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Good River Review is the literary journal of the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing at Spalding University. We publish two issues a year. Between issues, we regularly feature book reviews, interviews, essays on the practice of writing, and other important literary news.


Good River Review is a home for writing that launches quickly, speaks to the universal through the particular, and is layered with meaning. We also love work that doesn’t fit neatly into genre categories. Our editors are attracted to writing that blurs boundaries, and so contributors will find their work published under the headings of prose, lyric, and drama. In addition, we will publish the most compelling writing for children and young adults that we can find. The editors of GRR work in collaboration with Spalding School of Writing graduate students who serve in an editorial capacity. 


We are located in the river city of Louisville, Kentucky, which owes its location to geographical happenstance. Before a canal was built in 1830, boats traveling the Ohio River had to stop here and portage around a series of shallow rapids, and at this enforced stopping point, a town sprang up. The Ohio takes its name from a Seneca word meaning good river. We named our journal accordingly, and we acknowledge that we are located on the occupied land of several nations including the Shawnee, Osage, Cherokee, Adena, Miami, Kaskaskia and Hopewell People. This interactive map from Native Land provides more information about these and other indigenous cultures.

Kathleen Driskell, Editor in Chief

Kathleen is chair of the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing at Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky. She’s the author of four collections of poetry including Blue Etiquette, a finalist for the Weatherford Award; Next Door to the Dead, winner of the 2018 Judy Gaines Young Book Award, and Seed Across Snow, a Poetry Foundation national bestseller. Her poems and essays have appeared in many magazines including The New Yorker, River TeethShenandoah, Southern Review, and Appalachian Review, and have been featured in anthologies and online at Poetry Daily, Verse Daily, and American Life in Poetry

Ellyn Lichvar, Managing Editor

In addition to her role as the managing editor for Good River Review, Ellyn is the programs manager for the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing at Spalding University. Until 2020, she was the long-time managing editor of The Louisville Review. Her own poems have appeared in such journals as DIAGRAM, BOAAT, Meridian, The Journal, and others. 


Lynnell Edwards, Associate Editor/Book Review Editor

Lynnell is associate programs director for the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing, where she is also faculty in poetry and professional writing. Her five collections of poetry include, most recently, This Great Green Valley (2020); Kings of the Rock and Roll Hot Shop, Covet, The Highwayman's Wife, and The Farmer's Daughter. Her book reviews, poems, and short stories have been included in numerous journals including Pleaides, New Madrid, American Book Review, Sou'wester, and Waccamaw.  


Katy Yocom, Associate Editor

Katy Yocom is author of Three Ways to Disappear, a Barnes & Noble Top Indie Favorite, winner of the Siskiyou Prize for New Environmental Literature, Phillip H. McMath Post-Publication Book Award, First Horizon Award, and other prizes. Her words have appeared in LitHub,,, Necessary Fiction, American Way (the American Airlines in-flight magazine), and elsewhere. She serves as associate editor of Good River Review and associate director of the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing. Find her online at

About Good River Review

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