Announcing the Judges of the 2012 Hal Grutzmacher’s Writers’ Expose and Photography Jubilee

The Peninsula Pulse is once again sponsoring the Hal Grutzmacher Writer’s Exposé and Photography Jubilee. The contests are held in the spirit of the late Hal Grutzmacher, a professor and Door County bookstore owner, by offering commentary and encouragement to promising writers and photographers from accomplished and professional writers and photographers.

This year’s esteemed judges include Wisconsin Poet Laureate Bruce Dethlefsen; award-winning essayist and regular Peninsula Pulse contributor Justin Isherwood; professional photographer and Photography Director for the Pulse and Door County Living Len Villano; and writer, professor at University of Wisconsin – Madison and director of the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing Judith Claire Mitchell.

Bruce Dethlefsen

• Bruce Dethlefsen, this year’s poetry judge, is Wisconsin’s Poet Laureate. His collection Breather (Fireweed Press) won an Outstanding Achievement award from the Wisconsin Library Association. He also has two chapbooks, A Decent Reed and Something Near the Dance Floor, and his poems were featured twice on The Writer’s Almanac. His latest collection of poetry, released last fall from Cowfeather Press, is Unexpected Shiny Things. He plays bass, harmonica, and drums and performs original music with poetry as Obvious Dog.

To learn more about Dethlefsen and read selections of his poetry, visit

Justin Isherwood

• Justin Isherwood, whose humorous and thought-provoking non-fiction essays have graced pages of the Pulse for years, will judge this year’s non-fiction contest.

Isherwood is an award-winning writer, a Wisconsin farmer, humorist, author and contributor to numerous collections and publications including: Badger CommonTater, Isthmus, and Newsday. He is an essayist for the radio program, BookMarks & Art, airing on a CBS affiliate in central Wisconsin. His books include Christmas Stones & the Story Chair, Book of Plough, Farm Kid, and most recently, Pulse.

• Len Villano, Photography Director for the Peninsula Pulse and Door County Living, will act as this year’s photography judge.

Len Villano

Villano has been capturing stunning images of the people and landscapes of Door County for years. An artist, musician, recording engineer and producer, Villano left a promising career in architecture years ago to devote his life to capturing the beauty of nature on film. Finding the extraordinary in the ordinary is now the focus of Villano’s photography work.

To view Villano’s photography, visit or

• Judith Claire Mitchell, this year’s fiction judge, is the author of the novel The Last Day of the War. Her short stories and poetry have appeared in numerous literary magazines and anthologies including Prairie Schooner, StoryQuarterly, The Iowa Review, and Best of the Fiction Workshops. A former recipient of the James C. McCreight Fiction Fellowship and a Michener-Copernicus Society of America Fellowship, she is currently a professor in the English Department of the University of Wisconsin – Madison, where she co-directs the Program in Creative Writing and directs the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing.

Judith Claire Mitchell

The Peninsula Pulse extends an invitation to all those interested in submitting poems, prose, or photographs for consideration in this year’s contests.

This year’s literary issue will come out on Friday, August 3, 2012. As always, the issue will feature the most notable entries in each category, including fiction, nonfiction, poetry and photography. Entrants are eligible for cash awards, other prizes, and an opportunity to be published in the Pulse.

The deadline for submissions is Friday, June 29, 2012.

Please include with your submissions a cover letter, including the author or photographer’s name, mailing address, phone number, email, and a 25 – 50 word biography. Please clearly indicate which category (fiction, nonfiction, poetry or photography) your submissions fall into. Also, because the Pulse employs a blind judging process, the entrant’s name should not appear on the actual piece of work.

Send poetry and prose submission to [email protected] and photographs to Peninsula Pulse, c/o Contest Entries, P.O. Box 694, Baileys Harbor, WI 54202.

For more information visit, call 920.839.2121, or search ‘Hal Grutzmacher’s Writers’ Expose and Photography Jubilee’ on Facebook.