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    Darryl Pinckney, author of the new novel, Black Deutschland (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2016), reads from "In Ferguson," an essay he wrote for the New York Review of Books​ on ​witnessing the demonstrations occurring in​ Ferguson, Missouri,​ ​in November 2014.​


    "For a minor level stuck—a piece of dialogue too on the nose, a telling detail that just doesn't tell—I stay at the desk. I stare at the wall; I look out the window..."


    "There are a host of prescribed tricks for writing droughts, from the age-old divine intervention of Erato to the more practical jaunt around the neighborhood...."

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    by Oscar Casares

    From the long-standing tradition of the Texas Book Festival to the offbeat O. Henry Pun-Off World Championships, acclaimed author Oscar Casares highlights a range of literary happenings and haunts in Austin, a city that pledges to keep it weird.

    by Jen Michalski

    Author Jen Michalski takes us on a tour of the many literary sites writers should visit while strolling the gritty streets of Baltimore.

    by Edie Rhoads

    Join indie author Edie Rhoads as she showcases the local literary treasures of one of America’s most picturesque cities.

    by Adam Ross

    Adam Ross, author of the New York Times Notable Book Mr. Peanut, takes us on a tour of his beloved Nashville, "a great secret, cool as all get-out but never self-consciously hip or competitive," with a literary life as vibrant as its musical one.

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Our annual Inspiration Issue features essays on the origins of storytelling, historical fiction as an invitation to wonder, the challenges of facing difficult material on the page, taking risks in creative nonfiction, and our eleventh annual look at the year’s best debut poets; plus writing prompts for the new year, daring to discover your dangerous writing, the art of biography, questioning self-promotion, interviews with Kay Ryan and Saeed Jones, and more.

Jan/Feb 2016

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Ampersand Episode

The fifth episode of Ampersand features a preview of the new issue of the magazine, messages from Call Me Ishmael, an interview with Saeed Jones, poetry by Morgan Parker, Barry Lopez on the origins of storytelling, and more.

Listen to Ampersand

Fractures Through Time: Our Eleventh Annual Look at Debut Poets

Our eleventh annual Debut Poets roundup highlights ten of the most exciting and inspiring first books of poetry published in 2015.

Reviewers & Critics: Michael Schaub

The latest installment of Reviewers & Critics features Michael Schaub, an incisive—and hilarious—literary critic and former Bookslut contributor.

Calling Ishmael

With an app, a website, and a fleet of rotary-style pay phones, the new interactive project Call Me Ishmael allows readers and book lovers to call the fabled sailor and leave him personal messages about their favorite books.  

Q&A: Saeed Jones Feeds the Buzz

BuzzFeed’s newly minted executive editor of culture discusses his new position at the media company, and his goals for the recently launched BuzzFeed Emerging Writers Fellowship.

AAWW Continues the Conversation

The Asian American Writers Workshop rings in its twenty-fifth year at the forefront of the movement to diversify the publishing industry, and to provide advocacy, education, opportunity, and visibility to Asian American poets and writers.

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Pushcart Prize Turns Forty


The Pushcart Prize, a venerable nonprofit award series and press, released its fortieth-anniversary prize anthology this month. On the eve of its release party, Poets & Writers staff looked into the history of the prize, and what has kept "one of the last bastions of non-corporate writing" alive and well over the years.

MFA Nation 2016: A Compendium of Graduate Programs in Creative Writing


Start your MFA research with this comprehensive guide to more than 170 full- and low-residency programs in creative writing, expanded and updated for 2016. Each listing includes detailed information such as core faculty, special features, funding, tuition, application fees, and deadlines. The free PDF also includes a regional index, a cost-of-living comparision, and a handy Application Tracker to keep track of your applications.

Three Poets Laureate: Lightning Rods for Poetry


Three poets laureate—Luis J. Rodriguez, Joseph Bathanti, and Natasha Trethewey—talk about the various initiatives and influences they've brought to the position, and what the role means to them.

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Special Section Gallery
Credit: Michael Waraska

Our annual Inspiration Issue explores ideas of creativity and time, including essays on the origins of storytelling and historical fiction as an invitation to wonder.

Debut Poets 2016 Gallery
Credit: Eugene Smith

In Poets & Writers’ eleventh annual look at debut poets, we highlight ten of the most compelling and inspiring first books of poetry published in 2015.

Saeed Jones Gallery
Credit: Murray Greenfield

BuzzFeed’s new executive editor of culture, Saeed Jones, discusses his new role and his goals for the recently launched BuzzFeed Emerging Writers Fellowship.

Ken Chen Gallery
Credit: Asian American Writers' Workshop

With executive director Ken Chen at the helm, the Asian American Writers' Workshop rings in its twenty-fifth year of providing advocacy to Asian American poets and writers.