Poet Linda Schandelmeier has deep roots in Fairbanks and the University of Alaska Fairbanks, but her links to Alaska extend farther back still. She was born and raised on a 160-acre homestead outside of Anchorage, and her memories and impressions of the homestead and coming to university are captured in a recent book of verse published by the University of Alaska Press, Coming out of Nowhere: Alaska Homestead Poems. The poems combine elements of memoir and history with literary techniques of multiple voices and personae. The mixture attracted the attention of Women Writing the West judges. The organization annually hands out Willa Awards in various literary genres to works that explore the contributions made by women to the history, culture and growth of the American West. Schandelmeier’s collection took top honours for poetry.
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