Writing Contests and Events

DVC encourages a rich literary and creative writing community. From our literary journal to our semesterly literary events to our creative writing contests, we encourage and support our students, faculty, staff, and community members in their literary and creative writing inspirations. 

On this page:

DVC Literary Journal, It's Lit

Literature Week

Fall 2021 Virtual Literature Week, November 8, 9, and 10

November 8, 11:10-12:35 — DVC Faculty Read
    1. James Wilson
    2. Michael Levitin
    3. Chris Muravez
    4. Amanda Montei
November 9, 11:10-12:35 — Featured Reader Tanna Tucker

Often employing an Afrofuturist framework, Tanna uses comics and drawing as a way to map her relationship to the Black Diaspora, and to interrogate the utility of Black presence (or absence) in historical and mythical spaces. She is a 2021-22 MacDowell Fellow and is currently illustrating the Afrofuturist graphic novel, Black Kube, co-created with Ytasha Womack (Abrams ComicArts, Megascope 2023). Her work has been featured in the Eisner nominated LAAB Magazine, Believer Magazine, and The Nib.! 

November 10, 12:45-2:10 — DVC Students Read
    1. Kat Vaino
    2. Anthony Bernasconi
    3. Andrea Madison
    4. Andrew Pimentel
    5. Kristine Cox
    6. Dylan Mueller

And for this year’s student reading, we’re featuring both Literature/Creative Writing students as well as Journalism students! It’s so exciting. 

All events are available via Zoom. Please reach out to Rayshell Clapper for more information.

Past Events

Spring 2021 Virtual Literature Week, April 26, 27, 28, and 29
  • April 26, 2021 at 2:30 p.m.-4:00 p.m. Featured Readers from DVC Faculty and Staff
    • Alan Haslam
    • Ivan Hobson
    • Ía Carbonell
    • Anne Kingsley
  • April 27, 2021 at 2:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Featured Reader: Jade Cho
  • April 28, 2021 at 11:10 a.m. - 12:35 p.m.  Reader: DVC Literary Contest Winners: see above
  • April 29, 2020 at 11:10 a.m. - 12:35 p. m., Featured Reader: Jenn Givhan

A little about our featured readers:

Jade Cho is a writer and educator from Oakland, CA. She is the author of In the Tongue of Ghosts (First Word Press, 2016) and her poems have appeared in Apogee, BOAAT, The Offing, and elsewhere. She is an alum of June Jordan’s Poetry for the People at UC Berkeley and a co-founder of The Root Slam, an award-winning Bay Area poetry venue. She holds a BA in Ethnic Studies from UC Berkeley and is an MFA candidate in poetry at Arizona State University.

Jenn Givhan is a Mexican-American/Chicana from the Southwestern desert and the recipient of poetry fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and PEN/Rosenthal Emerging Voices. She is the author of four full-length poetry collections, most recently Rosa’s Einstein(Camino Del Sol Poetry Series), two chapbooks, and the novels Trinity Sight (which won a Southwest Book Award) and Jubilee, both from Blackstone Publishing. Her poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction have appeared in The New Republic, The Nation, POETRY, TriQuarterly, The Boston Review, The Rumpus, Salon, and many others. She's received New Ohio Review’s Poetry Prize, Phoebe Journal’s Greg Grummer Poetry Prize, the Pinch Journal Poetry Prize, and Cutthroat’s Joy Harjo Poetry Prize. Givhan raises her children in New Mexico.

Contact Rayshell Clapper for the Zoom link and any other info.


Literature Week, October 27, 28, 29, 2020

Celebrate the written word by participating in Literature Week. Hear readings from published authors, faculty, and students. Literature Week happens twice a year, during the fall and spring semesters. Spring Literature Week also includes a creative writing contest.  All events are free and will take place via Zoom.  Links to be provided.  

Featured Readers:  Ajuan Mance and Dean Rader

  • Dean Rader
    Tuesday, October 27, 11:00 a.m. - 12:35 p.m. Dean Rader 
  • Ajuan Mance (@8_Rock on Instagram and Twitter)
    Wednesday, October 28, 12:45p.m. - 2:10 p.m. Ajuan Mance
  • DVC Faculty/Staff and Student joint reading.
    Thursday, October 29, 12:45 p.m. - 2:10 p.m.

DVC literary contest

The DVC literary contest is held annually and consists of three categories: fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry. Contact one of our faculty and staff members for more information on guidelines. To see submission details and requirements, go to the DVC Literary Contest Submittable page.

Spring 2021 Winners:

Creative Nonfiction Winners
  • First Place: Danny, Morris, “The Hike”
  • Second Place: Cianna Book, “Treatment Kid”
  • Third Place: - Hali Loyd, “The Pit”
Poetry Winners
  • First Place: Kelly Autumn, "Be Careful, I Pinch"
  • Second Place: Sarah Jimison, "My Catalogue of Fears"
  • Third Place: "I Don't Look for Butterflies Anymore," Tess Manto
Prose Winners
  • First Place: Joe Chung, “Four-Two-Nine”
  • Second Place: Stephanie Pick, “Wraith”
  • Third Place: Samantha Snider, “How to Date a Millennial Boy (Executive, Techie, or Burnout)”

Spring 2020 Winners:

Fiction/Short Play
  • 1st Place: "Looking for Sleep" by Sierra Lofgren
  • 2nd Place:  "A Brighter Tomorrow" by Louise Edwards 
  • 3rd Place: "4pm Over Two" by Katherine Anderson
Creative Non-Fiction
  • 1st Place: "My Queer Neanderthal Cousin Claude" by Monte Fisher
  • 2nd Place: "Letter to Myself" by Katie Nunn
  • 3rd Place: "Leaving China" by Robyn McDowell  
  • 1st Place:  "Revelations" by Kaiu Aguigui 
  • 2nd Place: “California Dreaming"  by Allison Jones 
  • 3rd Place: “The Thoughts That Sprout Up After Midnight" by Frances Bustillos

O'Keefe Prize

The O’Keefe Prize is a comic contest that is held annually. This is a unique contest as there are many opportunities to meet with faculty and students to learn comic techniques and printing.

Meetings are usually held at the end of the fall term for this contest, with submissions accepted the end of January. Contact one of our faculty and staff members for more information.

The O’Keefe Prize is offered in memory of our beloved English colleague James O’Keefe who dribbled soccer balls and raised hell among us for far too short a time. James created and taught English 176 -- The Graphic Novel as Literature.

See some great submissions from our past winners.

Related links

Contact English

ESL Coordinator: Rayshell Clapper

Telephone: 925-969-2621

Email: Rayshell Clapper 

Office location: LC-114 campus map

ESL Coordinator: Laurie Sample

Telephone: 925-969-2619

Email: Laurie Sample 

Office location: LC-112 campus map

English Department Chair: Dorian Eidhin

Telephone: 925-969-2518

Email: deidhin@dvc.edu

Office location: FO 239

Contact: Charles Shackett

Telephone: 925-551-6217

Email: Charles Shackett  

Office location: W-117 campus map