Posts Tagged: Aimee Bender

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Announcing the 2016 Fiction Prize winner!

We are excited to announce that judge Aimee Bender has selected “Nothing Before Something” by Kimberly King Parsons as the winner of Indiana Review’s 2016 Fiction Prize! Thank you to everyone who submitted their work and made this year’s prize possible. “Nothing Before Something” will appear in our Winter 2017 issue.

2016 Fiction Prize Winner:

“Nothing Before Something” by Kimberly King Parsons

Aimee Bender says about the winning piece: “This was a tough decision; there were a lot of very fine stories in the mix here. I picked “Nothing Before Something” as the winner because it kept pulling me to it, pulling me in. Even if I tried to read fast, the natural movement of the narration forced me to slow down, and, paradoxically, there was urgency behind the sentences that created part of this slowing, a drive in Sheila that connects to emotional power. A lot of this is that elusive thing–voice. The author clearly knows how to make sentences that are unique, but that distinctiveness is all in the service of giving us a person, this Sheila, in a moment of her life, driven toward Tim as she negotiates the world of suffering—her own, and that of others, too. Basically, I just read along happily and I would’ve happily read more. There’s even a slightly sprawly messy feeling here too which seems hopeful to me, like this writer can keep trying stuff out and trusting the power of voice and valuing where it naturally leads. Readers are in for a real treat.”


“Cowbirds” by Kristen Arnett

“Liam and the Head” by Courtney Bird

“In the Skin” by Katie Flynn

“The Ninki-nanka” by Ah-reum Han

“House of Locks and Doors” by Micah Dean Hicks

“Everything Shined” by Maggie O’Brien

“The Keener” by Eric Schlich

“The Floating Fat Woman” by Chelsea Sutton

“Heaven for Your Full Lungs” by David E. Yee

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Interview with 2016 Fiction Prize Judge Aimee Bender

Our 2016 Fiction Prize Judge is Aimee Bender, author of five books including the short story collection The Girl in the Flammable Skirt, a New York Times notable book. In this interview, she discusses writing process, the importance of sound, and words of advice for Fiction Prize submitters.


Aimee Bender is the author of five books,aimeebender2including The Girl in the Flammable Skirt, and The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake. Her short fiction has been published in Granta, Harper’s, The Paris Review, Tin House, and more, as well as heard on This American Life and Selected Shorts. She lives in Los Angeles and teaches creative writing at USC.

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