About Leah

Leah Angstman is a historian and transplanted Midwesterner, unsure of what feels like home anymore. Her debut novel, Out Front the Following Sea, a look at King William’s War in a brutal 17th-century New England, will be released by Regal House Publishing in January 2022 and is currently shortlisted for the Chaucer Book Award.

Leah is the recent winner of the Loudoun Library Foundation Poetry Award and Nantucket Directory Poetry Award, and is a two-time Top 10 Finalist for the Saluda River Prize for Poetry, judged once by South Carolina Poet Laureate Marjory Heath Wentworth and once by poet Ray McManus. Her writing has been a recent placed finalist in the Cowles Book Prize from Southeast Missouri State University Press, Able Muse Book Award judged by author Charles Martin, Bevel Summers Prize for Short Fiction from Washington & Lee University, Pen 2 Paper Writing Competition in both poetry and fiction categories, Blue Bonnet Review Poetry Contest, Baltimore Science Fiction Society Poetry Contest, and West Coast Eisteddfod Poetry Competition. She has earned four Pushcart Prize nominations and a Best of the Net nomination.

Leah serves as editor-in-chief for Alternating Current Press and The Coil magazine; a fiction and nonfiction reviewer for Publishers Weekly; a contributing editor, culture writer, and proofreader for Pacific Standard magazine; and a copyeditor for Underscore News. Her work has appeared in numerous journals, including Los Angeles Review of Books, The Rumpus, Tupelo Quarterly, Electric Literature, Midwestern Gothic, The Nashville Review, The Adirondack Review, Atticus Review, Slice Magazine, Pacific Standard, The Maine Review, and Shenandoah.

She is an appointed government-advisory vice chair of a Colorado historical commission, an appointed liaison to a Colorado historic preservation government-advisory committee, and a member of the Pennsylvania Heritage Foundation, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, Ohio History Connection, and Louisville (Colorado) History Foundation, as well as a founding Quartermaster member of the American Battlefield Trust and a volunteer at her local mining-history museum. You can find her on social media as @leahangstman.

Archival Libraries
Some of Leah’s older chapbooks, pamphlets, zines, and archived writings can be found at the University of Buffalo Special Collections Poetry Library HERE; the Anchor Archive Zine Library in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, HERE; the Papercut Zine Library HERE; the Ohio State University Rare Books and Manuscripts Library as part of the Jim Leftwich Papers HERE; the Civic Media Center in Gainesville, Florida HERE; the Denver Zine Library HERE; the Pew Learning Center and Ellison Library of Warren Wilson College, Asheville, North Carolina, HERE; and the University of Wisconsin-Madison Special Library Collections HERE.

“Angstman reveals herself as a brave new voice in historical fiction that speaks to the present, recalling the bold spirits and cultural upheavals of a nation yet to be born.”

—Taylor Brown, author of The River of Kings
“Angstman has written the historical novel that I didn’t know I needed to read.”

—Kevin Catalano, author of Where the Sun Shines Out
“The kind of historical writing that evokes its time and place so vividly that the effect is just shy of hallucinogenic. I enjoyed it immensely.”

—Scott Phillips, author of The Ice Harvest
“Watching Angstman’s willful protagonist openly challenge the brutal world of 17th-Century New England, with its limiting ideas about gender, race, and science, was a delight.”

—Aline Ohanesian, author of Orhan’s Inheritance
“Angstman is a gifted storyteller with a poet’s sense of both beauty and darkness, and her stunning historical novel establishes her as one of the most exciting young novelists in the country.”

—Ashley Shelby, author of South Pole Station
“Angstman’s eye is keen, and her ability to transport you into America’s beginnings is powerful. With the raw ingredients of history, she creates a story both dashing and pensive, robust yet believable.”

—Eric Shonkwiler, author of Above All Men
“Rich, lyrical, and atmospheric, with a poet’s hand and a historian’s attention to detail.”

—Steph Post, author of Walk in the Fire
“Leah’s work spans diverse terrain and unearths moments and figures from our past in a unique, modern light.”

—Lynn Alexander, author of Flesh Made Widow
“Leah’s writing is part enthralling daydream, part history lesson. Digging into the past, we relive our struggles and our battles through her words.”

—J. Lewis Fleming, author of The Bones of Saints Under Glass
“An excellent example of fine poems, each one, a panel falling into the next panel: poem for poem they belong to each other. Leah goes to the winner’s circle!”

Heeltap Book Reviews
“We’ve never read a book of Leah’s that wasn’t worth ten times the cover price, with each piece shooting dead into the bullseye. Vast talent, polished, power-packed, primed to detonate.”

Nibble Reviews
“So vividly and authentically drawn, with characters that are so alive and relevant, and a narrative so masterfully paced and plotted.”

—Kevin Catalano, author of Deleted Scenes
“Leah is a writer par excellence, and her pen captures everyday people and places with a striking clarity. Captivating and honest, truly the work of a very gifted writer.”

Nightwaves Reviews
“Leah is an excellent poet. I love her voice and her style. Her writing blew me out of my seat.”

—Julie Buffaloe-Yoder, author of Price Reduced Again
“Angstman plunges readers into a brilliantly realized historical milieu peopled by characters real enough to touch. A compulsive, vivid read to change the way you look at the origins of our country.”

—Ashley Shelby, author of Muri
“One disaster after another spilling out in the most interesting and perverse ways: brilliant, Ms. Angstman, just brilliant.”

Poet Hound Reviews
“Angstman’s work never disappoints me; her language is vivid—always—and crisp.”

Xerography Debt
“Angstman creates an immersive world for readers to get lost in and a fascinating story to propel them through it. A thoroughly engaging and compelling tale.”

—Steph Post, author of Miraculum
“Angstman’s lines are sharp and sweet. Her words are a soulful elegy to the timeless half-world available everywhere between flights.”

Denver Examiner
“Angstman is comfortable living among words and images, as if she’s playing with old friends within her pages, frolicking and reveling, even when their games turn gravely serious.”

Indie Book Man
“Leah has what I would call creative courage, balancing biting commentary with subtle and striking observations on life in general.”

What to Wear During an Orange Alert
“Angstman has performed the miracle of layering the tumultuous past over our troubled present to gift us a sparkling new reality.”

—Kevin Catalano, author of Where the Sun Shines Out
“Leah goes to the edge of inventing language patterns that disrupt our normal constructions. But there is also a thread of quite elegant lyricism running throughout the dark forest of brute trees.”

Boston Area Small Press & Poetry Scene
“Angstman paces her rhythms perfectly and creates stories like deep, glistening pools you stumble across in the middle of a lonely wood, unable to resist the urge to dive right in.”

Nibble Reviews
“I have found me a new writer to enjoy. The honesty with which a life is examined in Leah’s books has value—in her writing, the reality of emotion almost rudely bumps the language up into song.”

The Time Garden
“Angstman has the capacity to describe scenes with flair. The palpable voice persists through shades and nuances of tenor, motion, estrangement, experience, and acceptance.”

The Nondisenchanted Foreshore
“Always the right word for the right moment, emphasis precisely placed, graphic by turns but compassionate. Angstman’s words are daring and show a precision that’s hard to find.”

Xerography Debt
“Leah’s work is wonderfully human, wise, compassionate without becoming sentimental, and infused with modern toughness brought about through experience, both painful and joyous.”

Fearless Magazine
“Leah finds her place in this collection of big-league, bare-knuckle poems. These are well-crafted poems of unpredictable stubbornness.”

Beatlick News
“As a poet, her work is captivating and honest. Her style is real, vivid, and beautifully true.”

Nightwaves Reviews