Newest Brief Essays

"Women's Hour, YMCA" featured in Kenyon Review Online

"I Second That Emotion" (craft essay) featured in New Ohio Review


Other Brief Essays

"Advanced Directive to My Future Roommate…"

"Things Gone the Way of Time," recently reprinted in Brief Encounters: A Collection of Contemporary Nonfiction (Norton)


Study with Rebecca this summer

Kenyon Review Writers Workshop, June 18-25


Kenyon Review PODCAST with Rebecca

(on memoir, genre-crossing, writing practice, and more)


Word Painting Revised Edition: The Fine Art of Writing Descriptively

New edition includes over 100 writing exercises for all genres.

Word Painting

The Tribal Knot

Rebecca'a newest nonfiction book, The Tribal Knot: A Memoir of Family, Community, and a Century of Change is now available from Indiana University Press and Amazon.

Tribal Knot

Naked as Eve

Naked as Eve
Portraits of marriage, its joys and ruptures; a “Regrets Only” party where our pasts gather; Passion Week 1966; ordinary angels.

Published by Cooper Beach Press
0-914278-78-9 (paperback)


  • These lines lift commonplace experiences out of the daily smog and make them shine so that we see them anew, maybe see the deepest truth in them for the first time." - The Pilot
  • "Poet and essayist Rebecca McClanahan is the master of finding unity in disparity." - The Charlotte Observer by Dannye Romine Powell

Selected Poems from Naked as Eve

Naked as Eve Reviewers' Comments

"...wondrously wise poems here, about marriage and family, gardens and old loved cars, all told with a felicity of phrasing and maturity of outlook that delight the reader." -- Maxine Kumin

"These resourceful poems beckon to us with their music, subtle wit and insight into human foibles and desire. The portraits of family, marriage, her canny meditations on language and the natural world insinuate themselves in memory and won't let go. A consummate poet, McClanahan proves herself a master at achieving just the right tone of voice, somber or high-spirited; the appearance of Naked as Eve, her fourth collection, is an occasion to gladden the heart." -- Colette Inez

"Whether the subject is her religious girlhood or conjugal love and its discontents, Rebecca McClanahan writes with grace and charm and with a lovely feel for the erotics of disaster (and survival)." --David Lehman, Editor of The Best American Poetry