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Nicolette Polek


Nicolette Polek’s inventive, highly compressed prose uses a magnified and surreal lens to examine feelings of displacement and transformation. Her first book, a collection of short stories entitled Imaginary Museums, was published by Soft Skull Press in 2020. She says, “The compact stories are set in the American Midwest and Eastern Europe and depict characters who experience alienation— from their homes, families, God, and themselves. The stories are greatly inspired by my experience of being an only child of immigrants.” Her work has appeared in Harper’s, The Atlantic, Paris Review Daily, BOMB, and elsewhere. She holds an MFA in fiction from the University of Maryland and a masters from Yale Divinity School. Her debut novel, Bitter Water Opera, was published by Graywolf Press in April 2024.

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