» Beyond the Pure Fellowships for Writers
Past Grant Recipients

2015 Beyond the Pure Fellowship Recipients

Jennifer Kwon Dobbs is the author of Paper Pavilion, recipient of the White Pine Press Poetry Prize and the New England Poetry Clubʼs Sheila Motton Book Award, and Song of a Mirror, finalist for the Tupelo Snowbound Chapbook Award. Recently, her prose and poetry have appeared in Asian American Literary Review, Blackbird, Crazyhorse, Cimarron Review, Line Break, Mascara Review, Poetry NZ, SOLO NOVO, among others; and have been anthologized in Echoes Upon Echoes (Asian American Writersʼ Workshop 2003), Language for a New Century: Contemporary Poetry from the Middle East, Asia, and Beyond (W. W. Norton 2008), One for the Money: The Sentence as a Poetic Form (Blue Lynx Press 2012), and Nothing to Declare: A Guide to the Flash Sequence (White Pine Press 2015). She has also received grants from the Daesan Foundation and Minnesota State Arts Board for her writing. Currently, Jennifer is associate professor of English at St. Olaf College where she teaches poetry, creative nonfiction, and Asian American studies. She lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

 

Sherrie Fernandez-Williams, author of Soft: A Memoir holds an MFA in writing from Hamline University and is a recipient of an Artist Initiative Award through the Minnesota State Arts Board, a SASE/Jerome Award through Intermedia Arts, and the Jonesʼ Commission Award through the Playwrightsʼ Center.She was a selected participant in the Loft Mentor Series for Creative Nonfiction, and the Givens Black Writers Collaborative.Her work has been published in various literary magazines and anthologies including the Poverty and Education Reader, Segue, RKVRY, Branches, and the Summit Avenue Review. Fernandez-Williams discovered her need for words in Brooklyn, NY where she was born and raised, but "grew up" as a writer in the Twin Cities.

 

May Lee-Yang is a playwright, poet, prose writer, and performance artist. She has been hailed by Twin Cities Metro Magazine as "on the way to becoming one of the most powerful and colorful voices in local theater." Her theater-based works have been presented at Mu Performing Arts, the Center for Hmong Arts and Talent (CHAT), Out North Theater, the 2011 National Asian American Theater Festival, the MN Fringe Festival and others. Her plays include The Divorcee Diaries, Confessions of a Lazy Hmong Woman and Ten Reasons Why I'd Be a Bad Porn Star. She is the author of the children's book The Imaginary Day (MN Humanities Center) and has been published Bamboo Among the Oaks: Contemporary Writing By Hmong Americans, Water~Stone Literary Journal, and others. She has received grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board, the National Performance Network, the Midwestern Voices and Visions Residency Award, the Playwright Center, the Loft Literary Center, and is a winner of the 2011 Bush Leadership Fellowship.

 

 

 

Eva Song Margolis is a Korean American adoptee from Minneapolis. She is a writer, organizer, and advocate for racial and economic justice. Writing has been an essential tool for her to explore, heal and question.Eva is a recipient of The Loftʼs 2013 In Roads Program and her work appears in Moonroutes, In Roads Out Roads Chapbook, and online.

 

 

 

 

 

Moe Lionel is a Minneapolis-based writer whose work focuses on the intersections between genealogy, disease, trauma, family, and the body. A 2011 recipient of the Jerome-funded Naked Stages residency, Moe Lionel performed his solo show, in and out of the body, directed by Gabrielle Civil and Ellen Marie Hinchcliffe, at the Pillsbury House Theatre. In 2012, he was awarded the Minnesota States Art Board Artist Initiative Grant for the development of his fiction collection What Was in Fact. He has presented work at Bedlam Theatre, The Fish House Studio, Duluthʼs Adeline Inc., The Exchange, Pillsbury House Theatreʼs Late Nite series, and Bryant Lake Bowlʼs Pleasure Rebel series. He has facilitated workshops and classes for the Naked Stages program and Antioch College. He yearns for and in moments, finds hope for a world where it is a little bit easier to breathe.

 

Robin Rozanskiʼs writing has appeared in many publications including The Humanist, A Cappella Zoo, Wilderness House Literary Review, Lake Region Review, Hint Fiction: An Anthology, and Thrice Fiction; her story "Something Different" won the 2014 Sue Lile Inman Fiction Award from Emrys Journal. She has an MA in creative writing from the University of Central Florida where she also taught composition and fiction workshops. In addition to teaching fiction and creative process at The Loft Literary Center, she has years of experience as a professional copywriter and editor, and currently works as an instructional designer at Capella University.

 


2014 Grant Recipients

Amoke Kubat ($3,500) is a Northside Minneapolis resident that has been involved in empowering families since 1987. She is a teacher, artist, writer and Yoruba Priestess, who partners with community artists, activists and organizations to bridge African/African American culture and cultural legacies to healing and building sustainable families and communities. Amoke is the self-published author of “Missing Mama: My Story of Loss, Sorrow and Healing”, a deeply personal story of mother loss. Amoke looks forward to expanding her writing community, mastering her writing craft and starting her next book, “Sorrow Songs”.

Kevin O’Rourke ($3,000) was born in Chicago in 1952, and comes from a mixed family—Gaelic, Native American, Afro-American, and Jewish, allowing him to experience American culture and trauma from many perspectives. He practices in his life and writing the following: exercise of mythic and historical knowledge toward deconstruction and discharge of trauma, and spiritual discipline and community building based on the indigenous decision-making process known as twelve-steps and the Lakota Sundance. He reconciles mixed ethnic and cultural heritage by identifying as Métis and Black Irish. He has lived Minnesota since 1975, and South Minneapolis since 1977.

Ruby S. Pediangco ($3,750) hails from Southern California and credits Minnesota's amazing writing community for squelching the urge to pack it up and return to the West when the weather dips below 72.  In 2012-2013, she participated in the Loft Literary Center Mentor Series as a fiction mentee and in 2014 won at spot at the VONA/Voices UC Berkeley fiction workshop.  The Philippine American Writers and Artists, Inc. also awarded her a Manuel G. Flores Prize in 2014.  She is currently working on a collection of short stories that contemplate cultural identity, mother-daughter relationships, time-travel, Elvis and death-by-baking. She works full-time as the Director of Planned Giving for the Minnesota Orchestra, and she lives in Edina with her husband and their two very clever children.

Beaudelaine Pierre ($2,750) is a native of Haiti and writes primarily in French and Haitian Creole. Her debut novel Testaman [‘The Will’] won First Prize in the 2002 Best Creole-Language Novel Contest sponsored by the newspaper Bon Nouvel in Port-Au-Prince. In Fall 2007 she was a writer in residence at the International writing Program at the University of Iowa. Her last novel, L’enfant qui voulait devenir President [“The child who wanted to become President”] was published by Les Editions Harmattan”.
Beaudelaine Pierre directs the Women Empowerment and Leadership (WeLead) Program at the Women’s Initiative for Self- Empowerment (WISE), Inc.  Her professional interests include transnational women's movements, women and social change, feminism, human rights, development, and international cooperation.

Charlotte Sullivan ($3,000) writes and teaches primarily children’s literature. She received the 2012 Loft Shabo Picture Book Award, a Pushcart nomination and an honor from Fourth Genre’s Annual Editor’s Prize for Best Essay/ Memoir 2007. Her essays and poetry have appeared in publications such as the Minneapolis StarTribune, Ottertail Review, Front Range Review, Rockhurst Review and others. She earned an MFA in fiction from Hamline University and an MS in Curriculum and Instruction from Minnesota State University, Mankato. She currently teaches at The Loft Literary Center and at Normandale Community College, where she served as the Visiting Scholar in Children’s Literature in 2011-2012. She also interviews children’s authors for Write On! Radio at KFAI.

2012


Romelle Adkins

Ayodele Alofe
is a Nigerian-British writer whose interests are on identity and relationships and how they fit into our concept of humanity. She has a Bachelor's degree in Modern European Languages from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria and a Masters in Mass Communication and Research from the University of Leicester, UK. She lives in Minnesota with her husband and two children.


An enrolled member of the Mandan Hidatsa Arikara Nation of Fort Berthold North Dakota, R. Vincent Moniz Jr. (Nu Eta – Knife Clan) is an emerging voice hailing from the Philips neighborhood of south Minneapolis. Vincent has been a part of the Twin Cities artistic community for over two decades as an actor, but has only shared his poetry a handful of times. Most recently he performed as part of Equilibrium: Spoken Word at the Loft.  His work has been published in the Yellow Medicine Review and online as part of Native Literatures: Generations. Moniz was selected as a 2012 Jerome Fellow and at the Ed Two River Memorial Poetry Slam Vincent was crowned the Indigenous Poetry Slam Champion.

Aundria Sheppard Morgan is the author of Cross My Heart and Hope to Die, (2004), a memoir of love, tragedy and truth told with unflinching candor. “Writing has always been my lifeline and serves as the tool to make sense of a world I don’t always get.” Aundria holds a Bachelors of Arts in writing and communications from Metropolitan State University. Smiling Is Not Resilience (current work-in-progress), is more than a sequel to her first memoir; it provides a social responsibility perspective that challenges the “mantras of hope” we utter in response to pain and suffering—our own, others, societal. She has read her work at various venues including Birchbark Books and Patrick’s Cabaret. Aundria has an affinity for those perched on life’s edge and  has worked and volunteered in social service organizations serving inmates and their loved ones, at-risk youth, and homeless populations in California, New York and Minnesota. She is employed at St. Stephen’s Human Services whose mission is ending homelessness. Aundria is a native of Brooklyn, New York and currently lives in Minneapolis.

Vikki Reich

Co-founder of the NorthSide Writers Group, short story writer and poet Debra Stone writes all hours of the day and night in a tiny attic room with a view looking through tree branches onto the avenue below. A blond Pomeranian named Bear warms her toes. She writes about community and people on the Northside of Minneapolis and sometimes about adventures of travel, like the day she was photographed kissing the Sphinx in Giza. The people Debra writes about don't always do the right thing but whatever choices are made she hopes engage the reader. As a writer she likes to experiment with narrative forms and points of view in her pieces; but most of all she loves to write. A writing teacher once said to me, don't worry about writing about the truth, truth doesn't matter, just write about what you know to be true.

Joan Maeda Trygg has published essays in the anthology, Cheers to Muses: Contemporary Works by Asian American Women, and in the Journal of the Asian American Renaissance.  In 2011-2012, she participated in “Ghost Stories: Five Writers Read Works on Historical Trauma.”  She has an MFA from Hamline University, and lives in St. Paul.
 


2011

LESLEY ARIMAH ($4,000) was born in the U.K. and resided in various countries (including her native Nigeria) before moving to the States in her early teens. She spent a decade in the South before moving northwards to earn an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Minnesota State University, Mankato. A resident of Mankato, Lesley is currently working on her first novel.

 

COLLEEN CASEY ($3,000) uses language and other arts to bring about positive transformation.  As Morning Program Manager with theEnglish Learning Center, in Minneapolis’s Phillips neighborhood, she leads a cadre of volunteer teachers to help adult immigrants build their voices in English and master other essential skills. She has worked with Adult Basic Education and ESL in the Twin Cities for over a decade and, before that, cut her teeth in community arts administration and arts in education with the History Theatre and In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theater.  She holds a BA in art history and is slowly completing an initial teacher license in English Language and Communication Arts. Colleen grew up in the Twin Cities area and is of European-American and Mdewakantan Dakota heritages. She is a member of the Loft-sponsored TGI Frybread.community writing group and was a mentee in the Loft’s Native Inroads writing mentorship in 2009.


JOHN LEE CLARK  ($1,962) was born deaf and became blind in adolescence. His chapbook of poems is Suddenly Slow (Handtype Press, 2008) and he edited the anthology Deaf American Poetry (Gallaudet University Press, 2009). His poems have appeared in many publications, including The Hollins Critic, Poetry, and The Seneca Review. He is married to the deaf cartoonist Adrean Clark, and they run a small press, Clerc Scar, dedicated to the literature of the signing community. They live with their three sons in Maplewood.

PALLAVI SHARMA DIXIT ($2,301) earned an MFA in creative writing from the University of Massachusetts, where she was awarded the Harvey Swados Prize in Fiction.  In 2010, she was the recipient of a Minnesota State Arts Board Grant and a Travel and Study Grant from the Jerome Foundation, and in 2007 she was a recipient of the Loft’s Mentor Series Award.  Most recently, her work has appeared in Fiction on a Stick: New Stories by Minnesota Writers and Her Mother’s Ashes 3: Stories from South Asian Women in Canada and the United States.

JACQUELINE WHITE ($1,962) is a Minneapolis writer who has also worked as a waitress and as an activist striving to create respectful schools for all students, including those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender. Her op-eds have been published in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune and distributed through the Progressive Media Project. Other credits include stints as a senior editor at The Utne Reader and as editor of the Search Institute magazine Assets. She has taught writing at a jail, a drop-in center for homeless youth, and at the Loft Literary Center. She earned a BA in English cum laude from Yale and an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Antioch University-Los Angeles. She is currently at work on a memoir, for which she received a 2008 Minnesota State Arts Board grant. Visit www.mytransgenderhusband.com.

 

2010

BRIAN LAIDLAW ($3,000) is a poet and folk songwriter from Northern California.  After a few years of touring and rambling, he is currently working toward an M.F.A. in poetry at the University of Minnesota.  Brian has released several musical albums, including Fond Memories of Sound, with Garagista records, and his song lyrics have appeared in American Songwriter Magazine.  He was also the recipient of the 2009 Gesell Award for Poetry and a finalist for the 2010 Loft Mentor Series.  Most recently, he received the inaugural Book Arts Fellowship from the University of Minnesota, and will be releasing an artist book with Deer Let Loose Press in 2010.

MICHELE MICKLEWRIGHT ($2,500) writer, spiritual director, chaplain and mother has spent many years engaged with her community, accompanying members as they face transition and loss. Her poetry, reflections and essays have been used in ministry settings. Her commitment has been centered in parishes, shelters, hospice, hospital and long-term care facilities in Latin America and in the States. She engages common human experience, the written word and theological reflection in dialogue to seek understanding. She wrestles with questions about how one can seek to live a life of integrity in a world where structures often forget the most vulnerable in society. She attempts to give image and form to those areas of our world that remain hidden. Facing her own limitations and brokenness, she wrestles with redefining what it means to seek wholeness. She has published in Vision, Maryknoll In-Touch, Chaplaincy Today. She is working on a spiritual memoir.

MARGIE NEWMAN ($2,000) Margie Newman's publications include Jewish Currents, Outlook and Dislocate. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Minnesota.  She was a winner of the Loft Shabo Award and the Loft Mentorship Series, and has received a University of Minnesota Travel Study Fellowship and a grant from the Howard Brin Jewish Arts Endowment.  She is currently at work on a memoir.  She lives in St. Paul with her husband David Unowsky and son Owen.

MIKE ROLLIN ($2,000) has worked as an interpreter and community organizer, and as a writing instructor at the University of Minnesota, the College of St. Catherine, and the Loft.  He received a MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Minnesota, was a Loft Mentor Series winner in poetry, and has been nominated for a Puschcart Prize. His poems have appeared in Puerto del Sol, Bombay Gin, Water~Stone, Xcp: Streetnotes, Northwest Review, mnartists.org, and elsewhere.  He lives in Minneapolis with his wife, author Laura Flynn, and children Samantha and Niko.

ERIC VROOMAN ($3,500) Eric Vrooman’s short fiction has appeared in The Kenyon Review, Minnesota Monthly, The Cream City Review, Passages North, Monkeybicycle, Ninth Letter, and elsewhere. He has taught creative writing at Macalester College, Tulane University, Gustavus Adolphus College, and The Loft Literary Center.




STEPHANIE WATSON ($2,775) published her debut book, Elvis & Olive, a middle-grade novel, with Scholastic Press. The book was named a 2008 Junior Library Book selection and a Washington Post Book of the Week. The sequel, Elvis & Olive: Super Detectives will be on store shelves in July of 2010. In March of 2009, Stephanie created Life is Life, an online serial story in words and pictures. A groundbreaking storytelling experiment, Life is Life has drawn online readers from over 50 countries. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, Stephanie Watson grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota and now lives across the wide Mississippi in St. Paul. In addition to writing fiction, she teaches at the Loft Literary Center and runs a web copywriting agency called PlumLines.


2009

HEATHER BOUWMAN ($2,800)


PAULA CISEWSKI ($3,000). Paula Cisewski’s poems have most recently appeared or are forthcoming in failbetter.com, Handsome, The Laurel Review, The Barn Owl Review, and Taiga. She teaches writing and humanities courses at Globe University and hosts the Imaginary Press Reading Series. Her first poetry collection, Upon Arrival, was published by Black Ocean in 2006.


SHERRIE FERNANDEZ-WILLIAMS ($3,000). Sherrie holds an MFA in Writing from Hamline University. She is a 2008 Loft Mentor Series Winner in creative nonfiction, a Givens Black Writers Collaborative Retreat participant, a SASE creative nonfiction mentor series participant, and a winner of the Jones’ Commission Award for new playwrights through the Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis, MN.
Excerpts of her memoir have been accepted for publication in 13th Moon, r-c-v-r-y, Summit Avenue Review, Subtle Tea, Segue, and Branches. Sherrie resides in St. Paul, MN with her nine-year old twins Kinsey and Kirby.  Among her passions is teaching personal storytelling for the purpose of self-discovery and healing.


MICHELLE MATTHEES ($1,500). Michelle Matthees' poems have appeared in The Bellingham Review, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Bloomsbury Review, ¶, and numerous other journals. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota’s MFA program and is a recipient of grants and awards from the Minnesota State Arts Board, The Jerome Foundation, The Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, and AWP. She currently lives a stone’s throw away from Lake Superior.


SCOTT MUSKIN ($2,450). Scott Muskin has been writing all his life. His novel “The Annunciations of Hank Meyerson, Mama’s Boy and Scholar” won the 2007 Parthenon Prize and will be published by Hooded Friar Press in January 2008. His story collection, “I’m with You Always,” was a finalist for the 2005 Flannery O’Connor Award. He has published short stories in the literary journals Beloit Fiction Journal, Clackamas Literary Review, North Dakota Quarterly, and Red Rock Review, and also in the general interest magazine Minnesota Monthly.


ETHAN RUTHERFORD ($3,000). Ethan Rutherford was born in Seattle. His work has appeared in Esopus, The New York Tyrant, Faultline, VERB: An Audioquarterly, American Short Fiction, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and in the anthology Fiction On A Stick: New Stories by Minnesota Writers.  His fiction has received special mention in the Pushcart Prize anthology series and been nominated for inclusion in the Best New American Voices anthology.  He lives in Minneapolis.
 

ELISABETH WORKMAN ($2,000). Elisabeth Workman was born outside of Philadelphia in 1976. Through the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, she has served as an artist-in-residence, conducting poetry workshops in schools throughout rural Pennsylvania. More recently, she taught poetry and rhetoric to international students in the Middle East. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in fourW, Absent, Alice Blue Review, The Black Economy, and West Wind Review, among others. Her chapbooks, a city a cloud (2006) and Opolis (2007)--collaborations with visual and graphic artists, published through the Dusie Kollectiv (Switzerland)--were featured at the Walker Art Center's Multiples Mall in February 2009.

 

2008

DHANA-MARIE BRANTON is a Minneapolis-based creative nonfiction writer. She will return to the New York State Writers Institute to study with Phillip Lopate. A native Chicagoan, Dhana-Marie is also an award-winning playwright whose work has been produced in Chicago and New York City.

CHARLES CONLEY is a graduate of the University of Minnesota’s MFA in Creative Writing program. He lives in Minneapolis and will use the SASE/Jerome grant to complete his short story collection.

ELISSA ELLIOTT received a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences and her master’s in education from UCLA. Her first novel will be published by Bantam Books in the Fall of 2008. Her work has appeared in The Baltimore Review, and her book reviews have been printed in Books & Culture and Paste Magazine and Elle. She is a former winner of the Loft Mentor Series and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her first screenplay is scheduled to begin filming in the Summer of 2008. She’s been a finalist for the McKnight Screenwriters Fellowship and a semi-finalist for the Nicholl Screenwriters Fellowship. She lives in Rochester with her husband.

LAURA FLYNN was born and raised in San Francisco, California. She is the author of Swallow the Ocean––a memoir of growing up in the face of her mother’s catastrophic mental illness–– published by Counterpoint Press in February 2008. She received her BA from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut and her MFA in creative writing from the University of Minnesota, where she served as the inaugural fellow in the Scribe for Human Rights Project, jointly sponsored by the Human Rights and the Creative Writing Programs at the University of Minnesota. She has been an activist and human rights advocate all her adult life. She lived in Haiti from 1994-2000 and remains deeply involved in the struggle for democracy and human dignity in that country. She is the editor of Eyes of the Heart: Seeking a Path for the Poor in the Age of Globalization by Jean-Bertrand Aristide, Common Courage Press, 2000. She currently teaches editing at the University of Minnesota, and lives in Minneapolis with her husband, poet Mike Rollin.

JOHN MEDEIROS is a writer living in Minneapolis. His work has appeared in Water~Stone, Gulf Coast; Willow Springs; Gents, Badboys and Barbarians: An Anthology of New Gay Male Poetry; Evergreen Chronicles; Christopher Street; Chiron Review; and Writers Against War. He is the recipient of a Minnesota State Arts Board grant; Gulf Coast's First Place Nonfiction Award; and the Blacklock Nature Sanctuary Fellowship for Emerging Artists. He is a recent graduate of Hamline University, where his memoir Self, Divided was awarded the Outstanding Creative Nonfiction Thesis of the Year, and his work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He is currently the Writer-in-Residence at the Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley, Minnesota.

RACHEL MORITZ received her MFA from the University of Minnesota. Her poetry chapbook, The Winchester Monologues, won the 2005 New Michigan Press Competition. Her work has been recently published or is forthcoming in Colorado Review, Denver Quarterly, Five Fingers Review, Hayden's Ferry Review, Indiana Review and other journals. She edits WinteRed Press, a publisher of poetry chaplets and broadsides. She will use her SASE/Jerome grant to pursue a mentorship with an established poet and to work on her poetry manuscript.

MATT RASMUSSEN received a bachelor’s degree from Gustavus Adolphus College and a master’s degree in creative writing from Emerson College. He is a former Peace Corps Volunteer (Papua New Guinea ’99-‘01) and participant in the Loft Mentor Series (’06-’07). His poetry has been recently published or is forthcoming in Gulf Coast, Cimmaron Review, Passages North, Dislocate, New York Quarterly, LIT, and What Light: This Week’s Poem at mnartists.org. He currently lives in Robbinsdale and teaches at Gustavus Adolphus College and Rasmussen College. His chapbook, Fingergun, is available from Kitchen Press.

 

2007

KELLY BARNHILL ($4,000) is a writer and mom, living in Minneapolis. Her work has appeared in The Rake, The Heartlands Today, In The Fray, The Flow, Thin Coyote, and will be appearing later this year in The Sun. She has been a kosher meat slicer, a church janitor, a middle school teacher, a park ranger, a coffee jerk, and a certified wildland firefighter.

STEPHANIE BOOKER ($1,500) of North Minneapolis is an editor of the African American newspaper Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder and holds an MFA from Hamline University of St. Paul. Her creative work has been published most recently in the online GLBT journal Blithe House Quarterly, the collection 60 Seconds to Shine: 221 One-minute Monologues For Women (Monologue Audition Series, Volume 2) edited by John Capecci and Irene Ziegler Aston (Smith & Kraus Inc., 2006), and the upcoming anthology Longing, Lust, and Love: Black Lesbian Stories edited by Shonia L. Brown (Nghosi Books, 2007). Stephani has read her prose and poetry at various Twin Cities-area venues including Patrick's Cabaret and Intermedia Arts. 

KIRSTEN (PAURUS) DIERKING ($2,600) received a bachelor's degree in international affairs and history from the University of Colorado, and a master's degree in creative writing from Hamline University. Her writing has appeared in numerous journals including Great River Review, Water~Stone, and The Comstock Review. She is the recipient of a Fellowship Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, and a Career Initiative Grant from The Loft. She lives with her husband in Arden Hills, Minnesota. 

JOHN JODZIO ($2,900) lives in Minneapolis. Recent fiction has appeared in McSweeney's Internet Concern, Opium.com, Pindeldyboz, Yankee Pot Roast and Bullfight Review. He also has stories in Opium #2 and The Quarterly #31 and has story in Opium Print #3 that won the Opium Fiction Prize. He is a former winner of The Loft Mentor Series and was recently nominated for the Best New American Voices series. 

BAKER LAWLEY ($2,000), a native of Alabama, focuses much of his fiction on the South, making use of the cultural and geographical perspective provided by working at a distance in Minnesota. His current project is a novel, tentatively titled Haints, focusing on a small town's reaction when their annual Civil War battle reenactment goes terribly wrong one year. An earlier version of the manuscript was chosen as a semifinalist in the Words and Music Literary Competition in 2004. Baker's short fiction has appeared in The Southeast Review and Oyster Boy Review. He graduated from the M.F.A. program at the University of Alabama in 2003, and currently teaches in the English department at Gustavus Adolphus College. He lives in south Minneapolis with his wife and hound dogs.

BRANDON LUSSIER ($2,000)