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Cancelled: Backbone Press Chicago Reading

03/21/2020 @ 2:30 PM - 5:00 PM

backbone press reading chicago

The Guild Complex Presents: A reading with Backbone Press

Featuring our 30 Writers to Watch Tara Betts and Faisal Mohyuddin, along with other Backbone Press authors Naoko Fujimoto, Allison Joseph, and Aozora Brockman.

As a response to the bleak state of diversity in publishing, Backbone Press has been publishing diversely since 2012, supporting writers who are considered marginalized voices and whose work may not be published elsewhere. Without the political, protest, diasporic, voices of the poor, and even prison writing, there are no distinctions. These publications provide necessary bridges, particularly in terms of generational, gender, and racial lines. In addition to informing, they engage us in broader cultural conversations.

Tara Betts is the author of Break the Habit (Trio House Press) and Arc & Hue (Willow Books). She teaches at the University of Illinois-Chicago and lives in Chicago. She has appeared on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam and her work has appeared in Essence Magazine, Callaloo, Drum Voices Revue, WSQ, Columbia Poetry Review, Ninth Letter, Hanging Loose, and Drunken Boat.


Aozora BrockmanAozora Brockman holds an MFA from Northwestern University. Her work has appeared in the Split Rock Review and Chicago Tribune. She grew up on a small, family-operated organic farm in Central Illinois, and much of her poetry is influenced by the meditative spaces of weeding and harvesting.



Naoko FujimotoNaoko Fujimoto was born and raised in Nagoya, Japan. She was an exchange student and received a B.A. and M.A. from Indiana University. Her forthcoming poetry collections is Where I Was Born, winner of the editor’s choice by Willow Books, Spring, 2019. Her first chapbook, Home, No Home, won the annual Oro FinoChapbook Competition. She is a RHINO Poetry fellow.


Allison JosephAllison Joseph received a BA from Kenyon College and an MFA from Indiana University–Bloomington. She is the author of several poetry collections, including Confessions of a Barefaced Woman (Red Hen Press, 2018); Worldly Pleasures (Word Press, 2004); and What Keeps Us Here (Ampersand, 1992), winner of the John C. Zacharis First Book Award. She also serves as the editor-in-chief and poetry editor of Crab Orchard Review.


 Faisal Mohyuddin is a writer, artist, and educator from Chicago, Illinois. He is the author of The Displaced Children of Displaced Children (Eyewear Publishing, 2018), winner of the 2017 Sexton Prize. The recipient of Prairie Schooner’s Edward Stanley Award and a Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Prize, his work appears in the Missouri Review, Narrative, Crab Orchard Review, Poet Lore, RHINO, Tinderbox, Chicago Quarterly Review, Atlanta Review, and elsewhere.



2:30 PM - 5:00 PM


Chopin Theater
1543 W Division