One Story is proud to congratulate two of our authors, Jim Shepard and Jason Zencka, who have received prestigious recognition for their work.
Jim Shepard has won the Rea Award for the Short Story, following the publication of his celebrated new collection, The World to Come. The title story of this collection was first published in One Story, and went on to be included in Best American Short Stories 2013. The Washington Post writes, “Established in 1986, the Rea Award is given to writers who have made a ‘significant contribution’ to short stories. Prize judges cited Shepard’s ‘prodigious research’ into history and science and ‘X-ray vision of the soul.’ ” The Rea Award provides $30,000 to the recipient.
Shepard has taught for many years at Sirenland, an international writing conference co-founded by Hannah Tinti, Dani Shapiro, Michael Maren and Antonio Sersale. In 2016 he was honored with the Mentor of the Year Award at One Story’s Literary Debutante Ball. He’s an important member of the One Story family and we couldn’t be more thrilled to see him recognized for his long commitment to the short stories.
One Story is also thrilled to announce that Issue #216, “Catacombs,” by Jason Zencka has won a Pushcart Prize! “Catacombs” was Zencka’s first publication. The Pushcart Prize has been honoring writers published by small presses since 1976.
Join us in applauding both writers on these exciting awards!
(Lam, Shepard & Hadley share a drink after the event)For those of us who write short stories but are under constant pressure to write novels because story collections don’t sell, The Story Prize is a welcome reminder that short fiction still matters to some people. The Story Prize gives $20,000 to the author of an outstanding story collection published in English during the previous year. This year’s three finalists, selected by Story Prize director Larry Dark and Story Prize founder Julie Lindsey were Sunstroke and Other Stories by Tessa Hadley, Bloodletting and Miraculous Cures by Vincent Lam, and Like You’d Understand, Anyway by Jim Shepard. On Wednesday, February 27th, at an award ceremony at The New School, literati gathered to hear each of the three finalists read an excerpt from one of their stories and then join Larry Dark on stage for a short conversation about their work. It was like being at a story writers’ version of the Oscars, where, instead of Nicole Kidman and Meryl Streep, the dazzling stars in attendance included Amy Hempel, Jayne Anne Phillips and David Gates (who was a judge this year.) One Story Editor Hannah Tinti, Managing Editor Pei-Ling Lue and I were in the audience to savor every word. Any of these three phenomenal collections would have been worthy of the prize, but this year’s winner is Jim Shepard (who read for One Story on January 4th.) Jim’s acceptance speech was so generous in its praise of the other two collections that it was a reminder that every great writer is also a great reader. And speaking of reading, if you haven’t read these three collections, buy them now. You won’t be disappointed. To see a webcast of the entire event, go here.
Jim Shepard & Lillian Nave Goudas, President of the Lenoir Book Club (thanks for the photo, Lillian!)Pianos was packed on Friday, January 4th when National Book Award-finalist Jim Shepard took the stage to read from his latest story collection, Like You’d Understand, Anyway. Jim read an excerpt of “Pleasure Boating at Lituya Bay,” and you can listen to it here. I love Jim Shepard’s stories because they make me laugh out loud and then, when I least expect it, they take a nose dive into emotional truth and make my heart explode.