Fiction: Afia Atakora for "The Crooked Man"
Afia Atakora is currently earning her MFA at Columbia University. She lives in Avenel, New Jersey, where she is at work on a novel about a reconstruction-era midwife.Poetry: Carolyne Wright for "Sestina: That Mouth..."
Carolyne Wright's most recent book is the anthology, Raising Lilly Ledbetter: Women Poets Occupy the Workspace (Lost Horse Press, 2015). This anthology is the recipient of ten Pushcart Prize nominations and is a finalist in The Foreword Review's Book of the Year Awards. Wright has nine other poetry volumes and five volumes of poetry in translation, and received a Pushcart Prize in 2010. Since 2005, when she returned to her native Seattle, she has taught for the Whidbey Writers Workshop MFA Program and for Richard Hugo House.Nonfiction: Jessica Conoley for "I Am Descended From Giants"
Jessica Conoley was raised on 80's action films, Jem and the Holograms, X-Men, and big-brother-mandated Star Wars. Decades later she started writing fantasy novels, flash fiction, and essays. In 2012, she became the Managing Editor of Kansas City Voices arts and literary magazine. You can read samples of her work here.RUNNER-UP
Fiction: Joseph Saling for "Eva"
Joe Saling's first book of poems, A Matter of Mind, is available from Foothills Publishing. His poetry and stories have appeared widely in such journals as The Raintown Review, The Formalist, The Amherst Review, and The Bacon Review. He lives in Atlanta with his wife Sandy and their dog Yeats. (The New Word Mechanic)Poetry: Leslie Anne Mcilroy for "Big Bang"
Leslie Anne Mcilroy won the 1997 Slipstream Poetry Chapbook Prize for Gravel, the 2001 Word Press Poetry Prize for her full-length collection Rare Space, and the 1997 Chicago Literary Award. Her book, Liquid Like This, was published by Word Press in 2008 and Slag by Main Street Rag Publishing Company. Leslie's poems appear in Grist, Jubilat, The Mississippi Review, PANK, Pearl, Poetry Magazine, The New Ohio Review, The Chiron Review, and more. She is Managing Editor of HEArt -- Human Equity Through Art. Leslie works as a copywriter in Pittsburgh.Nonfiction: Debra Burks Hori for "A Clothesline Meditation"
Debra Burks Hori's work has been published or is forthcoming in This I Believe, Crack the Spine, The Penmen Review, Silver Birch Press, and The Los Angeles Times Health Section. When her husband was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, Debra wrote to comfort herself; she continues her writing to share our universal experience of grief. She is an Educational Therapist in private practice, a parent, and is owned by two cats.