September 27, 2018
Today PEN America announced the winners of the 2018 PEN America Literary Awards—Los Angeles. We are excited to share that Vicki Vértiz is the 2018 Poetry award winner for her 2017 collection, Palm Frond with its Throat Cut!
The PEN America Literary Awards are juried by panels of esteemed, award-winning writers, editors, booksellers, and critics. This year’s award winners will be honored at the 2018 LitFest Gala on November 2nd at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, CA.
Vickie’s striking collection uses both humor and sincerity to capture moments in time. Brutally honest, playful, and rhythmically rich, Vértiz’s poetry shows how history, oppression, and resistance don’t just refer to big events or movements. Rather, these things play out in the intimate and everyday spaces of family, sex, and community. Vértiz’s poems ask us to see Los Angeles—and all the cities like it—as they always have been: an America of code-switching and reinvention, of lyric and fight.
A graduate of Williams College, the University of Texas at Austin, and the University of California Riverside, Vickie Vértiz is a writer from Bell Gardens, California. A Macondo Fellow and seven-time VONA participant, Vickie has also been a Bread Loaf Environmental Writers Conference scholar, a Lucille Clifton Scholar at the Community of Writers, and a Mellon Minority Undergraduate Fellow. Vickie is a social justice advocate who has given lectures and readings in France, Japan, Mexico City, and throughout the United States. She currently resides in Los Angeles.
Since 1963, the PEN America Literary Awards have honored many of the most outstanding voices in literature across diverse genres, including fiction, poetry, science writing, essays, sports writing, biography, children’s literature, and drama. To learn more about Pen America, the PEN America Literacy Awards, and the judges and other fantastic winners, visit the Pen America website.
An enormous congratulations to you, Vickie!