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Scibona Wins Young Lions Fiction Award

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A blog from: Poets & Writers Magazine

Posted by Prize Reporter on 3.18.09

On Monday night, at a ceremony at the New York Public Library that was hosted by actor Ethan Hawke, Salvatore Scibona won the Young Lions Fiction Award for his debut novel The End (Graywolf, 2008). Scibona, who administers the writing fellowship at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts, joins the company of Mark Danielewski, Colson Whitehead, Jonathan Safran Foer, Anthony Doerr, Andrew Sean Greer, and others who have received the ten-thousand-dollar award given annually to an American writer no older than thirty-five.

The finalists were Jon Fasman for The Unpossessed City (Penguin, 2008), Rivka Galchen for Atmospheric Disturbances (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2008), Sana Krasikov for One More Year (Spiegel & Grau, 2008), and Zachary Mason for The Lost Books of the Odyssey (Starcherone, 2008). 

Scibona and Galchen were both featured in the July/August 2008 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine—or, as we affectionately refer to it, Marilyn. In his interview, Scibona offered the following advice for first-time authors: "Read. Write at the same time in the same place at least five days a week. Socialize. Don't give in to what Chekhov called 'the egoism of the unhappy.' Resist the blues—especially when they look infinite—by pointing your mind outward and doing something for another person. But—important!—sometimes just let them be the blues. Also, school the internal critic in all the dark arts of editorial sadism, but ignore it when it attacks you personally. It likes to pretend that it's the coolest, most professionaly guy in the room. In fact, it is a cynic and a savage."

Both Galchen and Scibona, incidentally, have the same agent: Bill Clegg of the William Morris Agency. 

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