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Mekiya Outini

Founding Editor Mekiya Outini is an award-winning author, freelance editor, and MacDowell Fellow. His fiction and creative nonfiction have appeared or are forthcoming in The North American Review, The Coachella Review, ChautauquaWillow Springsand elsewhere. Two chapters from his novel Ashes, Ashes can be read at the West Trade Review 

Mekiya holds an MFA in fiction from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville and a BFA in creative writing from the UNC Wilmington. He brings to the table 10+ years of experience writing, editing, teaching, tutoring, reading, and revising. His clients hail from all backgrounds and all walks of life, and he especially enjoys supporting people who write in English as a foreign language to craft clear and elegant prose. To learn more, check out his LinkedIn newsletter

Mekiya Outini seated at a wooden table

New Award

"Baptism by Earth," by Mekiya Outini, wins 1st place in the 55th New Millennium Award in Fiction.


Abdelghafour ben Lahbib

ESL Teacher

Ministry of Education, Morocco

“Mekiya's His commitment to excellence is evident in every project he undertakes. His dedication to creating spaces for meaningful expression adds a profound layer to his commendable qualities as a writer and editor. His vision for a platform that amplifies unheard narratives reflects his deep understanding of the power of storytelling."

Sarwa Azeez


LanguageLine Solutions

“I have had the pleasure of working closely with Mekiya Outini as a contributor for The DateKeepers, and I can confidently attest to his exceptional skills, dedication, and passion for his work. He is a specialist in supporting ESL writers, and his commitment to helping them succeed is truly commendable."

Aditi Lele

EducationUSA Advisor

US-India Educational Foundation

"Not only was Mekiya generous helping an international student pro bono but asked pertinent questions while editing a document very different from his field. I can't stress enough how Mekiya has excellent editing skills but also very important is that he is kind hearted but practical and takes the time to understand your work."



  • "Baptism by Earth." Short story. New Millennium Writings. Winner of the 55th NMW Award in Fiction. July 2023. 

  • "The Red Herring." Short story. The Madison Review Extended Cut. 18. November 2022. 

  • "Lorelei's Worm." Short story. Chautauqua Literary Journal. Water Issue (18). June 2021. 

  • "Shibboleth." Short story. The Write Launch. 39. July 2020. 

  • "They Named Her Blue." Short story. Atlantis Magazine. 64. April 2013. 

  • "Stall." Short story. Diverse Voices Quarterly. 13:4.





  • "Banking on a Myth." Co-Authored with Itto Outini. Monograph. The DateKeepers. June 2023. 

  • "Goa." Essay. Atlantis Magazine. 67. April 2014. 


  • Finalist for the 2024 Disquiet Prize & Denis Johnson "Stagaya" Memorial Fellowship. March 2024. 

  • Winner (1st place) of the 55th New Millennium Award in Fiction ("Baptism by Earth"). July 2023. 

  • Finalist for the 2022 Chanticleer Awards for Short Stories and Essays ("The Man Who Misspelled God"). April 2023. 

  • Finalist for the North Carolina Literary Review's 2023 Alex Albright Creative Nonfiction Prize. ("Fleche, Blood.") April 2023. 

  • Finalist for the 2022 Chanticleer Awards for Collections & Novellas (Cassandra Says.) March 2023. 

  • Short-Listed for the 2022 Chanticleer Awards for Short Stories and Essays ("The Cavemen"). March 2023. 

  • Honorable Mention for the 2022 Leapfrog Press Global Fiction Prize (Bathwater, or, The Miseducation of Ness Chairmonte). November 2022.

  • Semi-Finalist for the 2022 Marianne Russo Emerging Writer’s Awards (“The Red Herring”). September 2022. 

  • Finalist for the 2021 Chanticleer Awards for Short Stories, Novelettes, and Novellas (Bathwater, or, The Miseducation of Ness Chairmonte). May, 2022. 

  • Semi-Finalist for the 2021 Chanticleer Somerset Awards (Ashes, Ashes: A Novel). April 2022. 

  • Wait-Listed for the UCross Foundation 2022 Spring Residency Program. November 2021. 

  • Semi-Finalist for the 2021 Marianne Russo Emerging Writer’s Awards (Ashes, Ashes: A Novel). September 2021.

  • Winner of Sunspot Literary Magazine’s 2020 Editor’s Prize (“The Man Who Misspelled God”). December 2020.

  • Honorable Mention for the Miami Book Fair’s 2020 Emerging Writer’s Fellowship (Ashes, Ashes: A Novel). September 2020. 

  • Finalist for the Texas Review’s 2020 George Garret Fiction Prize (Shibboleth: Stories). March 2020. 




  • "Soon We'll Sell Ourselves for Parts." Willow Springs Magazine. 89. March 2022. 

  • "Alice." "City of You." Actual Paper Magazine. August 2014. 

  • "Impersonal Birds." "The Jackhammers." Middle Gray Magazine. 4. April 2014. 

  • "Wind Will Be Wind." "The Jackhammers." Episodic Magazine. 5. April 2014. 

  • "Subject Permanence." "Personal Birds." "Chariot." Howl. January 2014. 

  • "Island Hoppers." "Only One." "Buoy." "Remember." "Imaginary Love." Atlantis Magazine. 64. April 2013. 

  • "We Are from the Sea." "Strange Kitchen." Gulf Stream Magazine. 7. April 2012. ​


  • "The Masala C: omplex: Rape-Revenge Cinema, Grassroots Feminism, and the Collision of Gazes in Mardaani." Film Matters. 7:1. May 2016. 

  • "Revising Revisionist Herstory: Reconstructing Gender Narratives Before, During, and After the Partition of India." Palaver Interdisciplinary Journal. April 2014. 



  • Review of Triangulum: A Novel, by Masande Ntshanga. Published by Two Dollar Radio. Arkansas International. May 2019. 

  • Review of Rough Magic: Riding the World’s Loneliest Horse Race, by Lara Prior-Palmer. Published by Catapult. Arkansas International. April 2019. 

  • Review of The Archive of Alternate Endings, by Lindsey Drager. Published by Dzanc Books. Arkansas International. March 2019. 

  • Review of Companions in Conflict: Animals in Occupied Palestine, by Penny Johnson. Published by Meliville House. Arkansas International. February 2019. 

  • Review of Night School: A Reader for Grownups, by Zsófia Bán, translated by Jim Tucker. Published by Open Letter. Arkansas International. January 2019. 

  • Review of The Females: A Novel, by Wolfgang Hilbig, translated by Isabel Fargo Cole. Published by Two Lines Press. Arkansas International. November 2018.

  • Review of American Fictionary, by Dubravka Ugrešcic, translated by Celia Hawkesworth and Ellen Elias-Bursac. Published by Open Letter. Arkansas International. September 2018. 

Image by Nahil Naseer

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