About Blue Mesa Review

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Anthony Yarbrough


Anthony Yarbrough is a writer from Los Angeles and a third-year MFA student at the University of New Mexico. His fiction and nonfiction explore memory, sexuality, substance abuse, introspection, weather and cottagecore. He’s excited to rejoin the Blue Mesa Review team as its Editor-In-Chief.

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Gwyneth Henke

Managing Editor

Gwyneth Henke (she/her) is a second-year MFA candidate in fiction at UNM. She graduated with a degree in religious studies at Washington University in St. Louis and worked in interfaith relations before joining the MFA. Her fiction explores conversion, doubt, faith, ritual, and desire. She loves to read Haruki Murakami, Michael Ondaatje, Elena Ferrante, Mieko Kawakami, and Zadie Smith.

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Kyndall Benning

Associate Editor

Kyndall Benning is a writer from Edmond, Oklahoma. She is a third year MFA candidate in Nonfiction at the University of New Mexico. Her essays focus mainly on complex relationships, especially familial, in addition to topics on class and place. In addition to nonfiction, she likes working in fiction and poetry. When she isn’t writing, she likes spending time with her loved ones, including her cat, Feathers. She also enjoys oil painting and scuba diving when she has time.

Amy Dotson headshot

Amy Dotson

Poetry Editor

Amy Dotson is a writer from all over Kentucky. She is a second-year MFA student working on fiction, but she also writes creative nonfiction and poetry. Her work tends to deal with class, places affected by political neglect, and the strangeness of the quotidian. Like many twenty-somethings, she has recently gotten really into rock climbing.

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Kani Aniegboka

Creative Nonfiction Editor

Kani Aniegboka is an MFA student at the University of New Mexico, a TinHouse summer camp participant and is currently working on his first memoir. A few years ago, he engaged in both occupational and geographical changes that he’s yet to recover from, but which have left him viewing the world with infant-like fascination once again. Kani enjoys reading culturally rich stories that question normativity.

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Joe Byrne

Fiction Editor

Joe Byrne was born in Colorado Springs but grew up in New Mexico. He is a second year MFA student at UNM and the incoming fiction editor for BMR. When he’s not reading or writing, he enjoys launching projectiles and listening to death metal.

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Marisa P. Clark

Faculty Advisor

Marisa P. Clark (she/her) grew up on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, came out in Atlanta, Georgia, and relocated to beautiful New Mexico in 1998. She holds a PhD in fiction-writing from Georgia State University and an MA in American literature and a BS in psychology from the University of Southern Mississippi. Now in her 24th year of working at UNM, she has taught all genres of undergraduate creative writing, queer texts and other literature courses, first- and second-year composition courses, and ESL, along with taking on various roles with Blue Mesa Review.

Her prose and poetry appear in numerous print and online journals. Best American Essays 2011 recognized her creative nonfiction among its Notable Essays, and she serves as a senior fiction reader for New England Review. She has also worked as a librarian at the Centers for Disease Control, a copy designer and proofreader in graphics and advertising, a bookshop clerk, and a clerical assistant at a law office.

Graduate Readers

Robin Babb
Paris Baldante
Kyndall Benning
Jasmine Colorado
Lucas Garcia
John Hardberger
Julie Peterman

Undergraduate Readers

Theo Bloyd
Isabella Clarke
Miriah Constant
Shelley Corral
Alexandra Dark
Robert “Wes” Dyer
Syd Freland
Carter Gage
Renata Gonzales
Alex Longo
Emilia Madrid
Ty Miller
Sophia Puglia-Henry
Gareth Ripol
Electra Schroeder
Tanya Tyler

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Prof. Rudolfo Anaya


Blue Mesa Review was founded by Rudolfo Anaya in 1989. Anaya, a Creative Writing instructor at the University of New Mexico at the time, wanted a space for New Mexican and Southwestern writers to publish their work. As a landscape of intersectionality and diversity, the Southwest is the perfect place for beautiful intersectional art to grow, and Anaya, a Creative Writing instructor at the time, charged Blue Mesa Review with tending those roots in our community. Today, we strive to continue to support and publish voices of the Southwest and the world at large, and to foster connections between our academic circle and the rich literary traditions of Albuquerque and New Mexico.

Blue Mesa Review is run by graduate students at University of New Mexico’s MFA program and assisted in our work by a faculty advisor and a team of graduate and undergraduate readers. In our thirty-four years and 40+ issues, our contributors have included Jimmy Santiago Baca, Sandra Cisneros, Joy Harjo, Sherwin Bitsui, and countless other exceptional writers. We are grateful to the diverse voices who have brought their identities, cultures, and creativity to an international arena.

We are proud to be approaching our 50th anniversary issue in Fall 2024. Since our founding, we’ve been committed to the craft of storytelling and the uplifting of unique voices and traditions through language and art. We invite you to join us. See our Submission Guidelines to learn how.


Genre graphics were created by Amy Dotson, with inspiration from the Friends of the Orphan Signs project. Banner photograph by Gwyneth Henke; graphic by Amy Dotson.

The thumbnail images used throughout our site that are not credited artist works are taken from publications curated by the Public Domain Review, including Adam Ludwig Marsing’s 1776 Marmora et adfines aliquos lapides coloribus suis exprimi (Illustrations of marble types and some related stones), Orra White Hitchcock’s Scientific Illustrations for the Classroom (1828-1840), and Eugène Grasset’s 1896 Plants and Their Application to Ornament. They are accessible under public domain.

Our website was designed by University Communications & Marketing’s Vincent Narducci.