Readings and Events for Breakpoint in 2022-23!


More stuff happening! If you want to schedule me for a virtual or in-person reading, please use the contact form at!


February 21, 2023 6:30-8pm EST Virtual STEM Poetry Series Farmingdale College

Technology poetry reading with Rebecca Durham, the author of two award-winning poetry books, Half-Life of Empathy (New Rivers Press, 2020) and Loss/Less (Shanti Arts, 2022.

Access Link:  External link

Learn more about the series

Our panel accepted for AWP 2023! Thursday March 9, 2023. Noon-1:25pm

Rooms 433-434, Summit Building, Seattle Convention Center, Level 4.

Race to Machine: Asian-Americans Write Tech, Colonialism, and Dystopia (Shankar Narayan, Franny Choi, Betsy Aoki, Neil Aitken, Margaret Rhee)

In-person event

The tech tsunami transforming our world isn’t new—but change is accelerating.  Tech may feed into intersectional crises in race, environment, disinformation, and intolerance, amplifying inequity and colonialist tropes. Five Asian-American voices tackle all of the above, drawing on roots in the tech space and in their race, gender, immigrant, and sexual identities.  We’ll explore the challenges of writing about tech with courage and authenticity, while exploring humanity’s love affair with tech.

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March 24 AWP panel and book signing at booth

March 12 Writers with Drinks, The Makeout Room, San Francisco.

April 1 Virtual Reading with Erin Malone and Aby Kaupang, for Elliott Bay Books (Video)

April 25 5 p.m. Pacific Virtual Reading with Joe Wilkins and Scott Edward Anderson hosted by on Zoom.

April 29 5 p.m. Pacific Virtual 580 Split’s “Fever Dreams” reading

May 10 7 p.m.- 8 p.m. PDT In-Person Kundiman’s FREE reading at Hugo House (Full writers’ bios and registration here.)

June 4 1-2 pm PDT “The Language of Machines” hosted by Seattle Public Library and Open Books. Featuring Betsy Aoki, Neil Aitken, Margaret Rhee.

YouTube recording with closed captions!
Register today at Third Place Books!

July 8 7 p.m. PDT In-Person In conversation with Cookie Hiponia (Author of We Belong), at Third Place Books Ravenna, 6504 20th Ave NE, Seattle, WA 98115, USA


October 12 12 PM EDT (not PDT!) Fall for the Book

“Video Games and Coding Poetry” presentation

Learn more about Fall for the Book at

In her “techno-lit” poetry collection, Breakpoint, game designer Betsy Aoki leads readers into a world of Halo, Japanese folklore, robot factories, and code as poetry. Attendees will use their own tech to generate poetry in this interactive event. Breakpoint blends technology and the Asian-American experience in what poet Colleen J. McElroy calls, “an evocative mixture of sensual experiences, and mathematically infused linguistic patterns.” Aoki makes machines speak, while also giving voice to the women who are part of the technological future.

Location: Johnson Center, 3rd Floor, Meeting Room C, 4477 Aquia Creek Lane, Fairfax.

November 20 3:30 PM EDT (not PDT!) Miami Book Fair

Sunday, November 20 @ 3:30 pm

Room 6100 (Building 6, 1st Floor)

300 NE Second Ave., Miami, FL 33132 United States

Official Launch of Breakpoint!


Available now at Amazon & Small Press Distribution !

Dedicated to all the women in tech making it happen!

I see you.

Breakpoint by Betsy Aoki, March 1 2022, published by Tebot Bach

More info about awards Breakpoint poems have won, full blurbs (from Jericho Brown, Kimiko Hahn, Colleen J. McElroy, Dorothy Barresi, Elisa C. Page) , resources for book clubs and poetry workshops can be found on the permanent landing page here.

Breakpoint Cover Reveal!

Cover of Breakpoint, Publication Date March 1, 2022

Breakpoint’s cover is an amazing piece of art called THIS WAY UP by Yejin Park.

I had originally begun working with another amazing artist, Cathy Kwan but found due to unforeseen circumstances, they needed to refer me to someone else. They noticed that there was already a work in existence that seemed to have a lot of the elements we talked about for the “Coder Girl” persona and the need for circuitry textures, and when I saw there was a fragile sticker on her cheek that was it! Breakpoint!

Yejin was really easy to work with and 10/10 would work on a cover again!

The cover reveal is happening in time for the pre-orders coming online.

Order from Small Press Distribution at .

Auburn Witness Poetry Prize 2021

I was over the moon to learn “Slouching like a velvet rope” won the Auburn Witness Poetry Prize Honoring Jake Adam York for 2021, and very blessed to have shared a stage with the judge, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Jericho Brown, in October 2021.

It’s of course only now I have time to post any of the reading photos here on my web site….

Jericho Brown standing with Betsy Aoki
Pre-reading wine reception, obligatory selfie (he was so kind!).

Jericho reads. Photo Courtesy Caitlin Rae Taylor, Southern Humanities Review Editor
Betsy reads. It’s harder than you think, through a mask.
Photo Courtesy Caitlin Rae Taylor, Southern Humanities Review Editor
Q & A. Photo Courtesy Caitlin Rae Taylor, Southern Humanities Review Editor
Betsy answers a question. Photo Courtesy Caitlin Rae Taylor, Southern Humanities Review Editor
Southern Humanities Review

Breakpoint wins the Bibby First Book Prize!

On Facebook they presented this…

(embedding messes with the fonts, so while I will replicate link below, image above)

Tebot Bach Announcement on Facebook. (Also serves as alt-text for the image). Excerpted from the web site announcement:

“Congratulations to Betsy Aoki, winner of the 2021 Patricia Bibby First Book Award for her poetry manuscript, Breakpoint.

Final judge Dorothy Barresi called Breakpoint “cutting edge” and praised its many “moments of brilliance.”

By day, Elizabeth (Betsy) Aoki leads tech teams to build social applications, search/metrics products and video games. By night, she writes fiction and poetry, and contributes poetry book reviews to the International Examiner.

A 2019 National Poetry Series finalist, she’s received grants and fellowships from Clarion West Writers Workshop, The City of Seattle, Artist Trust Foundation, Jackstraw Writers Program, and Hedgebrook.

Her work has been included in two anthologies Fire On Her Tongue: An Anthology of Contemporary Women’s Poetry (Two Sylvias Press) and Yellow as Turmeric, Fragrant as Cloves: A Contemporary Anthology of Asian American Women’s Poetry (Deep Bowl Press). Her chapbook, Every Vanish Leaves Its Trace was published by Finishing Line Press.

Other publications include (alphabetical order):Asian Pacific Journal, Calyx, Enizagam, Hunger Mountain, Nassau Review (2015 Writer Award,) Nimrod Journal of Prose and Poetry, Phoebe, Poetry Northwest, Seattle Review, Southern Humanities Review (finalist for Auburn Witness Poetry Prize), The Seattle Times, Strange Horizons, (Letters to America series), and Uncanny Magazine. She has a poem forthcoming in ASIMOV’S Science Fiction.”

Link to Tebot Bach web Site Announcement is here.

Thanks for stopping by!

There are a number of reasons you might find me here – my technology projects, social media, public speaking, or my writings (technology or creative).  Though most of my post-MFA creative energy has been devoted to poetry, I was fortunate to join the speculative fiction writing community by  attending Clarion West in 2016. I work on technology projects by day, and dream up new worlds at night. :)

For the most part, social media channels are the most active (and timely!) ways to reach me, or you can use the contact form on this Web site.

Live it vivid!