creative Writing (BFA)

Ellie Juska has been teaching creative writing at University of the Arts since 2002. She is the founding director of the BFA in Creative Writing program and currently serves as faculty advisor for the Creative Writing minor and the undergraduate literary magazine, Underground Pool.


Juska is the author of five novels, including If We Had Known (Grand Central Publishing, 2018) and The Blessings (Grand Central Publishing, 2014). Her sixth novel, Reunion, about three longtime friends who head to their 25th college reunion in Maine for a weekend that will test their bonds, will be published by HarperCollins in spring 2024.

Juska’s short fiction and nonfiction have appeared in Ploughshares, The Gettysburg Review, Harvard Review, The Hudson Review, Post Road, Electric Literature, The Missouri Review and numerous other publications. Her short stories have been longlisted for the Pushcart Prize and Best American Short Stories anthologies.

She holds a BA in English from Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine, and an MA in Creative Writing (Fiction) from University of New Hampshire, Durham, where she received graduate writing awards for best short story and overall body of work.


  • Juska is the author of five novels, with a new novel forthcoming from HarperCollins, and her stories and essays have appeared in numerous publications.

  • She has taught fiction writing at The New School in New York City, the MFA program at University of New Hampshire in Durham, and several writing conferences, including the Stonecoast Summer Writers’ Conference, Rosemont Summer Writers’ Retreat, Penn Writers Conference and Haystack Institute.

Awards & Accolades

  • Juska’s novel, The Blessings, was selected for the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers series, Entertainment Weekly’s “Must List,” and the Philadelphia Inquirer’s “Best Books of the Year.”

  • Her short story “Transfer Station” received the Alice Hoffman Prize for Fiction from Ploughshares.

  • Juska was the recipient of the 2014 Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching from UArts.

Praise for Juska’s novel Reunion, (May 2024, HarperCollins). 


“I loved this story about the importance of long friendships. . . . This is a perfectly crafted page-turner of a novel, full of warmth and wisdom.”

– Mary Beth Keane, New York Times bestselling author of Ask Again, Yes, and The Half Moon


Reunion had me hooked from its perfectly tense opening, and kept me enthralled throughout with its masterful storytelling... This is Elise Juska's best book yet.”

– Liz Moore, New York Times bestselling author of Long Bright River and The God of the Woods


"Reunion begins with three deftly drawn protagonists reckoning with the past and present in early midlife, and opens out into an interrogation of the future, what it means be young now. Juska's masterful ending is as startling as it is moving and true."

– Kate Christensen, author of Welcome Home, Stranger


Visit Elise Juska’s website.