Welcome to the Bull Pen, where each week we round up good news, including links to new poems, essays, and stories from the literary citizens of the larger Bull City!  —Noah Stetzer


There are people who think the life of a writer is lonely. But I don’t think one has to be isolated to be an artist. Though I love to be alone. The empty field out there that’s not empty at all. The maple sapling naked in its shaking. To be able to isolate yourself completely from others, if you choose, is a privilege, 

Ada Limón in her post “To What Do We Owe This Pleasure: On the Value of Not Writing.” 

Rachel Richardson

Rachel Richardson

“There was a girl who heard it happen: Amelia Earhart calling on the radio” begins Inch #25 contributor Rachel Richardson’s “Transmissions” chosen by Natasha Trethewey to appear in the New York Times Magazine.

Philip Schaefer, finalist for the Frost Place Chapbook Competition, has a poem, “Remedial Sunburst” posted at Thrush Poetry Journal.

Ploughshares features Inch #9 contributor Shane Jones’ short story “Off Days” published at The Adroit Journal as its #BestShortStory.

BCP friend Keith Leonard, whose forthcoming book is Ramshackle Ode (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), has poems and an interview featured at Vinyl Poetry & Prose.

“We’re writing because the wind is warm this morning, and mist is lifting itself up from the river” Katie Condon, another friend of the Bull City, pens an essay “Doubting Narcissism” for Grist Journal.

“Letter to Larry Levis” and “The Dead Letter Office” by Bull City alum, Matthew Olzmann are featured at Thrush Poetry Journal.

“I’m not sure what I’d do without the beautiful torture of writing a poem.” The Huffington Post publishes “Blossoming Mall Flower: An Interview with Tina Barry,” contributor to Inch #19.

CZl5h5gUsAAY6DtOur 2015 Frost Place Chapbook Contest winner, Anders Carson-Wee (Dynamite) has new work featured in the latest issue of Gulf Coast.

Congratulations go out to all the finalists for the Kingsley and Kate Tufts Awards announced in the LA Times.

“this isn’t a mouth full of the names of odd flowers,” Jamaal May, contributor to Another & Another: An Anthology from the Grind Daily Writing Series, has work featured on Poem-a-Day.

The PEN Book Report asks Gabrielle Calvocoressi to share a list of books she turns to over and over again, ones that both inspire and challenge how she engages with the world.

The upcoming 2016 releases expected from Yes Yes Books look awesome!

“The symbol existed long before its name. In the cursive scripts of ancient scholars, the letters of Latin’s et grew together, a miniature vineyard.” The 27th Letter by .

Aimee Nezhukumatathil

Aimee Nezhukumatathil

“Through wing, through vein and brittle wrist bone, how I kissed and moved with you still remain. After all this time you’d think I’d forget—already the sounds of a lost coin or click of a locket clasp I can’t recall, the first notes of an ice cream truck on your street: gone.” Aimee Nezhukumatathil’s, contributor to Inch #3, “Notes on the Invisible Kiss” at Guernica.

Inch #10 contributor, Muriel Nelson’s poem, “Semele to Zeus” is included in issue 70 of the Cortland Review.

Diode Editions announces their winners and finalists for their chapbook competition. Anders Carlson-Wee’s (Dynamite) and brother Kai Carlson-Wee’s chapbook Mercy Songs has been selected along with winners sam sax and Vandana Khanna.  Congratulations!

Kelly Fordon, participant in The Daily Grind Writing Series, talks at The Chapbook Interview about the perfect vehicle for preoccupations: the chapbook.

I meditate. I like the idea of emptying your mind, of “What am I? Don’t know.” I tend to view my life as an accident, almost as a dream. When I meditate, I think, no, you have a lot to do with it. And I’m reading Volume 2 of the Elena Ferrante series. It’s molten.

“How Eileen Myles, Poet, Spends Her Sundays”


NOW: Cave Canem is seeking applicants for internships that provide students and life-long learners with opportunities to gain knowledge of the ins-and-outs of arts administration and become better acquainted with the thriving literary scene of New York City and beyond. APPLY.

NOW: For an upcoming issue, Creative Nonfiction is seeking new essays about LEARNING FROM NATURE. The Biomimicry Center at Arizona State University will award $5,000 for best essay, and Creative Nonfiction editors will award $1,000 for runner-up. All essays will be considered for publication in a special “Learning from Nature” issue of the magazine to be published in fall 2016. Deadline February 1.

NOW: Orison Books accepts submissions of full-length poetry (60 – 100 pp.) and fiction (minimum 30,000 words) manuscripts for consideration for The Orison Prizes in Poetry & Fiction. Deadline February 15.

NOW: The Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference is accepting applications for this summer’s conference scheduled to run August 10 until August 20. APPLY. Deadline March 1.

NOW: The Sewanee Writers’s Conference begins to accept applications on January 15 for this summer’s conference scheduled to run from July 19 until July 31. APPLY.

NOW: U of A Press, CantoMundo Establish Poetry Prize. The $1,000 prize will be awarded to a book of poetry by a contemporary U.S.-based Latina/o poet. The University of Arkansas Press will publish the book. Deadline April 15.

NOW: 2016 New Women’s Voices Series Chapbook Competitionfrom Finishing Line Press, awards a prize of $1,000 and publication for a chapbook-length poetry collection in perfect-bound print edition. Open to women who have never before published a full-length poetry collection. Deadline April 16.