VCU Publishing Presents Award for Outstanding Journal Article to Mighty Pen Project Essay

Chuck Williamson

On March 6, 2024, VCU Publishing announced the third annual VCU Publishing Awards. These awards recognize scholarship and creativity from VCU Publishing’s journal partners.

VCU Libraries publishes seven open access peer-reviewed scholarly journals. VCU Publishing also hosts the archives of the Virginia War Memorial Foundation’s Mighty Pen Project, which provides creative writing instruction for veterans and their families.

Publishing partners were asked to nominate representative works from their most recent journal volumes that demonstrate VCU Publishing’s goals to advance research, creative expression, and learning.

The awardees for 2024 are:

Travis Harris, Scott “lyfestile” Woods, Dana Horton, M. Nicole Horsley and Shayne McGregor, for their article Funk What You Heard: Hip Hop Is a Field of Study, from Vol. 9, Issue 1 of the Journal of Hip Hop Studies.

Revisiting foundational theories and methods intrinsic to the field of Hip Hop Studies, this field-shifting article provides a clear definition of Hip Hop and the discipline. It addresses the gap in Hip Hop Studies’ methodology of focusing on lyrical analysis and provides theories and methods that can not only transform the field but also make changes in the world.

Chuck Williamson, for his story The Sphere, from the Mighty Pen Project.

Williamson, a lifelong Virginian and Richmond native, is a veteran of the US Army’s 10th Mountain Division, serving as an infantryman. He was discharged from active duty due to injuries in 2017. Since leaving the military he has been involved in both The Mighty Pen and War In Pieces programs with the Virginia War Memorial Foundation. His story focuses on war as presented in a rare setting, loneliness.

Williamson holds both a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the College of William & Mary. In addition to this story, Williamson also wrote the short story turned one-act play Skyline in the Mighty Pen Project class.

Skyline Still shot, 2021

Still Shot from “Skyline,” a one-act play in the 2021 production of “War in Pieces” at the Firehouse Theatre.

Based in VCU Libraries, VCU Publishing amplifies VCU scholarly and research findings, and provides publishing opportunities and experiences for VCU students and faculty. VCU Publishing includes a portfolio of platforms and publishing services, and seeks partnerships within VCU and the Greater Richmond community to broaden that portfolio in ways that advance research, creative expression, and learning at VCU and for the region.

View Full Announcement (published on March 6, 2024) on VCU’s website HERE.