In The Margins E8: Diversity in Print: An Interview with Backbone Press

E8 Guest: Managing Editor Crystal Simone Smith


Managing Editor, Crystal Simone Smith has “a small press with a big vision.”  Smith describes her transition from graphic designer to press editor and the importance of publishers who support ethnic minority writers.

Podcast Notes:

Crystal Simone Smith was raised in Prince George’s County, Maryland and educated in North Carolina at Bennett College, UNC-Greensboro, and Queens University of Charlotte. She is Managing Editor for Backbone Press and currently lives in Durham, NC, where she teaches Composition and Creative Writing.

Backbone Press

Backbone Press Annual Lucille Clifton Poetry Prize
The Lucille Clifton Annual Poetry Contest, held each spring, honors the prolific work of poet great Lucille Clifton. Widely celebrated for her unpretentious and unapologetic poems, Clifton’s unique free verse was free of punctuation, taut, and always recognizably her. When submitting think: humanness, struggle, adversity, resilience.

  • “Her life, her way of seeing and walking in the world were the backbone of her work. I am her daughter. Her backbone is mine. And yours.” ~Sidney Clifton
  • For further guidelines:

Journals Mentioned


Books Mentioned

Queens University Masters in the Fine Arts (Charlotte, NC)

Upcoming Poetry Readings with Crystal Simone Smith

  • May 4, 2015: Salem College, Winston-Salem, NC

Produced by: Tate Street:
Producers: Ray Crampton and Abigail Browning
Music provided by: Jonathan Stout and his Campus Five featuring Hilary Alexander
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