Author of three well-reviewed volumes of poetry and an award-winning chapbook of short fiction, Joan’s debut novel “Extreme,” set in a Silicon Valley startup, is published by Blue Light Press. Additionally, “You Can Be a Winning Writer: The 4 C’s of Successful Authors” Joan’s book for writers is an Amazon #1 best seller. Joan’s memoir about Berkeley in the 70’s is forthcoming from Post Hill Press, January 16, 2024.

Recipient of numerous awards, nominations and honors, Joan’s work appears in national and international literary journals, magazines and on the web.


An award-winning poet, reviewer and novelist, Joan’s work appears in over 150 national and international anthologies, magazines and journals. 


Writer’s Circle Member, PEN International
Women’s National Book Association: Development Chair, 2012-Present

National Book Critics Circle: Member, 2012-Present

Women’s National Book Association: President, 2008-2010

Women’s National Book Association, San Francisco Chapter: President, 2004-2006

World Poetry Society

International Women’s Writing Guild

National Association of Writing Women

California Poetry Society



MFA/Creative Writing – Mills College

BA/English/Creative Writing Emphasis – San Francisco State University

Scene Building with Carol Edgarian and Tom Jenks

Advanced Fiction with Tom Parker, Ellen Sussman and Karen Bjorneby

Awards & Honors

Winner: The Literary Titan Gold Book Award, May 2024 for “Outside Voices”

Runner Up: San Francisco Book Festival, May 2024 for “Outside Voices”

Finalist: in New Fiction for the 2020 International Book Awards, June 2021 for “Extreme”

First Place: Women’s National Book Association/Effie Lee Morris Writing Contest: SF Chapter: “The Blues” June 2020

Third Place: Women’s National Book Association/Effie Lee Morris Writing Contest/SF Chapter “Pivot” June 2020

Best Poetry Film: World Film Festival, LA, CA 2019

“Best Poetry” London International Film Festival, 2020 Nomination

“Certificate of Merit” International Association for the Study Dreams, “Ferlinghetti School of Poetics,” Movie produced by Dana and Kelly Walden, June 2017

Chattanooga Writer’s Guild: “Peonies: For Jill” 2017 National Writing Contest, 3rd place in Poetry Category

Featured Poet, PoetryMagazine.com, January 2015

“The Noble Prize (not Nobel!) Prize for Literature,” for “Here And Abroad” Back to Literature, Carolyn Howard-Johnson, Editor

“The Sugar Zone is Bittersweet” “Review of the Week” on Red Room Authors

Cervena Barva Press, Winner of the 2010 Fiction Contest, for “Here and Abroad,” Dorothy Freudenthal, Judge

Best Poem: Levure Litteraire for “The Ferlinghetti School of Poetics” 2015

2011 Benicia Love Poetry Contest: Honorable Mention, Rona Leon, Poet Laureate, Judge

“Poets 11, District 7” San Francisco, CA, 2010 Winner/District 7 Judged by Jack Hirschman, Poet Laureate Emeritus, San Francisco, CA for “The Ferlinghetti School of Poetics,” “5:50 AM” and “Transported”

American League of Pen Women/Roanoke Branch “I Know Why Sylvia Plath Put Her Head in the Oven.” Honorable Mention

2009: First Prize: Osmosis Sanctuary, Sebastopol, CA: “Japanese Maple Tangka”

2008/Ina Coolbrith Poet’s Award: “Torqued Torus”

2008 June Poet of the Month, Poetica Magazine

2008 Featured Poet: PoetryMagazine.com

2007 Ina Coolbrith Poet’s Award: “Anthology Sonnet”

2005 Best Fiction Award, Chaffin Journal, “Paris Blues Redux”


2021 Pushcart Prize Nomination: Blue Light Press: “The Ferlinghetti School of Poetics” included in anthology, “Fog and Light: San Francisco Through the Eyes of Poets who Live Here”

2014 Pushcart: “The Ferlinghetti School of Poetics,” and “Good Morning America, Where Are You?”

2009 Pushcart Prize Nomination: “Transported”

2006 Carver Nomination, “The Art Critic”

“It was not an innocent time, although by today’s standards (540 mass shootings in 2022 as of October, a war raging in Europe, a rise in terrorism and the growth of racism and white supremacy) it can appear so.”

Joan, on the times of “Outside Voices”

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