The Blog


Carolyne Wright

In this volume of thoughtful, reflective, lyric-narrative poems, David Rigsbee's deep psychic engagement with perception, memory, culture, and the politics of human interaction, in all their expansiveness and limitation, is on full display. The poet's sensibility—guided by compassionate reflection and seared by loss—discovers its way forward through the inland waterways of memory to reach for difficult epiphanies. Lyric immediacy alternates with reflective expansiveness and melancholy, and with economy of diction and startling appositions of image and interrogative, Rigsbee breaks open the factual planes—the faits accomplis of events, of names and dates—to re-construe the connections between them.

Kyle Minor's TIR-awarded work in Best American Nonrequired Reading!

Audrey Smith

The Iowa Review is pleased to announce that Kyle Minor’s “Seven Stories About Kenel of Koulév-Ville” will be featured in The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2013, edited by Dave Eggers.  Kyle’s story was featured in TIR 42-3 as the winner of the 2012 Iowa Review Award in fiction.

Read more about The Best American Nonrequired Reading anthology here. The collection will be available for purchase in October. 

Congratulations, Kyle!

Angels Who Incarnated the Void: Dana Ward’s THE CRISIS OF INFINITE WORLDS

Will Vincent

Dana Ward’s The Crisis of Infinite Worlds performs the opening lines of Comte de Lautréamont’s Les Chants de Maldoror in reverse, where rather than threatening to have our souls dissolved as “water does sugar” by the text itself, Ward’s book lands like a Lautréamontian crane on our brilliantine post-modern marsh. Floating above and aware of an avant-garde still obsessed with signs signifying signs signifying signs and conceptual writing that we don’t even have to read to understand, Ward invites us to love again.

Hitting the streets: What does poetry mean to you?

Kate Kraabel

Sometimes poetry gets left out. Novels become movies or television shows, essays become documentaries, and the world knows about them. To be blunt, the only truly bestselling poets are dead. Even avid readers of The Iowa Review can probably name only a few poets off the tops of their heads, and topping that list would likely be people like Emily Dickinson and Robert Frost.

As a class project for Iowa's undergraduate creative writing track in poetry, a few of my classmates and I set out to bring poetry into the community of Iowa City and the larger community of the internet. We went out into the streets of Iowa City with a video camera, asking people two things:

One: Tell us your favorite poet, and why.
Two: Describe your relationship with poetry in one word.

Z Is for Zombies: A Conversation with Bennett Sims

Derek Heckman

Bennett Sims was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and received his MFA in fiction from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. His stories have appeared in A Public Space, Tin House, and Zoetrope: All-Story.

His debut novel, A Questionable Shape (Two Dollar Radio), has been called “addictively engaging” by Benjamin Hale and was said to announce “a literary talent of genre-wrecking brilliance” by Wells Tower.

Bennett was my fiction teacher this past spring, and when I finished reading his novel, I invited him to stop by the Iowa Review office to talk books, movies, and undeath.


HECKMAN: To get all the uninspired preliminary questions out of the way, I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about yourself as a writer, your history with writing, influences, etc.


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