And the winners are…

Glass Mountain fans, readers, and artists,

It’s been a while since we last saw each other! A lot has happened since the last blog post—a few readings, new staff additions, and the opening (and conclusion!) of our annual Poetry & Prose contest!

As usual, there are three categories: fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. This year, the contest was judged by Peter Turchi, Antonya Nelson, and Hayan Charara, respectively. All three of our esteemed judges teach at the University of Houston, and had a few words to say about each winner and runner-up:

Winner: “Love: An Investigation” by Arthur Pike
Peter Turchi said, “‘Love: An Investigation’ is clearly a playful homage to the noir tradition, vivid in detail, witty in its observations.”

Runner-up: “Drive” by Laura Parker

Winner: “Threshold” by Susanna Space
Toni Nelson said, “This is a stirring piece of prose that illuminates, through highly nuanced attention to sensory details, the distilled elegiac moment of love and light in appreciation of a mother.”

Runner-up: “What Do You Do With All The Old Stuff?” by Meredith Melville
Toni Nelson said, “This is a comic meditation on the meaning of ‘stuff,’ bestowing upon the ordinary the qualities of grail-like importance.”

Winner: “Like Her” by Bri Griffith
Hayan Charara said, “In a relatively small amount of space, ‘Like Her’ creates an authentic world populated with authentic people—more than this, and no doubt because of it the poem rings true with insight that it deeply felt and carefully earned.”

Runner-up: “José Bearvo” by Juliane Tran*
Hayan Charara said, “‘José Bearvo’ accomplishes one of poetry’s most difficult tasks: writing a funny poem that isn’t just for laughs. The turn it makes, from not taking itself seriously to a self- and social reflection, surprises and delivers.”

Thank you to everyone who submitted to the contest. Read the winning submissions in volume 20 of Glass Mountain, launching April 2018.


*Scrutinizing readers may have noticed that Juliane Tran is also listed on this website as a member of Glass Mountain’s staff. Juliane applied to join the staff over a month after the piece she submitted was chosen to be a finalist for the contest. Since our inception, Glass Mountain has maintained a strict rule against staff submitting to the magazine in order to maintain artistic integrity. The poem stands on its own merit.

Fall Reading Series: The Halloween Event

Join Glass Mountain for our Halloween reading! @ Bohemio’s back patio!

708 Telephone Rd Ste E, Houston, Texas 77023
Doors at 6:30PM, reading starts promptly at 7PM!

Come listen to our featured readers Conor Bracken, Will Burns, and B.J. Love. Costumes are appreciated but not required!

Don’t forget to sign up for the open mic and share your work. (Spooky or otherwise!) There will be a 3 MINUTE LIMIT per each open mic reader but we just want to make sure everyone gets a chance to hear all the lovely souls willing to share their work!

Featured Readers


Conor Bracken’s poems appear or are forthcoming in the Adroit Journal, At Length, Love’s Executive Order, Muzzle Magazine, and The New Yorker, among others. His chapbook, Henry Kissinger, Mon Amour, was selected by Diane Seuss as the winner of the 2017 Frost Place Chapbook Competition, and was published by Bull City Press in September 2017. A graduate of Virginia Tech, a former poetry editor for Gulf Coast, and the assistant director of a university writing center, he received his MFA from the University of Houston, where he and his wife currently live.



Will Burns graduated high school in Arkansas (in a little town called Methlehem) and went straight to the PhD program at the University of Houston to study fiction writing. He can wink with both eyes at once. He is great with scorpions of all kinds, snakes too. On this night, He will read much fiction.






BJ Love is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has written and taught poetry for more than 15 years. In that time, he’s led writing workshops in Alaska, taught fiction and poetry writing in Vermont, and, last July, took a group of young writers to Ireland. Recent work can be found in numerous journals and anthologies, including Gulf Coast, The North American Review, and Forklift, OH. BJ is the sixth grade English teacher at The Emery/Weiner School in Houston, Texas.

Fall Reading Recap

Thanks to all that joined us for our Fall Reading!

Our featured readers Erika Jo Brown, LeeAnne Carlson, and Quentin Key-Tello shared some amazing work with us which was then followed by the open mic where we got to hear your genius. It was MC’d by Glass Mountain’s Co-Managing Editor, the illustrious red lipsticked poet herself, Amanda Ortiz.

Erika Jo Brown started off our night with a series of poems that touched on the monotony of everyday life and the power of imagination. A fresh faced look on the world that makes us all want to experience life through her eyes.

Then we got a taste of LeeAnne Carlson’s tale of farm house mystery, gripping the crowd in page turning enigma and heart warming memories. Following the main character as we trace through past and present day we peel back the layers of this case to find the truth. It is a tale we couldn’t get enough of and left us wanting to pluck the manuscript from her fingers and absorb the rest of it whole.

We finished off with Quentin Key-Tello and his self proclaimed “anxious and over analytic” mutterings with his piece “Elegy.” It read from the perspective of the narrator who is reflecting on his best friend’s life after he’s passed. Although a different form of narrative than we are used to it is nothing short of compelling. I’ve never read or heard a piece that was told in this form of narrative, 10 minutes of flash fiction the room was silenced in awe of his use of rhetoric and narrative.

We continued the night with a series of open mic readings by our audience members. This is the most exciting portion of the night because you don’t have to be a published writer, or even a writer at all to share your work. Chug your liquid courage and brace the eyes of the masses as the innermost depths of your subconscious is regaled in the form of prose and poetry. All of the contributors were brilliant and we are so glad audience members felt comfortable enough to share their work.

If you didn’t get a chance to attend this reading or you need plans for another Tuesday night don’t miss the next reading! The Halloween Reading October 31, details to come!

2017 Poetry & Prose Contest Winners!

To all Glass Mountain readers and friends, the 2017 Poetry and Prose Contest has come to an end. Our esteemed judges have declared winners, although one category has an unprecedented TWO winners this time around.

In nonfiction, judged by Kim Meyer, the winner is “Magical Boy with Bleeding Guts” by Alexander Castro.

For poetry, judged by Martha Serpas, the winner is “Urban Universality” by Gerald Smith.

And in fiction, judged by Antonya Nelson, we have two winners: “What We Do To Be New” by Jonah Brunet and “Counting Lights” by Fajer Khansa.

Thank you so much to everyone who submitted work; we loved reading it and can’t wait for next year’s contest! To read the winners’ work, keep an eye out for Glass Mountain volume 18, our tenth anniversary edition!

A New Year with New Beginnings…

To all Glass Mountain fans, readers and artists: happy 2017 and thank you for sticking around for what promises to be another amazing semester! We’re celebrating ten years of Glass Mountain with the 10th anniversary issue this spring.

After a restful winter break, the GM staff is ready to get right back into the swing of things with three major announcements:


Any piece of art, poetry, fiction or creative nonfiction will be considered as long as the artist is not currently enrolled in or previously awarded a PhD or MFA in the category you are submitting to; for example, we’ll accept poetry from someone with a master’s degree in art and business. The submission deadline for the Spring 2017 issue of Glass Mountain is February 11. For further guidelines and to submit, go here.

Staff applications should be sent to by January 27 and can be found at the bottom of this page.

Our first reading of the semester will take place on Tuesday, January 31 at 7 PM at Bohemeo’s. The café is very close to campus, and it’s the same place we held two of last semester’s readings! So come on out to enjoy some snacks and beverages, as well as readings from Miah Arnold, Alex Colter and Alex Naumann and the open mic!