This Just In: 2015 Contest Judges Announced

The Enizagam staff is excited to announce the 2015 fiction and poetry contest judges!

We are proud to introduce Taiye Selasi as fiction judge and Chinaka Hodge as poetry judge.

Taiye Selasi Chinaka-Hodge-by-Mike-Kepka

Excelling in several literary styles, London-born Taiye Selasi is the author of Ghana Must Go, along with several essays, short stories, and scripts. Chinaka Hodge is a leading Bay Area poet, playwright, screenwriter, and educator.

Contest submissions open November 1st! Winners receive a prize of $1,000 plus publication.

We look forward to reading your submissions!

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Lit Crawl is my Christmas


Hello Everyone!

It’s that magical time when all the beautiful poets, authors, essayists, and creative minds of the Bay Area crawl out of the woodwork and flock to the city for the biggest literary event in our calenders. With this years’ fantastic Lit Crawl lineup, everyone here on the Enizagam staff is thrilled to announce that various members of our staff and program will be reading in the midst of all that greatness. Newly stated Enizagam chief editor Mina Jameson is one in our set, along with Poetry Editor Paige O’Farrell, and readers for the journal Imani Diltz and Chloe Smith.

Join us at 849 Valencia St on Saturday, October 18th at 7:15 for EDGE OF SEVENTEEN: Featuring Poetry/Prose/Performance by students from Oakland School for the Arts.

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OMG Volume 8 is here!



Cover art by Andrea Sarber! Printed at 1984 Printing in Oakland! Chock-full of awesome!

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Thank you to all who entered the 2014 Enizagam Literary Awards in Poetry and Fiction competition! Our judges Eileen Myles (Poetry) and Daniel Alarcon (Fiction) have selected the winners: Congratulations to KAT HARVILLE for her selected poetry and MIRENE ARSANIOS for her short story “B”! Both will receive $1000 and will be published in the 2014 issue.

About Mirene’s story “B”, Daniel Alarcon says: Mirene Arsanios has written a dreamy, sultry gem of a story. “B” is about love and desire and growing up; about the power dynamic between two girls on the cusp of being young women. I was drawn in by the careful, supple language, and the poetic rendering of a scene that is both mesmeric and utterly real. Bravo!

About Kat Harville’s poetry, Eileen Myles says: Kat Harville #1 for me. I love the intense verbiness. It’s wild stuff full of sprung energy, shrinking and pouncing, full of animals and animalism, full of pronouncements:  I am the terrible vanilla and you….It’s brave, passionate, fun dark work that is running on its own honor, its own steam and it does not let up and I am never once disappointed in this work. She plays it to the end, a real poet. 

Congratulations to KAT and MIRENE and to all of our amazing Finalists!

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The Finalists Have Been Selected!

Hurrah! After several weeks of constant + careful reading, the Enizagam editors have selected the finalists for the 2014 Enizagam Contest in Fiction and Poetry. We received over 125 entries in each category; the work was consistently outstanding, and it was a challenge to whittle it down.

But, we did! Eileen Myles is currently reading work by Poetry finalists Laura Jo Hess, Kat Harville and Michael Mlekoday. Daniel Alarcon, our Fiction judge, is reading “Harvest” by Alma Garcia, “B” by Mirene Arsanios, and “Be Gone Affliction!” by Mary Kuryla. Though there will only be one winner in each category, we are thrilled to be publishing the work of all the finalists.

Stay tuned! Winners will be announced soon…


The Enizagam Editors

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The Deadline is Here! (Also: Isabel Allende!)

Hello everyone! It’s April 1st and this is no joke: Today is the LAST day to submit your work for the ENIZAGAM Literary Contest in Poetry and Fiction! Thank you so much to all those who have sent us their incredible work, and go go go to all you last minute submitters. We’ve got a lot of amazing reading ahead of us, and some very difficult decisions to make…

In other exciting ENIZAGAM news: The 2014 issue will include an interview with none other than the magical luminary amazing incredible Isabel Allende, done by (the magical luminary amazing incredible) Mina Jameson.

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Call for Submissions

What do Nikki Giovanni, Daniel Handler (aka Lemony Snicket), Kim Addonizio, Michelle Tea, and Robert Olen Butler have in common?

1. They’re incredible, renowned writers.
2. They’ve all judged the annual Enizagam Literary Awards in Poetry and Fiction.

Eileen Myles, Enizagam Poetry Judge, 2013

Eileen Myles, Enizagam Poetry Judge, 2013



Daniel Alarcon, Enizagam Fiction Judge, 2013

This year we’re thrilled to announce that Eileen Myles(“the rock star of modern poetry”)will judge Poetry, and Daniel Alarcón (a Granta “Best Young American Novelist”  and one of the New Yorker’s ‘20 under 40’) will judge Fiction.

Winners in each competition will receive $1,000.00 each, blurbs about their work from the esteemed judges, and publication in the 2014 issue of Enizagam. Winners and finalists will be nominated for the Pushcart Prize by Enizagam’s editor.

The deadline for submissions is April 1, 2014, and the entry fee is $20. We are also accepting general submissions in fiction, poetry, and cross/multi-genre, fee-free. See submission page for details.

We hope to read your work!

The Enizagam staff

Eileen Myles was born in Boston (1949) and moved to New York in 1974 to be a poet. Snowflake/different streets (poems, 2012) is the latest of her 18 books. Inferno (a poet’s novel) came out in 2010. For The Importance of Being Iceland/travel essays in art she received a Warhol/Creative Capital grant. In 2010 the Poetry Society of America awarded Eileen the Shelley Prize. She is a Prof. Emeritus of Writing at UC San Diego. She’s a 2012 Guggenheim fellow. She lives in New York.

Daniel Alarcón is author of the story collection War by Candlelight, a finalist for the 2005 PEN-Hemingway Award, and Lost City Radio, named a Best Novel of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle and the Washington Post. His fiction, journalism and translations have appeared in A Public Space, El País, McSweeney’s, n+1, and Harper’s, and in 2010 The New Yorker named him one of the best 20 Writers Under 40. Alarcón is co-founder of Radio Ambulante, a Spanish language storytelling podcast, and currently serves as a Fellow in the Investigative Reporting Program at the UC Berkeley School of Journalism. He lives in San Francisco, California.


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New Staff, Same Great Taste

Our new staff is busy securing judges for contest 2014. Once they are announced, submissions will come in (like a wrecking ball).

Stay up to date by checking our website! We’ll be sending out a flyer when everything is properly secured and all seats are in the upright and locked position.

Happy writing,

Enizagam staff

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Soma Mei Sheng Frazier Hands Over the Reins

Enizagam Community -

I hope this post finds you well, happy, reading and writing.

I’m typing atcha to share news of two major changes in the Eniz community:

  • Student Editor-in-Chief Rosalie Bidar has graduated from Oakland School for the Arts (OSA). Her impressive legacy will be upheld by another staffer studying writing in the School of Literary Arts – to be selected from within our current ranks in the fall.
  • As of August 9, I’ll be handing over the reins as well. While I’ve deeply enjoyed launching Enizagam in the national and international literary communities, and will continue to shout the journal’s praises from the mountaintops, I’ve accepted a position as Associate Director of Foundation and Government Support at KQED, the San Francisco Bay Area’s public media source. As part of my transition out of Oakland School for the Arts, I’m placing Enizagam in the capable hands of Kate Schatz and Terrel Adams. And me? I’ve decided to try my hand at breeding Welsh Ponies.

OK, that’s a lie. In 2015, I’ll launch a publication with poet/friend Arisa White, who’s been rocking it as a 2013 NAACP Image Award in Poetry and 2013 California Book Award nominee; getting interviewed by dream hampton on Jay-Z’s website; doing other stellar-writer-stuff. It’s based on a fairly snazzy concept, and we’re positioning it to ensure that it makes a big splash nationwide – so stay tuned.

Mainly, though, I’m going to be giving my own writing a little TLC. (While teaching is 24/7, KQED is 9-5. Muahahaha!)

While I’ve managed to avoid most forms of social media (if only there were antisocial media) you can find me on LinkedIn and FB, should you wish to connect in the cloud.

It’s been a deep pleasure to read the amazing work that this journal receives every year, via general submissions and the Enizagam Awards in Poetry and Fiction. My <3 to everyone.


Soma Mei Sheng Frazier

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Enizagam Supporter + Award-winning Author Arisa White – Book Launch

The entire Enizagam staff has been delighted to follow this year of successes for poet Arisa White. Arisa, who has graciously read at several of our journal’s events, is a 2013 NAACP Image Award Nominee, a 2013 California Book Award Nominee, and the list goes on…

Please come out and join us for the launch of Arisa’s celebrated second volume, A Penny Saved (published by Willow Books).

We’ll be at Pegasus on Shattuck: one of our favorite Bay Area bookstores.

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