“Christopher Soto is the living embodiment of the best poetry being written in Los Angeles right now: queer, punk, pro-migrant, irrepressibly rousing and political” – Los Angeles Times, André Naffis-Sahely
“Christopher Soto takes an unflinching and raw view of current systems’ impact on Latino and other communities” – NBC News, Raul A. Reyes
“His poetry brings tender vulnerability and crass humor in equal measure, and his book opens up new possibilities for a better world we can all work to create together.” – New York Magazine, Katja Vujić
“He may be draped in poetry, but Soto is wading into a policy discussion about security. The heuristic his analysis of the state is indebted to is necropolitics—a concept in political theory that examines how sovereign power controls bodies it considers abnormal and thus labels a threat, marching them toward exclusion or death.” – The Nation, Danielle Mackey
“Diaries of a Terrorist is an ambitious debut collection… Their poems are rebellious antiestablishment denunciations of those in power – from police officers and immigration guards, to politicians, administrators, and the military.” – Poetry London, Leo Boix
“The poems in this collection are the ponderings and assertions of a so-called ‘terrorist’ looking at the nation from outside its borders. Although a part of said nation, the poet treats this poetry collection as if it’s the only country he has left… Not only is his individual craft poignant, but his voice echoes his people.” – Los Angeles Review of Books, féi hernandez
“The collection is both a challenge and an invitation, allowing readers to confront interconnected legacies of violence and open their imaginations to a more just and equitable future.” – The Atlantic, Nicole Chung
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Christopher Soto (b. 1991) is a poet based in Los Angeles, California. His debut poetry collection, Diaries of a Terrorist, was published by Copper Canyon Press. This collection demands the abolition of policing and human caging. In 2022, he was honored with Them’s Now Award in Literature for representing the cutting edge of queer culture. He was also honored as part of Out100, which celebrates the year’s most impactful and influential LGBTQ+ people. Boston Globe named his debut one of the best books of 2022.
Christopher Soto currently works at UCLA’s Ethnic Studies Research Centers, and he also teaches at UCLA’s Honors College. He has previously taught at NYU where he received his MFA in Poetry and was a Goldwater Hospital Writing Fellow, Columbia University as a June Jordan Teaching Corp Fellow, and at Occidental College as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Creative Writing. He previously interned with the Poetry Society of America and he served on the Board of Directors with Lambda Literary. He is the editor of Nepantla: An Anthology Dedicated to Queer Poets of Color (Nightboat Books, 2018) and the author of the limited-print chapbook Sad Girl Poems (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2016). He co-founded the Undocupoets Campaign, which successfully lobbied numerous poetry publishers in the United States to remove proof of citizenship requirements from first-book contests. He cofounded Writers for Migrant Justice to protest the detention and separation of migrant families in the U.S. He has also organized with the Cops Off Campus movement and he has worked at Equal Justice USA to end the death penalty. He was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Poetry, a CantoMundo Fellowship, the Freedom Plow Award for Poetry & Activism by Split This Rock, and the Barnes & Nobles Writer for Writers Award from Poets & Writers. His poems, reviews, interviews, and articles can be found at New York Times, Los Angeles Times, The Nation, The Guardian, Los Angeles Review of Books, among others. He identifies as nonbinary and also uses “they” pronouns.