Winner: Notes from the Birth Year by Mia Ayumi Malhotra

Notes from the Birth Year is the official winner of Bateau’s 2021/2022 BOOM Chapbook contest. Out of a big ole batch of amazing manuscripts, Mia’s just kept rising. We really loved it. We can’t wait to work with Mia. We can’t wait to get this chapbook into people’s hands. We can’t wait to launch it at AWP Bookfair 2022 in Philly.  



Mia Ayumi Malhotra is the author of Isako Isako, a California Book Award finalist and winner of the Alice James Award, the Nautilus Gold Award, a National Indie Excellence Award, and a Maine Literary Award. She is a Kundiman fellow and founding editor of Lantern Review, and her poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including The Yale Review, Indiana Review, and The World I Leave You: Asian American Poets on Faith and Spirit. She tends a hillside in the San Francisco Bay Area.


pic by Zach Domes

Finalists for BOOM Chapbook Contest 2021/2022

holy smokes peoples. we got us a good group this year. thanks to everyone who submitted, asked a question, allowed us to read their work, said hello, or cursed at us from a passing car. we read a whole bunch of amazing / sexy / strong / odd manuscripts but sadly we we can only publish one. but we can’t do what we do without all of you.  thanks to all of the authors that trusted us with their work.


Here are the finalists for the 2021/2022 contest:

Lupine by Jenny Irish

Breathe by Amina Gautier

“Never Trust Your Instincts” by Tara Roeder

Starfish Dismantling an Oyster by Stuart Greenhouse

American Poetry Review by Matthew Lippman

Notes from the Birth Year by Mia Ayumi Malhotra

18 Poems by Kate Greene

Grandma June by Mara Beneway

Dreamsoak by Will Russo

Mutually Assured Construction by James D’Agostino


Big thanks to our super talented and hard working COA student editors. They were first, second, and third readers for the contest. Bateau is nothing without the following people: Bella DeHart, Sarah Stovicek, Linnae D’Auria, Lydia Solomon, Crystal Guzman Emmy Fenwick Alexa Parkinson, Cass Martoccia, Sarah Cyr, Sophia Saccente, Managing Editor Gaby Gordon-Fox, Managing Editor Anna Parsons, Danylo Shuvalov, and Sadie Cooley.  Thank you all!


by Miss Expanding Universe


It Is Coming!!!  Look for HTBTWLFIP-O-SITWE! EFSC in early October, 2021


With How To Be The Worst Laziest Fattest Incontinent Piece-of-Shit In The World Ever! Encouragement For Struggling Creatives, Bateau Press & Miss Expanding Universe are officially entering the self-help book industry.<<<Because that’s where the money is, yo>>>>This beautiful 8 x 10 comic book is meant to get your juices flowing, your mojo rising, and your genitals exploding.

Critics say: “…this book has that Certain Something that makes you want to lick it.”

Critics say: “…after reading this chapbook, you will experience total identification with the worm.”

Critics say: “…shamewanking…”

WE say: “Are you willing to spend $14.00 to change your life for good?”


Preorder How To Be The Worst Laziest Fattest Incontinent Piece-of-Shit In The World Ever! Now!

Ashley Yang-Thompson aka Miss Expanding Universe produces a weekly zine, WORM HOUSE: the only source of real news in the world / bringing Las Vegas to the Berkshires, to Oregon, and beyond. 

Drakkar Noir by Michael Chang

Stephen Scott Whitaker’s review of Drakkar Noir is up at The Rumpus.  Nothing but love for Stephen and The Rumpus crew.

Lantern Review Blog names Drakkar Noir as one of its must-read poetry titles for summer 2021.

Featurette on Drakkar Noir at Burrow Press.

Drakkar Noir review up on WUSSY. Big love to Nicholas Goodly for the sharp reading of Michael’s amazing chapbook.

Drakkar Noir review up on Barrelhouse.  Shout out to Julian Day & the Barrelhouse crew!

Drakkar Noir review up on Serotonin.  Shout out to Sean Lynch for his insightful reading of Michael’s work.

Drakkar Noir review up on The Broadkill Review.  Shout out to Chester Wilson III, our new favorite person!


Order Drakkar Noir now!  Drakkar Noir is officially out today: May 1, 2021!


Bateau Press is pleased to announce the upcoming publication of MICHAEL CHANG’S chapbook Drakkar NoirDrakkar Noir won the Bateau Press 2020/2021 BOOM Chapbook contest. These poems are funny, acerbic, sexy, insane, wide open, and, ultimately, welcoming. Drakkar Noir is a wild ride. We love it. We know you will too.

More love for Drakkar Noir:

Reading Michael Chang’s Drakkar Noir is a metaphor for walking through a healthy spray of the eponymous cologne: top notes of radical diction, middle notes of fearlessness, and a dry down of sex. This collection, “messy yet delightful,” the tone a splash of benevolence and derision, does not suffer fools—or the system—yet somehow, a knowing vulnerability shines through: “I understand how tenuous existence can be.” These poems raucously challenge everything hallowed about poetry and find a way to make something fresh and true out of our cruel detritus.  —RANDALL MANN

Electric and delicious . . . through formal experimentation and erotic intellect, through the knowing and delicious performance of disaffection, through social critiques embedded in humor, wit entwined with sincerity and longing, and with an inexplicit loneliness inherent to the gift-curse of seeing through things, people and systems, Drakkar Noir enacts Lyn Hejinian’s assertion that “language is nothing but meanings, and meanings are nothing but a flow of contexts.” The confluence of those contexts, for Michael Chang, to some extent involves the cosmic and comic absurdity of 21st century America and its pop culture. This is a book of tensions. The dissonance between candor and smirk. The dissonance between desire and grotesque capitalism—grotesque Americanness—which denigrates and cheapens subjectivity. In the face of that, Chang’s poems celebrate taste, and the critique of others’ tastes, as a form of agency and refusal. These poems bite with pleasure, but also press on language and tone and form, in the process asserting singular irreverence and defiance, an appetite for being amused by existence.  “My voice a melody,” Chang writes. That melody is the melody of an unapologetically discrete mind, one that rejects expectation in a time of so much predictable posturing. Michael Chang is a poet of radical selfhood.  —BRIAN TIERNEY

Quick-footed, exceptionally sharp, and overspilling with hilarious (and deeply true!) nonstop jabs, Michael Chang’s Drakkar Noir attempts to outpace the racist and capitalist machine at every corner. If there is any question about how the rapidly developing forms of digital communication and cultural capital have transformed the way we talk about identity and politics, Chang has a concise Tweet written just for you—only it’s part of a zuihitsu, an elliptical poem, a multi-referential poem that leaves you dizzy and gobsmacked, a poem that leans into the hyperbolic and affective excess of our times. Make no mistake—the surface flippancy of Chang’s tone is merely an attempt to get you to pay closer attention. There is no passive commerce here. In expressing the stakes of this writing, they share, “Did I say ‘poem’? I meant life.”  —MURIEL LEUNG

“We contain multitudes, you know, lemon drops & melon balls, sweet & sadistic, turkey & ham,” writes Michael Chang in their adventurous and audacious Drakkar Noir. These poems are voracious in scope, horned up with pop culture, dizzy with desire and juxtaposition (“u taste like jerky & tears”). Rarely do I see a poet whose voice is so singularly their own, so inventive and mesmerizing, present in the contemporary moment while nodding to the future. Chang’s poems make the page a space of reckoning, a space for boldness and invention, a canvas not painted, but slashed and smashed against a wall. “A lot of ppl write pretty words but don’t say shit,” the poet mocks. These poems offer “no neat ending, no bow to tie it all together”; they say whatever the fuck they want. They “blow shit up.”  —AARON SMITH

MICHAEL CHANG is a must-read voice whose poetry embodies jewel-toned pleasure, treasure, and oh please, keep teasing the reader with more back and forth, then hitting hard with the plain and honest Truth with a capital T. In their debut chapbook, brilliantly titled, Drakkar Noir, Chang gives us romp and runway fused with popular culture that leads into allegories of what it’s like to be queer and Asian American in America—in the world today—around people who want to slow you down. Drakkar Noir is a love letter to all queer Asian Americans that calls out performative allyship, or as Chang’s speaker states, “have you ever fucked the system?” I want to wife this collection.  —DOROTHY CHAN


Bateau Press expects to be done sewing these amazing chapbooks on May 1, 2021. We use college student labor for all of our sewing and emotional needs. Students are paid for this work in love, coffee, bagels, and more love.  Orders will ship out May 3, 2021.


Bathe yourself in Drakkar Noir now.  The book, a hand sewn letterpressed work of wonder, costs $14 plus shipping. 

A Lambda Literary fellow, MICHAEL CHANG (they/them) was awarded the Kundiman Scholarship at the Miami Writers Institute. A finalist in contests at the Iowa Review, BOMB, NightBlock, & many others, their poems have been nominated for Best of the Net & the Pushcart Prize.


2021 & Michael Chang & Ashley Yang-Thompson & Bateau

Drakkar Noir by Michael Chang is the winner of the 2020/2021 BOOM Chapbook Contest


We had a whole bunch of really amazing & incredibly strong manuscripts sent to us this year.  To be honest, we really need that. When the world is going to hell and life seems pointless / locked down it helps to read a bunch of work that rises up / resists. As Jeanette Winterson so eloquently says in her essay Art Objects: Art, all art, is the communication cord that cannot be snapped by indifference or disaster. Against the daily death it does not die. Congratulations, Michael! Look for Drakkar Noir in the spring of 2021.


A Lambda Literary fellow, MICHAEL CHANG (they/them) was awarded the Kundiman Scholarship at the Miami Writers Institute. A finalist in contests at the Iowa Review, BOMB, NightBlock, & many others, their poems have been nominated for Best of the Net & the Pushcart Prize.







As Bateau navigates through pandemics & recessions & lost funding & funding found & Mahoney’s onrushing midlife crisis, it makes sense for us to work with Miss Expanding Universe (aka Ashley Yang-Thompson) on a book project that is not a typical Bateau chapbook. A project that involves something else.  Something we have never done before.  Something akin to wonder.  So keep your eyes open for How to be the worst laziest fattest most incontinent piece-of-shit in the world EVER headed your way sometime in the early fall of 2021.


Ashley Yang-Thompson aka Miss Expanding Universe produces a weekly zine, WORM HOUSE: the only source of real news in the world / bringing Las Vegas to the Berkshires.

Finalists For The 2020/2021 BOOM Chapbook Competition

Sault Ste. Marie by Jeff Ewing

FM by Matthew Lippman

Jonah by Elizabeth Robinson

Weltshmerz by Kevin Tosca

The Old Fashioned Way by Dinah Cox

Speaks the Dark Lobe by L. I. Henley

Drakkar Noir by Michael Chang

How to be the worst laziest fattest most incontinent piece-of-shit in the world EVER by Ashley Yang Thompson

Still Life with Skull, Cluster of Grapes, Nintendo 64 Controller by Jim Redmond

Major League Gaming by Devin Taylor

Indigent by Elizabeth Robinson

The Pocket Oracle by Sharon Dolin

In the Whale by Halo Lahnert


Bateau wishes to give a shout out to everyone who entered this year’s contest. Your writing is fierce, amazing, and really fucking needed.  Thank you for sharing it with us.

CHAPBOOKS But No Lit Mag This Year

Dearest Family

We at Bateau Press have been thinking things over, confronting the hard truth that there is no way we can publish a Bateau Lit Mag in the year of the plague, lost revenue from AWP & COA, and hope to survive.  So: BATEAU PRESS IS NOT GOING TO PUBLISH A LIT MAG IN 202O.  We will publish a Lit Mag in 2021 once the world is sane again.  Will it be sane again?

The entire literary landscape might dissolve. Magazines and small presses might become smoke. We are lucky that we have student labor and institutional support but who knows what the next five years will look like. Bateau might die five years from now, or a decade from now, but for the time being, WE WILL LIVE. We will run the chapbook contest in the fall. Instead of relying on outside designers and printers, we will bring the letterpress printing and design of our chaps and lit mags onto the COA campus. This has always been the plan, now we are fast-forwarding.  We will be more ruthless in our exploitation of student labor. ((the kids love it!!!))

We will also reenvision what it means to publish a lit mag in the post COVID-19 landscape. We might become a record label. We might become a dreamscape or a seagull. Check out what Sleeperhold Publications is up to.  Whatever we become it will be a physical object, it will have to do with creating art that affirms life, and it will be beautiful. Most likely a lit mag but a seagull would be fucking awesome!