We are so excited to announce the release of Juliana Chang’s Inheritance, a Vella Chapbook Co-Winner, and the first of six titles to be released from our lineup selected from our 2020 contests. The book may be ordered here or under the Books menu, in case you’re looking for some other new reads to pick up.

Juliana Chang’s Inheritance tells a deeply moving tale of immigration, love, and family, in poems taut with a longing that spans oceans, and decades, and generations. “Dear god,” Chang’s speaker pleads at one point, “give us a new story,” and in these poems, lucky for us, she has written exactly that. This is a soulful, serious debut.

           —Patrick Phillips, author of Elegy for a Broken Machine

This admirable debut volume of poems speaks to the many complex legacies of the immigrant psyche: those of language, of longing, of unspoken traumas and unlikely joys. These vivid tableaus, ranging from girlhood to womanhood, reveal a young writer of great empathy and discernment, and invite us to join in the redemptive act of wonderment. 

 —Chang-rae Lee, author of Native Speaker

We have another two titles that are most of the way through production, so keep an eye out for more books coming soon!

We are so excited to announce the release of Amanda Hope’s The Museum of Resentments, a Debut Series Co-Winner and the fifth book to be released from our lineup selected from our 2019 contests. The book may be ordered here or under the Books menu, in case you’re looking for some other new reads to pick up.

This collection received the following praise:

“‘I am good at affliction,’ writes Amanda Hope, ‘and sky.’ This is true. The poems in The Museum of Resentments offer lament and potent imagery in surprising and insightful pairings. Hope’s portraits of domestic disintegration and its aftermath are sometimes confrontational, sometimes self-deprecating, sometimes tender, sometimes stark, and always stylish and compelling.”
—Natalie Shapero”
“Amanda Hope writes, ‘Listen: I am going to hide myself in this poem/ in the heart of it, and maybe someone (you) / will find me’ which best describes her notable debut collection. Hope is a master of metaphor and simile which she employs to create a meta-experience for the reader and meanwhile she’s ‘ignoring for the sake of metaphor…’. Yes, she is hiding behind her own truth-spinning which is nothing short of human. I encourage you to find her!”
We have one last title to be release this season, and are looking forward to naming the finalists and winners of the 2020 contests!

We are so pleased to announce the release of Melissa Fite Johnson’s A Crooked Door Cut into the Sky, now available for order! You can purchase a copy here, or over under the books menu, where you may find a few other titles you’d like to pick up.

Her poems received the following praise:

“A Crooked Door Cut into the Sky is shot through with loss, with the ways our bodies fail us, and with what we can’t—or don’t say. The speakers are daughters, wives, not-mothers, and they occupy domestic spaces in which “nothing is missing.” Indeed, everything is present in Melissa Fite Johnson’s elegiac collection, even the empty spaces: a remembered father, the children not to be born, the past that is at once long-gone and not gone at all.”

Maggie Smith, author of Good Bones

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“Melissa Fite Johnson’s A Crooked Door Cut into the Sky is like a poetry photo album where poems appear like perfect snapshots of a life being lived. Johnson’s poems question “what it means to be human”—what we hold onto and what we let go. The narrative beauty of these poems lead us into a garden where  branches “quilt patterns into the sky”—the possibility of becoming a parent and the experience of losing one. This
chapbook grounds us in the past and present and connects the two worlds—leaving me thankful for this poet who opens the door for us to walk into her poems and join her.

Kelli Russell Agodon, author of Hourglass Museum

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This is the first of our 2017 winners to be ready, with four more to follow (and one likely within the next week or two).

If you think you have a manuscript we might love, our annual contest begins February 15th — that is just a little over ONE WEEK. You can find all the details you need at our Submittable once it’s open, or elsewhere on our website. We can’t wait to start thinking about what amazing works we’ll get to read soon!


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