2021 Featured Presenters
Joy Harjo,’s nine books of poetry include An American Sunrise, Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings, How We Became Human: New and Selected Poems, and She Had Some Horses. Harjo’s memoir
Featured Events & Readers
Scroll over presenter photos for biographies.
American Harvest & White Flights: Marie Mockett and Jess Row in Conversation, Sponsored by Graywolf Press
Fiona McCrae has been director and publisher of Minneapolis-based Graywolf Press since 1994, following 11 years with the British publishers Faber and Faber. Authors that McCrae has published at Graywolf include Mary Szybist, Max Porter, Anna Burns, Daisy Johnson, Elizabeth Alexander, Per Petterson, and Percival Everett. She currently serves on the board of the Anderson Center and as vice-chair of the board of the National Book Foundation. McCrae received the Golden Colophon Award for leadership from the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses in 2014, and in 2017 she and Jeff Shotts received the Editor’s Award from Poets & Writers.
Marie Mutsuki Mockett is the author of American Harvest: God, Country, and Farming in the Heartland, as well as a novel, Picking Bones from Ash, and a memoir, Where the Dead Pause, and the Japanese Say Goodbye, which was a finalist for the PEN Open Book Award.
(Photo Credit: Rachel Eliza Griffiths)
Jess Row is the author of White Flights: Race, Fiction, and the American Imagination, as well as the novel Your Face in Mine and the story collections The Train to Lo Wu and ,em>Nobody Ever Gets Lost. White Flights is his first book of nonfiction. One of Granta’s Best of Young American Novelists of 2007, he teaches at the College of New Jersey.
(Photo Credit: Sarah Shatz)
Mira Jacob is the author and illustrator of Good Talk: A Memoir in Conversations. Her critically acclaimed novel The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing was a Barnes & Noble Discover New Writers pick, shortlisted for India’s Tata First Literature Award, and longlisted for the Brooklyn Literary Eagles Prize. She currently teaches at the New School, and she is a founding faculty member of the MFA Program at Randolph College. She is the co-founder of Pete’s Reading Series in Brooklyn, where she spent 13 years bringing literary fiction, nonfiction, and poetry to Williamsburg.
Monique Truong is the Vietnamese American author of The Book of Salt, Bitter in the Mouth, and The Sweetest Fruits. Recipient of a Robert W. Bingham Fellowship, Hodder Fellowship, U.S.-Japan Creative Artists Fellowship, and Guggenheim Fellowship, she is a former refugee, novelist, essayist, lyricist/librettist, avid eater, and retired intellectual property attorney (more or less in this order). She serves as vice president of the Authors Guild and is a member of the Creative Advisory Council for Hedgebrook and Advisory Committee of the Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network (DVAN).
(Photo Credit: Haruka Sakaguichi)
Crystal Hana Kim
Crystal Hana Kim’s novel If You Leave Me was named a best book of 2018 by the Washington Post, Literary Hub, and others. A 2017 PEN America/Dau Short Story Prize winner, she has received scholarships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, Jentel, and more. She is a contributing editor at Apogee Journal.
(Photo Credit: Margarita Coporan)
Marlena Chertock has two books of poetry, Crumb-Sized: Poems and On That One-Way Trip to Mars. She uses her skeletal dysplasia as a bridge to scientific poetry. Marlena is a bisexual poet and serves on the planning committee for OutWrite, Washington, DC’s annual LGBTQ literary festival.
Eileen Cronin’s Mermaid, translated in 3 languages, was one of O Magazine’s Best Memoirs of the Year. She’s held fellowships with Vermont Studio Center and American Psychological Association. She won the Washington Writing Prize in fiction. She's a writing instructor and a psychologist at UCLA.
James Tate Hill
James Tate Hill is the author of Academy Gothic, winner of the Nilse Prize for a First Novel. His work has appeared in Literary Hub, Prairie Schooner, Waxwing, and Hobart, among others. He is the fiction editor for Monkeybicycle and a contributing editor for Lit Hub, where he writes a monthly audiobooks column.
T. K. Dalton
T. K. Dalton's writing has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net and appears in Apogee,The Millions, Southeast Review, Tahoma Literary Review, The Common, Radical Teacher, and elsewhere. He recently completed work on The Intimate Register, a memoir for which he is actively seeking representation. A founding editor of The Deaf Poets Society, a digital journal publishing disability literature and art that will publish its ninth issue this spring, Tim has taught writing at the college level since 2005. He holds an MFA from the University of Oregon and is currently earning a PhD in English at the CUNY Graduate Center.
Katharine Coles’ seven collections of poems include, most recently, Wayward (Red Hen Press, 2019). Poet-in-Residence at the Natural History Museum of Utah and the Salt Lake City Public Library for the Poets House program Field Work, she traveled to Antarctica in 2010 to write poems under the auspices of the National Science Foundation’s Antarctic Artists and Writers Program. She is a Distinguished Professor at the University of Utah, where she is founding co-director of the Utah Symposium in Science and Literature and is currently working with an interdisciplinary team to launch a minor in Dark Skies Studies at Utah. She has received awards from the NEA, the NEH, and the Guggenheim Foundation.
Alison Hawthorne Deming
Alison Hawthorne Deming ’is the Agnese Nelms Haury Chair in Environment and Social Justice and Regents’ Professor at the University of Arizona. Her most recent books are the poetry collection Stairway to Heaven (Penguin, 2016), the essay collection Zoologies: On Animals and the Human Spirit (Milkweed, 2014), and Death Valley: Painted Light, a collaboration with photographer Stephen Strom (George F. Thompson, 2016).
Camille T. Dungy
Camille T. Dungy is the author of the essay collection Guidebook to Relative Strangers: Journeys into Race, Motherhood, and History, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and four collections of poetry, most recently Trophic Cascade. She edited Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry, co-edited the From the Fishouse poetry anthology, and served as assistant editor on Gathering Ground: Celebrating Cave Canem’s First Decade. She was recently the poetry editor for Tin House magazine. Dungy's work has appeared in Best American Poetry, 100 Best African American Poems, Best American Essays, Best American Travel Essays, and nearly 30 other anthologies, plus dozens of print and online venues including Poetry, American Poetry Review, VQR, Literary Hub, Orion, the Paris Review, and Poets.org. Her honors include a 2019 Guggenheim Fellowship, an American Book Award, a Colorado Book Award, two Northern California Book Awards, two NAACP Image Award Nominations, and fellowships from the NEA in both prose and poetry. Dungy has held tenured/tenure-track posts at the college and university level since 1998, and she is currently a full professor in the English Department at Colorado State University. www.camilledungy.com
Cécile Barlier was born in France, and received her master’s degree from the Sorbonne University in Paris. Three of her short, “ A Gypsy’s Book of Revelations, ”,“Forgetting, ” and ”MRI,“ have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. “Forgetting” is featured in Epiphany’s 30th anniversary anthology.Her work is featured or is forthcoming in Amarillo Bay, Bacopa Literary Review (first place for fiction, 2012), Blue Lake Review, Clare Literary Journal, Crack the Spine, Cerise Press, Delmarva Review, Euphony Journal, The Emerson Review, Gold Man Review, Gone Lawn, Knee-Jerk, The Lindenwood Review, The Meadow, New Delta Review, Penmen Review, Red Savina Review, Saint Ann’s Review, Serving House Journal, Sou’wester, StreetLight Magazine, Summerset Review, Sweet Tree Review, The Tower Journal, Valparaiso Fiction Review, The Wax Paper, and Whistling Shade.
Joy Priest’s poems and essays appear in numerous publications. Priest is the winner of the 2019 Gearhart Poetry Prize from The Southeast Review; the 2019 Nikki Giovanni Scholar at the Appalachian Writers’ Workshop; the 2018 Gregory Pardlo Scholar at The Frost Place; the winner of the 2016 College Writers’ Award from the Hurston/Wright Foundation; and the recipient of a 2015 Emerging Artist Award from the Kentucky Arts Council. Additionally, she has received support from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and the University of South Carolina, where she received her MFA in Poetry with a Certificate in Women & Gender Studies and served as senior editor for Yemassee Journal. She is a 2019-2020 Fine Arts Work Center Fellow in Poetry.
Robert Shuster received a 2011 James Jones First Novel Fellowship for To Zenzi when the book was still in progress. His short fiction has appeared in North American Review, Witness, The Mississippi Review, and Stone Canoe (among other publications) and in the anthologies Micro Fiction (W.W. Norton) and Yellow Silk II (Warner Books). His short story, “A Solution to the Barber Paradox,” was the 2014 winner of The Winter Anthology contest. In 2005, he was the recipient of a research fellowship from the American Antiquarian Society for his writings on war. For several years, he wrote art reviews for The Village Voice. Read more at robertshuster.com.
Megan Harlan’s essays have appeared or are forthcoming in AGNI, Colorado Review, Hotel Amerika, Alaska Quarterly Review, Arts & Letters, and Cincinnati Review and have been awarded the Arts & Letters Prize for Creative Nonfiction (2018) and cited as distinguished in Best American Essays 2018. Her first book, Mapmaking (BkMk Press/New Letters), won the John Ciardi Prize for Poetry. She holds a master’s degree from New York University’s Creative Writing Program and works as a writer and editor in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Sarah Broom is a writer whose work has appeared in the New Yorker, New York Times Magazine, Oxford American, and O Magazine, among others. She is the recipient of the National Book Award for Nonfiction and the John Leonard Prize for Best First Book for her memoir, The Yellow House. A native New Orleanian, she received her Master of Journalism from the University of California, Berkeley in 2004. She was awarded a Whiting Foundation Creative Nonfiction Grant in 2016 and was a finalist for the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Creative Nonfiction in 2011. She has also been awarded fellowships at Djerassi Resident Artists Program and The MacDowell Colony. She lives in Harlem.
Edwidge Danticat is the author of Breath, Eyes, Memory, an Oprah Book Club selection;Krik? Krak!, a National Book Award finalist; The Farming of Bones; The Dew Breaker; Create Dangerously; Claire of the Sea Light; the memoir Brother, I'm Dying, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for autobiography; and the story collection Everything Inside, which won the NBCC’s fiction award. She also is the winner of the 2018 Neustadt International Prize and the 2019 St. Louis Literary Award.
Jane Ciabattari is the National Book Critics Circle VP/Online (and a former National Book Critics Circle president), the author of the story collection Stealing the Fire, a regular contributor to BBC Culture and Lit Hub, and a member of the Writers Grotto. She serves on the advisory boards of The Story Prize, Bay Area Book Festival, and Lit Camp, and is a Pushcart Prize contributing editor.
Marion Winik, Moderator
A University of Baltimore professor,Marion Winik serves on the the National Book Critics Circle Board. She is the author of The Big Book of the Dead, winner of the 2019 Towson Prize for Literature. Among her nine other books are New York Times Notable First Comes Love (1996) and Above Us Only Sky (2020). Her essays have been published in The New York Times Magazine, The Sun and elsewhere. A board member of the National Book Critics Circle, she reviews for People, Newsday, The Washington Post, Kirkus Reviews; she hosts The Weekly Reader podcast at WYPR.
A Reading & Conversation with Shira Erlichman, Sumita Chakraborty, and Taylor Johnson, moderated by Cortney Lamar Charleston
Shira Erlichman is a poet, musician, and visual artist. She was born in Israel and immigrated to the US at age six. Her poems explore recovery––of language, of home, of mind––and value the "scattered wholeness" of healing. She earned a BA at Hampshire College and has been awarded the James Merrill Fellowship by the Vermont Studio Center, the Visions of Wellbeing Focus Fellowship at AIR Serenbe, and a residency by the Millay Colony. Her debut poetry book, Odes to Lithium, came out in September 2019. She is the author and illustrator of the picture book Be/Hold.
Cortney Lamar Charleston
Cortney Lamar Charleston is a Cave Canem fellow from the Chicago suburbs. His debut collection, Telepathologies, won the 2016 Saturnalia Books Poetry Prize, selected by D.A. Powell. He began writing and performing poetry as a member of The Excelano Project when he was an undergraduate studying economics and urban studies at the University of Pennsylvania. His poetry is a marriage between art and activism and a call for a more involved and empathetic understanding of the diversity of the human experience. In 2017, Charleston was a recipient of the Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation. He currently serves as poetry editor at The Rumpus.
(Photo Credit: Jeremy Michael Clark)
Sumita Chakrabortyis a poet, essayist, and scholar. Her poems have appeared in Poetry, The Best American Poetry 2019, and elsewhere, and essays have appeared in the Los Angeles Review of Books, Cultural Critique, Modernism/modernity, College Literature. She holds a BA from Wellesley College and a PhD from Emory University. She was the recipient of a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg fellowship from the Poetry Foundation and has been shortlisted for a Forward Prize. Originally from Massachusetts, she now lives in Michigan, where she is the Helen Zell Visiting Professor in Poetry at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.
Taylor Johnson is from Washington, DC. Their poems appear in, or will appear in, The Baffler, Indiana Review, Scalawag, and The Paris Review. They've received fellowships from Cave Canem and the Conversation Literary Festival, among other organizations. Taylor lives in southern Louisiana, where they listen.