Awards

CABIN READS + LOST RIVER WRITERS’ RETREAT

My 4-year anniversary of hosting CABIN READS is this month! Join us at the Lost River Trading Post on July 31st from 6-8pm to hear from local award-winning author John Copenhaver and others from THE LOST RIVER WRITERS’ RETREAT as they read from their works in progress:

JENNIFER BUNDY is a poet and author of the audio chapbook Girls (EAT Poems). She is the Director of Bridge Eight Press and Co-director of the Douglas Anderson Writers’ Festival. She has taught at IES José María Infantes, a secondary art institute in Sevilla, Spain, and Douglas Anderson School of the Arts in her hometown of Jacksonville, Florida. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Tulane Review, Jelly Bucket, Cagibi, and elsewhere.

JOHN COPENHAVER has been nominated for the Anthony, Barry, Lammy, and Strand Critics awards for his historical mystery Dodging and Burning (Pegasus, 2018). He writes a crime fiction column for Lambda Literary called “Blacklight.” He’s been awarded five DCCAH Artist Fellowships. He’s published in CrimeReads, Electric Lit, Glitterwolf, PANK, Washington Independent Review of Books, New York Journal of Books, and others. He chairs the 7-12 grade English at Flint Hill School and lives in DC with his husband.

MOLLY GALLENTINE is a graduate of the Creative Writing Program at The New School. Her written works have been published in places such as The Wall Street Journal, Gulf Coast, and the Normal School. Gallentine is a Pushcart Prize winner, has been twice listed as a notable essayist in The Best American Essays, and is a Fourth Genre Steinberg Essay Prize recipient.

GALE MASSEY‘s debut novel, The Girl From Blind River, received a 2018 Florida Book Award. Her award-winning stories and essays have appeared in the Tampa Bay Times, Sabal, Seven Hills Press, and other places. She has received fellowships at The Sewanee Writers Conference and Eckerd College’s Writers in Paradise, and has been nominated for the 2019 Clara Johnson Award. Massey, a Florida native, lives in St. Petersburg. The Girl From Blind River is a coming of age story centered around family dysfunction, illegal gambling and small-town corruption.

JESSICA HENDRY NELSON is the author of the memoir If Only You People Could Follow Directions (Counterpoint Press, 2014) and the forthcoming textbook and anthology Advanced Creative Nonfiction along with the writer Sean Prentiss (Bloomsbury, 2021). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Prairie Schooner, Tin House, The Threepenny Review, The Carolina Quarterly, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Columbia Journal, PANK, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. She teaches in the MFA Program at the University of Nebraska in Omaha and is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Denison University. More at jessicahnelson.com.

KRISTIN SHERMAN’s work has appeared in Brevity, Barrelhouse, Flashquake and Silk Road among others. She has been a finalist in many short fiction contests but rarely wins. She lives in Charlotte, NC where she writes English as a Second Language textbooks and spends a lot of time rowing on the Catawba River. She is currently working on a novel.

Making art in 2018.

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I’m so excited to be the recipient of a 2018 Individual Artist professional development grant from the West Virginia Division of Culture and History, and the National Endowment for the Arts, approved by the WV Commission on the Arts. Getting tangible help and positive feedback on my writing and community-building efforts is just amazing. Thank you to all the arts organizations who are still pushing ahead with a mission to give resources and support to artists and writers of all kinds.

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Congratulations to the Winner of the 2014 Sue Alexander Award!

Recently I posted about being nominated for the 2014 Sue Alexander Award for Most Promising New Work at the SCBWI Conference in Los Angeles. It was my complete honor to have that experience, and I still can’t believe it. I didn’t win but I feel so encouraged as a writer to keep my head down and keep writing!

This can be a lonely, frustrating business, and it takes more perseverance and patience than most folks can muster on their own. A reward like this nomination was a tremendous boost to my spirit, and helps me to keep going.

But now, huge congratulations to the winner:  LINDA KAO for THE TREASURE OF THE FOGGY ISLES!

Big props to the runners up, as well: Lori Snyder for THE HEART AT THE END OF THE WORLD and Natalie Hyde for GOLD RUSH!

Thanks again to the Sue Alexander Award Committee for the time and effort you put into this process. Thank you, SCBWI, for providing so many different ways for writers to grow and learn and be recognized along this journey.

Sue Alexander Award Nomination!

SueAlexanderY’all, my middle grade manuscript has been nominated for the 2014 Sue Alexander Most Promising New Work Award!  The award is given annually to the manuscript deemed most promising for publication from among manuscripts submitted for individual critique at the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Annual Conference in Los Angeles.

I feel very honored to be nominated for an award named after a woman who personified the spirit of the organization to which I owe much gratitude in my journey so far as a writer.

From the SCBWI website: “Sue Alexander was the first member to join SCBWI and was vitally involved with the organization from its inception to her death in 2008. Her responsibilities for SCBWI included, among others, serving as Chairperson of the Board of Advisors (33 years), managing the office (20 years), coordinating — with Lin Oliver — the August conference in California (25 years), and coordinating the Golden Kite Awards (25 years). She was the author of more than twenty-five books for young people, including World Famous Muriel; Small Plays for Special Days; Witch, Goblin and Sometimes Ghost; Sara’s City and award winners Lila on the Landing; Nadia the Willful; and Behold the Trees. In addition to her books, she wrote stories for magazines and for the Los Angeles Times “Kids’ Reading Room” several times a year. Sue passed away suddenly on July 3 at her home in West Hills, California. She was 74.”

I’m so grateful to my supportive, understanding family and friends, to the SCBWI family of writers, illustrators and industry professionals who teach us at the regional and national conferences, and to my Smith classmate Emma Dryden of DRYDENBKS who gave me a loving, yet hearty, shove in the right direction when I felt so far afield.