1. Marielitos, Balseros and Other Exiles by Cecilia Rodríguez Milanés
  2. Everyday Chica by Cecilia Rodríguez Milanés
  3. Mud Song by Terry Thaxton
  4. The Night We Set the Dead Kid on Fire by Ephraim
  5. Oye What I'm Gonna Tell You by Milanés
Department of English Graduate Programs
Brenda Peynado

Brenda Peynado, Ph.D.

Brenda Peynado’s stories have won an O. Henry Prize, the Chicago Tribune's Nelson Algren Award, a Dana Award, a Fulbright Grant to the Dominican Republic, a Vermont Studio Center Residency, and other prizes. Her work appears in The Georgia Review, The Sun, The Southern Review, The Kenyon Review Online, Pleiades, The Threepenny Review, Prairie Schooner, Black Warrior Review, and other journals. She received her MFA at Florida State University and her PhD at the University of Cincinnati. She teaches fiction and screenwriting at UCF.


  • Ph.D. in English Literature and Creative Writing from University of Cincinnati (2017)
  • M.F.A. in Creative Writing (Fiction) from Florida State University (2012)
  • B.A. in Computer Science and Philosophy from Wellesley College (2006)

Research Interests

Magical Realism, Fabulism, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Speculative Fiction, Literary Fiction, Postcolonialism, Diaspora Studies, Latinx Fiction, Latin-American Fiction, Graphic Novels, Screenwriting, Novel Structure, Transmedia Narrative, Fiction Writing, Flash Fiction, Nonfiction Writing, Editing & Publishing, Creative Writing Pedagogy.

Recent Research Activities

A Dominican-American, she is working on a novel about the Dominican Republic 1965 civil war and American occupation, narrated by a girl who can tell all possible futures. She is also working on a book about fabulist techniques and a graphic memoir.


Vermont Studio Center Fellowship, May 2018

Finalist, The Lascaux Prize, “The Stones of Sorrow Lake,” 2017

Vermont Studio Center Fellowship, March 2017

Dana Award in Short Fiction, “The Drownings,” 2016

Winner, Sycamore Review Flashcard Contest, “Sheets,” 2016

Honorable Mention, Zoetrope: All-Story Short Fiction Contest, “Yaiza,” 2016

Runner-up, ½ K Prize, Indiana Review, “Weathering,” 2016

Honorable Mention, Short Story Award for New Writers, The Masters Review, “The Drownings,” 2016

Finalist, American Short Fiction Prize, "Yaiza," 2016

Finalist, The Lascaux Review Prize in Short Fiction, “We Work in Miraculous Cages,” 2016

Finalist, Permafrost New Alchemy Award, “Building, Breaking Houses,” Co-written Micah Hicks 2016

Finalist, Sequestrum Reprint Award, “Storage,” 2016

Finalist, International Literary Awards Reynolds Price Short Fiction Award, “Yaiza,” 2016

Finalist, International Literary Awards Reynolds Price Short Fiction Award, “The Whitest Girl,” 2016

3rd Place, Stella Kupferberg Short Story Contest, “Fire,” 2016

2nd Place, Hatfield/Westheimer Short Story Prize, University of Cincinnati, 2016

Selected for the O. Henry Prize Stories, “The History of Happiness,” 2015

Nelson Algren Award, Chicago Tribune, “The Great Escape,” 2015

Writers at Work Fellowship, “We Work In Miraculous Cages,” 2015

Tennessee Williams Fellowship, Sewanee Writers’ Conference 2015

Taft Graduate Summer Fellowship Award, University of Cincinnati, 2015

Yates Fellowship, University of Cincinnati, 2014-2018

Special Mention, 2015 Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses, “The History of Happiness”

Short-listed, Santa Fe Writers Project Literary Award, Manuscript of THE ROCK EATERS, 2015

Honorable Mention, Zoetrope: All-Story Short Fiction Contest, “The Whitest Girl,” 2015

Honorable Mention, Fall Fiction Contest, The Masters Review, “The Lion and the Beauty Queen,” 2015

Finalist, Short Story Prize, American Short Fiction, “The Drownings,” 2015

Finalist, Ryan R. Gibbs Flash Fiction Contest, New Delta Review, “The Haunting,” 2015

Finalist, ½ K Prize, Indiana Review, “My Debt Collector,” 2015

Finalist, ½ K Prize, Indiana Review, “The Bank,” 2015

Finalist, Fineline Competition, Mid-American Review, “The Bank,” 2015

Honorable Mention, Bevel Summers Short Story Award, Shenandoah, “The Bridesmaids,” 2015

Honorable Mention, Betty Gabehart Prize, Kentucky Women Writers’ Conference, 2015

Finalist, Iowa Review Award for Fiction, “The Lion and the Beauty Queen,” 2014

3rd Place, “We Work in Miraculous Cages,” Glimmer Train Fiction Open Contest, December 2013

Finalist, Iowa Review Award for Fiction, “The Last King of Open Roads,” 2011

George M. Harper Award for Outstanding Creative Writing, Florida State University, 2011

Edward H. and Marie C. Kingsbury Fellowship in Creative Writing, Florida State University, 2010-2011


No courses found for Spring 2019.

Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
81456 CRW6025 Adv Graduate Writing Workshop Face2Face M 7:30PM - 10:15PM Not Online

CRW 6025 is a graduate-level fiction workshop course in which you will write new stories or novel chapters. The emphasis this semester will be on novels, and all students will be asked to develop a novel idea. Assignments will include query letters, loglines, synopses, and novel chapters. This is a generative workshop, which means the focus will be on producing new ideas and pages. Novel excerpts workshopped will be read and critiqued for structure and momentum, with a focus on finding the heart of the story that will move the writer forward through the arduous process of writing a book-length work. Besides writing, we will read craft and analyze published novels to learn how to structure our own work. We will also read writers on the process of writing book-length works.

No courses found for Summer 2018.

Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
19423 LIT6097 Studies in Cont Fiction Face2Face W 7:30PM - 10:15PM Not Online

Fiction in the last 20 years in the United States and Britain. Specifically, we will explore how genre has melded with literary fiction in the last few decades to create a host of sub-genres—fabulism, speculative fiction, upmarket fiction, and others. To this end, we will analyze genre conventions and techniques of unreal narratives and real narratives alike, discovering not only their specialities but also what they have in common.

No courses found for Fall 2017.

Updated: Dec 8, 2017

Department of English • College of Arts & Humanities at the University of Central Florida
Phone: 407-823-5596 • Fax: 407-823-3300 • english@ucf.edu