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Western Student Anthology Wins Colorado Book Award

student anthology wins book award

Monsters, Movies & Mayhem

Western Colorado University Graduate Program in Creative Writing (GPCW) is thrilled to announce that its student-produced, “Monsters, Movies & Mayhem” is the winner of a Colorado Book Award in the anthology category. The anthology is the first of its kind produced by the students in the GPCW’s Publishing M.A. program, which is directed by Publishing Concentration Director Kevin J. Anderson, MFA.

“I am very proud of the work these students created and this recognition is well deserved,” said Anderson.

The Colorado Book Award

The Colorado Book Award is offered by Colorado Humanities, a nonprofit organization established in 1974 as a result of the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act. In its 30th year, the Colorado Book Awards celebrate the accomplishments of Colorado’s outstanding authors, editors, illustrators and photographers. This year there were 190 entries in 17 categories: anthology, biography, children’s literature, creative nonfiction, general nonfiction, general fiction, history, historical fiction, juvenile literature, literary fiction, mystery, pictorial, poetry, romance, science fiction/fantasy, thriller and young adult literature. About 70 volunteer selectors and judges read submissions to choose finalists and winners.

A Team EffortMonsters, Movies & Mayhem

Nine Western M.A. students produced the anthology as a group project. The students—Elizabeth Drisko, Kelly Lynn Colby, Angela Johnson, Ashley King, M. Scott Lee, Tracy Leonard Nakatani, James Romag, Kailey Urbaniak and Carol Wyrick—created the anthology concept, solicited submissions, read the slush pile, wrote rejections and selected the best stories. They designed, produced, and released the book.

Thanks to funding from Draft2Digital, the authors were paid professional rates, and the anthology includes 23 original stories by best-selling or award-winning authors such as Jonathan Maberry, David Gerrold, Genre Fiction concentration director Fran Wilde, Genre Fiction instructor Rick Wilber and Genre Fiction MFA alum Charles Maclay.

“Monsters, Movies & Mayhem” was released in hardcover, trade paperback, e-book and audiobook, and received a featured, starred review in Publishers Weekly. The review stated, “The authors’ palpable love of supernatural cinema is infectious; horror fans won’t want to put this down.”

Upcoming Releases, Resources and Events

The second anthology from the current cohort of Publishing M.A. students, “Unmasked,” will be released during the GPCW’s summer residency this July.

The Publishing students will hold an in-person signing event at the Gunnison Arts Center on July 21.

Learn more about Western’s Graduate Program in Creative Writing.



Author Credit: Chris Rourke

Photo Credit: Courtesy

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