Raquel Vasquez Gilliland is a poet, novelist, and artist of Mexican-American descent who weaves together intricate tales with a blend of magical realism and profound insight. She was born and raised in southern Texas, where her bi-cultural experiences have significantly influenced both her life and her writing. A graduate of the esteemed MFA program at the University of Alaska, Anchorage, Gilliland offers a unique literary perspective deeply embedded in her rich cultural background and higher education.
In her outstanding career, Gilliland has authored several compelling works, with her debut young adult novel, "Sia Martinez and the Moonlit Beginning of Everything", making waves in the literary world for its breathtaking prose and riveting narrative. Gilliland’s poetry, too, has gained widespread acclaim - her collection, "Dirt and Honey", winning the 2018 Green Rose Prize in Poetry. Her writing style showcases powerful emotions, creating unforgettable characters and narratives that resonate long after the final page.
Aside from being a prolific author, Gilliland is also an accomplished painter and potter, her visual artistry presenting another medium through which she expresses her thoughts and experiences. As an artist, her focus remains primarily on realism and portraiture, further exploring the depth and complexity of human experiences. Each aspect of Gilliland's work—whether that be writing, painting, or pottery—reflects her deep passion for storytelling, making her a truly multitalented and influential figure in the creative arts.