Meet the Team

From Arthur’s Seat couldn’t happen without the hardworking MSc Creative Writing students. Not only do each of the team members below have pieces in the anthology, but they helped bring it to life.

Lena Kraus

Editor-in-Chief

Lena is a writer and literary translator. She graduated from the University of Freiburg, Germany in 2015 with a degree in English and Scandinavian studies, majoring in literature. She has lived in Germany, Cornwall and Norway. Before moving to Edinburgh in 2019, Lena was the chair of the European Democratic Education Community, promoting Democratic Education in Europe and beyond, and conducting research on achievement culture and inclusivity. She is a keen paddler and has completed the longest canoe race in the world twice. Lena writes mostly realistic fiction, exploring how stories can tell the truth without being the truth. She likes to re-imagine the status quo, especially with regard to education, children’s rights and the way humans live and interact with each other.

Lauren Thurman

Copy Editor

Lauren Thurman is a writer and editor from Colorado. Her stories have been featured in Quaint Magazine and on The Moth Radio Hour. Find more of her work and get in touch on her website.

Anna O’Connor

Art Director

Anna O’Connor is a writer and visual artist from Portland, Oregon. Anna currently lives in Scotland, where she is completing an MSc in creative writing at the University of Edinburgh.

Lola Gaztañaga Baggen

Prose Editor

Lola is a multinational anti-nationalist polyglot with a penchant for black clothes, colourful scarves and anything folklore. Having lived in the wonderfully gothic Edinburgh for going-on-three years now, she takes full inspiration to write the dark, magical and disturbed, but a childhood spent in Holland and Spain means she also specialises in dyke reviews and siesta manuals.

Bhavika Govil

Prose Editor

Bhavika Govil is a fiction writer from India who loves writing about people, and the strange and wonderful things they feel and do. She has worked in publishing and in media houses as a travel and food writer. Her fiction and nonfiction pieces have been published in Vogue India, Outlook Traveller, The New Indian Express, The Lookout Journal and Little Black Book.

Michael Howrie

Prose Editor

Michael spent his undergrad studying literature, film and theatre before coming to Edinburgh to pursue his master’s in creative writing. He is from the Lake District and tends to write about nature, but always with an element of the fantastic in mind. He is most inspired by Diana Wynne Jones.

Saoirse Ibargüen

Prose Editor

Saoirse is a graduate of the University of South Florida. She owns enough books to fill a library, and couldn’t help bringing a suitcase full of them to Scotland. Saoirse has written two novels and two memoirs and hopes to begin the process of querying agents soon. While she enjoys writing fiction, she spends more time having adventures and writing about them. Her most recent work tells the story of her six-month thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. For Saoirse, writing and exploring go hand in hand.

Zala Jambrovic Hatic

Prose Editor

Zala is a Slovenian writer currently based in Edinburgh. She holds a double BA in English and French from the University of Ljubljana and volunteers as a beta reader in her free time. An avid foodie and full-time bookworm, she enjoys discovering new fictional worlds as well as creating her own.

Jake Kendall

Prose Editor

Jake Kendall writes damp jokes and sad humour. His stories engage with the sheer crushing disappointment of it all.

M.H. Monica

Prose Editor

Monica fell in love with books at the age of three. Securing an award in British Council’s Agatha Christie Short Story competition propelled her desire to become a writer.  When she isn’t immersed in a make-believe world of her own creation, she likes to curl up with a good book, movie or anime. Her favourite genres include mystery, thriller, fantasy and sci-fi. Monica enjoys making crazy home videos with her friends. And playing with random animals (even though she knows she probably shouldn’t).

Abbie Randall

Prose Editor

Abbie graduated from the University of Denver with a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing and communications. Though she’s a long way from her home in Colorado, she is so excited to be working towards her master’s at the University of Edinburgh. She enjoys spending her days in a cafe with a cappuccino and a good book.

Alice Rogers

Prose Editor

Alice did her undergrad in American literature and history at the University of Birmingham, and now spends her days wishing she could reclaim the time she spent reading Jack Kerouac. She likes to write American historical fiction.

Hayley Bernier

Poetry Editor

Hayley is doing her MSc in creative writing here in Edinburgh, with a focus in poetry. This is following her BA in English literature with a minor in creative writing and journalism, from Bishop’s University in Quebec, Canada. Hayley likes psychological thriller movies, vegetarian snacks and indie music. Her long term goals are to publish her works of writing, hopefully in a variety of genres (poetry, short fiction, novels, non-fiction) à la Margaret Atwood.

Anthi Cheimariou

Poetry Editor

Anthi Cheimariou holds a BA in English and American literature from the American College of Greece. She is currently pursuing an MSc in creative writing at The University of Edinburgh. She was long-listed in the Poetry Society’s National Poetry Competition in 2017 with her poem ‘Leftovers’. Identifying herself as a poet, Anthi is also classically trained in piano and cello from a young age having received numerous distinctions until the age of 16 and hopes that her love of music and in extension of mathematics will manifest in her poetry.

Leslie Grollman

Poetry Editor

Leslie Grollman’s work appears in Nailed Magazine, Thimble Literary Magazine, Pathos Literary Magazine, Spark, Write Like You’re Alive Anthology 2016 and 2018, and is forthcoming. Her stuff is in storage in Portland, Oregon; her mail goes to her brother in Baltimore. She likes the sounds of shoes clicking cobblestones.

Qi’ang Meng

Poetry Editor

Meng is recently rereading Critic of Pure Reason by Immanuel Kant and wishes he could understand it someday.

Todd Workman

Poetry Editor

Born and raised in Oregon, Todd graduated with a BA in English and minors in creative writing, Portuguese and Russian. When not reading or pondering on the conundrum of Schrödinger’s cat, Todd spends his time rollerblading, drinking pickle juice and quoting movies (he slips writing in every once in a while). When he grows up, Todd wants to be the Ninja Turtle Leonardo.

Bethany Grainger

Proofreader

Born in Trafford, Manchester in 1997 Beth completed a degree in French and English literature at the University of Edinburgh before going on to study a master’s there in creative writing. Her passion is writing on political issues and human problems in the present day.

Anna Jones

Proofreader

BA English literature graduate from the University of Liverpool.

Abigail O’Neill

Proofreader

Abigail is a prose writer, undertaking her MSc in creative writing at Edinburgh. She achieved First Class Honours in her BA at the University of Greenwich. During her undergraduate her poetry was published in several anthologies, she co-founded and managed Projector Magazine and her play was performed at the Greenwich Book Festival in 2018. She hopes to continue writing, with the aim of becoming a published novelist.

Tess Simpson

Proofreader

Tess has a BA in history from Warwick University and spent a few years working in a bookshop before joining this year’s Creative Writing MSc. She has loved working with this amazing group.

Alex Penland

Events Manager

Alexandra Penn is an American student at U of E. She grew up in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, is a former founder and Director of The Writers’ Rooms in Iowa City, and author of The Letter Mage serial. She writes poetry, science fiction and young adult fiction.

Bruna Castelo Branco

Events Team

A Brazilian journalist graduated from the Universidade Federal da Bahia, in Brazil, and author of the book “Caminho pro Céu – Lembranças de um Tempo não Muito Distante.” Interested in magical realism, memoir and non-fiction.

Katie Hay

Events Team

Katie Hay is a creative mind from southern GA (USA), holding a BA in urban studies and visual arts from Brown University. She is currently pursuing her MSc in creative writing at the University of Edinburgh and hopes to publish novels for young adults and children in the future. She has more ideas about relationship, faith and fun than she often has time to process.

Juliann Guerra

Web Designer

Juliann is from Massachusetts, USA. She received a BA in English with a minor in web design at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, NH, before coming to the University of Edinburgh to study in the fiction strand of creative writing. She’s had a blog since high school called “Books, Travel, Life, etc.” where she shares her past trips and favorite books.

Emerson Rose Craig

Social Media Manager

Emerson Rose Craig is an American-born writer living in Edinburgh. She received her BA from The Evergreen State College with a focus in creative writing and a minor focus in art history. She is currently working on her MSc in creative writing with a focus in fiction at the University of Edinburgh. Besides writing, she enjoys reading classic literature and fantasy novels, volunteering as an assistant editor for CALYX Press, and going to musical theatre and art museums. She finds inspiration in authors like Kazuo Ishiguro, David Mitchell and Madeline Miller.

Harrison MacLeod-Bonnar

Podcast Producer

Born and raised in Scotland, Harrison graduated from Edinburgh in English and Scottish literature in 2019 and is now devoting his studies to creative writing. His writing interests include realism, bildungsroman and Scottish identity. Harrison is hoping to begin writing his first novel in early 2020.

Julia Guillermina

Treasurer

Julia Guillermina is a Spanish and French writer. She has been reading and writing all her life, and studied humanities. She has a master’s in medieval history and is currently doing the Creative Writing MSc. She also happens to love figures and Excel sheets!

Tracey S. Rosenberg

FAS Team Advisor (LLC Writer in Residence)

Tracey S. Rosenberg is Writer in Residence at the University of Edinburgh (2019–2021). She’s the author of the historical novel The Girl in the Bunker and three poetry collections, most recently Secondary (Red Squirrel Press).