About Marisa

Marisa (rhymes with Lisa) writes fiction and nonfiction from her home in the middle of nowhere, New York with her loving husband and the cutest Doxie mixes ever, Terry and Lucy. (But she does her best writing on ferry boats and train rides.)

She is at work finishing her first book—YAY!—a memoir entitled Everything You Can't Control. Read more and check out an excerpt on the Publications page of this site.

Marisa Russello and her spouse smiling.
Terry, the dog, chasing a tennis ball.

A former middle school teacher, Marisa now works as a peer recovery specialist at a local not-for-profit where she supports individuals improving their mental health and wellness. Her passion for mental health advocacy and past experiences with discrimination inspire her to speak openly about her disabilities.

Marisa’s idea of fun includes playing board games, kayaking, reading, dancing awkwardly and singing badly to loud music, or painting her next masterpiece. She values travel as a form of education and loves learning languages, exploring new places, and meeting people.

You can find her on Instagram @marisarussellowrites and rarely on Twitter @russellowrites. (She gave into peer pressure!)

Marisa and her spouse wearing life jackets and standing in front of a red kayak.
Marisa sitting on the floor, surrounded by piles of books.

Marisa graduated with a bachelor’s in Spanish language and literature from Haverford College and a master’s in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Teachers College, Columbia University. She has taken writing courses from Catapult and elsewhere.

If you’d like to request Marisa as a speaker, you can do so through The Stability Network, where she presents about her own mental health struggles to empower others and inspire hope. She also volunteers with NAMI, the largest mental health organization in the U.S. and consults for the Mount Sinai Suicide Research and Prevention Lab.

A microphone.