I’m Jessie Roy, a queer fiction writer, teacher, and editor.

I hold an MFA in Fiction from Syracuse University and a PhD in Creative Writing from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where I was a Distinguished Dissertation Fellow.  I’m a former Fiction Editor for the literary magazine Cream City Review. My short fiction has recently appeared in American Literary Review and The Journal, and my novel manuscript, Brides, was honored as First Runner-Up in the 2020 James Jones First Novel Fellowship.

When I’m not writing, you can find me designing and sewing my own clothes.



For my short fiction, I have received three Hopwood Awards, a Cornelia Carhart Ward Fellowship, and was selected as a finalist for the Philip Roth Residence in Creative Writing, the Wisconsin Institute of Creative Writing Fellowships, and the 2019 American Literary Review Fiction Contest. My short story “The Lamentations” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and the PEN/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers.

I am currently at work on a novel, Brides, which draws on my professional experience in the bridal industry and my personal experience as a married queer woman to explore the tensions and contradictions within ‘gay marriage.’ Brides was named First Runner-Up in the 2020 James Jones First Novel Fellowship.


For over a decade, I’ve been teaching literature, creative writing, and composition to high school, college, and non-degree-seeking students both online and in person. At Syracuse University and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, I’ve been instructor of record for many undergraduate courses including:

  • Introduction to Creative Writing
  • College Writing and Research
  • Introduction to College Writing
  • Living Writers (a survey of contemporary literature)
  • Representations of Sex and Sexuality 
  • Visual Rhetorical Analysis in Gender and Sexuality

I also served as the primary Fiction Instructor for the Syracuse University Summer College Program in Creative Writing, a two-week intensive course for high school students. In 2019, I co-founded the Milwaukee Queer Writing Project, an organization which partnered with Woodland Pattern Book Center to create writing workshops for young people in Milwaukee public schools. 

Since 2022, I have been offering creative writing courses and private coaching through Writers.com. Visit my profile there to see student feedback and a list of upcoming classes! Current and past courses I’ve offered include:


In 2019-2020, I served as Fiction Editor for the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s nationally distributed literary magazine, Cream City Review.  I have ten years of experience serving as a reader, assistant editor, and editorial committee leader for popular anthologies, textbooks, and literary magazines. Publications I’ve edited or served on the editorial board for include The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2010 (edited by Dave Eggers with an introduction by David Sedaris), the eighth edition of the textbook Critical Encounters With Texts, and the literary journals Salt Hill and Cream City Review.

I also offer my editorial services on a freelance basis, working directly with writers to provide developmental editing to their prose manuscripts (fiction, creative nonfiction, and academic writing in the humanities). I provide deep, thoughtful analysis of your work and experienced revision suggestions, guiding you toward the most ambitious possible version of your manuscript. For estimates, inquiries, and questions, please email me at jessie.c.roy@gmail.com.


My research focuses on women writers of the early-to-mid 20th century whose work engages with ordinary, gendered embodied experiences like food and fashion.  My objects of study include the works of literary writers like Eileen Chang, MFK Fisher, and Assia Djebar, as well as popular cookbooks, food journalism, and home economics manuals by women like Irma Rombauer, Mary Brooks Picken, and Mimi Sheraton.  I also collect 1930s – 1940s issues of women’s magazines like McCall’s and Woman’s Home Companion and write about serialized fiction and mid-century advertising practices aimed at women.

Recent conference presentations include:

  • “Who’s That Woman?: Follies and the Queer Self” at the Midwest Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference 2019
  • “The politics of the private in Eileen Chang’s Aloeswood Incense” at the Northeast MLA Conference 2019
  • “‘Labor-saving’ for whom?: working on the white body in 1930s magazine advertising” at the Pop Culture Association / American Culture Association Conference 2019
  • “Who’s That Woman?: Reconstructing Follies” at Backward Glances 2019

I collect and comment on excerpts from midcentury women’s print culture at my blog, Homemakers’ Chat.