Hanif Abdurraqib writes poems when he is not sitting in his Columbus, Ohio apartment eating red velvet cake, or judgmentally thumbing through your record collection. His first collection of poems, Three Crosses, was released in December 2012, and his second collection, Sons of Noah, is forthcoming from Tired Hearts Press in 2014. He wants you to tell him your top 5 albums of all time.
Raul Alvarez lives and writes in Chicago. He received an MFA in creative writing from Columbia College, and his work has been featured in PANK, Elimae, Court Green, Ghost Proposal, and elsewhere. You can find more of his writing at raulrafaelalvarez.com.
Desiree Bailey hails from Trinidad & Tobago and Queens, NY. She has received fellowships from Princeton in Africa, The Norman Mailer Center and Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop and is a recipient of the Poets & Writers 2013 Amy Award. She is currently the fiction editor at Kinfolks Quarterly and an MFA Fiction candidate at Brown University.
Stacey Balkun’s work has appeared or will appear in Stone Highway Review, Los Angeles Review, THRUSH, Bodega, and others. The 2013 recipient of the C.G. Hanzlicek Poetry Writing Fellowship, Stacey served as Artist-in-Residence at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the summer of 2013. Her chapbook,
Eppur Si Muove, was selected as a Finalist for the 2014 Sunken Garden Poetry Prize.
Krysten Hill is originally from Kansas City, MO, and currently lives and teaches in Boston, MA. She received her MFA from UMass Boston. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in PANK, apt, Amethyst Arsenic, ROAR, and Write on the DOT.
Irène Mathieu is a writer and medical student at Vanderbilt University. Before medical school, she studied International Relations at the College of William and Mary and completed a Fulbright Fellowship in the Dominican Republic. Irène’s poetry, prose, and photography can be found in a diverse array of publications, including The Caribbean Writer, The Meadowland Review, Sole Literary Journal, Protest Poems, the Lindenwood Review, Muzzle Magazine, Magnapoets, Damselfly Press, Hinchas de Poesia, OVS Magazine, qarrtsiluni, Tabula Rasa, Extract(s), So to Speak, Diverse Voices Quarterly, Journal of General Internal Medicine, Love Insha'Allah, and more. Her poetry chapbook entitled the galaxy of origins is forthcoming in 2014 from Dancing Girl Press. She plans to pursue a career in community-engaged primary care, global health policy, and creative writing. You can read her blog.
Isaac Ginsberg Miller is a Writer-in-Residence with InsideOut Literary Arts Project and an Artist in Residence with Detroit Future Schools. He has also taught with Youth Speaks and the James and Grace Lee Boggs School. Originally from California, Isaac graduated from UC Berkeley with degrees in Ethnic Studies and Interdisciplinary Studies and received the Judith Lee Stronach Baccalaureate Prize. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The Collagist, Midwestern Gothic, English Journal, and the anthology Uncommon Core: Contemporary Poems for Learning and Living.
Gala Mukomolova received her MFA from the Helen Zell Writers' Program. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in a variety of journals/sites including the Indiana Review, Drunken Boat, and PANK. She has resided at the Vermont Studio Center, the Pink Door Retreat, and Six Points Fellowship: ASYLUM International Jewish Artist Retreat. Nowadays, she impersonates an astrologer for The Hairpin and practices slicing deli meat as thin as she can.
Nikki lives in places in and around New York City where she writes poems, studies trees and works at The Museum of Natural History. She reads everything. Poems appear in PoetsArtists Magazine, egg poetry and are forthcoming in several places. She has recently been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She also lives online at www.iwriteasnikki.com.
Sam Sax is an MFA candidate at the Michener Center for Writers. He’s the two-time Oakland Grand Slam Champion and the two-time Bay Area Unified Grand Slam Champion.Sam is a recipient of The 2013 Acker Award for Poetry and has recently been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He is the co-founder of the New Sh!t Show, a reading series currently running in San Francisco, Boston, Austin, and Minneapolis. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in: Anti-, The Boxcar Poetry Review, The Journal, Rattle, The Evergreen Review, Gertrude, Muzzle, PANK, and other journals. His new chapbook A Guide to Undressing Your Monsters will be released through Button Poetry this year.
Caitlin Scarano is an incoming poet in the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee PhD creative writing program. She is the recent winner of the A Room of Her Own Foundation's Spring 2014 Orlando Prize for Flash Fiction. Her work is forthcoming in Banango Street and Indiana Review.
Miles Walser is the author of the full-length collection of poetry What the Night Demands, released on Write Bloody Press in 2013. His work has appeared in literary journals Vinyl, Used Furniture Review, Radius,
and The Bakery, as well as the audio podcast IndieFeed. He currently lives in Brooklyn, New York. For more information visit www.mileswalser.com.
L. Lamar Wilson is the author of Sacrilegion (2013), the 2012 selection for the Carolina Wren Press Poetry Series, a 2013 Independent Publishers Group bronze medalist, and a 2013 Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry finalist, and is a co-author of Prime (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2014), a collection of poems and interviews with the Phantastique Five. Individual poems have been published in jubilat, Rattle, Connotation Press Online and elsewhere; have won the Beau Boudreaux Poetry Prize; and have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. Wilson, a Cave Canem and Callaloo Fellow, holds an MFA from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and is completing a doctorate in African American and multiethnic American poetics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Visit him at llamarwilson.com.
Jenna Brager is an artist and PhD student in Gender Studies who writes and draws about ghosts, monsters, queers, and selfies. Like Jay-Z, JB is a Sagittarius.
Karli Henneman was born in Idaho. She spent her teenage years working internationally in the fashion industry, before attending Parsons and receiving her BFA in Fine Art. After graduating from school she created an art workshop for children in Rwanda, with Rwanda Works. Upon her arrival back to the United States, Karli relocated to San Francisco, where she spent several years before returning to New York to study art therapy at NYU. This element of her life merged art making along with her study of psychology. Karli’s current body of work embodies conceptual ideas of self-perception and identity. She pulls images from fashion magazines and vintage images from LIFE and collages them upon her abstract paintings. By deconstructing mass produced faces, she intends to create masks for the viewer to find themselves in her work.
Lena Klyukina is a drawing artist from Vilnius, Lithuania. Her works aim to erase the line between real and the unknown, while monochrome pictures leave plenty of space to the viewer's imagination. Inspiration is drawn from music, long walks in the forest, bicycle rides and all the random things around put together. There is something absurd, chaotic and instinctive about it and the process, when you know it could be real, but it's not really there.
To Jon Mann, art is therapy. Rather than offering his interpretation and commentary on the outside world, his work displays the imagery in his mind: his more subconscious perception of things. The first step in realizing these internal images is finding matching photographic reference material, which Jon takes everywhere he goes: pictures of architecture, random items off the street, and models. He begins to layer the traces of these images, confusing his own perception of them, leading to a focal point within the chaos. Using brightly colored pencils on paper, he distorts the real images to match his internal ones. At the risk of self-psychoanalysis, Jon prefers not to discuss his own work, leaving the interpretation to his viewer. Jon was born in Columbus, OH, and has studied art at the University of Cincinnati DAAP and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He has recently moved to New York City to further pursue his art.
V.A. Smith is a writer and photographer who feels lucky to live and work in Portsmouth, NH. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Compose Journal, Driftwood Press, Connotation Press, Scissors & Spackle, Petrichor Review, Temenos Journal, Stirring, and Paper Tape. She can be reached at vixworx.com.