blackbirdonline journalFall 2016  Vol. 15 No. 2
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Founded in 2002 as a joint venture of the Virginia Commonwealth University Department of English and New Virginia Review, Inc.

Copyright © 2016 by Blackbird and the individual writers and artists

ISSN 1540-3068

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EDITORIAL STAFF

Blackbird Editorial and Intern Staff Fall 2016 photo by Janae Offord Powell & Diarra Vick

(Left to right) Kneeling: Victoria C. Flanagan, Randy Marshall, Janae Offord Powell, Diarra Vick; First Row: Mary Flinn, Angelica Fuchs, Emily Block, Kacey Ingram, Ceanna Fisher, Julie Ward, Gregory Donovan; Second Row: Amanda Goemmer, Annie Persons, Sophia Wiltrout, Ume Farwa, Caitlin Etherton; Third Row: Bennett Winters, Scott Selden, Kayleigh Dumont, Taylor Evans; Fourth Row: Jake Branigan, William Minor, Lance Lambert, Scott Bugher; Not Pictured: Caleb Stacy, M.A. Keller, Jordan Keller.

spacer Lead Associate Editors
  Victoria C. Flanagan 2016–2017
  Jake Branigan 2015–2016
  Chelsea Gillenwater 2014–2015
  Leia Darwish 2013–2014
  Lena Moses-Schmitt 2012–2013
  Ross Losapio 2011–2012
  Emilia Phillips 2010–2011
  Grant White 2009–2010
  Matthew Baker 2008–2009
  Tarfia Faizullah 2007–2008
  Kate Beles 2006–2007
  Anna Journey 2005–2006
  Steven Collis 2004–2005
  Maria Hagan 2003–2004
  Tara Moyle    2002–2003
  Jamye Shelleby 2001–2002

Blackbird, founded in 2002 as a joint venture of the Virginia Commonwealth University Department of English and the former New Virginia Review, Inc., benefits from the contributions of graduate and undergraduate student interns, as well as from MA and MFA Graduate Assistants from the VCU Department of English. Students from the interdisciplinary PhD program in Media, Art, and Text (MATX) have also worked with us in past years, as have community volunteers and MFA alumni. We are grateful for everyone's contributions.

Each year, Blackbird awards the coveted lead associate editor position to a second–year VCU MFA graduate student; to qualify, the student must already have been awarded a graduate fellowship and must have worked as an intern for the journal. The lead associate editor staffs the Blackbird office in the historic Anderson House, and is at the center of all the journal’s activities, working to coordinate communication between literary and production editors, as well as between the editors and contributors.


Staff listings are by categories.


EDITORS
Gregory Donovan
, senior editor, is the author of the poetry collections Torn from the Sun (Red Hen Press, 2015), long-listed for the Julie Suk Award, and Calling His Children Home (University of Missouri Press, 1993), which won the Devins Award for Poetry. His poetry, essays, translations, and fiction have been published in The Kenyon Review, The Southern Review, New England Review, TriQuarterly, diode, Crazyhorse, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Gulf Coast, Copper Nickel, and many other journals. His work has also appeared in several anthologies, including Common Wealth: Contemporary Poets of Virginia (University of Virginia Press, 2003). Among other awards for his writing, he is the recipient of the Robert Penn Warren Award from New England Writers, as well as grants from the Virginia Commission for the Arts and fellowships from the Ucross Foundation and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Donovan has served as guest faculty for a number of summer conferences, including the Chautauqua Institution Writers’ Center, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the River Pretty Writers Retreat, and the Other Words Conference of the Florida Literary Arts Coalition. With the writer/director Michele Poulos, he is a producer of A Late Style of Fire, a feature-length documentary on the life and work of the late Larry Levis. Donovan is a founding faculty member of Virginia Commonwealth University’s graduate creative writing program.

Mary Flinn, senior editor, began her tenure as the director of New Virgina Review, Inc. in 1985. She is the coeditor, with George Garrett, of Elvis in Oz: New Stories and Poems from the Hollins Creative Writing Program (University of Virginia Press, 1992) and facilitated the editing of The Gazer Within (University of Michigan Press, 2001), a collection of essays by Larry Levis. Flinn served as the poetry and fiction editor of 64 and the editor of New Virginia Review. She has participated on numerous editors’ panels, served as a judge for literature fellowships from various arts councils, and been a review panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts and the Virginia Commission for the Arts. Flinn won the inaugural Theresa Pollak Award for Words from Richmond Magazine, and Style Weekly recognized her as one of their 2016 Richmond Women in the Arts.

M.A. Keller, senior online editor, is a technologist, web coordinator, and writing instructor for Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of English. His poetry has appeared in The Southern Review, New Virginia Review, Runes, and elsewhere. Keller is the author of a chapter, “Meghan Sapnar’s ‘Car Wash’ as a New Media Sonnet,” in RAW (Reading and Writing) New Media (Hampton Press, 2010). His work centers on electronic writing, issues of materiality and multimodal writing, and how to define, support, and teach online publishing and new media. He has taught poetry and advanced writing workshops, as well as courses in hypertext and new media. He publishes the visual blog, Abaculi, and is the editor of The Abaculi Project. Keller earned an MFA in creative writing from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Randy Marshall, senior literary editor and photo editor, edited, along with Mary Flinn, Andrew Miller, and John Venable, The Gazer Within (University of Michigan Press, 2001). His poetry, essays, and reviews have appeared in Richmond Arts Magazine, New South, cream city review, diode, and Blackbird. Marshall earned his MFA in poetry from Virginia Commonwealth University, where he currently serves as an adjunct instructor, teaching poetry writing and advanced composition. Marshall is also a writing instructor at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond, where he holds workshops in beginning poetry, multi-genre writing, and the lyric essay.

Victoria C. Flanagan, lead associate editor, is a second-year MFA student in poetry and nonfiction at Virginia Commonwealth University. She holds a BA in English and BFA in creative writing from the University of North Carolina Wilmington

Jake Branigan, lead associate editor emeritus and lead audio editor, is a third-year MFA student in fiction at Virginia Commonwealth University. He earned a BA in English and a Master of Arts in teaching from James Madison University.

Chelsea Gillenwater, book review editor, is a page designer and copyeditor for the Bristol Herald Courier and a contributor at Heart Beings. Her fiction and reviews have appeared in Blackbird and Philologia. She earned a BA in English and communication from Virginia Tech and an MFA in fiction from Virginia Commonwealth University, where she served as the 2014–2015 lead associate editor for Blackbird.

Ross Losapio, book review editor, served as the 2011–2012 lead associate editor for Blackbird. His poems and reviews have appeared in Copper Nickel, The Emerson Review, the minnesota review, Naugatuck River Review, Rattle, Verse Wisconsin, and Blackbird, among other journals. He earned a BA in writing and English from Loyola University Maryland and an MFA in poetry from Virginia Commonwealth University.



ASSOCIATE EDITORS
Emily Block, lead copyeditor, is a second-year MFA student at Virginia Commonwealth University. She holds a BA in English and a BS in advertising from the University of Florida.

Scott Bugher, assistant literary editor and copyeditor, is a third-year MFA student in poetry at Virginia Commonwealth University. His work has appeared in The Baltimore Review, The Rumpus, Hobart, and elsewhere. He is the founder and former editor-in-chief of Split Lip Press.

Caleb Stacy, lead pagebuilder and production intern, is a second-year MFA student in poetry at Virginia Commonwealth University. He earned a BA in English from West Virginia University.

 

INTERNS
Kayleigh Dumont, literary intern and copyeditor, is a senior undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University. She will graduate in the spring of 2017 with a BA in English and minors in creative writing and psychology.

Caitlin Etherton, literary intern and audio editor, is a first-year MFA student in poetry and creative nonfiction at Virginia Commonwealth University. She earned a BA in English with a minor in religion from Emory University.

Taylor Evans, literary intern and audio editor, is a senior undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University. She will graduate in 2018 with a BA in English. She serves as an associate editor at Emanata, and her work has appeared in The Odyssey Online.

Ume Farwa, literary editor and audio editor, is a sophomore undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University. She has previously interned for plain china, VCU’s undergraduate literary anthology. She will graduate in the spring of 2019 with a BA in English.

Ceanna Fisher, literary intern and pagebuilder, is a senior undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University. She will graduate in the spring of 2017 with a BA in English and a minor in creative writing. She is also an intern for the VCU undergraduate literary anthology plain china.

Angelica Fuchs, literary intern and pagebuilder, is a first-year MA in English student at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she previously earned a BA in English and a minor in history. Her work has appeared in Amendment.

Amanda Goemmer, literary intern and pagebuilder, is a first-year MFA student in fiction at Virginia Commonwealth University. She has also worked as an assistant editor for The Oklahoma Review, and her fiction has appeared in Burningword and The Gold Mine. She earned a BA in English from Cameron University.

Kacey Ingram, literary intern and copyeditor, is a senior undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University. She will graduate in May 2017 with a BA in English. She is also a staff editor at Poictesme, VCU’s undergraduate literary journal.

Lance Lambert, literary intern and copyeditor, is a senior undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University. He will graduate in December of 2016 with a BA in English. His flash fiction has appeared in Poictesme, VCU’s undergraduate literary journal.

William Minor, literary intern and pagebuilder, is a senior undergraduate student attending Virginia Commonwealth University. He will graduate in the spring of 2017 with a BA in English and a minor in environmental studies.

Annie Persons, literary intern and copyeditor, is a first-year MFA student in poetry at Virginia Commonwealth University. She has a BA in English with a minor in creative writing from Washington and Lee University, where she served as a managing editor for Shenandoah.

Janae Offord Powell, literary intern and photo editor, is a senior undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University. They will graduate in the spring of 2017 with a BA in English and a minor in African American studies.

Scott Selden, literary intern and copyeditor, is a first-year MFA student in fiction at Virginia Commonwealth University. His fiction has appeared in The Offbeat, The Critical Pass Review, and Akashic Books’ “Mondays Are Murder” flash fiction series. He has also worked as an intern and assistant editor for Virginia Living magazine.

Diarra Vick, literary intern and photo editor, is a senior undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University. She will graduate in the spring of 2017 with a BA in English and a minor in creative writing.

Julie Ward, literary intern and copyeditor, is a first-year MA in English student at Virginia Commonwealth University. She holds an undergraduate degree in English from VCU, is a Teach For America alumna, and served as an intern and copyeditor for Blackbird in 2012.

Sophia Wiltrout, literary intern and audio editor, is a first-year MFA student in fiction at Virginia Commonwealth University. She holds a BA in English and creative writing from George Washington University.

Bennett Winters, literary intern and copyeditor, is a first-year MFA student in fiction at Virginia Commonwealth University. He holds a BA in English from Cornell University.

 

VOLUNTEER
Jordan Keller, summer photo editor, pagebuilder, and media converter, is a student artist, designer, and coder in her senior year at Maggie L. Walker Governor's School.

 

& MANY THANKS
to all the editors, staff members, interns, and volunteers who made Blackbird, volume 15, number 2 possible.

Special thanks to Victoria Flanagan, our lead associate editor, for keeping us all focused on this big effort, and for bringing the work of the contributors and the Blackbird team into fruition.

Thanks to Jake Branigan for his audio capturing and editing, and for leading the media team; to Emily Block for taking charge of the copyediting team; to Randy Marshall for directing the photo editing team; to Caleb Stacy for leading the pagebuilding team.

Thanks to Chelsea Gillenwater for her meticulous copyediting and continued support of Blackbird.

Thanks to Randy Marshall, Annie Persons, and Caitlin Etherton for their extensive work with submissions and for leading the reading groups.

Thanks to Mary Flinn and Randy Marshall for contributing the foreword text, and thanks to everyone who wrote metatext for this issue.

Thanks to Jordan Keller for her hours of dedication editing images for George Ferrandi’s “Fugive Materials” and in her work converting legacy RealMedia files to mp3s, linking the converted files, and reublishing audio content pages to the live archive.

And to all others—manuscript readers, pagebuilders, audio editors, photo editors, transcribers, and copyeditors, our sincere appreciation.  bug


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