We are proud to announce the Leonard A. Slade, Jr. Poetry Fellowships for Poets of Color est. in 2018 

& The Voices of Color Prose Fellowships established in 2017  


These fellowships assist MVICW with our commitment to expanding the American literary canon by promoting voices from a wide array of cultural backgrounds, and to increasing philanthropic support for writers of color in the arts. Application to these fellowships are open to all writers of color, ages 18 and older. The awards provide funding to attend a week of choice at the Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing. 

Fellowship Opportunities

Two Leonard A. Slade, Jr. Full Fellowships in Poetry

Two Voices of Color Full Fellowships in Fiction/CNF

Two Runner-Up Fellowships: $500 each (Toward Registration)

The Judges

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Sequoia Nagamatsu

Fiction/CNF Judge

Sequoia Nagamatsu is the author of the story collection, Where We Go When All We Were Is Gone, silver medal winner of the 2016 Foreword Reviews Indies Book of the Year Award, an Entropy Magazine Best Book of 2016, and a notable book at Buzzfeed. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in publications such as Conjunctions, ZYZZYVA, The Fairy Tale Review, Tin House online, Black Warrior Review, Willow Springs, Pleiades, Lightspeed Magazine, and One World: A Global Anthology of Short Stories, among others. He co-edits Psychopomp Magazine, an online quarterly dedicated to innovative prose, and teaches at St. Olaf College. He is currently working on a second story collection and a novel.

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Adrian Matejka

Poetry Judge

Adrian Matejka was born in Nuremberg, Germany and grew up in Indianapolis, Indiana. He is the author of The Devil’s Garden, which won the New York/New England Award, and Mixology, a winner of the 2008 National Poetry Series. Mixology was also a finalist for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literature. His third collection, The Big Smoke, focuses on Jack Johnson, the first African American heavyweight champion of the world. The Big Smoke was awarded the 2014 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was also a finalist for the 2013 National Book Award, 2014 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and 2014 Pulitzer Prize in poetry. His most recent book, Map to the Stars, was published by Penguin in 2017. Among Matejka’s other honors are the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana Authors Award, the Julia Peterkin Award, a Pushcart Prize, and fellowships from the Bellagio Center, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, and a Simon Fellowship from United States Artists. He teaches at Indiana University and is Poet Laureate of Indiana. 

About Leonard A. Slade Jr.

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Leonard A. Slade, Jr. is a professor of Africana Studies and adjunct professor of English at the University at Albany (SUNY). Slade is the past director of the Doctor of Arts in Humanistic Studies Program and past director of the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies Program. He taught for twenty-two years at Kentucky State University, where he was Chair of the Division of Literature, Languages, and Philosophy, and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. He has published 26 books, including 21 books of poetry: Another Black Voice: A Different Drummer (1988), The Beauty of Blackness (1989), I Fly Like a Bird (1992), The Whipping Song (1993), Vintage (1995), Fire Burning (1995), Pure Light (1996), Neglecting the Flowers (1997), Lilacs in Spring (1998), Elisabeth and Other Poems (1999), For the Love of Freedom (2000), Jazz After Dinner (2006), Triumph (2010), Sweet Solitude (State University of New York Press, 2010), The Season (2011), Chasing the Wind (2012), and God Put a Rainbow in the Sky (2014). Slade's poetry has been published in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.