Best of the Net 2015  


Gabrielle Bates is a Southern poet and writer living in Seattle, where she serves as coordinating editor of The Seattle Review, Twitter editor of Broadsided Press, and works toward her MFA in poetry at the University of Washington. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee, an Indiana Review Poetry Prize finalist, and the winner of Gigantic Sequins' Poetry Comic Contest. Her poems appear in Southern Humanities Review, Rattle, Guernica, The Journal, and Radar Poetry, among other journals. She can be found online at or on Twitter (@GabrielleBates).

Liz Breazeale holds an MFA in creative writing from Bowling Green State University, where she worked as a staff editor for the Mid-American Review. She currently lives in Bowling Green, Ohio, and is a content editor for Blue Monday Review. Her work is forthcoming or has appeared in The Sycamore Review, Fence, Passages North, Carolina Quarterly, Booth, Tupelo Quarterly, and others.

Anne Champion is the author of Reluctant Mistress (Gold Wake Press, 2013) and The Dark Length Home (Noctuary Press, 2017). Her poems have appeared in Verse Daily, Prairie Schooner, The Pinch, Pank Magazine, Thrush Poetry Journal, Redivider, New South, and elsewhere. She was a recipient of the Academy of American Poet's Prize, a recipient of the Barbara Deming Memorial grant, a Pushcart Prize nominee, a St. Botolph Emerging Writer's Grant nominee, and a Squaw Valley Community of Writers Poetry Workshop participant. She holds degrees in Behavioral Psychology and Creative Writing from Western Michigan University and received her MFA in Poetry from Emerson College. She currently teaches writing and literature at Wheelock College in Boston, MA. She can be found online at

Chen Chen is the author of the chapbooks Set the Garden on Fire (Porkbelly Press) and Kissing the Sphinx (Two of Cups Press). His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Poetry, The Massachusetts Review, Indiana Review, Gulf Coast, The Best American Poetry, and other places. He has received scholarships and fellowships from Kundiman, the Saltonstall Foundation, Tent: Creative Writing, and Lambda Literary. In 2015, he was a finalist for the Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowships. He holds an MFA from Syracuse University and is pursuing a PhD in English and Creative Writing at Texas Tech University. Visit him at

Most recently a finalist for the 2016 University of Wisconsin Press's Brittingham and Pollack Book Prizes, Melissa Cundieff-Pexa received an MFA from Vanderbilt. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in journals such as Superstition Review, The Adroit Journal, Linebreak, Mid-American, Tupelo Quarterly, Bat City, Phantom Limb, Iron Horse Literary Review, Diagram, among others. The recipient of an Academy of American Poets Prize, she's the author of a chapbook, Futures with Your Ghost. Currently a PhD student at Oklahoma State University, she lives in Stillwater, OK with her family.

Sarah Domet is the author The Guineveres (Flatiron Books, forthcoming October 2016). Her short work has appeared in numerous journals, including Burrow Press Review, Beloit Fiction Journal, Potomac Review, Blue Stem, New Delta Review, Juked, and other places. She lives in Savannah, Georgia.

Claudia Emerson passed away on December 4, 2014, a victim of cancer. Her books, Pharaoh, Pharaoh, Pinion, An Elegy, Late Wife, Figure Studies, and Secure the Shadow were published as part of LSU's Southern Messenger Poets series. LSU has also published two posthumous collections, Impossible Bottle and The Opposite House. Late Wife won the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for poetry. Emerson's awards included fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, a Witter Bynner fellow and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

Katherine Frain is a sophomore at Princeton University and incredibly proud to be a poetry editor for The Blueshift Journal. She studies English, creative writing, and applied transfiguration, and has a slightly unhealthy addiction to cooking blogs and the Oxford comma. Her work can also be found in Sugared Water and The Journal.

Jacqui Germain is a freelance writer, Pushcart Prize nominated poet, and Callaloo Fellow based in St. Louis, MO. Her essays and poems have either appeared or are forthcoming in Muzzle Magazine, The Offing, Construction Lit, The Nation, and elsewhere. Her work is focused on historical and contemporary iterations of black, brown and indigenous resistance. She is also the author of When the Ghosts Come Ashore, a poetry chapbook published by Button Poetry/Exploding Pinecone Press (2016).

Jennifer Givhan is a Mexican-American poet from the Southwestern desert. Her full-length collection Landscape with Headless Mama won the 2015 Pleiades Editors' Prize (forthcoming September 2016). Her honors include an NEA Fellowship, a PEN/Rosenthal Emerging Voices Fellowship, The Frost Place Latin@ Scholarship, The 2016 Lascaux Review Editors' Choice Prize, The Pinch Poetry Prize, the DASH Poetry Prize, 2nd Place in Blue Mesa Review's 2014 Poetry Prize, and her work has been nominated four times for a Pushcart. She has appeared or is fo'rthcoming in Best New Poets 2013, AGNI, TriQuarterly, Crazyhorse, Blackbird, The Kenyon Review, Rattle, and Southern Humanities Review (finalist for the 2015 Auburn Witness Prize). She is Poetry Editor at Tinderbox Poetry Journal and teaches at Western New Mexico University and The Poetry Barn.

Jesse Goolsby is the author of the novel I'd Walk with My Friends If I Could Find Them (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt). His fiction and personal essays have appeared widely, including EPOCH, the Kenyon Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Salon, and Pleiades. He earned his PhD in English from Florida State University.

Rachel Eliza Griffiths is a poet and visual artist. Her most recent collection, Lighting the Shadow, was published by Four Way Books in 2015. Griffiths' literary and visual work has appeared widely, including The New York Times, Poets & Writers, Guernica, Lit Hub, American PEN Center, ESPNW, The Writer's Chronicle, and many others. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Rachel Michelle Hanson recently completed her PhD in Nonfiction at the University of Missouri and holds an MFA from the University of Utah. Her work can be found or is forthcoming in The Iowa Review, American Literary Review, The Minnesota Review, Creative Nonfiction, Storyscape, and other literary journals.

Kirun Kapur is the winner of the Arts & Letters Rumi Prize in Poetry and the Antivenom Poetry Award for her first book, Visiting Indira Gandhi's Palmist. Her work has appeared in AGNI, Poetry International, FIELD, Blackbird and many other journals. She is director of the Boston-area arts program The Tannery Series and serves as poetry editor at The Drum Literary Magazine. You can find her

Megan Kerns's essays and poetry have appeared or are forthcoming in Southern Humanities Review, Yemassee, The Pinch, The Rumpus, and Hawaii Pacific Review. Her essay, "This Is East Tennessee Punk Rock," was a finalist in Yemassee's 2015 Inaugural Non-Fiction Contest. She holds an MFA in nonfiction from The Ohio State University, where she is currently a Senior Lecturer in the English Department. She lives in Columbus, Ohio.

In 2005 award-winning publisher Flippedeye launched its pamphlet series with Nick Makoha's debut The Lost Collection of an Invisible Man. Part of Nick's soon to be published first full collection The Kingdom Of Gravity is in the anthology Seven New Generation African Poets (Slapering Hol Press). He won the 2015 Brunel African Poetry prize, represented Uganda at Poetry Parnassus as part of the Cultural Olympiad held in London, and his one-man-show My Father & Other Superheroes is currently on tour. His poems appeared in The Poetry Review, Rialto, The Triquarterly Review, One Throne, and the Boston Review.

Sandra Meek is the author of five books of poems, An Ecology of Elsewhere (Persea Books, May 2016), Road Scatter (Persea Books, 2012), Biogeography, winner of the Dorset Prize (Tupelo 2008), Burn (2005), and Nomadic Foundations (2002). She also edited an anthology, Deep Travel: Contemporary American Poets Abroad (Ninebark 2007), which was awarded a 2008 Independent Publisher Book Award Gold Medal. Her poems have appeared in The Kenyon Review, Poetry, The American Poetry Review, Conjunctions, Agni, Prairie Schooner, and The Iowa Review, among others. A recipient of a 2011 National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Poetry and the 2015 Lucille Medwick Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, she has twice been awarded Georgia Author of the Year, in 2006 for Burn, and in 2003 for Nomadic Foundations, which also was awarded the Peace Corps Writers Award in Poetry. Meek served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Manyana, Botswana, 1989-1991. She is a co-founding editor of Ninebark Press, director of the Georgia Poetry Circuit, poetry editor of the Phi Kappa Phi Forum, and Dana Professor of English, Rhetoric, and Writing at Berry College. Visit her at

Jennifer Moore is the author of The Veronica Maneuver (University of Akron Press), selected by Mary Biddinger as the Editor's Choice for the 2014 Akron Series in Poetry. Poems have appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Best New Poets, B O D Y, The Volta, and elsewhere. A native of the Seattle area, she is an assistant professor of creative writing at Ohio Northern University and lives in Bowling Green, Ohio.

Harmony Neal was the 2011-2013 Fiction Fellow at Emory University. Her essays and stories have been published in Eleven Eleven, Psychopomp, Gulf Coast, Nashville Review, The Gettysburg Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, New Letters, Grist, Paper Darts, storySouth, and The Toast, among others. As a powerful witch, she spends her spare time avoiding false nonchalance, playing with her dog, Milkshake, and growing poets in her home. She "manages" the awesome band The Favourite Child. You can check them out on facebook or listen to them for free here.

Meg Thompson lives and writes in Cleveland, Ohio. A finalist for this year's Key West Literary Seminar Emerging Writer Awards, her work has appeared in DIAGRAM, Hawaii Pacific Review, Hayden's Ferry Review, The Journal, LUMINA, and McSweeney's. She is the author of the poetry chapbook, Farmer (Kattywompus Press, 2015).

Eric Tran is a medical student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and received his MFA from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. He is the winner of the 2015 Matt Clark Prize in Prose from New Delta Review and the author of the chapbook Affairs with Men in Suits (Backbone Press). His work appears or is forthcoming in Indiana Review, Collagist, Diagram, and elsewhere. For more, visit

Kimi Traube completed her MFA in Fiction and Literary Translation at Columbia in 2014. Her translations have been featured in Bomb Magazine, Powderkeg, Asymptote, and the Bridge Series at McNally Jackson. Her recent translation of Juan Villoro's collection The Guilty has garnered praise from the NYTimes and the LA Times, and 3 Percent. Her short prose has appeared in Catch & Release and Print Oriented Bastards. She is currently completing a novel in prose poems titled After Any Number of Things, What's One Thing More?.

Chelsea Laine Wells has been published by Third Point Press, Hobart, Witch Craft Magazine, The Other Stories, PANK, Change Seven, The Butter, and Heavy Feather, among others, and has work forthcoming from Knee-Jerk and the Spring 2016 issue of Hypertrophic Literary. She is managing and fiction editor of Hypertext Magazine and founding editor of Hypernova Lit and works as a high school creative writing teacher and librarian at in Dallas, TX. Her work is represented by Maria Massie of Lippincott Massie McQuilken. Follow her on Twitter at @chelsea_l_w and find out more about her at