R. T. Smith

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Rodney T. Smith (born 1947 in Washington, D.C.) is an American poet, fiction writer, and editor. The author of twelve poetry collections and a collection of short fiction, Smith is the editor of Shenandoah, a prestigious literary journal published by Washington and Lee University. His poetry and stories are identified with Southern literature and have been published in magazines and literary journals such as The Atlantic Monthly, Poetry, Southern Humanities Review, and The Kenyon Review.


Rodney T. Smith grew up in Georgia and North Carolina.[1] Smith received his higher education at Georgia Tech, the University of North Carolina, and Appalachian State University.[2] He now lives in Rockbridge County, Virginia.

Academic and editing career[edit]

While at Appalachian State University, Smith founded Cold Mountain Review. He also taught for nineteen years as an English professor at Auburn University, where he was named an Alumni Writer-In-Residence.

At Auburn Smith co-edited Southern Humanities Review. He currently serves as editor of Shenandoah, a prestigious literary journal published by Washington and Lee University, where he also teaches creative writing and literature courses in the English Department.

He teaches poetry and fiction in the Low-Residency MFA program in Creative Writing at Converse College.


Smith's writings have won the Pushcart Prize and been collected in Best American Short Stories and New Stories From the South. He has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the North Carolina Arts Council, and the Alabama Council on the Arts (he also received the Alabama Governor's Award for Achievement by an Artist). Two of his poetry collections have been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry.[3] Other awards include the Library of Virginia Poetry Prize and the Maurice English Poetry Award.[4]


Selected poetry collections[edit]

  • Outlaw Style: Poems (Arkansas Poetry Series, 2007)
  • The Hollow Log Lounge (University of Illinois Press, 2003). Winner of the 2004 Maurice English Poetry Award.
  • Brightwood (Louisiana State University Press, 2003)
  • Messenger (Louisiana State University Press, 2001). Winner of the Library of Virginia Poetry Prize.
  • Split the Lark: Selected Poems (1999)
  • Trespasser (1996). Nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry.
  • Hunter-Gatherer (Livingston University Press, 1996)
  • The Cardinal Heart (1991). Nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry.
  • From the High Dive (1983)


  • Faith: Stories (Black Belt Press, 1995)
  • Uke Rivers Delivers: Stories (Yellow Shoe Press, 2006)
  • The Calaboose Epistles (Iris Press, 2009)

As editor[edit]

  • Common Wealth: Contemporary Poets of Virginia (2003, with Sarah Kennedy).


  1. ^ Lee, Don (Fall 2006). "Postscripts (Laura Kasischke and R. T. Smith, Cohen Award Winners)". Ploughshares, the literary journal of Emerson College. Archived from the original on 2008-09-16.
  2. ^ "R.T. Smith Named W&L's Writer-in-Residence". Washington and Lee University. 2009-06-24. Retrieved 2011-07-14.
  3. ^ Interview with R. T. Smith by J.M. Spalding, The Cortland Review, May 1998, accessed March 6, 2007.
  4. ^ "Shenandoah Editor R.T. Smith Wins Pushcart Prize and the 2006 Cohen Award from Ploughshares". Washington and Lee University. May 23, 2006. Archived from the original on 2007-04-17.

External links[edit]