updated 2/1/2021

Photo by Fid Thompson

I’m a writer, artist, and editor based in Washington, DC with a passion for family stories and social change. My work has appeared in The Atlantic, The Washington Post, Washington City Paper, Pacific Standard, Harper’s Magazine, VICE, PANK, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, The Literary Review, and elsewhere. Here’s a full list of my published writing.

You can get my monthly email updates by signing up here.

I am at work on my first book about my revolutionary great-grandmother, a project that’s been supported by grants from the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities. I received my M.F.A. from Columbia University, where I completed concentrations in nonfiction writing and literary translation.

I have taught composition and journalism at American University, University of Maryland, Corcoran College of Art + Design (R.I.P.), Trinity Washington University, and Columbia University. I’ve also received fellowships and awards from OMI International Arts Center, Poets & Writers, Vermont Studio Center, and Gazing Grain Press. My poetry manuscript “& OTHER VALUABLES” was selected as the winner of the 2019 Tusculum Review Chapbook Prize.

In a previous life, I served as an organizer, activist, board member, writer, and consultant with social change organizations. Some groups I supported include: Bellwether Education Partners, Campus Progress (now “Generation Progress”), the National Youth Advocacy Coalition, the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, the Institute of Modern Russia, the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma, and Feministing.

To contact me, email tpaperny [at] gmail [dot] com.


  1. Thank you, Steve! She is quite a character, isn’t she? I’m glad that came through in the piece.

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