The Loft Literary Center has announced the winners of the 2013 McKnight Artist Fellowships for Writers.
The winners are Matthew Batt of St. Paul; Minneapolis writer Eric Braun; writer Susan Koefod; and memoirist Kao Kalia Yang of Minneapolis. The young-adult winner is Anne Ursu. Honorable mentions went to Jonathan Odell, Pallavi Dixit, Katie Hae Leo, Yuko Taniguchi, Will Alexander, Brian Farrey-Latz and Lynne Jonnell.
It is a testament to the depth of the field that among the honorable mentions are a National Book Award winner and two winners of a Minnesota Book Award. The awards carry a prize of $25,000 each.
Batt is the author of the memoir “Sugarhouse.” His work has appeared in Tin House, Huffington Post and elsewhere. He teaches at the University of St. Thomas and is at work on a collection of essays.
Braun, winner of a Minnesota Monthly Tamarack Award, has published short stories in a number of literary journals. Koefod has widely published prose, poetry and mysteries. Yang is the author of the memoir “The Latehomecomer.” She co-hosts a weekly radio program focusing on the Hmong community.
Ursu’s latest book is “Breadcrumbs.” She teaches at Hamline University.
More bad pub for the Biebs
As if Justin Bieber’s European escapades haven’t been entertaining enough already, let’s add … a drug raid in Sweden! A strong smell of marijuana got authorities’ attention Wednesday night when the Bieber bus was outside the Biebs’ hotel before the Stockholm show, a police spokesman said. A special narcotics unit was summoned and the bus was searched while the show was in progress. The cops found a small amount of pot and a stun gun, which requires a permit. Police said no charges would be filed because no suspects could be identified, TMZ said. By Thursday afternoon, Bieber had left the reefer madness behind and was already in Helsinki where he’s scheduled to play Friday evening.
fashion mavens: Red-carpet arrivals of such celebrities as Beyoncé and Rooney Mara at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Benefit in New York City will be streamed live on Vogue.com. The annual gala draws a mix of Hollywood A-listers, designers and supermodels to celebrate the museum’s big fashion-focused exhibit. This year’s event will be held May 6, and Beyoncé is honorary chairwoman. The live stream can also be seen on the Moda Operandi, Samsung and Met websites.