Crystal Wilkinson’s short stories have been described as “story poems." She is the author of two books, Blackberries, Blackberries (2000) and Water Street (2002), both published by Toby Press. Water Street was a long-list finalist for the prestigious Orange Prize and short-listed for a Zora Neale Hurston/Richard Wright Foundation Legacy Award in fiction. Blackberries, Blackberries was named Best Debut Fiction by Today’s Librarian magazine.
She has been published in the anthologies Confronting Appalachian Stereotypes: Back Talk from an American Region (University of Kentucky Press, 1999); Gifts from Our Grandmothers (Crown Publishers, 2000); and Gumbo: Stories by Black Writers (Doubleday, Harlem Moon Press, 2002). Her work has also appeared in various literary journals, including Obsidian II: Black Literature in Review, Southern Exposure, The Briar Cliff Review, LIT, Calyx, African Voices and the Indiana Review.
She is a faculty member in Spalding University’s low-residency MFA writing program and is currently serving as visiting professor and writer in residence for Morehead State University. Wilkinson was the 2002 recipient of the Chaffin Award for Appalachian Literature and is a member of a Lexington-based writing collective, The Affrilachian Poets.