About Us

Our Mission

The mission of Red Hen Press is to publish works of literary excellence, to foster diversity, and to promote literacy in our local schools. We seek a community of readers and writers who are actively engaged in the essential human practice known as literature.

Native Land Acknowledgment

We, Red Hen Press, acknowledge that we do our work of fostering the future of literature on the occupied and seized territory that belongs to the Tongva, Gabrielino, and Kizh people who are the original inhabitants of the region of Los Angeles. We recognize that we benefit from living and working on their ancestral homeland and wish to pay our respects to the Ancestors, Elders, and Relatives both past, present, and future by affirming their sovereign rights as First Peoples.

Our History: 29 Years of Literary Independence and Community Impact

In 1994, Dr. Kate Gale and Mark E. Cull co-founded the press from their San Fernando Valley home, selling nearly all they owned to begin publishing talented writers whose works had been overlooked by large-scale publishers. Red Hen Press has since transformed into a thriving organization that supports the Greater Los Angeles Area and international communities with arts-based events and literary advocacy. The press maintains five unique programs:

  • Publishing: Red Hen publishes approximately twenty-five books of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction each year, with over 550 books released to date and distributed internationally. Representative fiction writers include Aimee Liu, Martha Cooley, Donna Hemans, Judy Grahn, Yuvi Zalkow, and Andrew Lam. Representative poets include Chris Abani, Katharine Coles, Camille Dungy, Eloise Klein Healy, Brynn Saito, Peggy Shumaker, Doug Manuel, and Francesca Bell. The press also publishes ten imprints that highlight underrepresented authors from diverse locations and backgrounds. Collectively, our imprints have published over 350 titles.
  • Literary Events: The press cultivates nearly thirty readings annually, at a variety of venues in the Greater Los Angeles Area, New York City, and internationally. Events feature both acclaimed and emerging writers from throughout the U.S, are either free or low-cost, and average 1,000 audience members yearly. Additionally, author events contribute up to 300 – 350 events per year.
  • Writing in the Schools (WITS): Founded in 2003, this literary education program has served over 4,000 underserved students by placing published authors into fourth through twelfth-grade classrooms. WITS provides free creative writing workshops and books to low-income students and at the end of the school year students receive a professionally bound anthology of their work.
  • The Los Angeles Review (LAR): A literary journal available online with a “best of” annual print edition, LAR provides a platform for writers to share their standalone pieces of short stories, flash fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry.
  • Literary Awards: Red Hen Press and LAR proudly present five awards (prizes totaling $13,000) each year to emerging writers. All winners receive a monetary award ranging from $1,000 to $5,000. Red Hen Press Awards winners are guaranteed book publication.
Kate Gale at Christopher's Book
Ann Petry Award