Learn About the Laurel Review Staff


Dr. John Gallaher

John Gallaher

John is interested in soccer and social justice. In his spare time, he writes poems. He is the author or co-author of six poetry collections, most recently, In a Landscape (BOA Editions, 2014) and Ghost / Landscape (BlazeVOX, 2016) co-written with Kristina Marie Darling.

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Luke Rolfes

Luke is the author of Flyover Country (Georgetown Review Press, 2015). He has published a variety of stories and essays in journals across the country. He teaches creative writing, composition, professional writing, and literature at Northwest Missouri State University.

Associate Editors

Daniel Biegelson

Daniel Biegelson

Daniel is the Director of Northwest Missouri State's Visiting Writers Series. His work has appeared in Denver Quarterly, Hayden's Ferry Review, Jellyfish Magazine, Meridian, New Orleans Review, and Verse among other places. He was born and raised in New Jersey—a fact that means more to him than it probably should.

Richard Sonnemoser

Richard Sonnemoser

Richard has published fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction in Harvard Review, West Branch, Crab Orchard Review, Permafrost, and other magazines. His poetry chapbook, Science-Magic School, was published in 2010. He’s currently working on a memoir about fatherhood, called Sugarblind.

José Palacios Perez (Joseph Avski)

José, under his pen name, has published several books of fiction—most recently, El infinito se acaba pronto (Emencé, 2015). A Spanish-language writer from Colombia, most of his works have been translated into English. He received his MFA from UTEP and is assisting this spring with our special Spanish-to-English/English-to-Spanish translations section. He currently teaches Spanish and Latin American culture courses at Northwest Missouri State University.

Editorial Assistants


Nicole Kerwin

Nicole is the Graduate Assistant at The Laurel Review working towards a Master's in English, having received her Bachelor's in Creative Writing & Publishing from Northwest Missouri State University. She writes creative nonfiction and is obsessed with chai tea lattes. When she's not writing, napping, or contemplating life, she enjoys binge-watching The Office and Law & Order: SVU.

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Mason Arnold

Mason is a junior at Northwest with a writing major and an advertising minor. You might recognize him from his true crime/paranormal podcast "The Right Wrong Turn" that he's hosted for over two years. When not designing for The Laurel Review, he's typically research for his podcast, playing some video game, and watching a lot of professional and college football.

Spring 2020 Content Assistants


Angel Trinh

Angel is a sophomore majoring in multimedia journalism and

minoring in writing at Northwest Missouri State University. She's been writing creatively since 6th grade. She also enjoys dabbling photography, design, and videography.


Shannon Hillyer

Shannon is a graphic design student at Northwest and is also pursuing a professional writing certificate. She aspires to work for Disney someday and become an author and illustrate a series of children's books. Shannon keeps busy with classes and her job as an office assistant. She has a kitten at home named Phasma, yes named after a star wars character, and is a devoted pet parent. In her free time, Shannon enjoys going on photography adventures, reading, riding motorcycles, and binging shows like "Outlander" and "The Handmaid's Tale."

Tiffany Imperiale

Tiffany is a sophomore undergraduate student at @nwmostate, majoring in English and minoring in Cyber Security. She writes poetry as well as creative nonfiction and is in love with her cat, Chip. Tiffany is an intern at The Laurel Review and primarily reads our poetry submissions.

Sara Robke

Sara is a junior at Northwest Missouri State University studying Creative Writing and Publishing and minoring in art. She likes to write fiction and dabbles in creative nonfiction. She prefers drawing with pencils or charcoal rather than any other medium. She also works as an Arts and Entertainment for The Missourian. She loves spending time reading, being with her cat, collecting hats, and taking pictures.

Bianca Drake

Bianca is an undergraduate student currently pursuing a Bachelor’s in English Education at Northwest Missouri State University. She adores literature, writing both poetry and creative non-fiction, and her daily coffee. Bianca acts as our Social Media & Content Assistant Intern at The Laurel Review.

Brandon Hallock

Brandon is a junior at NWMSU studying Creative Writing and Publishing with a minor in art. He is a writer, focusing most in poetry and non-fiction, and aspiring artist, working towards blending these two worlds together. His writing focuses on his life, queer culture, and often dabbles in the surreal and horror. He is a Pisces and enjoys drag, pizza, and cryptids.

Melanie A. Wilson

Melanie is a junior at NWMSU pursuing a Creative Writing and Publishing degree with minors in Spanish and Organizational Communications. She has been published in Medium Weight Forks literary magazine and poetry book, In My Lifetime: Sentiments. Melanie is a fantasy fiction writer, who aspires to one day own her own publishing company. She also plans to start a charity for foster kids through the sales of her books and writings. Melanie is passionate about inspiring young people to read, write, and to encourage their creativity.

Alison Burski

Alison is a junior majoring in Creative Writing and Publishing and minoring in communications. She primarily writes fiction and is branching into creative nonfiction. When not in class or at work, she is reading whatever she can get her hands on or knitting while catching up on her watch list.

*Last updated on 12/9/2016