March 2014

George Saunders Wins The Story Prize for Tenth of December

The Story Prize winner George Saunders with finalists Andrea Barrett and Rebecca Lee

The Story Prize winner George Saunders with finalists Andrea Barrett and Rebecca Lee. Photo by Beowulf Sheehan

News coverage of The Story Prize event on March 5, 2014

January 2014


An elegant collection by a National Book Award winner, a talented author's first story collection, and one of 2013's most acclaimed books are the finalists for the richest top prize of any annual U.S. book award for fiction.
— Plus, a debut collection garners The Story Prize Spotlight Award.

The Story Prize, an annual award for books of short fiction, celebrating its tenth anniversary, is pleased to honor three outstanding short story collections chosen from among 96 books published 64 different publishers or imprints in 2013. The three finalists are:

  • Archangel by Andrea Barrett (W.W. Norton)
  • Bobcat by Rebecca Lee (Algonquin Books)
  • Tenth of December by George Saunders (Random House)
Archangel by Andrea Barrett
Tenth of December by George Saunders

You can buy tickets to the March 5 event at 7:35 p.m. at The New School online or by calling 212-229-5488.

Archangel by Andrea Barrett collects five long stories set between 1873 and 1939 and featuring interconnected characters seeking scientific knowledge in the face of disruptive new theories and inventions. The seven lyrical, witty stories in Rebecca Lee's Bobcat explore the friction between thought and emotion. George Saunders' acclaimed collection, Tenth of December, features ten stories that juxtapose characters' foibles and inner conflicts with their capacity to act and transcend their flaws. Saunders was also a finalist for The Story Prize in 2006 and is the first author to repeat.

In addition, we're pleased to present the second ever winner of The Story Prize Spotlight Award, a $1,000 prize for a short story collection worthy of additional attention: Byzantium by Ben Stroud (Graywolf Press). The Director and Founder of The Story Prize, Larry Dark and Julie Lindsey, select the winner of this award at their discretion from among the regular pool of entries for The Story Prize.

About the finalists

Andrea Barrett
Rebecca Lee
George Saunders
Photo by Chloe Aftel

Andrea Barrett is the author of Archangel, The Air We Breathe, Servants of the Map (finalist for the Pulitzer Prize), The Voyage of the Narwhal, Ship Fever (winner of the National Book Award), and other books. She is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, teaches at Williams College, and lives in northwestern Massachusetts.

Rebecca Lee is professor of creative writing at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, and the author of The City Is a Rising Tide. Her fiction has been read on NPR’s Selected Shorts, and her stories have been published in the Atlantic Monthly and Zoetrope.

George Saunders is the author of Tenth of December and six previous books, including the story collections CivilWarLand in Bad Decline, Pastoralia, and In Persuasion Nation. He has received fellowships from the MacArthur Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the Guggenheim Foundation. Saunders has been awarded the Pen/Malamud Award for Excellence in the Short Story and was included in Time's list of the 100 most influential people in the world. He teaches in the Creative Writing Program at Syracuse University.

Founder Julie Lindsey and Director Larry Dark selected the finalists for The Story Prize. This year's judges—author Antonya Nelson, Tin House editor Rob Spillman, and Stephen Ennis, Director of the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas, Austin—will choose the winner.

About The Story Prize Spotlight Award winner

Krys Lee
Byzantium by Ben Stroud

Ben Stroud is the author of Byzantium, winner of the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference Bakeless Prize. His stories have appeared in Harper's, One Story, Electric Literature, and Boston Review, among other magazines, and have been anthologized in New Stories from the South and Best American Mystery Stories. A native of Texas, he now lives in Ohio and teaches creative writing at the University of Toledo.

For more on The Story Prize please visit our Web site, read the official blog, follow us on Twitter, or visit our Facebook page.

March 13, 2013

Claire Vaye Watkins Wins The Story Prize for Battleborn

Finalists for The Story Prize Junot Díaz, Claire Vaye Watkins, and Dan Chaon
photo © Beowulf Sheehan

News coverage of The Story Prize event on March 13, 2013