2018 Spotlight Readers
Barbara Crooker is the author of eight books of poetry, including Les Fauves (C&R Press, 2017). Radiance, her first book, won the 2005 Word Press First Book Award and was finalist for the Paterson Poetry Prize; Line Dance, her second book, won the Paterson Award for Excellence in Literature. Her writing has received a number of awards, including the WB Yeats Society of New York Award, the Thomas Merton Poetry of the Sacred Award, and three Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Creative Writing Fellowships. Her work appears in a variety of literary journals and anthologies, including Common Wealth: Contemporary Poets on Pennsylvania and The Bedford Introduction to Literature, and has been read on The Writer's Almanac and featured on Ted Kooser's American Life in Poetry. She has been a fellow at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, the Moulin à Nef, Auvillar, France, and The Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Annaghmakerrig, Ireland.
Carmen Giménez Smith is a CantoMundo fellow and the author of a memoir and four poetry collections, including Milk and Filth, a finalist for the 2013 National Book Critics Circle award in poetry. She co-edited Angels of the Americlypse: New Latin@ Writing, an anthology of contemporary Latinx writing (Counterpath Press, 2014), and serves as the publisher of Noemi Press, which has published over 40 full-length collections of poetry and fiction. Her next collection of poems, Cruel Futures, will be a volume in the City Lights Spotlight Series in 2018. Be Recorder will be published by Graywolf Press in 2019. She is Professor of English at Virginia Tech.
Ishion Hutchinson was born in Port Antonio, Jamaica. He is the author of two poetry collections, Far District and House of Lords and Commons. He is the recipient of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Whiting Writers Award, the PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award, a Joseph Brodsky Rome Prize Fellowship and the Larry Levis Prize from the Academy of American Poets, among others. He teaches in the graduate writing program at Cornell University and is a contributing editor to the literary journals The Common and Tongue: A Journal of Writing & Art.
Adrian Matejka was born in Nuremberg, Germany and grew up in California and Indiana. He is a graduate of Indiana University and the MFA program at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He is the author of The Devil's Garden (Alice James Books, 2003) which won the New York / New England Award and Mixology (Penguin, 2009), a winner of the 2008 National Poetry Series. Mixology was also a finalist for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literature. His most recent collection of poems, The Big Smoke (Penguin, 2013), was awarded the 2014 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award. The Big Smoke was also a finalist for the 2013 National Book Award, 2014 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and 2014 Pulitzer Prize in poetry. His new book, Map to the Stars, was released from Penguin in March 2017. Among Matejka's other honors are the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana Authors Award, two grants from the Illinois Arts Council, the Julia Peterkin Award, a Pushcart Prize, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, and a Simon Fellowship from United States Artists. He teaches in the MFA program at Indiana University in Bloomington and is currently working on a new collection of poems, Hearing Damage, and a graphic novel.