Bret Lott is the bestselling author of fourteen books, most recently the nonfiction collection Letters and Life: On Being a Writer, On Being a Christian (Crossway 2013), and the novel Dead Low Tide (Random House 2012).

Other books include the story collection The Difference Between Women and Men, the nonfiction book Before We Get Started: A Practical Memoir of the Writer’s Life, and the novels Jewel, an Oprah Book Club pick, and A Song I Knew by Heart. His work has appeared in, among other places, The Yale Review, The New York Times, The Georgia Review and in dozens of anthologies. Born in Los Angeles, he received his BA in English from Cal State Long Beach in 1981, and his MFA in fiction from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 1984, where he studied under James Baldwin. From 1986 to 2004 he was writer-in-residence and professor of English at The College of Charleston, leaving to take the position of editor and director of the journal The Southern Review at Louisiana State University. Three years later, in the fall of 2007, he returned to The College of Charleston and the job he most loves: teaching. His honors include being named Fulbright Senior American Scholar and writer-in-residence to Bar-Ilan University in Tel Aviv, Israel; speaking on Flannery O’Connor at The White House; and having served as a member of the National Council on the Arts from 2006 to 2012. He and his wife, Melanie, live in Hanahan, South Carolina.


MFA - Fiction | University of Massachusetts, Amherst

BA - English | California State University, Long Beach

Selected work

Samuel Kọ́láwọlé

Faculty, MFA in Writing [fiction]

Nance Van Winckel

Faculty, MFA in Writing [fiction/poetry]

Philip Metres

Faculty, MFA in Writing [poetry]

Richard Jackson

Faculty, MFA in Writing [poetry]

Harrison Candelaria Fletcher

Faculty, MFA in Writing [CNF]

Natasha Sajé

Faculty, MFA in Writing [poetry/CNF]