Department of Languages and Literatures

Vince Gotera


Faculty - Professor


PhD, Indiana University
MFA, Indiana University
MA, San Francisco State University
BA, Stanford University
AA, City College of San Francisco

Research Interests

Areas of Specialty:

  • Creative writing 

  • Contemporary poetry

  • Multicultural literature (especially Asian American)

  • American literature 

Vince's blog: The Man with the Blue Guitar

Vince Gotera came to the University of Northern Iowa in 1995 as a professor of creative writing and poetics. He served as Editor at the North American Review from 2000 through 2016. He is now Editor of Star*Line, the print journal of the international Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association.

Before coming to UNI, Vince taught creative writing and ethnic American literature at Humboldt State University, where he directed the creative-writing program. He earned his MFA in poetry writing and a double Ph.D. in English and in American Studies at Indiana University. Vince also studied at Stanford University and San Francisco State University.

In 1994, Vince published two books: Dragonfly (a collection of poems from Pecan Grove Press in San Antonio, Texas) and Radical Visions: Poetry by Vietnam Veterans (a book of literary criticism from the University of Georgia Press). In 2003, Vince published a chapbook of poems titled Ghost Wars with Final Thursday Press. Another poetry collection, Fighting Kite, was published by Pecan Grove Press in 2007. Vince's poems, short stories, and essays have appeared in Ploughshares, Altered Reality Magazine, Eye to the TelescopeThe Kenyon Review, The Asian Pacific American Journal, Zone 3 and other literary magazines, as well as in such anthologies as Contemporary Fiction by Filipinos in AmericaTilting the Continent: Southeast Asian American Writing and From Totems to Hip-Hop. His next book of poems will be titles Pacific Crossing. In 2017, he won the Veterans Writing Prize from Stone Canoe journal.

Vince was awarded the Faculty Excellence Award by the College of Humanities and Fine Arts at UNI in 2006. He won the Regents Award for Faculty Excellence, from the Iowa Board of Regents ion 2012.

Born and raised in San Francisco, Vince also lived in the Philippines for some time as a young child. He lives in Cedar Falls, Iowa, and has five children: Marty, Amanda, Amelia, Melina and Gabriel. Marty, a graphic artist, lives in Bielefeld, Germany, with his wife, Grace. Amanda, a filmmaker, lives in Austin, Texas. Amelia and Melina are an indie folk duo that performs frequently around the Cedar Valley and across Iowa. Gabriel is a Theatre major at the University of Iowa. 

Vince plays electric bass, guitar, and drums — blues, rock and jazz. He is the bassist in the worship band at St. John Lutheran Church in Cedar Falls. He is also the guitarist in Groovy News, a music duo with singer Amelia Blue Gotera, his daughter.

Vince's favorite color is any shade of blue: aquamarine, cobalt, cornflower, midnight, robin's-egg, sky.

Pronouns: he, his, cis