Blood Orange Review Annual Contest

Announcing: 2020 Contest Results

The winners' writing will appear in the next issue of Blood Orange Review.


Maurisa Li-A-Ping

Winner | Maurisa Li-A-Ping | "to the fxck gxrls at sea:"

Maurisa Li-A-Ping is a writer and educator raised by an Afro-Caribbean Womxn in Brooklyn, New York. Her commitment to poetry and higher education can be seen through her publications in Puerto del Sol, Up the Staircase Quarterly, Celebrating Twenty Years of Black Girlhood: The Lauryn Hill Reader, About Campus, and forthcoming work in Obsidian. She has a M.S.Ed in Higher Education Student Affairs and is a current MFA candidate at Randolph College. Learn more at

Jari Bradley

Runner-Up | Jari Bradley | “Wayward”

Jari Bradley is a Black genderqueer poet and scholar from San Francisco, California. They have received fellowships and support from Callaloo, Cave Canem, Tin House, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments. Jari’s work has been published in The Adroit Journal, The Offing, Academy of American Poets, Callaloo, Columbia Journal, The Virginia Quarterly Review, and elsewhere. Jari Bradley (MFA: University of Pittsburgh) is the current 2020-2021 First Wave Poetry Fellow at UW-Madison.


Kenneth Carroll

Winner | Kenneth Carroll | “A Charles Brown Christmas”

Kenneth Carroll is a native Washingtonian whose poetry and prose has appeared in Icarus, In Search Of Color Everywhere, Bum Rush The Page, Potomac Review, Worcester Review, the Washington Post, Words & Images Journal, Indiana Review, American Poetry: The Next Generation, Beyond the Frontier, Gargoyle, Children of the Dream, Spirit & Flame, and Penguin Academics Anthology of African American Poetry, among others. His short stories appear in Stress City, (Paycock Press), Children of the Dream, (Simon & Schuster Pocketbooks), Gargoyle Magazine #44, Words and Images Journal of Southern Maine, Full Moon Over K Street, Shooting Star Magazine, The Black Body (7 Stories Press), and the anthology “It’s All Love” (Double Day), edited by Marita Golden.

His book of poetry is entitled So What: For The White Dude Who Said This Ain’t Poetry, Bunny & The Crocodile Press. He has had three of his plays produced, The Mask, Walking To Be Free, and Make My Funk The P-Funk, which Ishmael Reed published in Konch. He is former director of DC WritersCorps and the African American Writers Guild and taught at Duke Ellington School for the Arts, Washington Writers Center and Montgomery County Community College. He is a former Pushcart Prize nominee for poetry. He is married and the proud father of a daughter and two sons.

Chelsea Sutton

Runner-Up | Chelsea Sutton | “The Floating Woman”

Chelsea Sutton writes weird fiction, plays and films. She was a 2016 PEN America Emerging Voices Fellow and is member of the Clarion UCSD 2020/21 class. She has just finished her first short story collection, Curious Monsters, which was the runner-Up for the 2018 Madeline P. Plonsker Emerging Writers Residency Prize. Her writing has appeared in The Rattling Wall, Bourbon Penn, The Texas Observer, The Exposition Review, LA Review of Books, Cosmonaut Avenue, and Pithead Chapel, and is forthcoming in Craft Literary, Sequestrum, and F(r)iction. She was a 2018 Sewanee Writers Conference Playwright Fellow, a writer in residence at Willapa Bay AiR in 2017, and a Humanitas PlayLA award winner. MFA UC Riverside.


Dara Mathis

Winner | Dara Mathis | “Water Will Carry You Home”

Dara Mathis is a freelance writer based in Maryland. Her work on race, gender, and motherhood has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, and other outlets. She spends her free time exploring the Mid-Atlantic with a scientist and three tiny humans.

Caitlin Feldman

Runner-Up | Caitlin Feldman | “Bloom”

Caitlin Feldman holds an MFA in nonfiction from Eastern Washington University, where she taught English composition and creative writing. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Hobart and Portland Monthly, among others. Having resided in Oregon’s Willamette Valley for most of her life, she now lives and writes in Spokane, Washington.

CLMP’s Contest Code of Ethics:

CLMP’s community of independent literary publishers believes that ethical contests serve our shared goal: to connect writers and readers by publishing exceptional writing. We believe that intent to act ethically, clarity of guidelines, and transparency of process form the foundation of an ethical contest. To that end, we agree to 1) conduct our contests as ethically as possible and to address any unethical behavior on the part of our readers, judges, or editors; 2) to provide clear and specific contest guidelines—defining conflict of interest for all parties involved; and 3) to make the mechanics of our selection process available to the public. This Code recognizes that different contest models produce different results, but that each model can be run ethically. We have adopted this Code to reinforce our integrity and dedication as a publishing community and to ensure that our contests contribute to a vibrant literary heritage.