The WWPH Team

Caroline Bock, Co-President

Caroline Bock’s short story collection, Carry Her Home, received the 2018 WWPH Fiction Prize. She is the author of two critically acclaimed young adult novels, LIE and Before My Eyes from St. Martin’s Press. Her short fiction has appeared in many journals and is the winner of first prizes from Driftwood Press and The Writer magazine. In addition to her role as co-president, she is the prose editor at WWPH Writes, our bi-weekly literary journal, and the co-editor of our 2021 anthology This Is What America Looks Like Fiction and Poetry from D.C. Maryland, and Virginia.

Jona Colson, Co-President and Poetry Editor

Jona Colson’s poetry collection, Said Through Glass, won the 2018 Jean Feldman Poetry Prize from WWPH. He teaches English at Montgomery College. Notably, in addition to his role as co-president, he is the poetry editor of WWPH Writes, our bi-weekly literary journal, and the co-editor of This Is What America Looks Like: Poetry and Fiction from D.C., Maryland, and Virginia. He is also the translator for Aguas/Waters by Miguel Avero, our first work in translation, scheduled for publication in May 2024.

Kathleen Wheaton, Vice President, Fiction

Kathleen Wheaton’s collection, Aliens and Other Stories, received the 2013 WWPH Fiction Prize. Her fiction has appeared in many journals and she is the recipient of five Maryland State Arts Council grants.

Holly Karapetkova, Vice President, Poetry

Holly Karapetkova is the author of Words We Might One Day Say from WWPH. She’s the former Poet Laureate of Arlington, Virginia, and teaches at Marymount University.

Melanie Hatter, Secretary

Melanie Hatter is the author of two novels and one short story collection. Her most recent novel, Malawi’s Sisters, was selected by Edwidge Danticat as the winner of the inaugural Kimbilio National Fiction Prize and was published by Four Way Books in 2019. Her debut novel, The Color of My Soul, won the 2011 Washington Writers’ Publishing House Fiction Prize, and Let No One Weep for Me, Stories of Love and Loss was released in 2015.

Elizabeth Bruce, Vice President, Compliance

Elizabeth Bruce’s novel And Silent Left the Place won WWPH’s Fiction Prize (distinctions: ForeWord Magazine/Texas Institute of Letters). She has published fiction in the USA and abroad.

Robert Williams, Vice President, Production

Robert Williams is the author of the collection Strivers and Other Stories, winner of the 2016 WWPH Fiction Prize. A resident of Washington, D.C., he is the recipient of four Larry Neal Writers’ Awards given by the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities.

Len Kruger, Treasurer

Len Kruger lives in Washington, D.C. His short fiction has appeared in Zoetrope-All Story, The Barcelona Review, The Potomac Review, Gargoyle, Splonk, and the anthology, This is What America Looks Like: Fiction and Poetry from DC, Maryland, and Virginia. He is a graduate of the MFA Program at the University of Maryland. His debut novel, Bad Questions is the winner of the 2023 WWPH Fiction Prize. More at

Steven Leyva, Member at large

Steven Leyva was born in New Orleans, Louisiana and raised in Houston, Texas. His poems have appeared in 2 Bridges Review, Scalawag, Nashville Review, jubilat, Vinyl, Prairie Schooner, and Best American Poetry 2020. He is a Cave Canem fellow and author of the chapbook Low Parish and author of The Understudy’s Handbook which won the Jean Feldman Poetry Prize from Washington Writers Publishing House. Steven holds an MFA from the University of Baltimore, where he is an assistant professor in the Klein Family School of Communications Design.

Our mission is to publish poets and prose writers, in fiction and creative nonfiction, from across Washington DC, Maryland, and Virginia who showcase our region’s rich diversity and talents. We embrace and foster diversity within our organization, strive to be an anti-racist organization and an ally to the marginalized and historically underrepresented writers across the region. As a cooperative press, we will bring this effort forward in all our work to reflect and foster the larger literary community in the DMV. Established in 1975, the Washington Writers’ Publishing House is the longest continuously operating cooperative nonprofit press in the United States.