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      William Saroyan International Prize for Writing


April 30, 2010

Sonia Lee
(650) 736-9538,

Shortlist Announced for
2010 William Saroyan International Prize for Writing

Stanford University Libraries announced today the shortlist for the fourth William Saroyan International Prize for Writing (Saroyan Prize).


Aesop's Mirror
by Maryalice Huggins

by Taras Grescoe

Apologize, Apologize!
by Elizabeth Kelly

Atmospheric Disturbances
by Rivka Galchen

Come on Shore and We Will
Kill and Eat You All
by Christina Thompson

The Curse of the Labrador Duck
by Glen Chilton

by Stacia Saint Owens

The Bigness of the World
by Lori Ostlund

Everyone Had Cameras
by Richard Street

The Fallen Sky
by Christopher Cokinos

Both Ways is the Only Way I Want It
by Maile Meloy

Concord, Virginia
by Peter Neofotis

Grass, Sky, Song
by Trevor Herriot

The King of Vodka
by Linda Himelstein

Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned
by Wells Tower

Mathilda Savitch
by Victor Lodato

Leaving India
by Minal Hajratwala

Me As Her Again
by Nancy Agabian

Morningside Heights: New York Stories
by Joe Tsujimoto

Picking Bones from Ash
by Marie Matsuki Mockett

Notes from No Man's Land
by Eula Bliss

Opa Nobody
by Sonya Huber

Saroyan's Bookie
by Larry Hill

The Southern Cross
by Skip Horack

The Past is Never Dead
by Harry MacLean

Surviving Paradise
by Peter Rudiak-Gould

by James Magruder

The Theory of Light and Matter
by Andrew Porter

Trauma Farm
by Brian Brett

The Torturer's Wife
by Thomas Glave

Intended to encourage new or emerging writers and honor the Saroyan literary legacy of originality, vitality and stylistic innovation, the Saroyan Prize recognizes newly published works of both fiction and non-fiction. A prize of $5,000 will be awarded in each category. Winners will be announced this summer.

This year's distinguished judging panel for fiction consists of Geoffrey Burn, Director of Stanford University Press; award-winning author Elizabeth McKenzie; and Hank Saroyan, writer, performer, and nephew of William Saroyan. The non-fiction panel includes Keith Devlin, Executive Director at Stanford University's Center for the Study of Language and Information; Professor Patrick Hunt; and Fritz Maytag, legendary brewer, distiller and wine maker. More information on our judges can be found here.

Literary fiction, including novels, short story collections, and drama, are eligible for the Saroyan Fiction Prize. Literary non-fiction of any length is eligible for the Saroyan Non-fiction Prize, most particularly writing in the Saroyan tradition: memoirs, portraits and excursions into neighborhood and community. Entries in either category are limited to English language publications that are available for individual purchase by the general public.

Michael A. Keller, Stanford University Librarian noted “We are excited to once again be awarding The Saroyan Prize. The Saroyan archive is a gem in the Libraries' Special Collections department and we are thrilled to be able to honor Saroyan's legacy through the award." Keller commented on the involvement of Stanford alumni in evaluating entries: "It has proven exciting to bring together a cadre of alumni for the winnowing process. We know that Stanford's alumni appreciate the opportunity for active and continued engagement with emerging literary figures, and we in turn are energized by their engagement and enthusiasm."

In partnership with the William Saroyan Foundation, the first William Saroyan International Prize for Writing was awarded in 2003 to Jonathan Safran Foer for his novel Everything is Illuminated (Houghton Mifflin, 2002). The second Saroyan Prize, awarded in 2005, was the first to be offered for both fiction and non-fiction. The fiction prize was awarded to George Hagen for his novel The Laments (Random House, 2004), and the non-fiction prize went to Mark Arax and Rick Wartzman for The King of California (Public Affairs, 2005). The third Saroyan Prize, awarded in 2008, coincided with the centennial of Saroyan's birth. The fiction prize was awarded to Nicole Krauss, a Stanford alumna, for her novel The History of Love (W. W. Norton, 2005). The non-fiction prize was awarded to Kiyo Sato for Dandelion Through the Crack (Willow Valley Press, 2007).

William Saroyan, an American writer and playwright, is a Pulitzer Prize and Academy Award winner best known for his short stories about humorous experiences of immigrant families and children in California. Much of Saroyan's other work is clearly autobiographical, although similar in style and technique to fiction. Saroyan was the fourth child of Armenian immigrants. He battled his way through poverty and rose to literary prominence in the early 1930s when national magazines began publishing his short stories, such as The Daring Young Man On The Flying Trapeze, My Name Is Aram, Inhale & Exhale, Three Times Three, and Peace, It's Wonderful. Saroyan soon moved on to writing plays for Broadway and screenplays for Hollywood, including: My Heart's in the Highlands, The Time of Your Life, The Beautiful People, and The Human Comedy.

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Stanford University Libraries & Academic Information Resources supports the teaching, learning and research mandates of the University through delivery of bibliographic and other information resources and services to faculty, students and staff. It is tackling the challenges of the digital age while continuing the development, preservation and conservation of its extensive print, media and manuscript collections.

The William Saroyan Foundation was founded by the author on December 30, 1966 and remains active under a Board of Trustees. Commencing in 1990, the Trustees set a goal of bringing together into one single archive his entire literary estate. A decision was finally made by the Trustees to offer Stanford University the assembled Saroyan Literary Collection with provisions that would safeguard in perpetuity one of the rare treasure troves in American literature, carrying on the legacy of Fresno, California's own native son, William Saroyan.

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William Saroyan International Prize for Writing homepage:


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