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Director of Writing for Stage & Screen Minor/Professor of the Practice

Area of Study: Writing for Stage & Screen

Office: 300C Bynum Hall
Office Hours: By appointment
Curriculum Vitae





B.A., Wake Forest University. English Literature.

M.P.P., Harvard University, Education Policy.



Joy Goodwin grew up in rural Ohio and attended college in North Carolina, but her love of theater and film drew her to New York City. She began her career in live TV production, rising through the ranks at ABC to write and direct sports documentaries. After publishing her book, The Second Mark (Simon & Schuster), she became a theater critic and reporter, covering the New York stage for The New York Times, The New Yorker, and others. She later became Head of Feature Film Development at Plum Pictures, where she co-produced six Sundance films and exec-produced a Fox Searchlight feature.

As a screenwriter, she has received awards from the 2021 Writers Lab, 2021 Tribeca Film Festival, 2020 Film Independent Screenwriting Lab, 2020 Sloan Film Fund, and the 2019 Austin Film Festival. For director Nicholas Ma she wrote the feature MABEL, produced in 2023 by Helen Estabrook and Luca Borghese. She has also developed screenplays with the directors Debra Granik (WINTER’S BONE) and Carl Franklin (HOUSE OF CARDS). She currently has a book in TV development with Skydance Media (REACHER, GRACE & FRANKIE). She is represented by Team 713 for screenwriting and Compass Talent for books.

Joy has held many jobs, including: corn farmer, Olympics reporter, hotel desk clerk in Italy, piano player, organizer for a cab drivers’ union, and modern dance critic. She especially enjoys teaching, and has taught writing at several universities, including UNC, Hunter College, and Duke. She previously chaired the MFA screenwriting programs at UNCSA and Western Colorado University. She is currently the Director of the Writing for the Stage & Screen Minor at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where she is Professor of the Practice.