Riggio "Fishbowl;" room 510

Riggio "Fishbowl;" room 510

12th Street Online is the web branch of the literary journal, 12th Street. Its first issue was published and sold at Barnes and Noble in the Spring of 2008. 12th Street is produced every year by students enrolled in the Riggio Honors Program: Writing and Democracy.

This honors program is an innovative sequence of writing workshops and close-reading seminars designed to offer a balanced and substantial literary education. The core of the program is a curriculum of writing workshops (fiction, nonfiction, poetry) and literature seminars, culminating in a thesis project. There is also an ongoing series of public readings, literary forums, lectures, symposia and panel discussions. All students of the Riggio program receive a $4000 scholarship upon completing the course.

The program is structured to create and foster a community of undergraduate writers through regular student readings and other peer-group activities, including 12th Street, edited and published by New School undergraduates. By the completion of the course, it is hoped that its students have enhanced their skills as writers, and have better tools to read, being able to delve into a word-by-word analysis of a text without pause.

Hopefully both 12th Street and 12th Street Online will be examples of just that. To see more about the Riggio Honors Program: Writing and Democracy, click here

2010 EDITORS

*updated Bios coming soon*

Mario Zambrano: Editor-In Chief. Mario Zambrano was a contemporary ballet dancer for fifteen years, turning down full scholarships to The Julliard School and CAL Arts University to pursue his career. He lived in Holland, Germany, Spain, Israel, Japan, and Chicago, but considers New York City his new home. As a senior in college, in his free time, he dedicates himself to fiction.

Liz Axelrod: Managing Editor. Liz Axelrod enjoys huge waves and the people who ride them. A former DJ, Music Industry Promoter and Publicist, Liz is well into her third life as a creative writing student and a Nonprofit Grant Administrator. Liz has been making the rounds of the NYC Poetry Circuit for the past seven years and has been both reader and judge at the Bowery College Poetry Slam, a featured poet at the Yippie Museum’s Monday Night Poet’s Café, and a regular at Smalls Jazz Club’s Saturday Open Mic Poetry Series. She is currently working on her first collection of poems, an Eighties DJ Girl Collection of short stories, finishing her novel and rearranging the Earth’s gravitational pull to make the day at least three hours longer.

Rebecca Melnyk: Poetry Editor. Rebecca Melnyk was born in Canada during a snow storm. She has lived in New York for awhile, enough that she can’t shake the city off her bones.  She dedicates her time to studying literature, writing poems and stories, and is currently kicking around in the cacophony of the East Village by interning at the Poetry Project.

Luke Sirinides: Editor at Large. Luke Sirinides sort of lives and sort of writes in New York City. When he’s not couch surfing with friends in Alphabet City, he likes to compose short stories and novels about nice families and fancy places, though with a dark, gritty, literary edge, because he’s deep, man. He sort of used to work for Philadelphia City Paper and Philadelphia Magazine, but that ended when he went back to school. He enjoys good books, good meals, warm sheets and hot showers. If you can provide any of these, please contact him. In the meantime, look for his work in whatever literary journals will publish them.

Patrick Hipp: Interview Editor. Patrick Hipp once dabbled in music journalism, writing for IGN, Prefix, and Magnet magazines but prefers to be on the other side of the speaker with his band Action Set. He is currently the City Editor for NYC.com, enjoys Oxford commas, and looks forward to one day resting on his laurels.

Eric Marsh: Fiction Editor

Rene Steinke: Faculty Advisor. Rene is the Faculty Advisor to 12th Street. She teaches in the Riggio Honors Program: Writing and Democracy. She is the author of the novels The Fires and Holy Skirts, which was a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award. Her writing has also appeared in Bookforum, Vogue, The New York Times, and TriQuarterly. She lives in Brooklyn.

Tony Grassi: Non-Fiction Editor. Tony Grassi is an alumni of the Berklee College of Music. He currently works for Guitar World magazine. Tony enjoys longs walks on the beach, sunsets, and girls that know how to treat a guy a right.

Jeff Vashista Online Editor “As most music journalists will tell you, interviewing your heroes and listening to CD’s all day can’t strictly be considered a job” says Jeff Vasishta, who in a lengthy career as a music hack (he writes under the name of ‘Jeff Lorez’ ) has interviewed the likes of Prince, Quincy Jones and Herbie Hancock. “It doesn’t necessarily mean I can write well which of course is the whole point of going to the New School – to challenge myself and see if I can string a sentence together without putting a song title in the middle”

Phil Anderson: Online Literary Editor

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10 Responses to “About Us”


  1. I am looking for a contact at 12th Street to query about sending 5 copies of the 2009 publication to participate in an online national undergraduate literary anthology Bennington students are putting together for spring 2010 publication. I have full information to send, but don’t have an email address. Can you help me out?

    Thanks,
    Rebecca Godwin
    Faculty Editor, Best Undergraduate Writing Series

  2. Liz Axelrod Says:

    Hi Rebecca,
    Send me your contact info and any instructions and I will get those copies in the mail right away.

    Regards,
    Liz Axelrod
    Managing Editor
    12th Street

  3. Pat Says:

    Way to show us all up, Jeff!

  4. 12th Street Says:

    In Jeff’s defense, he has sent me a new (how should I say it?), more succinct bio. I will be putting it up shortly.

    Jeff, how tall is Prince? I’ve heard he’s really short.

  5. Pat Says:

    Three apples, same as all Smurfs.


  6. Hello,thanks for this useful blogg, i really find many new things on it and i really loved the design of the blogg. I found it on yahoo. I also want to wish you a happy new year.

  7. 12th St Says:

    Two months later, I reply! Yes Prince is quite short – maybe 5’3″ or so but with the heels you don’t really notice. Actually I’m more impressed by Tony’s bio than mine. Does working for Guitar World mean you are actually allowed to play air guitar in the office? Berklee College Of Music too! Now he’s showing us all up!


  8. Good and relevant post. I have


  9. Thanks for this! Ive been looking all over the internet for this.


  10. This is an exceptional. Loving it dude!

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