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Wendy Call is a writer, editor, translator, and educator. Her current literary projects include a series of essays on grief and loss, a craft book about sense of place on the page, and translations of Mexican and Columbian poetry by Indigenous women.

Her nonfiction writing and her translations (from Spanish) of poetry and fiction have appeared (or are forthcoming) in more than eighty magazines and literary journals, including Cincinnati Review, Common-Place, Guernica, Michigan Quarterly Review, Kenyon Review online, Nimrod International Journal, Orion, and Yes.

In many publications her photographs accompany her writing. In 2012, with an Artist Support Residency from Seattle's Jack Straw Studios, Wendy recorded a trilingual audio CD of her English translations of poems with Zapotec-Mexican poet Irma Pineda.

She co-coordinated a three-day gathering of indigenous Mexican women writers with Irma Pineda and Sandra Cisneros in 2011, catalyzing a network of multilingual writers and translators in Mexico and United States that continues to collaborate. One of her current writing projects, a cycle of essays on grief and loss, has been supported by grants from the American Antiquarian Society, Artist Trust, and the arts and culture commissions of the City of Seattle and King County.

She has served as Writer in Residence at twenty-one institutions, including five national parks, three universities, two visual arts centers, a historical society, and a public hospital. The hosting institutions include:
Mineral School and Willapa Bay (2015)
Acadia and Everglades National Parks (2013)
Joshua Tree and North Cascades National Parks (2012)
Cornell College of Iowa, the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park of Vermont, and The Studios of Key West (2011)
New College of Florida (2010)
Seattle University (2009)
Richard Hugo House (2006-2008)

Wendy’s narrative nonfiction book, No Word for Welcome (University of Nebraska Press), won Grub Street's 2011 National Book Prize for Nonfiction and the 2012 International Latino Book Award for Best History / Political Book. No Word for Welcome explores how economic globalization intersects with village life in a region of southern Mexico called the Isthmus of Tehuantepec. Grants from the arts commissions of Seattle, King County, and Washington State, as well as the Institute of Current World Affairs and Oberlin College Alumni Association, supported the research and writing of the book.

She co-edited Telling True Stories: A Nonfiction Writers’ Guide from the Nieman Foundation at Harvard University (Plume/Penguin) with Mark Kramer. Telling True Stories, an anthology of writing advice from some of the country’s best-known writers of nonfiction, is currently used as a core text in university courses throughout the United States, as well as in a dozen other countries.

She serves on the faculty of Goddard College's low-residency BFA in Creative Writing program and at Pacific Lutheran University, in the English Department and Environmental Studies Program.

Wendy has also taught creative writing in literary centers, writers' conferences, newsrooms in the United States and Mexico, public libraries, community centers, public high schools, city parks, and county jails. In 2008 she worked with a team of writers and publishing industry professionals to design Artist Trust's Literary EDGE program, a writers' professional development program that she co-taught until 2012.

Wendy has worked as a writer and editor since 2000. Before that, she devoted a decade to work for social change organizations in Boston and Seattle. She holds a BA in biology from Oberlin College and a MFA in writing and literature from the Bennington College Writing Seminars.

The daughter of a middle-school math teacher and a career Navy officer from rural Michigan, Wendy spent her childhood on and around military bases in Florida, Pennsylvania, southern California, and southern Maryland. She has lived in Seattle's Columbia City neighborhood since 2005.

"Call is never dry or academic; rather, she writes lively narrative, detailed description, and engaging scenes that render her subjects—a schoolteacher, fishermen, activists—three-dimensional. By relating the lives and concerns of isthmus dwellers and the struggles they face, the author raises awareness of globalization's effects on the village economy."
Publishers Weekly review of No Word for Welcome
May 2, 2011


Photo above by Rosanne Olson, 2010
Image below (photo transfer onto watercolor paper): View from Sao Bento Monastery, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2003