The publisher and the executive editor of Minneapolis’ Graywolf Press will receive the 2017 Editors Award from Poets & Writers, it was announced Thursday.
Fiona Mccrae, Graywolf’s publisher and director, and Jeff Shotts, executive editor, will share the award, which is given to editors who have made outstanding contributions to the publication of poetry or literary prose over time.
The honor usually goes to an individual. But the committee decided to give the award to Mccrae and Shotts jointly “in honor of the tremendous impact they have had, individually and collaboratively,” Susan Isaacs, chairman of Poets and Writers board of directors, said in a statement.
Under Mccrae and Shotts, the nonprofit Graywolf has published such noted writers as Kevin Barry, Per Petterson, Elizabeth Alexander and Claudia Rankine, and Graywolf authors have received just about every notable literary award there is, including the Nobel Prize, the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award.
“This award is a huge recognition for what Graywolf Press has done over many years and by many people," Shotts said Thursday. "It is a surprising and humbling honor to share the award with Fiona Mccrae, who continues to lead the press with innovation and brilliance, as she has for more than twenty years. Of course, no one goes into editing and publishing for recognition of any kind, but for the hope that literature might save someone as it has saved me. I hope this shines a light on the work of editors at independent publishers, many of them nonprofit organizations, who are tirelessly pursuing the common cause of challenging and changing people and our culture through art, community, and conversation.”
Mccrae said, "This lovely double honor is as delightful as it is unexpected. Jeff Shotts has had a transformative impact on Graywolf's list, so I am proud and rather humbled to share this award with him. We have had a wonderful editorial conversation that has lasted almost two decades. And of course, all our writers, and the entire team at Graywolf are very much included in my sense of celebration and gratitude."
Poets and Writers also announced the winners of its 2017 Barnes & Noble Writers Award. That prize will go to Francisco Goldman, Ann Patchett and Richard Shelton.
The awards will be presented in March at a celebration in New York City.