Subscriber News: May 2015
Congratulations to Anna Scotti. Her short story “They Look Like Angels” won the Spring 2015 Orlando Short Fiction Prize and will be published in the Los Angeles Review. Visit her website to sample her award-winning poetry and fiction. This twice-yearly award series from A Room of Her Own Foundation gives prizes of $1,000 for unpublished poems, stories, and essays by women; the next deadline is July 31. In other news, Anna's poem “Tanager” won the 2015 Pocataligo Poetry Prize from Yemassee, the University of South Carolina literary journal. The most recent deadline for this $500 prize was January 15. Contest judge Nikky Finney said: “The sensuous dance the poet creates between the lives and bodies of the birds and the lives and bodies of the women is a tender frighting one. The rhythm of the long prose lines map a geography for the poem that the poet beautifully controls. The last word of the poem is felt long after the poem ends. It resounds and reverberates like a struck tambourine hidden beneath a cloth. This is a beautiful poetic rendering.”
Congratulations to Valerie Nieman. Her poetry collection, Hotel Worthy, was published in March by Press 53. She kindly shares a sample poem here. North Carolina Poet Laureate Joseph Bathanti says of this collection, “There abides in its pages an uncanny past wrought into poems that spring from a memory—from a vast, liturgical acumen—that unites the dead with the living, restores the abandoned, returns the missing. Nieman knows the names of things, how those things piece together, how they sunder; and, while she refuses to lie, her truths are exquisite.” Visit her website for her upcoming readings and workshops.
Congratulations to Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingdé. He became the first author to win top prize in two categories at the 2015 Beverly Hills International Book Awards, in Poetry for Sanctus Sanctus Dirgha Sanctus (Red Wheelbarrow Books, 2014) and in Visionary Fiction for Singular Acts of Endearment (Grey Sparrow Press/Squircle Line Press). His win was profiled in the journal Kitaab: Asia+n Writing in English, where he is poetry editor. Singular Acts of Endearment also won a silver medal in the multicultural fiction category of the 2015 Independent Publisher Book Awards (IPPYs).
Congratulations to Sherry Ballou Hanson. She won the 2014 Paumanok Poetry Award from Farmingdale State College. This award for a portfolio of poems gives $1,500 and expenses for a reading in their Visiting Writers Program series; the next deadline is September 15. She kindly shares a sample poem here. A freelance writer, educator, and published poet, Sherry was a 2013 winner of a MORE Award for reporting excellence from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
Congratulations to Nick Korolev. His latest maritime novel, Storm Warning, was recently released by Fireship Press, a publisher specializing in nautical and historical fiction and nonfiction books. The novel is based on the true story of Nathanial “Lucky Nat” Gordon, the only slaver caught, tried, and hung for piracy at the beginning of the Lincoln administration, and the people who brought him to justice—the naval officer who captured him with 897 slaves onboard his ship, the court officers who prosecuted and defended him, the judges who tried him in the most controversial landmark case of its time, and lastly his naive young wife and infant son, the other tragic victims of his crime.
Congratulations to Paul Martin. His poetry chapbook Floating on the Lehigh won the 2015 Grayson Books Chapbook Contest. He kindly shares a sample poem here. Contest Judge John Stanizzi said, “Each poem in Floating on the Lehigh is buoyant and clear, a powerfully understated, beautifully written commemoration of the might and magnificence of nature and our tenuous, fickle, irresistible relationship with it.” The most recent deadline for this $500 prize was February 1.
Congratulations to Ralph Salisbury. His novel Soldier With Silver Dollar Skull is forthcoming from Turnstone Press, an independent press in Winnipeg, Canada. The author of 13 books of poetry, three story collections, and one memoir, he recently received the 2015 C.E.S. Wood Distinguished Writer Award, a lifetime achievement award from the Oregon Institute of Literary Arts.
Congratulations to Jessica Goody. Her poem “Stockings” won second prize in the 2015 Reader's Digest Poetry Contest. Over 4,800 entries were received for this free contest, which had a top prize of $500 and deadline January 30.
Winning Writers Editor Jendi Reiter was the Tattooed Poet of the Week for May 8 on Tattoosday, Bill Cohen's blog about body art and the stories behind it. The post included the poem “Trigger Warning for Sailors” from her new collection, Bullies in Love (Little Red Tree Publishing, 2015).
Shirani Rajapakse's short story “Shattered” was included in Flash Fiction International (W.W. Norton, 2015), an anthology of 86 flash stories from writers around the world. The anthology was the subject of a panel discussion at the 2015 AWP Conference in Minneapolis in April. “Shattered” was mentioned favorably in Publishers Weekly's review of the collection. In other news, Shirani's poem “Growing Up in the City” was published on the Silver Birch Press website in their April 2015 themed series, “Me, as a Child”.
Carol Smallwood's poetry book Divining the Prime Meridian (Word Poetry, 2015) was favorably reviewed in the Sycamore Review by Joan Gelfand, who writes: “In Carol Smallwood's new collection…the universe is examined, spun on its axis prism-like and finally, released. Smallwood finds the universe in a dragonfly, quilt-stitching, Clabber Girl baking soda and the bandana that she will wear after the chemotherapy treating her breast cancer.” Reviewer Nancy Means Wright praised the book in an April column in Poets' Quarterly: “At the close of the collection, the reader will surely want to read, reread and mull over in the mind these stunning, insightful poems—poems that will open up the heart to both perilous sides of the Great Divide.” Another positive review by Christine Redman-Waldeyer appeared in March in Word Riot.
Andrea Hurst's novel Tea and Comfort, the second book in her Madrona Island series, is now available in print and e-book formats from Amazon.com. From the book blurb: “After receiving life-changing news, Kyla Nolan ran away from her life as a top model in New York and left her fiancé, Luke Bradford, behind. Now, almost two years later, Kyla has a rebuilt her life as the successful owner of Tea & Comfort on Madrona Island. She lives in a cozy home behind her tea shop, has great friends, and a community where she belongs. But Kyla's life is thrown off balance when Luke moves to the island…”
Erik Christian's short story was published in the April issue of On The Premises, a biannual online journal with different themes for each issue. Erik says, “It's my first fiction publication and I learned about the contest in the Winning Writers newsletter. Thanks!”
Mark Fleisher's poem “Unlikelies” was published in Leonardo, the literary and fine arts magazine of Central New Mexico Community College. He is also one of eight poets participating in the now SeeHear project of the New Mexico Humanities Council. The exhibit, opening May 1, involves each poet interpreting the work of one of eight artists. Fleisher's poem “Lady Liberty Redux” interprets a modern rendition of the Statue of Liberty painted by Iva Morris.
John Reinhart was the featured poet for May 2015 in Scifaikuest, a print and online journal specializing in minimalist poetry forms. His poetry was also featured at Moon Pigeon Press. Additional work is forthcoming in Star*Line, the newsletter of the Science Fiction Poetry Association, and in Grievous Angel.
Roberta Beary's chapbook Deflection (Accents Publishing, 2015) was among the “National Poetry Month's Best Picks” chosen by Grace Cavalieri for her April 2015 book review column in the Washington Independent Review of Books. Other Winning Writers subscribers' books in this list included Rebecca Foust's Paradise Drive (Press 53) and Charlotte Mandel's Through a Garden Gate (David Robert Books).
Lesléa Newman's essay “My Mother Always Told Me Not to Cry” was published in Dame Magazine in April. Her essay “Like Mother, Like Daughter” appeared in the webzine Full Grown People in May. Watch the book trailer for her latest poetry collection, I Carry My Mother.
Published: May 7, 2015