Rose Pearson, M.A. creative director and playwright, founded The Writers’ Circle, Inc. in 1993. Workshops for emerging and professional writers, visiting author forums, staged readings of original plays and The Writers’ Circle Anthology, and the new online magazine for writers, artists and photographers. Ms. Pearson’s plays have been produced in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Chicago, Illinois, New Orleans, and San Francisco, California. Ms. Pearson is the principal editor for the online magazine.

Consulting Staff


Brigid Duffy, M.A. was Artistic Associate of Irish Repertory where she appeared in The Mai, A Life, Pentecost, and Well of the Saints. Other performances include Steppenwolf's Hedda Gabler, Goodman'sThe Sea and Freedom of the City, and Drury Lane Water Tower's Mornings at Seven. Brigid taught in the Chicago Public Schools and won the prestigious Golden Apple Award. Favorite roles include Gabrielle in The Madwoman of Chaillot with Zoë Caldwell, Lady Macduff in Macbeth with Sam Wanamaker, and alternating with Cicely Tyson in American Conservatory Theatre's Servant of Two Masters. Brigid trained at the Goodman School of Drama.

Charles Gerace, M.A. is a Chicago native and has been a theatre teacher, director, and actor for 40 years. During those years, he has performed in and directed scores of productions, most recently at the Irish Repertory, Court, and AppleTree theatres. He holds a B.F.A. from The Goodman School of Drama at the Art Institute of Chicago and an M.A from Northeastern Illinois University. He is a member of AEA, SAG and AFTRA.

David Howard, M.F.A. started writing in the fifth grade, with the lead story for the Spring Glen School Chronicle. He spent over thirty years as a newspaper reporter and editor and now works as a freelance writer. He has published in ManuscriptParnassus Literary Journal, Mobius, Manna and Animal Print. He won first place in the short story contest for Vebsap Literary Magazine and is at work on a novel about politics in Rhode Island. He has a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Vermont College and conducts fiction and creative nonfiction workshops for The Writers' Circle.

Ellen Taylor, was born in Nashville into a musical family, with a symphony conductor father and pianist mother. She grew up in Nashville, Phoenix and Fresno, CA, studying ballet and music from a young age, with an eye towards a career in dance. She trained at ballet schools in Phoenix, Fresno, New York, Atlanta and San Francisco and performed with the Fresno Dance Theatre and the Atlanta Ballet. While in Atlanta in the 1970's, she discovered a propensity for writing poetry and fiction, and has since created a prodigious body of short stories, creative nonfiction, poetry and essays (most not submitted for publication). After many years in the Bay Area and Seattle, Ellen moved with her husband and daughter to Louisville and then to Rhode Island in 2003. Currently a paralegal in a Providence criminal defense law firm, she also takes great pleasure in helping other writers edit their own work. Her short story, The Key, appears in the 2008 Rhode Island Writers' Circle Anthology, and a creative nonfiction piece, The Conductor's Wife, appears in the Winter 2010 edition of the online literary journal, The Newport Review.  

Robert Leuci,
 first came to popular attention when his life as an undercover detective, for the NY police department, was portrayed in the book and film Prince of the City, starring Treat Williams. After retirement, he began writing and lecturing full time. He has written several novels, that have been translated and published in Croatia, Italy, Spain, Germany, and France. His television plays have been featured on the Arts & Entertainment network show, 100 Centre Street. Leuci is currently working with Rob Holcomb, television director and producer of ER, Wiseguy, and Lost. Together they are adapting Leuci's novels into films for television. Presently, Mr. Leuci is an adjunct professor of English and Political Science at the University of Rhode Island. With his vast knowledge of organized crime and narcotics, he continues to lecture at universities, major police departments, and the FBI academy in Virginia. His memoir, All The Centurions, depicts the harsh reality of his life as a law enforcement officer. 

Jody Lisberger, PhD, MFA (fiction), Vermont College. Jody Lisberger's story collection, Remember Love, was published by Fleur-de-Lis Press. Her stories have appeared in Fugue, Michigan Quarterly Review, Thema, Confrontation, and The Louisville Review. Her story "Crucible" was nominated for a Pushcart Award. She won third place in the 2003 American Literary Review Fiction Contest and was a finalist in the 2004 Quarterly West Fiction Contest. She has taught fiction, creative nonfiction, literature, and feminist theory at Brown, Harvard, Tufts, Holy Cross, Boston University, and University of Rhode Island where she currently is the interim director of Women's Studies. She has also worked as a journalist, editor, and grant writer.

Brett Rutherford, M.A. is a graduate of the University of Rhode Island. He moved to Providence in 1985 from New York City. During his Manhattan years, he founded The Poet's Press to promote the work of lesser-known but deserving poets. The press is still active in print and on-line, with over 165 publications to date. Brett is a poet, novelist, and playwright. Night Gaunts, a play about H.P. Lovecraft, was staged in Heidelberg, Germany in 2006. His most recent book of poetry is Things Seen In Graveyards, 2007.

Lisa J. Starr, is the founder of the Block Island Poetry Project.  Her poetry books include Day of Dogs and Driftwood, This Place Here, and Mad With Yellow; her individual works appear in journals and publications around the country.  Currently, she is touring RI with Power to the Poets, a Writers' Circle free outreach program.  An inn-keeper, mother, basketball coach and champion for fun, Starr divides her time between family and her passion for poetry.  As RI Poet Laureate, her five year plan includes a state-wide poetry pen pal system, enlisting student writers working with the elderly.  She uses poetry in positive, proactive ways to educate and free the writer to be authentic.  Recently, she was a featured reader at the Dodge Poetry Festival in New Jersey.  Her agenda is to pool collective resources to bring cultural programs to Rhode Island and nationally.

Emily Petit lives in Rhode Island and is the author of the poetry collection “And If I Told You I Was Hungry For Your Laughter”, as well as a variety of other poems which are available on her web site,  Topics addressed in Emily’s poetry include eating disorders, child abuse, religion and spirituality, sexuality, and many other issues applicable to both personal and cultural growth.  In addition to prose and poetry, she actively pursues research in a variety of academia, including music, medicine, foreign language, and art history. She has been writing since the age of seven.  She joined our consulting staff as an editor recently.

Heather Sullivan is an active member of Ocean State Poets, a group whose mission is to give voice to Rhode Islanders by conducting workshops in prisons, nursing and group homes, addiction recovery centers and alternative learning environments. Sullivan is the editor of two poetry chapbooks, Butterfly Wings and Poems on Branches, published by Salve Regina University, featuring the works of 75 individuals.

In 2007, Heather was appointed Assistant Creative Director of the Rhode Island Writers’ Circle, where she volunteered until 2010. In 2007, Sullivan served as a panel judge for Barnes and Noble’s State-wide Maya Angelou High School Poetry Contest. Heather holds an M.A. in English and won First Place in Writers’ Digest’s 1999 Competition in memoir / personal essay category.

Sullivan’s work has appeared in Tiferet: A Journal of Spiritual Literature; Balancing the Tides: A Newport Journal; The Writers’ Circle’s 2008 & 2010 Anthologies; Newport Round Table’s Walls and Bridges Anthology; The Providence Journal; Newport Life Magazine; The Newport Daily News and She Shines Magazine. Her essay Compassion aired on Rhode Island’s National Public Radio’s This I Believe series, and she has recorded her poetry for Insight Radio for the visually impaired.

Cleveland Francoeur: I originally grew up in a small town in Southeast Michigan and remembered as a child looking through my father's photographs and being amazed at how they could capture a moment so well. I'm grateful that my father ejoyed taking photos while me and my brothers were growing up, as I now have some great photos to go with my memories. I have always had an interest in creating art of one form or another since I was a young adult, but never really found my medium until relocating to New England in the summer of 2006. Being away from my family and friends of many years I wanted to show them all the beautiful places and things that I saw every day. What was a hobby, quickly became a passion. I'm continually amazed and inspired by the the works of so many. Through the last few years I've become much better at capturing what I see the way that I see it and enjoy all of the places that photography has taken me. You can see a selection of my work at