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Maria Mazziotti Gillan Reviewed in Voices in Italian Americana

writing poetry_PROOF_Nov29

Two of Maria Mazziotti Gillan’s books – The Place I Call Home and Writing Poetry to Save Your Life –  were recently reviewed in the latest volume of Voices in Italian Americana. Josephine Gattuso Hendin, who reviewed Mazzioti’s Writing Poetry to Save Your Life, describes it as “an indispensable book for anyone who has ever dreamed of writing poetry.” She praises the book as an excellent guide in overcoming self-doubt and fear of failure. She admires its ability to encourage writers not only to improve their writing, but also to get those creative juices flowing in the first place. (Which Mazziotti does beautifully with “hundreds of prompts that are so good they could provoke anyone to enter the cave, confront whatever is there, and mine the bounty of self-understanding.”) Gattuso states that “Gillan has a rare knowledge of both the inner life of art and an understanding of how to actually produce it, to build it out of oneself.  In the process, she produces a celebration of the everyday, the relationships, work, tasks–all the daily threads that make up the fabric of life and can be woven into art.”

Maria Mazziotti Gillan is the Director of the Poetry Center at Passaic Country Community College, as well as the Editor of the Paterson Literary Review. She is the author of over a dozen works including All That Lies Between Us, Italian Women in Black Dresses, Things My Mother Told Me, What We Pass On, and Writing Poetry to Save Your Life, which was recently published by MiroLand in 2013. Her many honors include the 2008 American Book Award, the 2011 Barnes and Noble Writers For Writers Award, the May Sarton Award, the Fearing Houghton Award, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts Fellowships in Poetry, and the American Literary Translators Association Award through a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information on Maria Mazziotti Gillan, you can visit her website at

Voices in Italian Americana  is a biannual peer-reviewed literary and cultural review which features essays, fiction, poetry and book reviews about Italian and Italian-American culture. The journal was founded in 1990, and is now subscribed to by more than fifty Canadian and American university libraries.

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