Melissa lives on a small mountain homestead in the Applegate Valley of southwestern Oregon.
She is the author of a collaborative chapbook, (un)learning, with Andrea Beltran from Artifact Press (2016). Her essays have been published in numerous places including DIAGRAM, Mid-American Review, Guernica, River Teeth, and Bellingham Review among other publications.
Her first book of nonfiction, Tracing the Desire Line, is coming out in 2019 from Split Lip Press. The book, as memoir-in-fragments, follows the narrator’s journey as a pirate radio DJ, writer, mother, and organic farmer exploring identity, sexuality, and feminine desire through opening her marriage with her husband. Along the way, the book detours into memory and meditations on various subjects that frame the narrator’s story including music, radio, place, home, rule-breaking, freedom, religion, belonging, forgiveness, divorce, love, and wildness.
She’s working on a second book of nonfiction, The Intimate Rural: Notes Toward Beauty & Other Such Designs, exploring the ecology of the feminine, nature, beauty, agrarianism, and the erotic.
She holds a BA in Environmental Studies from UC Santa Cruz and an MS in Environmental Studies and Writing from the University of Montana. She also holds an MFA in creative nonfiction from the Vermont College of Fine Arts.
She currently teaches writing and literature at Southern Oregon University as well as Zumba dance classes. She also runs an organic vegetable market farm with her husband and two children.