September 27, 2006

Joseph wins new literary journal’s grand prize

by Sun Min

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- A professor in Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s College of Liberal Arts is the winner of a national poetry prize.

Allison E. Joseph, head of SIUC’s master’s program in creative writing, claimed the $1,500 Grand Prize of the 2006 Happy Hour Poetry Contest, sponsored by the literary journal “Alehouse Press.”

Alehouse, an independent literary press based in San Francisco, is a new press. Its first publication will be the 2007 issue of “Alehouse,” a journal of poetry containing new poetry from both established and emerging writers, plus essays on poetry and poetry book reviews. Poets in the inaugural issue of Alehouse include former United States poet laureate Billy Collins, Pulitzer-Prize winning poets Maxine Kumin and Stephen Dunn and SIUC’s Joseph.

“What an honor to be chosen for a prize that is essentially launching a new journal,” Joseph said.

Judges chose Joseph’s poem “Blind Date” as the “Best Poem” among more than 200 applicants from across the country.

“I felt shock and disbelief!” she said. “As a writer I'm very used to rejections, so when something wonderful like this happens, I'm not sure how to react.”

Supporting and fostering faculty excellence are among the goals of Southern at 150: Building Excellence Through Commitment, the blueprint for the development of the University by the time it celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019.


Allison E. Joseph

Allison E. Joseph
Download Photo Here