Third Annual MU Undergraduate Runners Up

Once again, we were fortunate to receive a number of outstanding works for our University of Missouri Undergraduate Writing Competition.

In addition to our winner, Annalee Roustio, we’d like to congratulate three other truly outstanding undergraduate writers:

  • Crystal Cox for “Bumpy Love Body”
  • Elliot Goodman for “The Sleeping Habits of Poltergeists”
  • Jewell Pfister for “Condense”

If you want to hear these works (and trust us, you do) join us on January 28th, at 5:00 p.m. in the George Caleb Bingham Gallery. You can read Annalee’s piece, “Worried, Sick” on our scrolling LED display outside the gallery.

Thanks also to Grace Gardiner and Lindsay Fowler for judging the competition this year.

Winner of the Third Annual MU Undergraduate Writing Competition

We are excited to announce that Annalee Roustio is the winner of the 3rd Annual MU Undergraduate LED Writing competition!

Annalee is a Senior majoring in English and French. She’s interned with Persea Books since last Fall and is crossing her fingers that she’ll get to earn her MFA in creative writing sooner rather than later.

Our judges, Grace Gardiner and Lindsay Fowler, selected Annalee’s emotionally-charged poem, “Worried, Sick” for publication on our scrolling LED display.

You can hear Annalee read “Worried, Sick” at on January 28th, at 5:00 p.m. in the George Caleb Bingham Gallery, and you can read it yourself starting tomorrow, December 9th on our LED display outside the gallery.

Thank you to all the MU students who shared your writing with us, and to the instructors who encouraged your students to do so. We are grateful for the support from our collaborators in the MU English Department and School of Visual Studies.

Second Annual MU Undergraduate Runners Up

Just like last year, we were fortunate to receive a number of outstanding works for our University of Missouri Undergraduate Writing Competition.

In addition to this year’s winner, Annalee Roustio, we’d like to acknowledge three other talented undergraduate writers:

  • Darren Baker for his incisive poem, “New Old Game”
  • Gabrielle Hesse for her tragic piece ,”The Weight You Borrow”
  • Alyssa Ripley for her brisk yet intimate poem, “Bargaining”

If you want to hear these works, join us for a reading on December 5th, at 5:00 p.m. in the George Caleb Bingham Gallery.

Thanks again to Jeff Wasserboehr for judging the competition.

Winner of the 2nd Annual MU Undergraduate Writing Competition

We are proud to announce that Annalee Roustio is the winner of the 2nd Annual MU Undergraduate LED Writing competition!

Annalee is in her third year at MU, where she studies English and plans to declare a second major in French. She’s a tutor and outreach representative for the campus Writing Center, a copywriter at Marketing by Emma, and an intern for the poetry division of Persea Books. In terms of future plans, beyond traveling to AWP this spring with Persea Books and hopefully studying abroad this summer, Annalee has begun exploring MFA programs. She should probably complete her personal website. Until then, feel free to add her on LinkedIn; her brief (and with luck, ever-growing!) smattering of publications and prizes can be found there. Special thanks to Rebecca Pelky for her helpful feedback and encouragement.

Our judge, Jeff Wasserboehr, selected Annalee’s moving, contemplative poem, “Ether” for publication on our scrolling LED display.

You can hear Annalee read “Ether” at on December 5th, at 5:00 p.m. in the George Caleb Bingham Gallery, and you can read it yourself anytime in December on the display outside the gallery.

We’re very grateful to all the MU students who shared their writing with us as well as the instructors who encouraged their students to do so. Thank you!

MU Undergraduate Reading Event

We moved on to our next installation, Sonnet (51) by Nikki Wallschlaeger, without posting any photos from the wonderful reading and poster-printing event that wrapped up our MU Undergraduate Writing Competition. So, in the spirit of better late than never, we’ve finally organized some images to share!

Click the images to read the captions. Not pictured is runner-up Sabrina Brons, who read her piece, “Gossip.” The first gallery features images from the George Caleb Bingham Gallery, where the reading was held. The second set of images is from SRLBX x THERETHERENOW, where we held a reception with refreshments, a reading room stocked full of artist’s books and zines, and a poster-printing session for Kirstin Smith’s broadside (the contest’s publication prize).

Introducing Our Contest Judges

Now that we’ve congratulated our winner and runners up, it’s time to say thanks to the two fabulous readers who judged the entries for the 2018 undergraduate competition. We are so grateful that Jordi Alonso and Anna Wehrwein made time for our contest amid the demands of writing and art-making and teaching!

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Jordi Alonso graduated with an AB in English from Kenyon College in 2014 and was the first Turner Fellow in Poetry at Stony Brook University where he received his MFA. He is the Gus T. Ridgel Fellow in English at the University of Missouri where he is a PhD candidate studying the cultural transmission of nymphs in literature. He’s been published in Kenyon Review Online, Noble/Gas QtrlyRoanoke ReviewLevure Littéraire, and other journals. Honeyvoiced, his first book, was published by XOXOX Press and his chapbook, The Lovers’ Phrasebook, was published by Red Flag Poetry Press in 2017.


Anna Wehrwein is an artist originally from the Boston area. She received her BS in Art and BA in English/Creative Writing from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her MFA in Drawing and Painting from the University of Tennessee. Her work has been featured in New American Paintings and Friend of the Artist and has been exhibited nationally. During the summer of 2017 she was a resident at Vermont Studio Center. She currently lives in Columbia, MO where she is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Painting and Drawing at the University of Missouri.

MU Undergraduate Runners Up

Yesterday, we introduced our winning writer, Kirstin Smith.

We also have some talented runners up to acknowledge:

  • Sabrina Brons for her story, “Gossip”
  • Sabrina Heffern for her story, “On the Wings of Her Fledglings”
  • Kelly Schoessling for her story, “Is it Distance or Space?”

They have also been invited to share their submissions at our reading event at the George Caleb Bingham Gallery, located in the Fine Arts Building on the MU Campus on Tuesday, February 27th at 5:00 p.m.

Stick around after to celebrate at SRLBX x THERETHERENOW (206 Hitt St.) and enjoy snacks, refreshments, and art.