Cole Lavalais (’13, ’15) in JADED IBIS

For the Kimbilio panel at AWP ’16, Cole Lavalais (’13, ’15) presented these remarks on directionality in fiction: Several years ago during my first semester in graduate school, some of my classmates and I went out to a local watering hole after a rather tedious writing workshop. Which, by the way, was nothing new. I […]

Deesha Philyaw (’15) Interviews Cole Lavalais (’13, ’15)

Cole Lavalais’s arresting debut novel, The Summer of the Cicadas, engages with a mother-daughter relationship, mental health, and first love, set on the campus of small black college in the South. The novel’s main character Viola (Vi) Moon is still emotionally fragile after a recent hospitalization at a mental health facility, but she’s also determined […]

Dennis Norris II Writing for AWSOME SPORTS PROJECT

Finding Michelle Kwan: A Black Boy’s Childhood on Ice By Dennis Norris II Long before it actually happened, I tried to tell the world that I was a figure skater. I tried on Saturday afternoons, back in the nineties when skating was on TV every weekend. I tried by pushing all the furniture to the edges […]

An Interview with ‘The Loss of All Lost Things’ author Amina Gautier (’13)

From the Evanston Public Library Blog: Amina Gautier writes short stories, and her short story collections win awards.  It’s about that simple.  Back in 2011, for instance, her debut collectionAt-Risk earned the Flannery O’Connor Award and the First Horizon Award among other honors, and her 2014 follow-upNow We Will Be Happy won the Praire Schooner […]

Desiree Cooper (’13, ’15) in BLOOD ORANGE REVIEW

Sex Coffee by Desiree Cooper You walk into the coffeehouse and pick a seat beside the thin woman whose beauty is coiled into tight vines of hair. Never seen her here before, you think as you slide into the bench beside her, careful not to get caught looking in her direction. You take off your […]

Coal Lavalais (’13, ’15) Interviewed on THE TOAST

In Cole Lavalais’ debut novel Summer of the Cicadas, Viola “Vi” Moon hopes to leave her experience at a mental health facility behind when she enrolls in a small black college in the south, but the stability she hoped she’d gain fractures more quickly than she anticipated. Vi thinks the best way to regain her […]

Dennis Norris II (’15) Interviewed by Rion Amilcar Scott (’13)

FROM SMOKE LONG QUARTERLY Smoke and Mirrors: An Interview with Dennis Norris II Your story, “Daddy’s Boy,” devastated me when I first read it, flooded me with discomfort. I had to step away and think about it, come back to it and read it again and then sort through competing emotions: admiration, disgust, sympathy. What […]

Deeshaw Philyaw (’15) Interviews Darryl Pinkney

Craft, White Gaze and Black Gaze by Andy Johnson (’14, ’16)

At AWP 2016, Andy Johnson delivered the following remarks as part of a Kimbilio panel on black writers in the white world.  As a result of this presentation, Andy was offered a book contract! In 2014, I spoke on a panel called “Crossing (Imagined) Borders: Research, Writing, and the Challenges of the 21st Century,” at […]


by Michal B. Tager from What Weekly Khaliah Williams and I meet on the Avenue in Hampden, where many young, artistic folk have moved in the past ten years, transforming a bastion of the working-class into a new artistic Mecca of Baltimore. She is early for our meeting, highly polite and very well-coiffed; we both […]