interior banner image

Writer’s Retreat

Support the future

Donate to the Retreat Scholarship Fund today

Writer’s Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices

The Writer’s Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices is the nation’s premier LGBTQ writing residency. It is the only multi-genre writing residency devoted exclusively to emerging LGBTQ writers.

Since 2007, the Writer’s Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices has offered sophisticated instruction in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, young adult fiction, playwriting led by the most talented writers working today. The Retreat is an unparalleled opportunity to develop one’s craft and find community.

Rectangle Red Created with Sketch.
image i
video from youtube

Writer’s Retreat Impact

Since 2007, the Writer’s Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices has provided over 500 emerging writers to write their truth in an exclusively queer space. The experience builds community for life and increases access to publishing opportunities. 

All fellows participate in free public readings in Los Angeles during the Retreat and are invited to be published in Emerge, an annual anthology published by Lambda Literary.

?
416

Emerging writers since have taken part in the retreat since 2011.

?
41

Faculty, including Dorothy Allison, Danez Smith, Andrew Holleran.

?
7

genres, including poetry, young adult fiction, and playwriting

?
5

Anthologies, presenting Retreat Fellows work.

Last Year’s Fellows

Watch the fellows read from their work

How To Apply

Applications for the next Retreat are now closed. Applications will open again in November 2021.

Rectangle Red Created with Sketch.
image i
video from youtube

Fellows & Faculty Directory

loader
loader
loader

You are filtering by

Imani Davis (Poetry - 2019)

Imani Davis is a queer Black miracle from Brooklyn. A Pushcart Prize-nominated poet, they are a recipient of fellowships from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Stadler Center for Literary Arts. Their poetry appears with Rookie, PBS News Hour’s Brief But Spectacular Series, The Adroit Journal, Winter Tangerine, and elsewhere. Notably, they have performed at the Teen Vogue Activism Summit, the Apollo Theater, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Nuyorican Poets Café. They currently study at the University of Pennsylvania, where they serve as Outreach Coordinator for the Kelly Writers House.

J K Chukwu (Young Adult Fiction - 2019)

J K Chukwu is a half Nigerian, half Detroitian writer from the Midwest. Her writing is rooted in examining the strangeness, depravity, and trauma that is contained in everyday life. Currently, she is attending Brown University for her MFA in Fiction. Her audio essay “Love Sounds”, published by A Velvet Giant, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She has presented her writing and art at University of Wisconsin-Madison, National Louis University, UC Berkeley, and the University of Maryland. Her personal essay is forthcoming in the Black Warrior Review.

Jamiece Adams (Fiction - 2019)

Jamiece Adams is a queer writer and high school teacher based in Chicago. She earned her MFA in fiction at Columbia College Chicago. Recently she worked on a multidisciplinary project, Take Care, which examined the roles of intimacy and correspondence; her poem is featured in the limited-edition artist book. Currently, she’s working on a collection of short stories that examines the nature of childhood, friendship, and family by questioning the ways that “home” constructs who we are and who we aren’t. Some of these stories have been published in Hair Trigger, Rabbit: Nonfiction Poetry Journal, The Lindenwood Review, and forthcoming to Hypertext Magazine.

Jazlyn Patricio-Archer (Young Adult Fiction - 2019)

Jazlyn Patricio-Archer is a queer, mixed Filipina from the Bay Area. Jazlyn writes fiction for young queer romantics of color. She believes deeply in writing stories where we get to be happy and alive, brown and queer, all at once. In addition, she is a femme urban farmer, taiko player, and pop music evangelist. Jazlyn is currently at work building a cookware brand that centers on storytelling and product-making around immigrant and indigenous food traditions launching this August.

Jeremy Lybarger (Fiction - 2019)

Jeremy Lybarger is a writer and editor in Chicago. His work has appeared in Rolling Stone, Esquire, The Paris Review, The Nation, The Baffler, Art in America, OUT, Mother Jones, The New Republic, The California Sunday Magazine, and many others. He is the features editor at the Poetry Foundation and a member of the National Book Critics Circle. He is currently working on a novel and a collection of short stories.

Jesús I. Valles (Poetry - 2019)

Jesús I. Valles is a queer Mexican immigrant, educator, storyteller, and performer based in Austin, Texas, originally from Cd. Juarez, México. As an actor and theatremaker, Jesús is the recipient of four B. Iden Payne awards, including Outstanding Original Script and Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama for their autobiographical solo show, (Un)Documents. (Un)Documents was also nominated for five Austin Critics’ Table Awards, including the David Mark Cohen Award for Best New Play. Jesús is a recipient of the 2019 Letras Latinas Scholarship from the Squaw Valley Community of Writers, a poetry fellow at Idyllwild Arts Writers Week, and a recipient of a 2019 Fine Arts Work Center scholarship. Jesús is also a 2018 Undocupoets Fellow, a 2018 Tin House Scholar, a fellow of The 2018 Poetry Incubator, the runner-up in the 2017 Button Poetry Chapbook Contest, and a finalist of the 2016 Write Bloody Poetry Contest. Their work has been published in The Shade Journal, The Texas Review, The New Republic, Palabritas, The Acentos Review, Quarterly West, and The Mississippi Review. Jesús is a proud member of The VORTEX Repertory Company, Shrewd Productions, and executive board member for Teatro Vivo, and has also worked with Scottish Rite Theater, Lucky Chaos, and Glam Fam. Jesús currently teaches social and emotional learning to high school students, focusing on those recently arrived to the U.S.

Joe Baumann (Fiction - 2019)

Joe Baumann’s fiction and essays have appeared in Electric Literature, Electric Spec, On Spec, Barrelhouse, Zone 3, Hawai’i Review, Eleven Eleven, and many others. He is the author of Ivory Children, published in 2013 by Red Bird Chapbooks. He possesses a PhD in English from the University of Louisiana-Lafayette. He currently teaches and directs the creative writing program at St. Charles Community College in Cottleville, Missouri.

John Bavoso (Playwriting - 2019)

John Bavoso is a Washington, DC-based playwright, book and theatre reviewer, marketer, and aspiring wrangler of unicorns. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, a Pinky Swear Productions company member, and the recipient of District of Columbia FY18 and FY19 Arts and Humanities Fellowships. His plays have been produced and/or developed in DC, Virginia, New York, Colorado, Texas, California, Florida, South Carolina, Wisconsin, Washington, Illinois, Maryland, Maine, Massachusetts, and Arizona; Toronto, Canada; and Gold Coast and Sydney, Australia.

John Gregan (Young Adult Fiction - 2019)

John Gregan‘s writing career peaked in the eighth grade, when his crush read one of his short stories and texted him “Haha that was cool.” Since then John has graduated from college, won a queer studies writing contest, and written a novella, but nothing has ever beaten that middle-school high. Still, he remains hopeful for his next project, a YA novel about a trans teenager traveling from Los Angeles to Roswell in search of aliens.

Joseph Cáceres (Fiction - 2019)

Joseph Cáceres is a writer from New York whose work investigates the relationship between language, race, (homo)sexuality, and capitalism in America. His fiction has been published in Slice, Cosmonauts Avenue, and CURA Literary Magazine. He is currently working on a novel.

Joseph Jess Rey (Young Adult Fiction - 2019)

Joseph Jess Rey is a queer Chicano writer, born and raised in Los Angeles. He recently received his B.A. in Literature from UCLA, where he presented about Queer Latinx Characters in YA at the QScholars Research Symposium, as well as a spoken-word piece at UCLA’s first Latino Film Festival. He writes fiction and poetry but is currently working on a poetry collection that focuses on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and race criticism. He plans to contribute many queer stories to the world! Find him talking about Buffy or queer things on twitter @JosephJessRey.

Joshunda Sanders (Fiction - 2019)

Joshunda Sanders is the award-winning author of five books, most recently I Can Write the World, a book for children praised by international bestselling author Jacqueline Woodson as “lovely and timely.” She has won fellowships and scholarships to attend the Martha’s Vineyard Institute for Creative Writing, Hedgebrook and Key West Literary Seminars. In 2018, she won a fiction grant award from the Bronx Council on the Arts. She lives in New York City.

Kay Gabriel (Poetry - 2019)

Kay Gabriel is a poet and essayist. She’s the author of Elegy Department Spring / Candy Sonnets 1 (BOAAT Press, 2017), the finalist for the 2016 BOAAT Chapbook Prize selected by Richard Siken. She’s also a 2018-19 Emerge-Surface-Be Fellow at the Poetry Project and a PhD Candidate at Princeton University. With Andrea Abi-Karam she’s co-editing an anthology of radical trans poetics, forthcoming in 2020 from Nightboat Books. Find her recent work in The Brooklyn Rail, Salvage, The Believer, and Social Text.

Khaliah Peterson-Reed (Young Adult Fiction - 2019)

Khaliah Peterson-Reed is from Newark, New Jersey. She lived in Washington D.C. while she earned her B.A. in English at Howard University. She currently lives in Los Angeles and is a PhD student in English Literature at the University of Southern California. Her work has focused on mental health, specifically the mental health of African American teens and young adults including but not limited to depression, anorexia, and PTSD. In 2016 she won first place in the Tuckson Health Connections 2016 Healing Stories contest for her short story “Jagged Little Girl.” When she isn’t writing, she’s handmaking journals that she’ll never have the time to write in.

j. sebastián alberdi (Playwriting - 2018)

j. sebastián alberdi writes plays & poems about being queer, being mexican, and being brought up in his mother’s catholicism. he runs (pnkprl.com), an erasure e-zine, and his first book of erasures Y ES is available from ghost city press.

Jackie Hedeman (Nonfiction - 2018)

Jackie Hedeman is a Midwesterner and a chocolate chip cookie connoisseur. She received her MFA from The Ohio State University, where she served as Reviews & Interviews Editor of The Journal. Jackie’s nonfiction has appeared in Autostraddle, The Best American Travel Writing 2017, Entropy, The Offing, and elsewhere. When she isn’t writing grants for a Kansas arts nonprofit, Jackie is working on a collection of essays about pop culture, secrecy and subtext, and identity.

Jasmyne Hammonds (Young Adult Fiction - 2018)

Jasmyne Hammonds grew up as a military brat and went to college in Virginia where she studied Creative Writing. She lives in Portland, Oregon and works as a full-time flight attendant. When she’s not daydreaming at 30,000 feet, she enjoys reading and writing fiction about characters from diverse backgrounds. She has contributed to The Flight Attendant Life blog and is currently working on a young adult murder mystery set in the Deep South.

Javier Fuentes (Fiction - 2018)

Javier Fuentes is a Spanish-American writer and educator. He holds an MFA in fiction from Columbia University where he was awarded a Teaching Fellowship. Javier has also taught at The School of Visual Arts. His writing has appeared in the Columbia Journal. He’s currently working on a novel about forced migration.

Jaz Papadopoulos (Poetry - 2018)

Jaz Papadopoulos is an interdisciplinary artist who works in experimental poetry, installation, video and performance. They explore the in-between – that which is overlooked by language and other social and cultural powers – and are interested in diaspora, gender, bodies, place, memory, grief and ritual. Recently, Jaz completed a residency at the Cartae Open School in Winnipeg, Canada, and performed at Documenta 14 in Athens, Greece alongside Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens. They are a current recipient of the New Artist in Media Art Production Fund at Video Pool. Jaz lives in Treaty 1 territory, “Canada.”

JD Scott (Young Adult Fiction - 2018)

JD Scott is a writer, editor, amateur perfumer, and the author of two chapbooks. Recent and forthcoming publications include Best American Experimental Writing, Best New Poets, Denver Quarterly, Prairie Schooner, Salt Hill, Sonora Review, Ninth Letter, Apogee, and elsewhere. Recent accolades include being awarded residencies at the Millay Colony, the Edward F. Albee Foundation, and Writers at the Eyrie, in Brooklyn, NY.

Jennifer Cox (Young Adult Fiction - 2018)

Jennifer Cox recently completed her first novel, an apocalyptic Bildungsroman set in New Hampshire. She graduated from Harvard University with a Master’s in Literature and Creative Writing and is Editor-in-Chief of Pocket Change Magazine (please submit!). She lives in Chicago and balances her love of dark stories with dogs, pop music, independent book stores, and adventures with her fiancée.

Jon Riccio (Poetry - 2018)

Jon Riccio is a PhD candidate at the University of Southern Mississippi’s Center for Writers where he serves as an associate editor at Mississippi Review. His work appears in print or online at Booth, The Cincinnati Review, Cleaver, Hawai’i Review, Permafrost, Switchback, and Waxwing, among others. The poetry editor at Fairy Tale Review and contributing interviewer for Sonora Review, he received his MFA from the University of Arizona.

Kat Evasco (Playwriting - 2018)

Kat Evasco is a theatermaker, writer, and stand up comedian. As a queer Filipina immigrant, Evasco’s work primarily reflects and celebrates the experiences QTPOC and immigrant communities. Evasco is best known for her autobiographical one-woman show, Mommy Queerest, co-written and directed by John Caldon. She has performed at venues including Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Bovard Auditorium, Logan Center, Annenberg Center, and FringeArts. Evasco’s current projects include developing and directing Prieto by written and performed by Yosimar Reyes and directing Locus of Control, a one man show by Jason Bayani. Evasco serves as the Co-Director for Resilience Archives.

Kate Bove (Young Adult Fiction - 2018)

Kate Bove is a New Englander living in the Bay Area, where she completed the University of San Francisco’s MFA program and received the school’s Zivic Fellowship in 2016. Her work has appeared in Exposition Review, Concrete Literary, Emerson Review, and plain china. When not writing, Kate can be found adding another flannel shirt to her closet—or exploring the city, the woods, and everywhere in between.

Kay Ulanday Barrett (2018)

Writer-in-Residence Kay Ulanday Barrett aka @brownroundboi, is a poet, performer, and educator, navigating life as a disabled pilipinx amerikan transgender queer in the U.S. K. has featured globally: Princeton University, UC Berkeley, The Lincoln Center, Queens Museum, The Chicago Historical Society, NY Poetry Festival, Dodge Poetry Foundation, The Hemispheric Institute, & National Queer Arts Festival. They are a 3x Pushcart Prize nominee and has received fellowships from Lambda Literary Review, VONA/Voices, The Home School, and Drunken Boat. Their contributions are found in Asian American Literary Review, PBS News Hour, NYLON, The Margins, RaceForward, Foglifter, The Deaf Poets Society, Poor Magazine, Fusion.net, Trans Bodies/Trans Selves, Winter Tangerine, Apogee, Entropy, Colorlines, Everyday Feminism, Them., The Advocate, and Bitch Magazine. They are currently a Guest Editor at Nat.Brut and 2018 Guest Faculty for The Poetry Foundation & Crescendo Literary. When The Chant Comes (Topside Press, 2016) is their first collection of poetry.

Kirt Ethridge (Young Adult Fiction - 2018)

Kirt Ethridge is a genderqueer/transmasculine writer and science educator living in Southern Indiana. They received a BFA in Creative Writing from the University of Evansville (Indiana) in 2016. They are currently working on a YA novel about trans kids growing up in their hometown of Evansville. Their writing has been published in apt literary magazine, Paper Darts, the Heavy Feather Review’s #notmypresident, and Crab Fat Magazine. When Kirt isn’t writing, they are probably cuddling snakes or helping with their local Trans Support Group.

Ilana Masad (Fiction - 2017)

Ilana Masad is an Israeli-American writer. Her fiction has appeared in the New Yorker, McSweeney’s, Tin House, Printer’s Row, Joyland, and more, while her nonfiction and book criticism have appeared in the Guardian, the Washington Post, the LA Times, Vice, and more. She is the founder and host of The Other Stories, a podcast featuring fiction writers both seasoned and new. She enjoys social media too much for her own liking.

Jane Starr (Poetry - 2017)

When Jane isnt writing the coolest stories you’ll ever read in your entire life, She spends far too much of her time in her apartment piecing together a “career” as a dominatrix/pornographer/sex worker/masseuse. She loves skateboarding and is always covered in bruises. Jane has played bass since she was thirteen in various go nowhere punk bands and is grateful to be alive. She currently resides in Silverlake, Los Angeles.

jayy dodd (Poetry - 2017)

jayy dodd is a blxk question mark from los angeles, california– now based on the internet. they are a professional writer & literary editor. their work has appeared / will appear in Lambda Literary, The Establishment, Assaracus, Winter Tangerine, Guernica, & Yes,Poetry among others. they’re the author of [sugar in the tank] (Pizza Pi Press 2016) & Mannish Tongues (Platypus Press 2017). they are a Pushcart Prize & Bettering American Poetry nominee; their work has been featured in Teen Vogue & Entropy.

Joanna Eng (Young Adult Fiction - 2017)

Joanna Eng is a freelance editor, writer, and web producer based in Yonkers, New York. When she’s not curating newsletters about classical piano music or writing persuasive emails to global news consumers or proofreading 700-page history tomes, she loves to write fiction for all ages featuring characters who don’t fit into neat categories—some of whom happen to be obsessed with plants, and others of whom, well, are plants. She tweets occasional compliments @joannamengland.

Jubi Arriola-Headley (Poetry - 2017)

Jubi Arriola-Headley is a writer, editor, storyteller, and first-generation American born to Bajan (Barbadian) parents. He’s currently working on his first collection of poems. Jubi and his husband divide their time between South Florida and Guatemala, where Jubi hopes to pick up enough Spanish to figure out what his in-laws are saying about him.

Karina Vahitova (Poetry - 2017)

Karina Vahitova is a post-Soviet queer poet and movement artist from Kiev, Ukraine living in New York. She has previously worked with Opportunity Project helping to develop healing art therapy programs for individuals with brain damage. She led and managed the global research and performance art archive project at Marina Abramovic Institute. Currently, she volunteers as a rape and domestic violence crisis counselor with Crime Victims Treatment Center. She is a co-founder of The Void Academy and is working on her first book of lyrical theory about female queerness, totalitarianism, violence, and women in the Soviet Union.

Kate Cochrane (Young Adult Fiction - 2017)

Kate Cochrane lives outside Boston with her wife, two daughters, and badly-behaved chocolate lab. Before becoming a law librarian at one of Boston’s many law schools, Kate was a Division I ice hockey player, a lawyer, and a stay-at-home mom. In the time she can steal from her family, she’s a writer. She was a contributing writer to AfterEllen.com for over four years before moving to Autostraddle.com. Her short story, Dragon Slayer, was published in the Torqued Tales Anthology.

Kay Ulanday Barrett (Poetry - 2017)

Kay Ulanday Barrett aka @brownroundboi, is a poet, performer, and educator, navigating life as a disabled pilipinx amerikan transgender queer in the U.S. K. has featured globally; Princeton University, UC Berkeley, The Lincoln Center, Queens Museum, The Chicago Historical Society, The Guild Complex, The Hemispheric Institute, & The White House. They have received fellowships from The Home School, and Drunken Boat. Contributions are in PBS News Hour, The Margins, Lambda Literary, RaceForward, Foglifter, The Deaf Poets Society, Poor Magazine, Fusion.net, Trans Bodies/Trans Selves, Winter Tangerine, Make/Shift, Buzzfeed, The Huffington Post, The Advocate, and Bitch Magazine. When The Chant Comes is their first collection.

Kayleb Rae Candrilli (Poetry - 2017)

Kayleb Rae Candrilli is author of What Runs Over, forthcoming with YesYes Books and winner of the 2016 Pamet River Prize. They are published or forthcoming in BOAAT Press, Puerto del Sol, Booth, Vinyl, Muzzle, Cream City Review, and others. Candrilli is a Best of the Net winner and a Pushcart Prize nominated poet. They serve as an assistant poetry editor for BOAAT Press and they hold an MFA and an MLIS from the University of Alabama. Candrilli now lives in Philadelphia with their partner.

Kenan Ince (Poetry - 2017)

Kenan Ince is a mathematician, poet, and musician from Denton, TX, living on occupied Shoshone, Paiute, Goshute and Ute territory (so-called Salt Lake City). Their work has appeared in Word Riot, Duende, and Permafrost, among others, and won first prize in the Utah Pride Center Poetry & Prose Writing Contest. They are the recipient of scholarships to the Antioch Writers’ Workshop and Lambda Literary Writers’ Retreat.

James Chaarani (Fiction - 2016)

James Chaarani is a writer and journalist based in Toronto, Canada. He’s written for Slate, The Gay and Lesbian Review, Lambda Literary, The Quietus and Daily Xtra. His first novel, “Paris Demands,” was released last year. He’s working on his second novel based on his column, “Hole and Corner,” for Daily Xtra.

Janelle Fine (Poetry - 2016)

Janelle Fine is a queer poet, artist, and performance artist living in Boulder, Colorado with their leopard gecko named Max. They graduated with their MFA from Naropa University and currently work as a book designer. Their poetry and visual art can be found in various online and in print journals. They are the founder and editor of Le Petit Press and are always turning fellow poets’ and writers’ work into small books and art objects. They have an obsession with matchboxes and miniatures and want to spend the rest of their life handcrafting beautiful things.

Javier Hurtado (Playwriting - 2016)

Javier is a playwright, drag performer and producer. Javier’s performance work has been presented at colleges, clubs, theaters, and on city streets across the Southwest, on the East coast and throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. His plays has been developed and presented at El Teatro Campesino in San Juan Bautista, Brava Theater Center in San Francisco and at AS220 in Providence, RI. His most recent works El Niño and Housewarming had concert readings at The Culver Center for the Arts as part of the Latina/o Play Project in Riverside earlier this year.

Jennifer Hanks (Poetry - 2016)

Jennifer Hanks is the author of Prophet Fever (Hyacinth Girl Press). They were a finalist for Heavy Feather Review’s Double Take Poetry Prize, judged by Dorothea Lasky, and have two chapbooks, gar child (Tree Light Books) and Ghost Skin (Porkbelly Press), forthcoming in 2016. Their poetry and nonfiction appear or are forthcoming in Arcadia, Gigantic Sequins, Bone Bouquet, HOUSEGUEST, and elsewhere. An associate editor for Sundress Publications, they live in New Orleans with their fiancée and tweet @corsetofscales.

Jeremy O’Brian (Playwriting - 2016)

Jeremy O’Brian is a Mississippi native and Master’s candidate in African and African Diaspora Studies at The University of Texas at Austin. His work centers black queer subjects in the south, black family life, and the black everyday. He is a graduate of Tougaloo College where he co-produced his first theatrical production- Tongues Untied: A Compilation of Theatrical Acts on Black Self-Identity. His greatest hope is to create art that will have lasting implications and influences on the way black queer subjects in the south are represented and made visible.

Jonathan Mack (Fiction - 2016)

Jonathan Mack grew up on a family farm in NH, but has spent most of his adult life in India and Japan. He studied writing at Naropa and the School of the Art Institute. His story “The Right Way to Be Crippled & Naked” is the title story of an anthology of fiction about disability forthcoming from Cinco Puntos Press. Other stories and essays have appeared in Quarter After Eight, Green Mountains Review, Eleven Eleven, Epiphany, Zymbol, Gargoyle, Mary, Jonathan, Japanzine, The Tokyo Advocate, and elsewhere. He blogs at Guttersnipe Das.

Joy Ladin (Poetry - 2016)

Joy Ladin is the author of seven books of poetry, including recently-published Impersonation, Lambda Literary Award finalist Transmigration, and Forward Fives award winner Coming to Life. Her memoir of gender transition, Through the Door of Life, was a 2012 National Jewish Book Award finalist. Her poetry has appeared in many publications, including American Poetry Review and she has spoken about gender identity issues around the country, and was featured on NPR’s “On Being” with Krista Tippett and other NPR programs. She holds the David and Ruth Gottesman Chair in English at Stern College of Yeshiva University, and has also taught creative writing at Sarah Lawrence College and the University of Massachusetts (Amherst).

Julia Tranchina (Poetry - 2016)

Julia Tranchina is a writer, poet, and municipal employee. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in places like The Rusty Toque, Bone Bouquet, Monkeybicycle, Permafrost and Juked. She was born, raised, and lives still, in San Jose, California (before it was never cool) with her wife and four-year-old twins.

Juliana Delgado Lopera (Fiction - 2016)

Juliana Delgado Lopera is an award-winning Colombian writer/educator/oral-historian based in San Francisco. The recipient of the 2014 Jackson Literary award, and a finalist of the Clark-Gross Novel award, she’s the author of ¡Cuéntamelo! an illustrated bilingual collection of oral histories by LGBT [email protected] immigrants awarded the Regen Ginaa Grant from Galería de la Raza and a 2014 National Queer Arts Festival Grant from theQueer Cultural Center. She’s the executive director of RADAR Productions.

Kai M. Green (Nonfiction - 2016)

Kai M. Green is a writer, scholar, poet, filmmaker, abolitionist, feminist, and whatever else it takes to make a new and more just world. He is invested in the work of healing and loving Black: he is particularly interested in helping to develop healthy Black masculinities. His work and thinking on queer and trans issues within communities of color has been published widely in prominent journals and anthologies such as TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly, GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies, No Tea, No Shade: New Writings in Black Queer Studies, and many others. Dr. Green is a regular contributor to activist and grassroots publications such as the feministwire.com, everydayfeminism.com. He is also a member of BYP100, Chicago where he sits on the the healing and safety council. Dr. Green earned his Ph.D. in American Studies & Ethnicity from the University of Southern California in 2014.

Karen Yin (Young Adult Fiction - 2016)

Karen Yin is a peace-loving, riot-inciting middle child with one eyebrow permanently arched. An award-winning writer, she alternates between several writing projects about unothering: a fantasy novel from a troll’s point of view, a graphic novel about person-based love, and a collection of short tales about collapsing identities. She received a grant from Table 4 Writers Foundation in 2014 and was a Lambda Literary Foundation fellow in 2015 and 2016. A longtime editor, Karen is the creator of Conscious Style Guide, “the place to go for people words.” She also writes about language style on her oddly popular blog, AP vs. Chicago.

Kate Goka (Young Adult Fiction - 2016)

Kate Goka is a returning Lambda and VONA/ Voices fellow writing YA fiction and graphic novels. A life-long education nerd, Kate was a founding member of June Jordan School for Equity. She lives in Brisbane, California with her wife and three kids.

Katherine Agard (Nonfiction - 2016)

Katherine Agard grew up in Trinidad listening to the stories of her mother growing up in Ghana. She studied Visual and Environmental Studies and Social Anthropology at Harvard, where she focused on some mixture of post-colonial theory, queer studies, religion, painting and filmmaking. Her work moves between fiction, non-fiction, image-making and social practice. She is an alumna of the VONA/Voices and Callaloo Writer’s workshops.

Kathleen Nacozy (Nonfiction - 2016)

Kathleen Nacozy is a writer who focuses on justice. She began working as a journalist while attending law school in small-town Texas. Earning her law degree spurred her to write about criminal justice for dozens of media outlets. She also works as a storyteller and stand-up comedian. Kathleen has performed for Bumbershoot, Gay City, Hella Much, Hollow Earth Radio, the Links and Alliances Conference, and the Northwest Folklife Festival. She is an impassioned student and teacher of improv through a social justice framework.

Keelay Gipson (Playwriting - 2016)

Keelay Gipson is a multi-disciplinary artist including work as an actor, filmmaker, director and award-winning playwright. His play What I Tell You in the Dark was recently selected as a Premiere Stages Playwriting Festival Finalist. His work as a playwright has been seen at the Wild Project, HERE Arts Center, Loft227, 133rd Street Arts Center, The Theater at Alvin Ailey, Tom Noonan’s Paradise Factory, Pace University, SCENE, The University of Houston, The National Black Theater, Rattlestick Playwrights’ Theater and New York Theatre Workshop. He is a playwriting fellow with The Amoralists Theater Company’s ‘Wright Club, a Rising Circle Theater Collective INKTank Semi-Finalist, and a finalist for NYC Department of Cultural Affairs and NYC Administration for Children’s Services Artist in Residence Program. As Co-Artistic Director of The Oneness Project he means to explore questions focusing on social injustice through various performance based mediums.

Imani Sims (Poetry - 2015)

Imani Sims, M.A. is a stiletto loving Seattle native who spun her first performance poem at the age of fourteen. Since then, she has developed an infinitely rippling love for poetry in all of its forms. She believes in the healing power of words and the transformational nuance of the human story. Imani is the founder of Split Six Productions, an interdisciplinary art production company that works towards connecting artists and collecting POC stories for production on stage. Her book Twisted Oak is available on Requiem Press and her second collection Beloved:Collision is available via Amazon.

Isabel Galupo (Genre Fiction - 2015)

Isabel Galupo is a second-generation queer writer living in Brooklyn, NY. She works as an Executive Assistant for the Nick Jr. show Dora and Friends: Into the City and is studying to get her MFA in Writing for Children at The New School. When she’s not writing, you can find Isabel missing her stop on the train because she’s too engrossed in a novel, Facetiming with her four younger sisters, and eating her way through Manhattan with her two lovely roommates.

Jasmine Molina (Genre Fiction - 2015)

Jasmine Molina Reading or writing biographies are dreadful, so please hold on. My life is simple like any other college student’s life I go to school, work, and study. I am majoring in biology to be a soon wildlife veterinarian. My family is the most important part of my life. Writing has recently become part of my daily life even when I am not writing. Life has been challenging now since all I can ever think about is continuing a story or creating new ones while trying to study for another future.

Javier Hurtado (Playwriting - 2015)

Javier is a playwright, drag performer and producer. Javier’s performance work has been presented at colleges, clubs, theaters, and on city streets across the Southwest, on the East coast and throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. His plays has been developed and presented at El Teatro Campesino in San Juan Bautista, Brava Theater Center in San Francisco and at AS220 in Providence, RI. His most recent show, LAST CALL was developed as part of the Teatro Lab residency in 2012. His lives with a spoiled chihuahua that keeps him company while he pursues an MFA in Playwriting at UC Riverside.

Jeanne Thornton (Fiction - 2015)

Jeanne Thornton is the copublisher of Instar Books and Rocksalt Magazine, as well as the author of The Dream of Doctor Bantam (Lambda Literary Award finalist for 2012) and The Black Emerald. She draws the comics Bad Mother and The Man Who Hates Fun, is working on an LA novel about the Beach Boys or reasonable facsimiles thereof, and she lives in New Orleans.

Jeffrey Wolf (Nonfiction - 2015)

Jeffrey Wolf grew up in Boston and attended GWU. He moved to NYC to get his MA in Psychology from The New School just five years after Stonewall, and less than a decade before ‘gay cancer’ began to devastate our community. After a career on Madison Avenue (not as a writer!) Jeffrey relocated to sunny SoCal, where he is now a self-proclaimed Reformed Mad Man. He has published several short stories and was a semi-finalist for The James Kirkwood Award for fiction at UCLA in 2014. Jeffrey is currently working on a memoir, A Very Bad Boy- The Story Of A Gay Baby Boomer Who Lived To Tell His Story.

Jess Pane (Fiction - 2015)

Jess Pane is a bookseller in Brooklyn, NY where she is the letters assistant for The Rumpus’ Letters in the Mail and volunteers for One Teen Story. Jess’ work has appeared on Everyday Genius and forthcoming on the podcast The Other Stories. She’ll be starting an MFA in Fiction in the fall.

Justin Torres (Fiction - 2015)

Justin Torres is author of the best-selling novel We the Animals, which won the VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, and has been translated into fifteen languages. He has published short fiction in The New Yorker, Harper’s, Granta, Tin House, The Washington Post, Glimmer Train, Flaunt, and other publications, as well as non-fiction pieces in publications like The Guardian and The Advocate. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he was a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, a Lambda Literary Fellow, and most recently a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard. The National Book Foundation named him one of 2012’s 5 Under 35. He has been the recipient of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and a Rolón Fellowship in Literature from United States Artists. He has taught at Columbia University, Lesley University’s Low Residency MFA Program, and The Writers’ Foundry MFA Program at St. Joseph’s College. Justin is currently a 2014-2015 Cullman Center Fellow at The New York Public Library.

Karen Yin (Genre Fiction - 2015)

Karen Yin is a peace-loving, riot-inciting middle child with one eyebrow permanently arched. An award-winning writer of short tales and a novel about person-based love, she considers the boxes drawn around us to be curious fictions. Karen received a writing grant from Table 4 Writers Foundation last year and is a 2015 Lambda Literary Foundation fellow. In her life as an editor, she is the creator of Conscious Style Guide, an online resource for kind, empowering, and inclusive language. She writes about language style on AP vs. Chicago and is a columnist for Copyediting newsletter.

Kate Goka (Genre Fiction - 2015)

Kate Goka is a writer and VONA fellow currently working on The Infinity of You, a math-infused, Cyrano de Bergerac-inspired graphic novel love story between two high school girls. Kate is also a married, Queer Asian mom living in the suburbs of San Francisco and can parallel park her old-skool minivan like nobody’s business. If there’s anything she hates with a passion, it’s all those newfangled minivans with their slow-ass automatic doors.

Kayla Rae Candrilli (Nonfiction - 2015)

Kayla Rae Candrilli received a Bachelors and Masters in Creative Writing from Penn State University and is a current MFA candidate at the University of Alabama. Candrilli was awarded first place in Vela Magazine’s non-fiction contest and is featured or forthcoming in the Chattahoochee Review, Puerto del Sol, Dogwood, Pacifica Literary, and others.

Kazim Ali (Poetry - 2015)

Kazim Ali is currently on the faculty of Oberlin College where he is associate professor of Creative Writing and Comparative Literature and the Director of the Creative Writing Program. His volumes of poetry include Sky Ward, winner of the Ohioana Book Award in Poetry, The Far Mosque, The Fortieth Day, and the poetic memoir Bright Felon: Autobiography and Cities which was finalist for the Ohioana Book Award in Poetry, the Lantern Award in Memoir and the Asian American Literary Award. He has also published the novels Quinn’s Passage, named one of the Best Books of 2005 by Chronogram, The Disappearance of Seth and Wind Instrument. He is the author of three collections of essays, Orange Alert: Essays on Poetry, Art and the Architecture of Silence, Resident Alien: On Border Crossing and the Undocumented Divine, and Fasting for Ramadan: Notes from a Spiritual Practice. He is the translator of Water’s Footfall and Oasis of Now: Selected Poems, both by Sohrab Sepehri, as well as the novel L’Amour by Marguerite Duras. He is the founding editor of the small press Nightboat Books as well as the Series Editor for the Poets on Poetry Series from the University of Michigan Press.

Keith Jarrett (Fiction - 2015)

Keith Jarrett lives in London, UK. Former UK poetry slam champion and Rio de Janeiro International Poetry Slam Winner 2014, he writes performance poetry and short fiction and teaches as part of a pioneering Spoken Word Educator programme. He is now working on his first novel, a tale written partly in verse.

Kelly McQuain (Poetry - 2015)

Kelly McQuain’s poems and stories have appeared in Painted Bride Quarterly, Redivider, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Kestrel, The Pinch, Asssaracus, A&U, Kin and Mead, as well as in numerous anthologies: The Queer South, Between: New Gay Poetry, Best American Erotica, Drawn to Marvel: Poems from the Comic Books, and Skin & Ink. His chapbook, VELVET RODEO (2014), won Bloom magazine’s poetry prize and went on to receive two Rainbow Award citations. He has twice received fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. A former comics illustrator, he now hosts Poetdelphia, a literary salon in the City of Brotherly Love where he teaches at Community College of Philadelphia.

Jaime Shearn Coan (Writers in Residence - 2014)

Jaime Shearn Coan is a PhD student in English at The Graduate Center, CUNY and a poet whose work has appeared in publications includingThe Brooklyn Rail, Drunken Boat, The Portland Review, and Troubling the Line: An Anthology of Trans and Genderqueer Poetry. Jaime has received fellowships from Poets House, The Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Tin House Writers Workshop, and the Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts. He was awarded a 2014 Jerome Travel & Study Grant and has a chapbook forthcoming from Argos Books in Spring 2015. (Photo credit: Arnold Adler Photography)

Jan Zivic (Genre Fiction - 2014)

Jan Zivic, a Lambda Literary Fellow, received her Master of Fine Arts from the University of San Francisco in 2012. In 2011 she published a memoir piece in the Porter Gulch Review, and more recently, a short story in Temporary Shelter, Eleven Stories, edited by Karl Soehnlein. In 2007, Jan co-founded vibrantBrains, a cognitive gym and start-up listed in Entrepreneur Magazine’s “100 Brilliant Companies.” She has received the Cable Car Woman of the Year Award, the Maya Angelou Award for Community Leadership from the Center for Excellence at the University of California Medical School, and a Distinguished Alumna Award from the University of California, PA, all for her community philanthropic and volunteer leadership. She currently serves on the Board of Lambda Literary, and is still working on emerging as a published writer…published being the key word here.

Jeffrey Ricker (Fiction - 2014)

Jeffrey Ricker is the author of Detours (2011) and the YA fantasy The Unwanted, both published by Bold Strokes Books. His writing has appeared in the anthologies Foolish Hearts: New Gay Fiction, A Family by Any Other Name, Men of the Mean Streets, and others. A graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, he holds an MFA from the University of British Columbia and lives in St. Louis with his partner and their contrary dachshund.

Jenna Leigh Evans (Fiction - 2014)

Jenna Leigh Evans has been published in In Pieces: an Anthology of Fragmentary Writing; the Outlet, FragLit, theNervous Breakdown, and most recently The Toast. She’s a Barbara Deming grantee, a finalist for the Eludia Award, and a semifinalist for the Black Lawrence Press’s Big Moose Prize. Her debut novel, Prosperity, is slated to be published this summer. She lives in Brooklyn.

Jennie Gruber (Nonfiction - 2014)

Jennie Gruber is a writer, educator, media-maker, queer punk, and true karaoke believer. She holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction Writing from Sarah Lawrence. Her writing has appeared on Vice, Helix Queer Performance Network, Fleshbot, and Gaga Stigmata, in The Believer, AORTA, and Whore! magazines, and in several Cleis Press anthologies. Her workshops and readings have been featured at a variety of venues, including Red Umbrella Diaries, Perverts Put Out, Lesbian Sex Mafia, and the Feminist Porn Conference. In a parallel dimension, she is also an award-winning experimental documentary filmmaker. Born in Northern California, Gruber now lives in Manhattan with a very sweet bear.

John Copenhaver (Genre Fiction - 2014)

John Copenhaver chairs the English department at Flint Hill School, an independent high school outside of Washington, DC. His novel Dodging and Burning placed as a quarterfinalist in the 2010 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. He attended Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference in 2012 and 2013, and Tin House in 2013. In 2011 he was a fellow in genre fiction at the Lambda Writers Retreat. He graduated with his MFA from George Mason, where he edited the literary magazine Phoebe. He has published in regional journals, including Timber Creek Review and The Roanoke Review, and was first runner-up in the F. Scott Fitzgerald Short Story Contest and Narrative Magazine Winter Story Contest, 2014. His blog is called Talking the Walk.

Joseph Osmundson (Nonfiction - 2014)

Joseph Osmundson is a scientist, writer, and educator from rural Washington state. His research focuses on protein structure and function while his writing explores identity and place and sexuality and class and race and all sorts of messy, complicated stuff. His work has been published on Salon, The Feminist Wire, and Gawker, and he will have an essay included in the upcoming anthology The Queer South (Sibling Rivalry Press) due out in the Fall of 2014. He has taught at The New School and Vassar College and is currently a postdoctoral fellow in Systems Biology at New York University.

J S Kuiken (Young Adult Fiction - 2013)

J S Kuiken My mother claims gypsies left me, which is as true as any other story which could be told. Some will say I graduated with an MA in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. Others remain skeptical such riff-raff would be accepted into the UEA’s distinguished program. Rumor has it that I’ve published in The Copperfield Review and Cactus Heart, was a founding editor for Rearrange, and I am completing a fantasy novel (or two), between teaching English, hiking, and having Jaime Lannister feels. You can find me on Twitter, and you should absolutely believe everything I say there.

Jayme Ringleb (Poetry - 2013)

Jayme Ringleb was raised in upstate South Carolina and Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy. He holds a bachelor’s degree with concentrations in English literature, film studies, and philosophy from the University of South Carolina and an MBA from the University of Iowa. He is the recipient of South Carolina’s Archibald Rutledge Award in Poetry and the Miriam McFall Starlin Poetry Prize. Currently, Jayme lives in Eugene, Oregon, where he is an MFA candidate and graduate teaching fellow at the University of Oregon.

Jerome Stueart (Fiction - 2013)

Jerome Stueart is a writer, teacher, performer, marketer who lives now in the Yukon Territory and (soon) Ohio. His fiction has appeared in Geist, Joyland, Fantasy, anthologies QueerWolf, Evolve, and three Tesseracts anthologies of Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy. He’s a graduate of the Clarion Writers Workshop in San Diego (2007). He produced/wrote four radio series for CBCYukon, and his immigration journey was heard round the world on Radio Canada International. He has recently taken his Writing Faith workshop, developed for spiritually-bent writers, on the road to let him experience every city for 13 weeks.

Jessie Nash (Young Adult Fiction - 2013)

Jessie Nash is a British writer, punk-poet, and photographer. He studied BA Creative Writing in London and MA English in the USA, where he also taught undergraduate writing classes. Jessie’s poetry has appeared in publications such as Poetry Express, Luna Negra, Skin to Skin: The Art of the Lesbian, and the Off the Rocks Anthology. His fiction has been published in Glitterwolf, Lunch Ticket, (T)our and Minetta, and his short story ‘Danny’ won the Thompson Prize in the Altogether Now 2012 competition. Jessie has also written reviews and features, worked as a copyeditor, and is a trans man.

Jory Mickelson (Poetry - 2013)

Jory Mickelson was born and raised in rural Montana. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Los Angeles Review, The Adirondack Review, Boxcar Poetry Review, The Cossack Literary Journal, PANK Magazine and other places. He received an Academy of American Poet’s Prize in 2011 while completing his MFA in Poetry at the University of Idaho. His second chapbook Slow Depth, was published in 2012 by Winged City Chapbooks. When not writing, he pages through 1940s magazines, goes trout fishing, and writes letters by hand. He currently lives in Northwest Washington.

Joshua Barton (Fiction - 2013)

Joshua Barton is a writer, journalist, and photographer living in St. Louis, Missouri. His writing has been featured in St. Louis’ LGBT magazine The Vital VOICE and the online queer salon InOurWords: A Salon for Queers & Co. His blog New Amurican Gospels was nominated in 2013 for Best Sex Blog by the River Front Times’ St. Louis Web Awards.

Kristen Arnett (Fiction - 2013)

Kristen Arnett is a Florida native who has spent the past nine years working in libraries. She is a fiction writer with interest in short stories and southern regionalism, female storytelling and new media. Her work on Flannery O’Connor won her the 2012 Howard Fox Senior Thesis award and she was also the recipient of the Barbara Harrell Carson award for English Literature. She interned for Winter With the Writers Literary Festival in 2012, and worked on short fiction with Paula McLain. She has been published in the Rollins Undergraduate Research Journal and in Brushing magazine. She lives in Winter Park, FL with her partner, Emily, and their son, Matthew.

Indira Allegra (Poetry - 2012)

Indira Allegra is a poet and interdisciplinary artist. Her experimental video poem, Blue Covers, has screened at festivals and events both nationally and internationally. Indira has contributed work to Cherokee Writers From the Flint Hills of Oklahoma: An Anthology and Sovereign Erotics: A Collection of Two-Spirit Literature, a winner of the Silver Medal from the Independent Publisher Book Awards and a finalist in 2012 for both the Lambda Literary Award and ForeWord Book of the Year Award. Indira has also contributed to Chicken Skin and Impossible Trees, Rivets Literary Magazine, Wordgathering Journal of Disability Poetry, Make/Shift Magazine and the 2008 Artists Against Rape Chapbook. She has forthcoming work in Konch Magazine. Indira is a 2007 Voices of Our Nation’s Arts alum and 2011 writer for the Intersection of the Arts, Interdisciplinary Writer’s Lab. She is currently working on her first collection of poems entitled Indigo Season.

Jacks McNamara (Nonfiction - 2012)

Jacks McNamara is a genderqueer writer, artist, activist, and healer based in Oakland, California. Co-founder of The Icarus Project, an adventure in mutual aid & radical mental health support, and co-author of Navigating the Space Between Brilliance and Madness, Jacks has facilitated workshops and performed poetry across North America and Europe. Jacks is currently building a somatics practice, making everyone pancakes, and working on finishing their first book. Lung Seed, a collection of poetry, prose, & hybrid experiments inbetween, is due out from Deviant Type Press later this year. Jacks’ life and work are the subject of the documentary film Crooked Beauty.

Jade Brooks (Fiction - 2012)

Jade Brooks is a writer, editor, and activist who lives in Durham, NC. She does work for make/shift magazine, Duke University Press, Southerners on New Ground, and other brave folk here in the South. She comes from the blackberry wilds of Oregon.

Jan Zivic (Fiction - 2012)

Jan Zivic will graduate in the MFA in Writing program at USF in San Francisco this year. A Lambda Literary Fellow in 2011, Jan joined the Board of Trustees of Lambda in 2012. In previous careers Jan taught film and English, sponsored the literary magazine, and directed the musicals at a high school in Pittsburgh, where she is from. She then moved to San Francisco and developed new interests in business and film production. Always a highly active community volunteer, Jan is now focused on her writing and volunteering in the literary community where she hopes to someday actually be a published writer. The two most important women in her life are Lisa Schoonerman, her wife, and her daughter, Jessie.

Jef Blocker (Young Adult Fiction - 2012)

Jef Blocker works as a recruiter for a non-profit and as Store Manager at Bound To Be Read Books in East Atlanta Village. His short fiction, essays, and poetry have won several writing contests. Jef participated in the Perfect Pitch at the 2004 and 2006 Atlanta Film Festivals. He’s a graduate of Orson Scott Card’s 2011 Literary Boot Camp, and was a finalist in the 2012 Erma Bombeck Writing Competition. Jef writes a humor blog at www.CultofJef.com. He’s the 17th biggest Bananarama fan in the world and frequently does his cat’s evil bidding.

Jewelle Gomez (Poetry - 2012)

Jewelle Gomez (Cape Verdean/Ioway/Wampanoag) is a writer and activist. She is the author of seven books including the double Lambda Literary Award-winning, Black lesbian vampire novel, The Gilda Stories. She also wrote the play based on the novel, Bones and Ash, which toured 13 US cities. Her third collection of poetry, Oral Tradition, was also nominated for a Lambda Literary Award.

Her fiction, non-fiction and poetry are included in over one hundred anthologies. She has written essays, literary and film criticism for numerous publications including The Village Voice, MS Magazine, The Advocate, The San Francisco Chronicle, and Black Scholar.

She was a member of the editorial collective of Conditions, an early lesbian/feminist literary journal and was one of the first contributors to On Our Backs, the erotic lesbian journal. She was on the founding board of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD); of the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice and the Open Meadows Foundation.

She’s taught creative writing and popular culture at San Francisco State University, Hunter College (NYC), New College of California, Menlo College as well as the Maui Writers Conference. She most recently taught poetry at the annual Saints & Sinners LGBT Writers Conference in New Orleans.

She sits on the poetry selection committees for the Commonwealth Club of California Book Awards; and for the San Francisco Poet Laureates. She currently serves as President of the San Francisco Public Library Commission.

She’s just finished a new novel, Televised, that’s looking for a home and her new play about James Baldwin premiered at the New Conservatory Theatre Center (San Francisco) in the fall of 2011.

JP Howard (Poetry - 2012)

JP Howard (Juliet P. Howard) is a poet, lawyer, Cave Canem fellow and native New Yorker. JP was a 2011 Cave Canem Fellow-in-Residence at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and a finalist in the 2009-2010 Astraea Lesbian Writers Fund poetry category. Her poems are published or forthcoming in Muzzle Magazine’s “Best of the First Year” print edition, The Mom Egg 2012, Cave Canem Anthology XII: Poems 2008-2009, Connotation Press and OF FIRE, OF IRON by The Hot Poets Collective. She co-founded and runs Women Writers in Bloom Poetry Salon (WWBPS) and blog. WWBPS’ debut poetry Anthology is forthcoming. [Photo by Rachel Eliza Griffith.]

Julian Shendelman (Nonfiction - 2012)

Julian Shendelman is an aspiring memoirist who spends most of his time talking about food, having existential crises, and fixing his hair. Having graduated from Mills College with a degree in Queer Studies in 2011, he now spends his days assembling sandwiches in Philadelphia, journaling extensively, and plotting his return to Oakland to pursue an M.A. in Human Sexuality Studies at SFSU. Julian has published poems in The Walrus, displayed photographs in San Francisco, and screened videos in The Netherlands, Germany, and of course, the Bay Area.

Karman Johnson-Vega (Nonfiction - 2012)

Karman Johnson-Vega is a credentialled Teacher Librarian serving two high schools in California. She spent three decades instructing an award-winning Fine Art and Graphic Design program for high school and college students. She is also a survivor of a violent crime, an experience which informs both her art and her writing. Karman believes she lived in order to tell her story to help others facing similar challenges. She is a recipient of the Wayne Thiebauld Undergraduate Fellowship in Art at University of California Riverside, where she earned a Bachelors degree in studio art and art history. She also holds a Masters Degree in Library Information Science from San Jose State University. She owns a home with her partner, Roz, that they share with a Rottweiller, and three tiny toy poodles.

Kenny Kruse (Fiction - 2012)

Kenny Kruse is a first-generation Utahn from Park City. He is currently getting his MFA at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, where drivers do not use blinkers. He is a classical pianist and avid swimmer and has a rare condition in which his body is unable to conserve water. When not writing postcards, he might be working on his novel, essays, fictions, or poems. His work can be found in Neon, SOFTBLOW, and Artichoke Haircut.

Kevin Brannon (Fiction - 2012)

Kevin Brannon is originally from Little Rock, Arkansas. He moved to New York City in 2002 following two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Estonia. His experiences writing about LGBT communities of faith in Manhattan and the Bronx as a student at the Columbia Journalism School have informed his interest in the intersection of race, religion and sexuality in American culture. These themes have also provided the focus for his studies as an MA candidate in English, also at Columbia. Kevin began work on his first novel in the winter of 2011 after a long hiatus from fiction writing. He is also an avid movie-goer and an unrepentant consumer of crime and suspense fiction.

Kima Jones (Poetry - 2012)

Kima Jones is a poet and writer. Born and raised in Harlem, she writes to honor her grandmothers. Kima is at work on a first collection that is poetry but also fiction, family history and geography. It is a matriarchal line and a witness. Kima is concerned with mother/daughter relationships, the black female body, the family as body, women as a united body, anatomical and spiritual bodies, the ability and disability of the corporeal body and how those bodies inform relationships. Kima is an Afrofuturist and is interested in the body on this planet, in the sea, out to space, other realms, the possibilities of the black female body on other Earths.

Jan Zivic (Fiction - 2011)

Jan Zivic recently published in the Porter Gulch Review and is enrolled in the MFA in Writing program at USF in San Francisco. Involved in independent film production and business, Jan founded vibrantBrains, a start-up recently listed on Entrepreneur Magazine’s “100 Brilliant Companies.” In a previous career Jan taught English and sponsored the literary magazine at a high school in Pittsburgh, where she is from. She has received the Cable Car Woman of the Year Award, the Maya Angelou Award for Community Leadership and a Distinguished Alumna Award from the University of California, PA.

Jill Leininger (Poetry - 2011)

Jill Leininger is a poet, arts administrator, and all-around tinkerer. Her literary scrap pile currently includes: some notes on a play, the beginnings of a few essays, and six handfuls of lines which may or may not become poetry. Past work has been included in Shenandoah, Crab Creek Review, Seattle Review and, most recently, in the Harvard Review Online. “Roof Picnic Skies, New York,” a chapbook of prose poems, will be published by dancing girl press in Fall 2011.

John Boucher (Nonfiction - 2011)

John Boucher started writing in 2005 in HIV+ Writing Workshops sponsored by AIDS Healthcare Foundation, AIDS Project Los Angeles, and the LA Gay & Lesbian Center. His first published piece, “Speaking in Tongues,” appeared in Washburn University’s inscape literary journal, where it won the 2009 Best Nonfiction award. John was a 2009 PEN Center USA Emerging Voice Fellow, and is the recipient of a 2009/2010 Community Access Scholarship to UCLA, where he studied and worked on Dichondra, his collection of humorously dark nonfiction stories. John attended Corcoran College of Art and Design and earned his MFA from Claremont Graduate University. Born in 1962 and raised in Los Angeles, John lives in West Hollywood. (Photo by Don Tinling.)

John Copenhaver (Genre Fiction - 2011)

John Copenhaver is passionate about crime fiction, visual art and artists, and the way that visual media skews our perception of reality. His novel, Dodging and Burning, a quarterfinalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award, is a murder mystery that explores discriminatory attitudes toward homosexuals during the 1940s. He has an MA in literature from Bread Loaf, and a MFA in fiction from GMU. He currently teaches English at a college preparatory school outside DC and blogs.

Johnathan Wilber (Fiction - 2011)

Johnathan Wilber is a novelist from Iowa, now based in New York, and a graduate of the MFA fiction program at Columbia. He is the author of Out, Beelzebub!, available in the Amazon Kindle store. An assistant editor at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and freelance copyeditor, he’s at work on a novel set in the mid-1970s, an adaptation of Stoker’s Dracula, which tells the story of how HIV came to the United States.

Juliet P. Howard (Poetry - 2011)

Juliet P. Howard (JP Howard) is a poet, lawyer, Cave Canem fellow & native New Yorker. JP has been selected as a 2011 Cave Canem Fellow in Residence at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and was a finalist in the Astraea Lesbian Writer’s Fund 2009-2010 poetry category. Her poems are published in Muzzle Magazine, TORCH, Queer Convention: A Chapbook of Fierce and Cave Canem XI 2007 Anthology. She is co-founder of Women Writers in Bloom Poetry Salon & Blog.

July Westhale (Poetry - 2011)

July Westhale is a femme shark/radical-archivist with a weakness for botany & hot air balloons. An archive enthusiast, she has published with academic conferences around the world, focusing on queering normative forms of record keeping. Her poetry has most recently been published in A Sharp Piece of Awesome and Bang Out!. She has forthcoming publications in 580 Split and Generations. A graduate of Mills College, she is currently an MFA candidate at Lesley University. She believes that her story should be told the way she wants it to be, and yours should too.

Katherine V. Forrest (Genre Fiction - 2011)

Katherine V. Forrest, a recipient of the Lambda Literary Foundation’s Pioneer Award, is the internationally recognized author of 15 works of fiction including, Curious Wine, Daughters of a Coral Dawn, and the Kate Delafield mystery series–which has won three Lambda Literary Awards. She has edited numerous anthologies, and her stories, articles and reviews have appeared in publications worldwide. Senior editor at the storied Naiad Press for a decade, she is supervising editor at Spinsters Ink and editor at large at Bella Books. She lives with her partner in the Southern California desert.

Kathy Bougher (Nonfiction - 2011)

Kathy Bougher is an educator, progressive lesbian feminist activist and writer living in Denver, Colorado. She taught immigrant student in public schools for thirty years, and now teaches at the University of Colorado Denver. She is active in the immigrant rights movement in Denver, and travels to Mexico and Central America frequently where she writes about immigration and collaborates with feminist and lesbian groups in El Salvador. Her writing appears in off our backs: feminist newsjournal, Poetalk, and make/shift.


Subscribe to our newsletter