Duncan Hill Press is a Black-owned and operated publisher with a commitment to arts activism, education, and equity in literary arts. Always engaged and listening for voices which are rendering our experiences in stunning ways and also imagining otherwise possibilities for our lives, we are dedicated to highlighting brilliant and moving writing in the Appalachian region and beyond.
Founder & Managing Editor
A native of Danville, Kentucky, Frank X Walker is the first African American writer to be named Kentucky Poet Laureate. Walker has published eleven collections of poetry, including Turn Me Loose: The Unghosting of Medgar Evers, which was awarded the 2014 NAACP Image Award for Poetry and the Black Caucus American Library Association Honor Award for Poetry. He is also the author of Buffalo Dance: The Journey of York, winner of the 2004 Lillian Smith Book Award, and Isaac Murphy: I Dedicate This Ride, which he adapted for stage, earning him the Paul Green Foundation Playwrights Fellowship Award. His poetry was also dramatized for the 2016 Contemporary American Theater Festival in Shepherdstown, WV and staged by Message Theater for the 2015 Breeders Cup Festival. A lover of comics, Walker curated “We Wear the Mask: Black Superheroes through the Ages,” an exhibit of his personal collection of action figures, comics, and related memorabilia at the Lyric Theatre and Cultural Arts Center in 2015; he reprised the exhibit in 2018 at Purdue University and Western Carolina University. Walker recently returned to the world of visual art with a collection of new and early multimedia works, “Black Star Seed: When Mi Cyaan Find Di Words” which was on exhibit at the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning in Lexington.
Voted one of the most creative professors in the south, Walker coined the term “Affrilachia” and co-founded the Affrilachian Poets, subsequently publishing the much-celebrated eponymous collection. His honors also include a 2004 Lannan Literary Fellowship for Poetry, the 2008 and 2009 Denny C. Plattner Award for Outstanding Poetry in Appalachian Heritage, the 2013 West Virginia Humanities Council’s Appalachian Heritage Award, as well as fellowships and residences with Cave Canem, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Kentucky Arts Council. In 2020 Walker received the Donald Justice Award for Poetry from the Fellowship of Southern Writers. The recipient of honorary doctorates from University of Kentucky, Transylvania University, Spalding University and Centre College, Walker is the founding editor of pluck! The Journal of Affrilachian Arts & Culture and serves as Professor of English and African American and Africana Studies at the University of Kentucky in Lexington. His most recent collection is Masked Man, Black: Pandemic & Protest Poems.
The author of Fear of Dogs & Other Animals (Central Square Press), Dr. Shauna M. Morgan is a poet-scholar and Associate Professor of creative writing and Africana literature who recently joined the University of Kentucky after serving on the faculty at Howard University for a decade. Both her scholarly work and her poetry are deeply engaged with global Black art and culture. Her critical work has been published in Journal of Postcolonial Writing, South Atlantic Review, Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, College Language Association Journal, and elsewhere. Her poetry has appeared in A Gathering Together, Interviewing the Caribbean, A Literary Field Guide to Southern Appalachia, among other periodicals and anthologies. Shauna tends to a hopeful garden at her home at the Artists’ Village in the historic East End of Lexington and works at UK’s Center for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching where she is the Director of Equity and Inclusion Initiatives in Teaching, Learning, and Academic Innovation in addition to being a member of the faculty. Her commitment to teaching and mentoring your scholar-artists and uplifting stunning literature is the foundation of her editorial work.
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