ACW is thrilled to announce the 2021 selected residents for the Anne LaBastille Memorial Writers Residency, taking place October 3 – 17 at the Lodge at Twitchell Lake. This year saw the largest number of submissions we’ve ever received. The selected writers were picked for their high quality of writing by a panel of judges. With all residents and staff fully vaccinated and rapid test kits on site, we’ve arranged a safe retreat for our residents.

Join ACW and this year’s residents for a reading from their current projects on Saturday, October 9, 2021 at 2:00pm. The event is free and open to the public, and all attendees are required to wear masks. Contact ACW for directions and to RSVP. If the weather is poor, the reading will be recorded and posted for online viewing.

Fiction 

Samantha Burns is an emerging writer who grew up in the Adirondacks and is currently residing full-time in North River. Her current manuscript-in-progress, There Are No Strangers Here, is a linked short story collection centered on a young woman coming of age in her hometown in the Adirondacks, a place that is both a source of comfort and repression. She received her MFA from the University of Idaho in 2018, where she was awarded the Writing in the Wild Fellowship. Her short fiction has appeared in Fence, Smokelong Quarterly, and The Onion River Review. Additionally, she was named a finalist for the Cecelia Joyce Johnson Award for Short Story from the Key West Literary Seminar in 2020. Outside of writing, she is a whitewater river guide on the Hudson River Gorge and also enjoy tutoring and mentoring others in academic writing.

Carter Sickels is the author of the novel The Prettiest Star, published by Hub City Press, and winner of the 2021 Southern Book Prize and the Weatherford Award. The Prettiest Star was also selected as a Kirkus Best Book of 2020 and a Best LGBT Book of 2020 by O Magazine. His debut novel The Evening Hour (Bloomsbury 2012), an Oregon Book Award finalist and a Lambda Literary Award finalist, was adapted into a feature film that premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. His essays and fiction have appeared in a variety of publications, including The Atlantic, Oxford American, Poets & Writers, BuzzFeed, Joyland, Guernica, Catapult, and Electric Literature. Carter is the recipient of the 2013 Lambda Literary Emerging Writer Award, and earned fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and MacDowell. He is an assistant professor of English at Eastern Kentucky University.

Nonfiction

Maria T. Allocco has taught Creative Writing, mindfulness, and Yin Yoga to high-need youth for over a decade. Schools have included: June Jordan School for Equity, Leadership High School, Immaculate Conception Academy, Sunset Elementary, Youth Chance and Hilltop School for Pregnant Minors. Maria co-founded and co-facilitated the bay area’s first mixed-race meditation group, still-running and in its third incarnation. She also curated Litquake SF’s first-ever mixed-race reading at the Mission Cultural Center and first-ever mixed-race Asian reading to a full-house at The Marsh Theater.

An Academy of American Poets Prize recipient and two-time Voices of Our Nation and Tin House alum, her work has been published in Tin House, The Rumpus, The Los Angeles Review, Lantern Review, Pariahs: Writing from Outside the Margins and is forthcoming in The Georgia Review. Maria was the first student accepted into both Columbia University’s Poetry and Nonfiction MFA programs and completed her thesis this Spring. As she stated in The New Yorker: “I write mixed-genre pieces on mixed-race experience.”

Maria’s pieces have featured at the Mixed Remixed Festival, the San Francisco International Arts Festival, the Write of Way Festival, The Venice Art House, The Langston Hughes House, for The Global Arts Project, at SOMArts and Feast of Words and more. Maria’s text-based art has exhibited in galleries and been interpreted through International and local contemporary dance. She is interested in collaborations that evolve into multiple forms and reflect multiple facets as she believes in the multi-facetedness and multi-dimensionality of every individual.

Amy Fisher Quinn is a lawyer and writer who lives in Lake Placid, NY. She delights in connecting people to what they need: equity and empathy, good food and good books, fresh perspectives and fresh air. She is happier still when she is writing about those things. Her creative projects include the co-production/direction of a stage show comprised of original monologues aimed at de-stigmatizing mental illness through storytelling for the “This Is My Brave” organization. Amy is passionate about using privilege to lift others in order to break cycles of trauma and dysfunction in individuals and communities.  She is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross and the Western New England School of Law but she hasn’t stopped learning since, finding that when she truly keeps her eyes open, the greatest lessons appear in the most unlikely places, packages and circumstances. 

Poetry

 Erin Adair-Hodges is the winner of the 2016 Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize for Let’s All Die Happy and the forthcoming Every Form of Ruin (Pitt Poetry Series, 2023). Her poetry has been awarded the Loraine Williams Poetry Prize from The Georgia Review and the Allen Tate Prize from The Sewanee Review; she has also been the Bread Loaf-Rona Jaffe Scholar, Sewanee Writers Conference-Claudia Emerson Scholar, and Vermont Studio Center’s James Merrill Fellow. Recent work has appeared in American Poetry ReviewPloughshares, AGNI, Gulf Coast, and more. Born and raised in New Mexico, she is currently an assistant professor of creative writing at the University of Central Missouri, where she co-edits the literary journal Pleiades.

Alice Turski was awarded a full-tuition merit scholarship and the McKelvey Research Award at Washington University in St. Louis where she completed her B.A. in Biology. She studied biology and medicine at NYU’s MD/PhD program before going on leave to obtain her MFA in Poetry from Cornell University. She been a lecturer in Ithaca, New York at Cornell, teaching creative writing and English literature. Her scientific writing has been published in journals like PNAS and Genes Development. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in The Iowa Review, Verse Daily, The Greensboro Review, Iron Horse Literary Review, PRISM, Zone 3, Copper Nickel, NELLE, The Salt Hill Journal, The Ilanot Review, and more. A Chinese American emerging poet, her writing circles examinations of displacement, ecological crisis, immigrant families, and myth-making.

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