Grant Hier was the inaugural Poet Laureate of the City of Anaheim (2018-2020).
In 2014 he was recipient of Prize Americana for his book Untended Garden, which was subsequently nominated for both an American Book Award and the Kate Tufts Discovery Award. Individual poems have been awarded the Nancy Dew Taylor Prize for Literary Excellence in Poetry (2014) and the Kick Prize for poetry (2013). Several of his pieces have been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.
PRACTICE: 394 Poems in 365 Days, a poetry collection and teaching text, is forthcoming from Pelekinesis in 2022.
California Continuum, Volume Two — Immigrations, co-edited with John Brantingham (Poet Laureate of Sequoia and Kings Canyon Parks), will include the works of dozens of invited authors, and is also forthcoming from Pelekinesis. It is a companion anthology to California Continuum, Volume One — Migrations and Amalgamations, the book of historical flash fiction co-written by Hier and Brantingham, with a foreword by D. J. Waldie.
Two original poetry collections were released in 2018 on Pelekinesis: The Difference Between and Similitude. Untended Garden — Histories and Reinhabitation in Suburbia is a book-length long poem published in 2015 (The Poetry Press).
Individual poems have been published in such literary journals as Zócalo Public Square, Interlitq: The International Literary Quarterly, Pratik: A Magazine of Contemporary Writing, TAB: A Journal of Poetry and Poetics, Dallas Review, Anastamos, Poetry/LA, Poetry Digest, Chiron Review, Poets Against the War, Review Americana, WTC Remembrances, Omnium Gatherum Quarterly, Pearl, Blue Fifth Review Quarterly, Orange County Review, Orange Coast Review, Emrys Journal, RipRap, Re)verb, Verse-Virtual, Slipstream, City Dialogues, Tandava, Faith, Stymie, Word Riot, and others.
Grant's poetry has also been anthologized in such books as Without a Doubt—poems illuminating faith (a New York Quarterly Anthology, 2021), Floored (Kingly Street Press, 2021), Making Up—Poems of Beauty, Reconciliation, & Invention (Picture Show Press, 2020), Orange County: A Literary Field Guide (Heyday, 2017), Love Poems (Basement Projects, 2016), Only Light Can Do That (Rattling Wall/PEN Cener USA, 2016), Monster Verse — Human and Inhuman Poems (Knopf/Everyman, 2015), and others.
Three fiction pieces were included in LA Fiction Anthology: Southland Stories by Southland Writers (Red Hen Press, 2016). A flash fiction piece from the 2018 UK Flash Fiction Festival was included in the anthology Flash Fiction Journal — Two.
Grant's essays and reviews have been widely published as well, including in So It Goes: The Literary Journal of the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library, The Review of Contemporary Fiction, Jeffers Studies, and Explorations in English Studies — as well as in the books Teaching Composition with Literature and John Fante: A Critical Gathering.
Since the 1990s Grant has served as editor, managing editor, and editor-in-chief of several literary journals and magazines. He is currently poetry editor for Chiron Review.
Grant penned the liner notes to the Los Lobos album, Llegó Navidad (Warner Music Group/Rhino). That writing was entered for a 2020 Grammy Award ("Best Album Notes—Grant Hier, Writer"). The band then extended the invitation to write the liner notes for their next release, Native Sons (New West Records), and that is currently entered for a 2021 Grammy Award ("Best Album Notes—Grant Hier, Writer"). Grant also penned the liner notes for a new WAR 5-LP color vinyl box set (limited to 5,000 pressings) from Warner Music Group/Rhino), titled WAR: The Vinyl: 1971-1975.
OTHER CREATIVE WORK
In addition to writing, Grant is a musical artist, visual artist, former graphic designer, and art director. He has recorded his original musical compositions at various studios, including as part of an A&R deal for A&M Records. His installation art has been featured in several gallery showings across Southern California.
In 2018 he wrote, produced, and performed on the double-CD JOYRIDE: Friends Take the Wheel, a companion to the book Good Morning, Aztlán: The Words, Pictures & Songs of Louie Pérez (Tia Chucha / Northwestern University Press, 2018). That recording of spoken word and music featured 50 artists, and was entered for a 2019 Grammy Award ("Best Folk Album—Grant Hier, Producer").
As a voice actor, he contributed the part of Stanley Hohner for the audiobook version of the New York Times bestseller, Lincoln in the Bardo: A Novel (Penguin/Random House, 2017), by George Saunders. That recording won the 2018 Audie Award for Audiobook of the Year.
EDUCATION AND TEACHING
Grant earned his BA in English from California State University at Fullerton, and both an MA in Literature and MFA in Creative Writing Poetry from California State University at Long Beach. After a decade of teaching writing at UC Irvine, he became full professor at Laguna College of Art + Design where he served as Chair of Liberal Arts and Art History and Faculty Senate President. He continues full time at LCAD, teaching courses in creative writing, literature, critical reasoning, and senior capstone.
Grant Hier (photo by Xun Chi)
» PRACTICE: 394 Poems in 365 Days | Pelekinesis, Forthcoming in 2022
» Similitude | Pelekinesis, 2018
» The Difference Between | Pelekinesis, 2018
» Untended Garden — Histories and Reinhabitation in Suburbia | The Poetry Press, 2014
FLASH FICTION BOOKS
» California Continuum, , Volume One — Migrations and Amalgamations | co-written with John Brantingham | Pelekinesis, 2019
» California Continuum , Volume Two— Immigrations | co-edited with John Brantingham | Pelekinesis, Forthcoming in 2023
» Without a Doubt — poems illuminating faith | New York Quarterly Anthology, 2021 | "Rapture"
» Floored | Kingly Street Press, 2021 | "Self-Similar"
» Making Up—Poems of Beauty, Reconciliation, & Invention | Picture Show Press, 2020 | "Because the sky was soft and slow"
» Flash Fiction Festival — Two | Ad Hoc Fiction, 2018 | "The Current Threaded"
» Orange County: A Literary Field Guide | Heyday, 2017 | "Untended Garden" excerpt
» Love Poems | Basement Projects, 2016 | "The Difference Between Entropy and Evaporation" > "Not Tired" > "I Must Sing" > "Kiss Me Hard (and Press Your Length)" > "Threnody" > "I Wish I Hadn't Made That Connection (or that one either...)" > "The Difference Between Rattle and Settling"
» Only Light Can Do That: 100 Post-Election Poems, Stories & Essays | Rattling Wall/PEN Center USA, 2016 | "Shame and Shock (Villanelle on The Etymology of an Election)"
» LA Fiction Anthology: Southland Stories by Southland Writers | Red Hen Press, 2016 | "The Snack Bar" > "Duffle Bag of Balls" > "Bat Rack"
» Monster Verse — Human and Inhuman Poems | Knopf/Everyman, 2015 | "The Surgeon Turns the Scalpel on Himself"
» Poets Against the War | Poets Against the War, 2003 | "The Difference Between Repair and Reconstruction"
» WTC Remembrances | September, 2002 | "The Difference Between Repair and Reconstruction"
» John Fante — A Critical Gathering | Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1999 | "Written Like Mad Sonnets: The Poetics of John Fante's Prose"
» Explorations in English Studies | April, 1997 | "Human Struggle Amidst Angelic Voices: Teaching the Creative Writing of Poetry" | Juried
» Jeffers Studies | Summer/Fall, 1995 | "Truth, Myth, and 'The Great Wound'" | Juried
» Jeffers Studies | Fall, 1994 | "The Dance of Shiva and Concepts of Hinduism in Robinson Jeffers's Poetry" | Juried
» Jeffers Studies | Summer, 1994 | "Robinson Jeffers and Thuban" | Juried
» So It Goes: The Literary Journal of the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library | Issue X — Our Good Earth: Kurt Vonnegut and the Environment, 2021 | "How Trees Inspire: The Whole World Kin" | Non-Fiction Essay
» Teaching Composition With Literature | Addison Wesley Longman, 1999 | "Connecting Images in Sylvia Plath's 'Metaphors.' — Stressing process over formula" | Invited || "Beyond Binary Thinking: 'My Papa's Waltz' by Theodore Roethke" | Invited
» The Review of Contemporary Fiction | Spring, 1998 | Book Review of The Troika, by Stephan Chapman | Invited
» Lincoln in the Bardo: A Novel by George Saunders | Penguin/Random House | Character of Stanley Hohner voiced by Grant Hier | 2018 Audie Award for Audiobook of the Year
LP / CD
» Native Sons by Los Lobos | Liner Notes | 2021 | Text for LP album inner sleeve; CD book and Softpak panels | Entered for a 2021 Grammy Award for Best Liner Notes
» WAR: The Vinyl: 1971-1975 by WAR | Liner Notes | 2021 | Text for exclusive 5-LP color vinyl box set and CD package, strictly limited to 5,000 copies worldwide
» Llegó Navidad by Los Lobos | Liner Notes | 2019 | Text for LP album jacket back cover & 4-panel, 2-sided inner sleeve; and CD 20-page book and Softpak panels | Entered for a 2020 Grammy Award for Best Liner Notes
» Joyride — Friends Take the Wheel | 2018 | Written and Produced by Grant Hier | A companion to the book Good Morning, Aztlán: The Words, Pictures & Songs of Louie Pérez (Tia Chucha / Northwestern University Press, 2018) | Double CD featuring music and spoken word performed by 50 artists. Readers include: George Saunders, Ser Anzoategui, Luís Alberto Urrea, Rose Portillo, Diane Rodriguez, Grant Hier, Luis J. Rodriguez, David Greenberger, Eileen Galindo, Guy Vickers, Ginger McBride, Mary Pérez, Luis Torres, Laura Andrade Padilla Dent, as well as Herbert Sigüenza, Ric Salinas and Richard Montoya of the performance troupe Culture Clash. Contributing musicians include: David Hidalgo, John Doe, Rick Trevino, Mitchell Froom, Vonda Shepard, Josh Baca, Max Baca, Althea Grace, Wesley Stace, Doyle Bramhall II, LPIII, Ruby Rosas, Edward David Anderson, Jackie Greene, Syd Straw, Hahn Rowe (Somatic), Donald Edgar Piper, Michel Delory, John McCauley, and the bands Quetzal, Cambalache, and Making Movies | Entered for a 2019 Grammy Award for Best Folk Album
Averi Endow | "Grant Hier" | 5" x 7" Oil on Panel