Editorial Fellowship



Nightboat is excited to announce that we have selected Naima Yael Tokunow as our inaugural Editorial Fellow! 


Naima Yael Tokunow is a writer, educator, artist, and editor, living in New Mexico. Her work focuses on exploring Black queer femme identity, kinship, and futurity. She is the author of three chapbooks, including MAKE WITNESSPlanetary Bodies, and Shadow Black, selected by Jericho Brown for the Frontier Digital Chapbook Prize. She proudly edits the Black Voice Series for Puerto del Sol and reads for POETRY Magazine. For selections of her work, visit naimaytokunow.com. She is blessed to be Black and alive.

We are thrilled to work with Naima on her project, an exploration of ancestry and recorded life that approaches historiography and archiving as a communal, radical practice. We believe that working with her will bring us into new and challenging editorial waters. 

Our panelists, Chris Chen, Nicole Wallace, Paradis Books & Bread Collective and William Johnson, alongside the Nightboat staff, felt honored to read the wealth of project proposals received, which were inspiring and diverse in their formal, political, and aesthetic concerns. 




Ade Omotosho
Christopher Valentine
E.R. Pulgar
feras helal

Abeo Chimeka-Tisdale
Andrew Tan-Delli Cicchi
Ica Sadagat
Maria Saldana
Minahil Khan
Porsha Olayiwola



The Nightboat Editorial Fellowship

Seeking to support the labor of editors of color, we’re looking for an aspiring BIPOC editor to work alongside Nightboat staff to develop a book project of their choosing over the course of two (2) years. Black and Indigenous editors are strongly encouraged to apply. Projects should not be comprised of the applicant’s original work. 

We hope to work collaboratively with this Editorial Fellow to foreground undervalued or little-known forms of experimental writing across a range of communities. As such, we’ll be providing the selected Fellow with the resources and mentorship necessary to acquire, edit, and guide to publication a project specific to their interests. 

Through this pilot program, funded by a grant from LitTAP: New York State Council on the Arts Literary Technical Assistance Program, we plan to explore possibilities for a new editorial model that takes into account community input and that expands access to editorial decision-making to those of diverse circumstances and identifications.



What you’ll get out of the fellowship:

*Familiarity with the full life-cycle of a book and the guidance of Nightboat staff and other project mentors through the 2-year process.

*Experience working collaboratively with an editorial team to research and pursue potential projects and clarify editorial perspective.

*Experience with developmental and conceptual editing, line editing, copy editing, permissions, design, cataloging, production, publicity, and marketing.

*A personalized program of meetings with Nightboat staff, external editorial mentors, and workshops based on your needs and interests 

*An in-depth understanding of the publication process that can be applied to future jobs and projects

*$10,000 (paid in installments—$5,000 per year of the fellowship or according to the fellow’s individual needs) for their work and participation in the program.



What we’re looking for:

*Applicants do not need to have a pre-existing editorial project in order to apply, so long as they can demonstrate an editorial perspective and intent. Projects should not be comprised of the applicant’s original work. 

*We are open to poetry, prose, nonfiction, archival projects, and what coalesces in the gaps between. We are, as always, excited by the provocative, the strange, the queer, what activates genre, and what’s been elided or excised from the archive. 

*Applicants do not have to be based in NYC but must live in the United States and be available to attend scheduled Zoom meetings, staff meetings, and workshops.

*We approximate that this fellowship will require a commitment of 400 hours at $25/ hour in total, approximately 15 hours/month over the course of 2 years.

*Experience in editorial work is preferred but not required. 

*The Fellow must feel confident working independently, however, since this is not an hourly position, attention will be paid to setting up an individualized meeting/workshop schedule and supportive project management structure that functions for the Fellow’s unique employment situation. 

Finalists will be chosen through an open application process by a committee composed of writers, editors, and literary organizers before meeting with Nightboat staff members for a final interview process in early summer. Selections will be made on the basis of the applicant’s ability to provide a unique perspective on experimental literature; to reimagine, expand or illuminate archival projects; to explore the complex relationships that arise between social, political and aesthetic concerns; to demonstrate a thorough knowledge of Nightboat’s mission and an interest in expanding it productively. 

The selected Fellow will start work at Nightboat in Fall 2022. Dates TBA & schedule subject to change.



Submissions for the Nightboat Editorial Fellowship are currently closed.

To Apply:

Please provide the following via the online Submittable application.

1) a statement summarizing your editorial interests and previous literary experience (500 words) – what are you reading/listening to/watching right now? What writing, performance, events, community-organizing have you participated in?

2) an example of a project(s) you’d be interested in bringing to Nightboat. This can be purely speculative (200 words) – is there a writer whose work you think deserves collecting? What kinds of aesthetic forms are you invested in? Are there communities outside of experimental writing you’d like to collaborate with and engage?

3) a current CV

Eligibility – applicants must:

*Identify as Black, Indigenous, and/or a Person of Color, but we’re not going to make judgments in relation to the boundaries of that category; we trust that those who apply will do so in good faith.

*Be able to commit to the two-year fellowship position.

*The applicant must live in the United States and be a U.S. Permanent Resident (green card) or U.S. Citizen.


Nightboat Books is committed to the principles of equal opportunity, equity in employment, accessibility, and to becoming a more inclusive organization.
Individuals who have questions about accommodation and accessibility during the application process and beyond, or any general inquiries about the program are invited to contact Gia Gonzales at [email protected]