The PEN awards were announced today, and Graywolf Press finds itself among the many winners. "The Grey Album," by Kevin Young, took one of two $5,000 Open Book Awards, which go to exceptional book-length works of literature by an author of color. (The other award went to Gina Apostol for "Gun Dealer's Daughter.")
You can read the Strib review of "The Grey Album" here.
And Monika Bauerlein, former writer and editor at City Pages in Minneapolis, won the Nora Magid award for excellence along with Clara Jeffery, her co-editor at Mother Jones.
Here's a list of the winners:
PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize ($25,000) to an author whose debut work of fiction suggests distinguished achievement: Sergio De La Pava, for "A Naked Singularity."
PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Awzrd for Nonfiction ($10,000): Katherine Boo, "Behind the Beautiful Forevers."
PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay ($10,000): Robert Hass, "What Light Can Do."
A drive to Mankato is nothing if it means you'll find riches at the end. And the 32nd season of the Mankato State University Good Thunder Reading Series sees a wealth of writers coming through town to teach and speak.
Pulitzer Prize winners Tracy Kidder (nonfiction), Tracy K. Smith (poetry) and Jesmyn Ward (fiction) will bookend the series, which will also see poets Alex Lemon, Matt Rasmussen and Tracy K Smith, as well as a host of other writers both national and regional.
All events are open to the public and will be held in the Centennial Student Union at MSU. Most of the writers will also be interviewed for radio programs, which will be aired on KMSU-FM 89.7 as part of the Authors in Transit series.
Here's the whole schedule. Now go gas up your car.
Sept. 12: Tracy Kidder. Author of "Soul of a New Machine" (winner of the Pulitzer Prize), "Mountains Beyond Mountains," and other works of nonfiction.
Oct 3-4: Swati Avasthi, young-adult fiction, and Rachael Hanel, memoir.
Oct. 24: Alicia Catt, creative nonfiction, and Alan Davis, fiction.
Nov. 14-15: Angela Duryee, creative nonfiction, and Luis Alberto Urrea, fiction and nonfiction.
Jan. 30: Sarah McKinstry-Brown and Christopher Howell, poetry.
Feb. 18-21: Pete Hautman, young adult fiction, and Alex Lemon, poetry and creative nonfiction.
March 20: Matt Rasmussen and Tracy K. Smith, poetry. Rasmussen won the 2012 Walt Whitman Award, and Smith won the Pulitzer Prize for "Life on Mars," published by Graywolf Press.
April 10: Jesmyn Ward, fiction (and winner of the Pultizer Prize for "Salvage the Bones"), and Niky Finney, poetry.
April 24: Candace Black, poetry and creative nonfiction, and Roger Sheffer, fiction.
Kevin Barry's novel "City of Bohane," published last year by Minneapolis' Graywolf Press, has won the 2013 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, one of the most significant literary prizes in the world.It comes with a cash prize of 100,000 euros (about $130,000) and is open to any book published in English.
Barry beat out a stellar crowd. Also in the running for the award were "1Q84," by Haruki Murakami, "Pure," by Andrew Miller, "The Buddha in the Attic," by Julie Otsuka, "The Tragedy of Arthur," by Minnesota writer Arthur Phillips, "Swamplandia!," by Karen Russell, "From the Mouth of the Whale," by Sjon, "The Faster I Walk the Smaller I am," by Kjersti A. Skomsvold, and "Caesarian," by Tommy Wieringa.
Previous winners include Colm Toibin, Edward P. Jones, Orhan Pamuk, and Graywolf author Per Petterson, for "Out Stealing Horses."
Barry also recently won the Sunday Times Short Story Award for his "Beer Trip to Llandudno," which will appear in "Dark Lies the Island," a collection of stories to be published this fall by Graywolf Press.
It was only at the very end of the evening, when Robert Bly read a poem by his longtime friend Tomas Tranströmer, that he grew animated, his voice dipping and swaying, gaining in power. He crisply enunciated the words, added that famous little Bly twist, and looked straight out at the crowd.
The names of the judges for this year's National Book Awards were announced this morning, and included in the stellar group are Minnesota writer Charles Baxter and Graywolf Press poet D.A. Powell.
Baxter, author of "The Feast of Love," a finalist for the 2000 National Book Award, is the Edelstein-Keller Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Minnesota. His most recent book is "Gryphon," a collection of short stories.
He will be joined as fiction judge with novelist Gish Jen ("Typical American"), Rene Steinke, a 2005 National Book Award Finalist for "Holy Skirts," and -- for the first time in many years -- two people who are not authors, Charles McGrath, fromer editor of the New York Times Book Review, and Rick Simonson, a bookseller at Elliott Bay Book Company in Seattle.
Judges for nonfiction are Jabari Asim, Andre Bernard, M.G. Lord, Lauren Redniss, and Eric Sundquist.
Poetry judges are Nikky Finney, author of "Head Off & Split," which won the 2011 National Book Award; Ada Limon, Graywolf Press poet D.A. Powell, who won a 2013 National Book Critics Circle Award for "Useless Landscape: Or, A Guide for Boys"; Jahan Ramazani, and Craig Morgan Teicher, author of "Cradle Book."
Young people's literature will be judged by Deb Caletti, Cecil Castellucci, Peter Glassman, E. Lockhart, and Lisa Von Drasekis.
The awards will be announced in New York City on Nov. 20.
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