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G&A: The Contest Blog

Daniel Khalastchi of Milwaukee has been named the winner of Tupelo Press’s tenth annual First Book Award for his poetry collection The Maturation of Man. He will receive three thousand dollars, and his debut book, selected by editors of College of Charleston's Crazyhorse literary journal and Tupelo Press, will be published by the Massachusetts-based independent press.

Khalastchi, whose work has appeared in jubilat, Ninth Letter, and Court Green, among other journals, is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and a former fellow of the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts.

Eleven finalists for the award were also announced. They are:
Ari Banias of New York City for One the Whistler, One the Dog

Laurie Capps of Austin, Texas, for Modern Recluse

Brett Foster of Wheaton, Illinois, for The Garbage Eater

Christina Hutchins of Albany, California, for World Without

Tanya Larkin of Somerville, Massachusetts, for Enemy Love Song

Dawn Lonsinger of Salt Lake City for fatal light awareness

Jynne Martin of New York City for We Mammals in Hospitable Times

Kathy Nilsson of Cambridge, Massachusetts, for Black Lemons

Addie Palin of Chicago for The Cautery

Juliet Rodeman of Columbia, Missouri, for Tropics of Petticoats

Amanda Rachelle Warren of Aiken, South Carolina, for Some Grain of Absolute Among the Trembling

The deadline to enter manuscripts for next year’s prize is April 15, 2010.

[Correction: Due to inaccurate information provided by the sponsoring organization, the cash value of the First Book Award was incorrectly stated in the August 3, 2009 blog post. The First Book Award is worth three thousand dollars.]

Both fiction writers and poets have the opportunity to submit their first book manuscripts to the St. Lawrence Book Award competition, which will close on August 31. The winning collection will be published by Black Lawrence Press, an imprint of Dzanc Books, and the winner will receive one thousand dollars.

The contest is unique in that its field of competition is open to both poetry and fiction—and the press asserts that no bias favors one genre over the other. “We consider this a natural extension of the literary magazine, which traditionally publishes both fiction and poetry,” the press says on its Web site. “Having a less limited focus than most other…literary contests affords Black Lawrence Press the opportunity to receive—and publish—the best writing today, period, regardless of genre.”

Poets should submit—via e-mail—manuscripts of 60 to 100 pages, and fiction writers should submit collections of 110 to 200 pages. The entry fee is twenty-five dollars.

Last year’s winner was Yelizaveta Renfro of Sidney, Nebraska, for her story collection A Catalogue of Everything in the World. Other winners have included Fred McGavran for his story collection The Butterfly Collector, Jason Tandon for his poetry collection Give Over the Heckler and Everyone Gets Hurt, Stefi Weisburf for her poetry collection The Wind-Up Gods, and Marcel Jolley for his story collection Neither Here Nor There.

Editors of Black Lawrence Press will judge the contest. The finalists, all of whom will be considered for publication, will be announced in October, and a winner will be named shortly thereafter.

The Man Group, sponsors of the Man Booker Prize, whose longlist of finalists was announced on Tuesday, has also recently released the names of twenty-four authors who will be considered for another of the literary awards financed by the company: the Man Asian Literary Prize. The prize, established in 2007, recognizes a novel by an Asian writer that has not yet been published in English, regardless of whether it has been released in another language. The winner will receive ten thousand dollars, and an additional three thousand dollars will go to the book's translator.

One hundred and fifty writers, ranging from emerging to established, submitted works for consideration. The nation most represented in the entry pool was India, followed by the Philippines and Hong Kong. Submissions were also made by writers hailing from China, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and Taiwan.

The longlisted finalists are:
Gopilal Acharya for With a Stone in My Heart
Omair Ahmad for Jimmy the Terrorist
Siddharth Chowdhury for Day Scholar
Kishwar Desai for Witness the Night
Samuel Ferrer for The Last Gods of Indochine
Eric Gamalinda for The Descartes Highlands
Ram Govardhan for Rough With the Smooth
Kanishka Gupta for History of Hate
Kameroon Rasheed Ismeer for Memoirs of a Terrorist
Ratika Kapur for Overwinter
Mariam Karim for The Bereavement of Agnes Desmoulins
Sriram Karri for The Autobiography of a Mad Nation
Nitasha Kaul for Residue
R. Zamora Linmark for Leche
Mario I. Miclat for Secrets of the Eighteen Mansions
Clarissa V. Militante for Different Countries
Varuna Mohite for Omigod
Dipika Mukherjee for Thunder Demons
Hena Pillai for Blackland
Roan Ching-Yueh for Lin Xiu-Tzi and her Family
Edgar Calabia Samar for Eight Muses of the Fall
K. Srilata for Table for Four
Su Tong for The Boat to Redemption
Oyungerel Tsedevdamba for Shadow of the Red Star

A shortlist of finalists will be released in October, and the winner, selected by novelists Pankaj Mishra, Colm Tóibín, and Gish Jen, will be announced on November 16 in Hong Kong.

Yesterday the Poetry Foundation announced the five recipients of its 2009 Ruth Lilly Poetry Fellowships. U.S. poets Malachi Black, Eric Ekstrand, Chloë Honum, Jeffrey Schultz, and Joseph Spece, all under the age of thirty-one, received awards of fifteen thousand dollars each to "to use as they wish in continued study and writing of poetry."

The editors of Poetry magazine—including former Ruth Lilly fellow Christian Wiman, who now heads the journal—selected the winners from a pool of more than five hundred and fifty applications. Poems by each of the fellows will appear in the November issue.

The fellowship program, now in its twentieth year, once gave a single award annually to a poet nominated by a university writing program. It has since expanded to offer five awards, and has opened its doors to entries from all U.S. poets between the ages of twenty-one and thirty-one. Guidelines for entry into next year’s fellowship competition will be available on the Poetry Foundation’s Web site in February 2010.

The fellows since the award's inception, many of whom have gone on to publish, teach, and edit literary magazines and small press publications, are:

1989 Saskia Hamilton

1990 Cathy Wagner

1991 Gregory A. Sellers

1992 James Kimbrell

1993 Davis McCombs

1994 Christian Wiman

1995 Matt D. Collinsworth

1996 Erin G. Brooks, Zarina Mullan Plath

1997 Delisa Mulkey, W. Morri Creech

1998 Christine Stewart, Robin Cooper-Stone

1999 Kevin Meaux, Maudelle Driskell

2000 Christina Pugh, Wayne Miller

2001 Ilya Kaminsky, Alissa Leigh

2002 Emily Rosko, Marc Bittner

2003 Katherine Larson, Kathleen Rooney

2004 Nathan Bartel, Emily Moore

2005 Michael McGriff, Miller Oberman

2006 Colin Cheney, David Krump

2007 Sean Brian Bishop, Megan Grumbling

2008 Nicky Beer, Roger Reeves, Michael Rutherglen, Alison Stine, Caki Wilkinson

The judges of the Man Booker Prize announced today their first wave of selections for the 2009 award, given to honor a novel by a citizen of the British Commonwealth, Ireland, or Zimbabwe. The longlist, which will be winnowed to six finalists announced on September 8, includes three debut novelists, two former winners, and a handful of authors previously nominated for the honor. The recipient of this year's fifty-thousand-pound prize will be announced on October 6 in London.

The longlisted authors are:
A. S. Byatt for The Children's Book (Chatto and Windus)
Winner in 1990 for Possession (Chatto and Windus)

J. M. Coetzee
for Summertime (Harvill Secker)
Winner in 1983 for Life & Times of Michael K (Secker & Warburg) and in 1999 for Disgrace (Secker & Warburg); previously longlisted for Elizabeth Costello (Secker & Warburg, 2003) and Slow Man (Secker & Warburg, 2005)

Adam Foulds for The Quickening Maze (Jonathan Cape)

Sarah Hall for How to Paint a Dead Man (Faber and Faber)
Previously shortlisted for The Electric Michelangelo (Faber and Faber, 2004)

Samantha Harvey for her debut The Wilderness (Jonathan Cape)

James Lever for his debut Me Cheeta (Fourth Estate)

Hilary Mantel for Wolf Hall (Fourth Estate)
Previously longlisted for Beyond Black (Fourth Estate, 2005)

Simon Mawer for The Glass Room (Little, Brown)

Ed O'Loughlin for his debut Not Untrue & Not Unkind (Penguin)

James Scudamore for Heliopolis (Harvill Secker)

Colm Toibin for Brooklyn (Viking)
Previously shortlisted for The Master (Picador, 2004) and The Blackwater Lightship (Picador, 1999)

William Trevor for Love and Summer (Viking)
Previously shortlisted for The Story of Lucy Gault (Viking, 2002), Reading Turgenev (from Two Lives) (Viking, 1991), The Children of Dynmouth (Bodley Head, 1976), and Mrs. Eckdorf in O’Neill’s Hotel (Bodley Head, 1970)

Sarah Waters for The Little Stranger (Virago)
Previously shortlisted for The Night Watch (Virago, 2006) and Fingersmith (Virago, 2002)

The "Man Booker Dozen" was selected from a pool of 132 entries by judges Lucasta Miller, John Mullan, James Naughtie, Sue Perkins, and Michael Prodger.

Debut novelist Aravind Adiga won the 2008 prize for The White Tiger (Atlantic), which is being translated into thirty-nine languages and whose U.K. edition has sold more than a half-million copies. Other winners of the forty-year-old prize have gone on to tour the world and see their novels climb the bestseller lists. Who do you think should take this year’s influential honor–an established master, a midcareer author, or an emerging voice?

A Room of Her Own Foundation (AROHO), named after one of Virginia Woolf’s prerequisites for a life of writing—the other being money—has created a new opportunity for a woman poet to win some of the latter, plus publication. The organization, which offers the biennial fifty-thousand-dollar Gift of Freedom Award, recently announced the first To the Lighthouse Poetry Publication Prize, a one-thousand-dollar award that includes publication of the winning poetry collection by Red Hen Press.

Poets may submit a 48- to 96-page manuscript by September 30, along with an entry fee of twenty dollars and a cover sheet available on the AROHO Web site. Red Hen Press editor Kate Gale will judge, and the winner will be announced on November 15.

(For women writers looking to realize a significant project, the next Gift of Freedom Award, given in 2008 to fiction writer Barb Johnson of New Orleans, will be offered in 2010.)

Later this summer, Persea Books and Perugia Press will open their contests for poetry collections by women. Persea Books will accept submissions for its Lexi Rudnitsky First Book Prize from September 1 to November 2, and Perugia's Poetry Prize for a first or second book will run from August 1 to November 15.

Olivet College, the 165-year-old liberal arts school located in the southern Michigan town of the same name, is looking for a poet to participate in its tradition of hosting "the best-known writers of the time." The college is currently inviting applications for the position of Sandburg-Auden-Stein poet-in-residence for a mini-term in April and May of 2011, opening the field to "poets who are establishing a name for themselves in this new millennium."

The award is named for Carl Sandburg, W. H. Auden, and Gertrude Stein, who are among the luminaries who have passed through the campus. Sinclair Lewis, Sherwood Anderson, Katherine Anne Porter, and Ford Madox Ford also spent time at Olivet, and recent resident poets are John Rybicki and Carol V. Davis.

The 2011 resident poet, who will receive room and board and a $3,100 honorarium, will teach one poetry writing class, host a public reading, and give one talk on a subject of her choice during the three-week term.

Poets who have published at least one book of poetry are eligible to apply. Olivet is asking each applicant to submit a selection of poems from her most recent book, a statement on personal poetics and teaching, a resumé, and two references. The deadline is September 10.

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