Alice James Poetry Cooperative (Farmington, ME)


Book cover with a butterfly and flower framed by a full moon

NEA Literature Fellow Frank X. Gaspar won the Beatrice Hawley Award from the Alice James Poetry Cooperative for his book, Night of a Thousand Blossoms. Image courtesy of Alice James Poetry Cooperative

Founded in 1973, the mission of the Alice James Poetry Cooperative in Farmington, Maine is to seek out and publish the best contemporary poetry by established and beginning poets, with particular emphasis on involving poets in the publishing process. Winners of the regional New York/New England Award are active members of the cooperative, judging future contests and participating in editorial and executive decision-making. The Cooperative’s authors have won many distinguished literary prizes, including the American Book Award, The Nation/Discovery Prize, and the William Carlos Williams Award. My Mojave, the eighth book of poetry by Alice James author and NEA Literature Fellow Donald Revell, won the $25,000 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize from the Academy of American Poets.

In FY 2004, the Alice James Poetry Cooperative received an NEA Creativity grant of $24,000 to support the promotion and publication of six poetry titles from its Beatrice Hawley Award and New York/New England Award competitions. The Cooperative receives more than 1,200 entries each year for these prizes.

Among the winning titles in the 2004 competitions were manuscripts by National Book Award finalist Cole Swensen, Whiting Writings’ Award winner Catherine Barnett, and NEA Literature Fellow Frank X. Gaspar. Winning titles were reviewed by many prominent publications, including Publishers Weekly, The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, and the Los Angeles Times Review of Books. More than 7,000 copies of the winning titles were sold, and, as part of its outreach program, the Cooperative distributed free copies of the award titles to artists’ colonies and prison libraries.

(From the 2004 NEA Annual Report)