Wisconsin People & Ideas 2021 Fiction and Poetry Contest Reading - Jennifer Fandel, Paula Schulz, David Southward, Kim Suhr, Allison Uselman, Yvette Viets Flaten, Jason Smith - 10/28/2021 - 7:00pm

Wisconsin People & Ideas 2021 Fiction and Poetry Contest Reading

Wisconsin People & Ideas, the Wisconsin Academy’s magazine of contemporary Wisconsin thought and culture, presents a Wisconsin Book Festival reading featuring the winners of the statewide 2020 Fiction & Poetry Contests, hosted by editor Jason A. Smith. Join the event at: Before the event begins, you will see a countdown and the event image. 


Fiction readings include:

1st-place story by Allison Uselman

2nd-place story by Kim Suhr

and 3rd-place story by Yvette Viets Flaten


Poetry readings include:

1st-place poem by Jennifer Fandel

2nd-place poem by David Southward

and 3rd-place poem by Paula Schulz


Join us in celebration and support of Wisconsin's creative writing community!


This reading is presented in partnership with the Wisconsin Book Festival with support from Wisconsin Public Radio and Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts. Learn more about how to submit your work to our annual fiction and poetry contests here.


For more information contact event host and Wisconsin People & Ideas editor Jason A. Smith.

Jennifer Fandel

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Jennifer Fandel is the first-place winner of the Wisconsin People & Ideas 2021 Poetry Contest. Her poetry is forthcoming or has been published in The American Journal of Poetry, Ginger, Measure, The Baltimore Review, and RHINO, as well as a number of anthologies including Hope Is the Thing: Wisconsinites on Hope and Resilience in the Time of Covid-19(Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2021). Fandel’s other published work includes book reviews and nonfiction books for children and young adults. She teaches poetry at Oakhill Correctional Institution through the Wisconsin Prison Humanities Project and tutors students in writing at Oakhill through the Odyssey Beyond Bars college program. Fandel has also taught poetry classes in women’s shelters, parks & rec programs, and grade schools.

Paula Schulz

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Paula Schulz is the third-place winner of the Wisconsin People & Ideas 2021 poetry contest. She has taught grade pre-K through college. Schulz has been involved in many ekphrastic projects and lives and writes in Slinger with her husband, Greg.

David Southward

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David Southward is the second-place winner of the 2021 Wisconsin People & Ideas Poetry Contest. He teaches in the Honors College at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. His publications include Bachelor’s Buttons (Kelsay Books 2020) and Apocrypha, a sonnet sequence based on the Gospels (Wipf & Stock 2018). Southward is a two-time winner of the Lorine Niedecker Prize and was selected by Mark Doty for the Muse Prize from the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets. In 2019 his poem “Mary’s Visit” received the Frost Farm Prize for Metrical Poetry. Southward resides in Milwaukee with his husband, Geoff.

Kim Suhr

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Kim Suhr is the second-place winner of the Wisconsin People & Ideas 2021 Fiction Contest. She is author of Nothing to Lose (Cornerstone Press, 2018) and Maybe I’ll Learn: Snapshots of a Novice Mom (2012). Suhr holds an MFA in fiction from the Solstice Program at Pine Manor College where she was the Dennis Lehane Fellow in 2013. Her writing has appeared in various publications. Suhr is Director of Red Oak Writing where she leads Writers’ Roundtable critique groups, provides manuscript critiques and coaching, and leads the summer Creative Writing Camps for youth. When Suhr isn’t writing, she enjoys reading, gardening, time outdoors with her family and being a fan-girl for her grown children in their various pursuits.

Allison Uselman

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Allison Uselman is the first-place winner of the Wisconsin People & Ideas 2021 Fiction Contest. She was born, raised, and currently lives in Madison. Uselman attended Augsburg University in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where she graduated in 2019 with a degree in English and with a studio art minor. In her free time Uselman draws, bikes, watches M*A*S*H reruns, and snuggles her dog, George. She hopes to one day attend art school somewhere near the ocean, where she can continue drawing baby animals, wildflowers, and pouty self-portraits.

Yvette Viets Flaten

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Yvette Viets Flaten is the 3rd-place winner of the Wisconsin People & Ideas 2021 Fiction Contest. Flaten was born in Denver, Colorado and grew up in an Air Force family, living in Nevada, North Dakota, and Washington State as well as France, England, and Spain. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and a Master of Arts in History from UW–Eau Claire. Flaten’s award-winning poetry has appeared in numerous journals, and her pandemic short story, La Pestilencia, appeared in The London Reader (June 2020), and her short story, Unforgiving Winter, won 2nd place in the 2020 Lakefly Flash Fiction Contest.

Jason Smith

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Jason A. Smith is the associate director of the Wisconsin Academy and editor of its quarterly magazine of Wisconsin thought and culture, Wisconsin People & Ideas. Through the magazine’s annual fiction and poetry contests, Smith works to advance the careers of Wisconsin writers, and he is also the manager of Academy Courses, which bring people together for lifelong learning and personal enrichment.