Book Contest Finalists

In 2012, Drunken Boat embarked upon a mission to begin publishing books, which we did with Reetika Vazirani’s Radha Says and Lisa Russ Spaar’s Hide-and-Seek Muse, but this latest book contest was the first time we opened up our submission to anyone with a book of poems, translations or hybrid works, and we were overwhelmed by the response. We received nearly 300 manuscripts, many of which were quite distinguished, and our intrepid staff helped winnow these submissions down to the 10 finalists we are presenting in this folio. We then sent along these finalists to Forrest Gander, who helped choose the winner of the contest, Collier Nogue’s The Ground I Stand on is Not My Ground, a book that utilizes QR codes that link up to a website to create a truly immersive multimedia experience.

We’ve asked each of the other finalists for work that we might include in this special issue to give you a sense of the breadth and diversity of the works we received, and give you some small sense of how difficult it was to choose a winner. We are all proud of Collier’s book and thankful to all the extraordinary poets and translators who submitted to our contest. We hope you appreciate this roster of work as much as we do. Thanks to everyone who helped us with our inaugural book contest, and we hope that this is the start of a remarkable series of new books. 

Ravi Shankar 
April 2015

Ravi Shankar

Ravi Shankar is Poet-in-Residence and Associate Professor of English at Central Connecticut State University, Chairman of the Connecticut Young Writers Trust and the founding editor of Drunken Boat. He has published or edited seven books of poems, including Deepening Groove, Radha Says, Seamless Matter, Voluptuous Bristle, Wanton Textiles, and Instrumentality. Along with Tina Chang and Nathalie Handal, he edited Language for a New Century: Contemporary Poetry from Asia, the Middle East & Beyond (W.W Norton & Co.), called “a beautiful achievement for world literature” by Nobel Laureate Nadine Gordimer. He has won a Pushcart Prize, been featured in The New York Times and the Chronicle of Higher Education, appeared on the BBC and NPR, and has performed his work around the world. He is currently on the faculty of the first international MFA Program at City University of Hong Kong.