Marina Rubin

Fiction Writer

Author's Bio

Marina Rubin was born in the small town of Vinnitsa, Ukraine, in the former Soviet Union. Her family immigrated to the United States in 1989 seeking asylum. She graduated from Pace University with a Degree in Psychology and minor in Women's Studies. Her first chapbook Ode to Hotels came out in 2002 and was followed by Once (2004) and Logic (2007). Marina Rubin’s work has appeared in over eighty magazines and anthologies, including 13th Warrior Review, Dos Passos, 5AM, Fiction on the Web, Westchester Review, Coal City, Gravel, Newfound, Jewish Currents, Lillith, Pearl, Skidrow Penthouse, and The Worcester Review. She is an Associate Editor of Mudfish, the Tribeca literary and art magazine and a 2013 recipient of the COJECO Blueprint Fellowship. Her collection of flash fiction "Stealing Cherries" was released from Manic D Press to rave reviews and received an honorable mention on Heeb Magazine’s list of Best Books of 2014. “One of the richer contemporary visions of America I’ve read," said Nano Fiction and Coachella Valley Independent compared Marina Rubin to David Sedaris. 

Her short-story collection "Knockout Beauty and Other Afflictions" (Crowsnest Books, January 2023) received an Honorable Mention for the 2020 Miami Book Fair Emerging Writer Fellowship and is now available on Amazon, B&N and local bookstores.  

One of "Knockout Beauty and Other Afflictions" centerpiece stories "Man in a Fedora" was recorded as an-hour long podcast, reminiscent of classic radio productions, that involved 11 voice actors of the Nightshift Radio Storyteller Series.

Marina Rubin has given readings in New York (Cornelia Café, JCC Amsterdam, The Midland JCC Long Island, The Hamptons Synagogue, Rodeph Congregation Central Park West, etc) and has traveled to other states as part of the JBC book tour. 

She has appeared as a Featured Author representing her home country of Ukraine at the "6 Nights at the Museum" Reading Series held at Temple Emanu El.  

Marina Rubin has been on the cover of the Arts Section of Jewish Week twice - once as a featured artist and the second time as part of an ensemble of writers in the issue The Next Wave of Russian-Jewish Literature. 

In addition to writing, Marina Rubin is an avid mountaineer, having summited Kilimanjaro, made it to Everest Base Camp, completed Tour du Mont Blanc and Camino de Santiago. 

She lives in Brooklyn.

Publications & Prizes

Knockout Beauty and Other Afflictions (Crowsnest Books, 2023)
Stealing Cherries (Manic D Press, 2013)
Prizes won: 

Marina Rubin is a 2013 recipient of COJECO Blueprint Fellowship.

She attended Pace University on a Writing Scholarship from the United Federation of Teachers (UFT).

While a student at Pace, she was a three-time recipient of Sarah Willis Creative Writing Award.

Her poetry was nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2007 and again in 2012.

Her book of flash fiction "Stealing Cherries" received an Honorable Mention on the list of Best Books of 2014 from Heeb Magazine.

Her short story "Good People Make Bad Couples" was shortlisted for the 2019 Writers' HQ Flash Fiction Prize. 

Her new short-story collection "Knockout Beauty and Other Afflictions"  (Crowsnest Books, 2023) has received an Honorable Mention for the 2020 Miami Book Fair Emerging Writer Fellowship.

Her short story "Jupiter" was nominated for the Best of the Net 2021.


  • In Marina Rubin’s sparkling new collection of stories, Knockout Beauty and Other Afflictions, Flora as well as most other women in the book are searching for love—and running from it, too. Rubin’s characters, many of them Jewish, are Americans and émigrés. Her writing is funny, dramatic, compassionate, rich with detail and original. Hadassah Magazine
  • In a Nutshell: A knockout beauty of an anthology with hardly any afflictions. Rosh Reviews
  • “The stories in “Knockout Beauty and Other Afflictions” are well done and offer interesting insights into the characters’ lives. This is Rubin’s second excellent collection, making her a writer to watch.” The Reporter Group


  •  “Like Russian-born novelists Gary Shteyngart, Lara Vapnyar and David Bezmozgis, Marina Rubin mines her immigrant experience for her fiction, uncovering the universal. Her writing is sparse and precise, yet also lush, with long sentences packed full of life, drama and artistry...” Jewish Week
  • " For the flash-fiction fan, ADD-suffering reader or David Sedaris admirer: Marina Rubin’s collection of micro-stories, hits all the right notes with its humor, mild perversity and warmth…Poetic, punchy and packed with vignettes, Stealing Cherries will pop your brain...” Coachella Valley Independent
  • "The flash stories are a veritable bushel of stolen cherries, each one is a delight to read, sweet and best enjoyed in bunches. A slight bitterness follows, we’re too old to enjoy stolen cherries, too grownup to snatch virgin fruit and eat it with unconscious abandon, but the memory of the taste, and the echoes within these stories are still delightful to carry within us afterwards." Nano Fiction
  • "Rubin is a new voice on the scene and her collection of flash fiction was a revelation…Her writing has such a sharp focus that she successfully captures an event and mood in very few words. While these funny, strange, off-beat works are called fiction, the ones written in the first person read like autobiography. Rubin does an excellent job capturing small, sometimes shocking, moments...” The Reporter
  • "Marina Rubin writes the shortest short stories around – they’re almost prose poems, each filling a rectangle of text on the page. Her stories in Stealing Cherries burst out of their boxes, as she writes with exuberance about her family’s experience as immigrants from the former Soviet Union and of her own later experiences working, traveling and becoming an American..." Jewish Woman Magazine
  • "...its intimate clash of cultures, political and economic antagonisms, and transgressive sexualities are never very far from the surface of these sometimes nostalgic, sometimes bittersweet, often sensual fictions." Urban Graffiti
  • “Short and sudden, none longer than a page, these tales are funny and embarrassing and sad and honest. Tradition intersects with cultural displacement as Rubin tells tales of dating mishaps and wardrobe malfunctions. Stealing Cherries is not your typical story of Russian refuseniks—and that’s exactly why we love it…” Jewniverse

Personal Favorites

Favorite authors: 
Dorothy Parker, Jean Rhys, Colette, Francoise Sagan, Patricia Highsmith, John Irving, Roald Dahl, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Somerset Maugham.

More Information

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Brooklyn, NY
New York
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Last update: Feb 13, 2024