Christopher P. Collins, a first-generation college student, is a doctoral candidate (A.B.D.) in his last semester (Spring 2018) at the University of Cincinnati. His primary concentration is Literary Nonfiction with a cognate specialization in Rhetoric & Composition. He holds a MFA in Poetry from Murray State University and a M.Ed in Secondary English Education from Xavier University (Ohio). His dissertation, Pocket Medal Elegy, is a collection of fourteen personal essays that explore war, faith, family, inheritance, and fatherhood.

He is the author of the poetry collection My American Night (University of Georgia Press, 2018), selected by David Bottoms as the winner of the 2017 Georgia Poetry Award. He has also published one poetry chapbook, Gathering Leaves for War (Finishing Line Press, 2013). His poetry and prose have been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, the Paumanok Poetry Award, and a fellowship with Creative Nonfiction where he worked directly with founder and chief editor Lee Gutkind. Chris is a Senior Editorial Assistant with The Cincinnati Review. His essays and poetry are forthcoming or have been published in Creative Nonfiction, CutBank Literary Journal, Five Points, Terminus Magazine, Pilgrimage, The Heartland Review, and The Licking River Review as well as anthologized in a few books.

A former Captain and twelve-year veteran of the U.S. Army Reserve, Chris completed three overseas combat tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. He is a Lifetime member of both the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Disabled American Veterans. Chris lives with his wife and his two children in a small, unincorporated section of Kenton County, Kentucky. The family’s Hound/Lab mix, a rescue from a Hazard County kill shelter, loves the area because he can bark at all hours of the day and night.

 “There is nothing wrong in being a writer or poet…but the harm lies in wanting to be one for the gratification of one’s own ambitions, and merely in order to bring oneself up to the level demanded by his own internal self-idolatry.”
—Thomas Merton, “Writing as a Spiritual Calling,” Echoing Silence