The PEN/Faulkner Foundation announced last week that novelist Kate Christensen has been awarded the 2008 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction for her fourth novel, The Great Man (Doubleday). She received $15,000. The finalists, each of whom received $5,000, were Annie Dillard for The Maytrees (HarperCollins), David Leavitt for The Indian Clerk (Bloomsbury), T. M. McNally for The Gateway: Stories (Southern Methodist University Press), and Ron Rash for Chemistry and Other Stories (Picador). Richard Bausch, Molly Giles, and Victor LaValle judged. All of the authors will be honored at a ceremony on May 10 at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C.
The PEN/Faulkner Award, founded in 1980, is given for a novel or short story collection published in United States during the previous year and is judged by a panel of fiction writers. Roughly three hundred and fifty works were considered for this year's prize. The PEN/Faulkner Foundation, an affiliate of PEN International based in Washington, D.C., established the award to further its mission of "building audiences for exceptional literature and bringing writers together with their readers."