Beth Alvarado

Instructor, MFA in Creative Writing

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Beth Alvarado's most recent book, "Jillian in the Borderlands: A Cycle of Rather Dark Tales," was described by one reviewer as "marrying the social-justice novel with magical realism to render a disquieting portrait of the humanitarian toll of our immigration policies." Much of Alvarado's work addresses life in the US/Mexico borderlands. She has written extensively about marrying into her late husband's family when she was 19 years old. Her essay collection "Anxious Attachments," which a reviewer called "a love song to Fernando," was long listed for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spievogel Award for the Art of the Essay and won the 2020 Oregon Book Award for Creative Nonfiction. Her lyric memoir "Anthropologies" layers scenes, oral histories, portraits, family myths and dreams in a cross-cultural mosaic. Her first story collection, "Not a Matter of Love," won the Many Voices Project Prize for work that the final judge called "wise, witty and unflinching."

Her short stories, essays, and reviews have appeared in many fine journals including The Sun, Ploughshares, Fourth Genre, The Southern Review, River Teeth, Guernica, LitHub, and the Los Angeles Review. Three of her essays have been chosen as Notable by "Best American Essays," and her stories have been anthologized in "The Female Complaint: Tales of Unruly Women and New California Writing." She is on the Editorial Board for the anthology Puro Chicanx Writers of the 21st Century and the Advisory Board of JackLeg Press. You can find out more about her work and listen to her read by visiting her website at Her twitter address is @bethfromtucson.