News & Events Archive

2021 NYC Big Book Awards

For the second year in a row, DJ is thrilled to be a Winner in the 2021 NYC Big Book Awards! ‘Who’s That I Hear,’ a collaboration with Vail, CO artist Julie Adriansen, took top prize in the Children’s Picture Book/Pre-K category.

Find out m ore and purchase copies at

2022 Independent Press Awards

DJ’s first audiobook, Homespun Mercies, was named Distinguished Favorite in the 2022 Independent Press Awards! Many thanks to producer Dave Taylor of Cool Brick Studios in Carbondale, Colorado.


DJ joined WTOL’s Steven Jackson for an early morning conversation about her children's book, Who’s That I Hear?, and the importance of addressing nighttime fears, for children and adults alike! (Apologies for the initial Skype delay).

Watch the video here

The Red Shawl

In 2018, DJ traveled to Santa Fe to work with mixed media artist Holly Roberts. DJ’s publisher had tasked her with creating the cover for her first collection of poetry, Homespun Mercies, and she had just five days to do so. ‘Release’ did become the cover art and in January 2020 was selected for a juried show at the Loveland Museum as part of VOTE: A Centennial Celebration and awarded the Spirit of the Suffragists prize.

‘The Red Shawl’ was part of this year-long event. The CO Poet Laureate enlisted poets from across the state to write toward a piece of art. Read what poet Beth Lechleitner had to say about the experience as well as her reading of ‘The Unbinding’ (YouTube).

New Book for Children

DJ is excited to announce her first children’s book, Who’s That I Hear?, launched April 2021 and is now available!


Eric Hoffer Book Award

“The Eric Hoffer Book Award honors the memory of the great American philosopher Eric Hoffer by highlighting salient writing as well as the independent spirit of small publishers.”

Homespun Mercies, DJ’s debut collection of poetry and collage, received a Category Prize of 1st Runner-Up in Art, finalist in the New Horizon (First Book) and Medal Provocateur (Best on the Frontier of Poetry), and named to the Grand Prize Short List.

Visit to discover great award-winning books!

Valley Visual Art Show

As one of fifty artists featured in the 42nd Annual Valley Visual Art Show in Carbondale, Colorado, DJ shared her thoughts on the challenges and opportunities of creating art in present times.

read more

Tupelo Press Reading

Poetry is the only history we have of the human heart. —Billy Collins

DJ is thrilled to be one of 30 poets participating in the Tupelo Press 30/30 Alumni Reading on Friday, April 30 from 7-9 pm ET via Zoom. Kirsten Miles, National Director of the 30/30 Project, will host. Each poet will read one poem with a comment about their participation. Celebrate the final day of National Poetry Month 2021 and join us!  Zoom Link

2020 New York City Big Book Awards

DJ is honored to announce Homespun Mercies as the winner in Poetry of the 2020 New York City Big Book Awards!

Read more about the contest and this year’s winners here.

The Power of the Poem

DJ spoke this summer with guest editor Nancy Eike of White Bear Lake Magazine on life, writing, and the publication of her award-winning book, Homespun Mercies.

Read the feature here

Valley Visual Art Show

January 2021, marked the opening of the 42nd Annual Valley Visual Art Show at The Launchpad in Carbondale, Colorado. DJ’s new piece, running from the Man, will be on display through February 25. Follow the links to learn more about the 50 artists chosen for this exhibit, take a virtual tour, or purchase art. Many thanks to The Launchpad, Carbondale Arts, and the Carbondale Creative District for your support!

Independent Publisher: THE Voice of the Independent Publishing Industry

DJ and fellow winners of the 2020 Independent Publisher “IPPY” Book Awards discuss writing, how current events influence their craft, and why poetry is more important now than ever.

Read the article at

BPA Benjamin Franklin Award Gold Winners

IBPA Award Finalist

The in-person award ceremony had to be canceled due to the COVID-19 health crisis and moved to the 4-night “Shelter-In-Place” IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award Ceremony Viewing Parties online. During the May 7 virtual awards, the IBPA announced the results of the Poetry category.

Watch DJ’s video here

Spirit of the Suffragists prize

‘Release’, the cover art of Homespun Mercies, was selected for the nationally juried show Vote: A Centennial Celebration where it was awarded the Spirit of the Suffragists Award.

Due to COVID 19, the exhibition closed early. But the organizers of the event and Loveland Museum created a virtual tour.

2020 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award

IBPA Award Finalist

DJ is thrilled to announce her book Homespun Mercies was named a finalist in the 2020 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards! DJ’s book was one of 1,697 entries in fifty-five categories submitted to the award program. Follow the link to read more and see the finalists in each category:


DJ Hill reading at the Strand bookstoreDJ will joined Indie authors John McCoy and Azzan Yadin-Israel on Monday, February 10 at 7 pm. Dart Frog Books hosted the event at the Strand—New York City’s oldest bookstore. Each author shared their publishing journey and read excerpts from their work. 


Many thanks to Dart Frog Books for this recent review of Homespun Mercies. 



The 25th CIPA EVVY Awards were held August 17th in Denver, Colorado. Homespun Mercies took first place in the Poetry category and second place in Interior Design Layout.

DJ will sign copies of her book on Thursday, October 10th from 4:30-5:30 as part of the MPIBA FallCon Show, Renaissance Denver Stapleton Hotel at 3801 Quebec Street.


After months of rehearsing, recording, re-recording and editing, Homespun Mercies, the audiobook, is now available for purchase! Produced by the incomparable Dave Taylor at Cool Brick Studios in Carbondale, Colorado, the audiobook is read by the author and gently weaves the words with music including original works by John Hatanaka and Dave Hornbacker.


Offbeat Poet recently published a review of DJ’s debut collection of poetry, Homespun Mercies — “Each turn of the page brings us one step closer to a personal realization of what it means to be.”

Read more of Offbeat Poet’s review


Homespun Mercies, DJ’s debut collection of poetry and visual art, was recently named a finalist in the Poetry Category of the 2019 International Book Awards! The book is currently available on this website as well as Amazon.

Visual Art Show

DJ is one of 50 local artists exhibiting work at the 39th Annual Valley Visual Art Show, opening Friday, January 18 with a reception from 6–8 pm An artist reception and preview will take place from 5:30–6 for members and gallery patrons. More information.

Editor's Pick: Pulling the strings

DJ talked with Aspen Daily News reporter Todd Hartley about her new mixed media piece, Release, and the story behind its creation.  Read the article.


In December of 2014, DJ committed to writing a poem a day. One of those poems, “Harry,” (written toward a post on Facebook) will soon be published in Volume 1 of Gone Dogs. “Born from a blog post in 2010, Gone Dogs is a tribute to the dogs that have left us, written by the people who loved them. When it’s finished, Gone Dogs will be a beautiful coffee table book chock full of stories and photographs from people across the world who chose to share their tributes with us.”


Young Ravens Literary Review recently published DJ’s collage “An Apology to My Inner Poet.” The piece will also appear in DJ’s first collection of poetry, Homespun Mercies, to be published later this spring.


The senior speaker selection committee chose Debbie Johnson-Hill from three finalists who auditioned for the role. Senior speaker candidates were asked to prepare a 3-5 minute speech that they would offer the graduating class, families, and guests. Students, faculty, and staff were present for the final auditions and offered the selection committee their feedback on the finalists’ speeches. Congratulations to Johnson-Hill on being selected senior speaker for the Class of 2017. Undergraduate Commencement was held May 20, 2017.


DJ was joined by musicians John Hatanaka and John Stuckey for First Friday at Roadside Gallery in Carbondale, Colorado. Prior to the event, the trio chatted with KDNK’s Express Yourself host Luke Nestler. Hear more…


Three of DJ’s collages were recently published in a special issue of The Rumpus—an online literary magazine—as part of their special series ENOUGH, addressing issues of rape culture, domestic violence, and sexual assault. With over 400 submissions, the series will run every Tuesday. See DJ’s work on The Rumpus.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This