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Meet the Staff

T.J. Murphy, Editor

T.J. Murphy is editor of The Writer magazine. He got his start in magazines in 1996, as a staff editor for Triathlete magazine, and has been at it ever since as a writer, editor, and author. One of his more colorful feature writing adventures was reporting on what it was like to go through a Navy SEAL “Hell Week” simulation camp for Outside magazine. It wasn’t pretty. He lives in the Boston area with his wife, Gretchen, and their two kids, Milo and Maddie.

Melissa Hart, Contributing Editor

Melissa Hart believes three hours of hard writing, followed by a four-mile run and a hike through the Douglas firs with chocolate chip cookies is a perfect day. She lives in Eugene, Oregon with her husband and daughter, four rescued cats and a terrier. She’s the author of the middle-grade novel Avenging the Owl, the YA memoir Gringa: A Contradictory Girlhood, and the adult memoir Wild Within: How Rescuing Owls Inspired a Family. She loves to discover and profile innovative writers, editors, and publishers. Website:

Toni Fitzgerald, Copy Editor

Toni Fitzgerald is a freelance editor and writer with nearly two decades of experience. She wrote her first newspaper story at age 11, when she and her sister launched a family newsletter. Her obsession with words has sent her on many adventures, from covering Penn State football to working for a doll magazine to reporting on the media world for Media Life magazine to writing SEO copy for churches. She also loves to run, both after her two energetic kids and (more slowly) in half marathons. Website:

Jaron Cote, Graphic Designer

Jaron Cote is the graphic designer of The Writer magazine. He admires good illustration and likes learning about art history. Outside of design and art, he enjoys spending time at Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire with his family and watching Friends or Boy Meets World reruns.