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Movable/New Ohio Review Recovery Writing Contest Winners Announced

13 June 2022

The Movable Project, a grassroots digital archive of recovery stories, housed at Marshall University, recently announced the winners of the 2022 Recovery Writing Contest, a partnership with the New Ohio Review, a national literary magazine.

Judges considered a number of poems, stories and first-hand accounts.  First-place winners are Kari Gunter-Seymour (Ohio) and Kandi Workman (West Virginia).

Of Gunter-Seymour’s poem “To Save a Life,” one judge remarked that it grabs “the reader from the beginning and doesn’t let go; even the ending begs the reader to start over and immediately read the poem again. I can smell the campfire, hear the barking coyotes, taste the creek water. I simply love this poem.” Gunter-Seymour is the poet laureate of Ohio. Her most recent book of poems, “A Place So Deep Inside America It Can’t Be Seen,” was awarded the 2020 Ohio Poet of the Year Award.

Workman’s essay “Ice Cream,” was praised for its ability to “capture the humbling experience of those awkward, initial interactions [in the recovery process], trying to find common ground . . . establishing mutual respect via swapping war stories and most importantly, getting gut-level honest about the severity of their illness.” Workman is a community organizer with Boone County Health (WV).

The Movable Project also selected an honorable mention: an untitled story by Olivia Marie of West Virginia.

The contributions by first-place winners are forthcoming in the New Ohio Review and at the Movable Project. The honorable mention and other qualifying submissions will also be published by Movable.

"We are extremely grateful to the New Ohio Review and the wonderful judges for making this contest possible,” Kristen Lillvis, co-editor of Movable said. “We are excited for everyone to read these winning works and be just as moved by them as we were.”

Movable welcomes and publishes creative, nonfiction, and biographical writing on the theme of recovery all year around.