Get the Word Out


Overview | Eligibility | Selection Criteria | How to Apply | Application Timeline

Now accepting applications for the 2024 Poetry Cohort! Deadline: February 9.




Get the Word Out is a publicity incubator for early career authors. Under the mentorship of an accomplished book publicist, writers will develop and execute publicity strategies to maximize the exposure of their first or second book, reach readers, and create a platform to propel their literary careers.

Get the Word Out participants will:

  • Participate in a six-session online publicity workshop led by an experienced book publicist

  • Attend six online seminars with leading media, events, marketing, and sales professionals, and accomplished authors

  • Devote considerable time outside of scheduled sessions to implement book publicity strategies they are acquiring in workshops and seminars 

  • Contribute to a peer learning community by sharing what works and what does not, helping each member of the cohort to amplify their impact

There is no application fee and no cost to those who are invited to participate.



  • Applicants must be 18 years of age or older at time of application.

  • Applicants must be under contract with a U.S.-based publisher for the publication of their debut or second poetry collection, written in English, and scheduled for release between April 1, 2024, and March 31, 2025.

  • Applicants who have published poetry chapbooks are eligible to apply for the program.

  • Applicants who have previously published a poetry collection in another country are eligible but may not have more than one published book of poetry with a foreign publisher.

  • Applicants must be based in the U.S. during the program period but do not need to be a U.S. citizen or hold permanent resident status at the time of application.

  • Applicants must be available to attend and participate in the incubator program’s 6 virtual workshops and 6 virtual seminars.

  • Applicants enrolled in a degree-granting program between April and July 2024 are ineligible to apply.

  • Self-published or hybrid-published books and e-book editions are ineligible.

  • Employees and Board Members of Poets & Writers, and their immediate families, are not eligible.

Finalists will be asked to submit verification of publication and residency. In the event of a dispute as to eligibility, Poets & Writers will decide whether a book is eligible, and its decision will be binding.


Selection Criteria

Participants will be selected based on the strength of their statement of purpose, writing sample, and suitability for the program. Poets & Writers’ Programs & Partnerships staff will evaluate applications and select those invited to participate.

Get the Word Out is open to all eligible applicants. The program aims to support writers who might not otherwise have access to in-depth publicity support and to help develop strong literary voices nationwide. To that end, we encourage applications from writers who identify as BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, or person of color), writers with disabilities, LGBTQ+ writers, writers from outside of New York City, writers who do not have an MFA or equivalent degree, and writers whose books are slated to be published by independent presses.

The selection decisions of Poets & Writers will be final and not subject to review.


How to Apply

Authors can apply to the program via Poet & Writers’ online Formstack application. Applications must include:

  • A completed application form

  • A statement of purpose (max: 1,000 words)

  • A double-spaced excerpt (max: 10 pages) in 12 pt. font from your forthcoming poetry collection

  • An author bio (max: 250 words)

For more information, please send an email to



Application Timeline

Poetry Cohort – Spring 2024

  • January 8 – Application posted

  • February 9 – Application deadline

  • March 11 – Applicant notifications sent

  • March 27 – Poetry Cohort Orientation

  • April 10 – Poetry Publicity Incubator Begins

  • July 3 – Poetry Publicity Incubator Ends



Meet the 2024 Poetry Publicity Mentor

Morgan LaRocca is the publicist at Milkweed Editions. Prior to joining Milkweed in 2022 they worked as a freelance publicist, publicity associate at Graywolf Press and served as marketing and publicity intern at Tin House Books. They are a graduate of Towson University and a proud Baltimorean.



Meet the 2023 Fiction Cohort and Publicity Mentor

Congratulations to Alisa Alering, Bruna Dantas Lobato, Christina Cooke, Esinam Bediako, Jessie Marshall, Kathya Alexander, Lena Valencia, Lynn Stansbury, Marissa Higgins, and Parul Kapur, our 2023 Get the Word Out fiction cohort!


2023 Fiction Publicity Mentor

Born and raised in Malaysia, May-Zhee Lim is a writer and freelance publicist living in New York. During her time with Riverhead Books, she has worked on all kinds of book campaigns, helping launch the careers of debut authors and continuing to expand the readership of prize-winning authors including Hernan Diaz, Olga Tokarczuk, James McBride, Masha Gessen, Patricia Lockwood, C Pam Zhang, Claire Vaye Watkins, and Sigrid Nunez, just to name a few. In 2021, she made the Publishers Weekly Star Honoree list for her creative, out-of-the-box publicity ideas, including a partnership with a New York City bakery to print a short story by Etgar Keret on their cake wrappers and a curated, open air, pop-up reading room series around the city. She was previously an executive assistant at PEN America. Currently, May-Zhee is at work on her first novel and moonlighting as a communications consultant for EMPAC, a center for experimental media and performing arts, and Cento Lit, a literary/nonprofit consultancy agency started by Katie Freeman. 



2023 Poetry Cohort and Publicity Mentor

Congratulations to Ashia Ajani, Caitlin Cowan, Ae Hee Lee, Sebastian Merrill, Sahar Muradi, Olatunde Osinaike, Dimitri Reyes, Leslie Sainz, Violet Spurlock, and Jorrell Watkins, our 2023 Get the Word Out inaugural poetry cohort! Read the press release.


2023 Poetry Publicity Mentor

Morgan LaRocca is the publicist at Milkweed Editions. Prior to joining Milkweed in 2022 they worked as a freelance publicist, publicity associate at Graywolf Press and served as marketing and publicity intern at Tin House Books. They are a graduate of Towson University and a proud Baltimorean.



2022 Fiction Cohort and Publicity Mentor

Congratulations to Federico Erebia, Kristen Gentry, Anita Gail Jones, Chin-Sun Lee, Magogodi Makhene, Mark Ernest Pothier, Shannon Sanders, Brenda Wilson, Lauren Yero, and Ada Zhang, our 2022 Get the Word Out inaugural fiction cohort! Read the press release here.


2022 Fiction Publicity Mentor

Get the Word Out will launch in November 2022 with the program’s inaugural cohort of debut fiction authors. The Publicity Mentor for this group will be Lauren Cerand.

Cerand has twenty years of experience running her own thriving global communications consultancy, driven by an intensive personal focus on each client’s needs and desires, a vast network of relationships, and unparalleled expertise and ingenuity. She helps creative professionals to connect with audiences and inspire community, often through the lens of media. Cerand has advised writers, artists, publishers, and media and cultural organizations that are household names throughout her career and guided many more that are still finding their path. After two decades in New York and a year in Florence, Italy, she now lives in Baltimore and continues to work internationally. For more information, visit



Get the Word Out was developed with funding from Leonard and Louise Riggio, with additional support from Macmillan Publishers.