Readings: MBF/de Groot Prize Finalists

Join 2019 MBF/de Groot Prize finalists Kristen Simental and Holly Takashima as they muse over their respective winning entries. Emerging Latinx author Simental’s Why, Arizona is a story about a […]


Readings: MBF/de Groot Prize Finalists

Authors:Holly Takashima , Kristen Simental


Join 2019 MBF/de Groot Prize finalists Kristen Simental and Holly Takashima as they muse over their respective winning entries. Emerging Latinx author Simental’s Why, Arizona is a story about a girl, an RV, a tortured ex, a small town on the edge of nowhere, and the end of the world. Takashima’s The Meaning of Words is a tale of growing up and coming into your own consciousness, and about how sometimes it takes silence and solitude to return to the world.

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Holly Takashima

Holly Takashima has been an educator for the past decade. She has taught in New Orleans, Estes Park, Nashville, Houston, and Los Angeles. She loves working with young people and helping them grow into readers and writers. She was a finalist of the 2019 Miami Book Fair/De  Groot Prize with her story The Meaning of Words.

Kristen Simental

Kristen Simental, an emerging Latinx author, has pursued literature, music, and photography all her life. Born in East Los Angeles and raised in Oxnard, she moved to LA at 18 attracted by the music scene. She started one of the first independent online music sites, Dark Culture Magazine. In 2016, while sidelined with a long illness, Kristen wrote first drafts of four novels, five short stories and two novellas. She is currently working towards a BA in English and has started Five South, an online literary journal. Her novella Why, Arizona was a finalist in the 2019 de Groot Prize.

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