Lookout Books is thrilled to welcome KaToya Ellis Fleming as our new editor. In this role, she will collaborate closely with co-founder Emily Louise Smith to acquire promising titles for the imprint’s award-winning list and to expand its mission by bringing books by emerging and underrepresented voices to wider attention and acclaim.
“From our first conversation, KaToya exuded warmth and care, especially in her editorial approach and practice,” Smith said. “I knew immediately how lucky Lookout authors will be to work with her as their editor and guide, how fortunate my colleagues and I will be to collaborate with her as we plan for Lookout’s future, and how significant her scholarship and mentorship will be to students in our publishing program.”
As assistant professor of publishing arts at UNC Wilmington, Fleming will teach courses and contribute to curriculum development for the department’s unique publishing certificate program. This fall her classes include the popular introductory course in book publishing, as well as a special topics course on the editorial process.
While serving as an editor at the Oxford American magazine and its 2019–2020 Jeff Baskin Writers Fellow, Fleming acquired works from writers both emerging and renowned, as well as assisted in the planning and editing of digital content, including a segment for an upcoming episode of the Points South podcast. She has taught classes and workshops at Hendrix College, the Georgia Writers Association’s Red Clay Writers Conference at Kennesaw State University, the University of Georgia, and elsewhere. She is a graduate of Spelman College (BA), where she served for a year as editor of FOCUS literary magazine, and the University of Georgia (MFA).
“The brilliant mentors I’ve had encouraged me to claim my space and embrace my voice as a writer, but their support also created in me a desire to teach and to become an agent of empowerment to help students find their own voices and realize the brightness of their futures,” Fleming said. “I look forward to guiding both undergraduate and graduate students in the publishing arts program, as well as a diverse roster of Lookout Books authors, toward the telling of their own unique and beautiful stories.”
A native of Georgia, Fleming is at work on a bibliomemoir titled Finding Frank, an excerpt from which appears in the Spring 2020 issue of the Oxford American. Her work focuses on race and culture in the American South.