Posts Tagged: fiction

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Announcing Our 2014 Fiction Prize Winner!

Judge Roxane Gay has selected “The Passuer,” by Erin Lyons, as the winner of Indiana Review‘s 2014 Fiction Prize! Lyons’ story will appear in the 2015 Summer issue of Indiana Review. We received more than 500 submissions, a record number of outstanding quality and variety. All work was read anonymously and closely by our editors. Thanks to all who submitted their work for consideration and made this year’s 2014 Fiction Prize possible.

2014 Indiana Review Fiction Prize Winner:

“The Passeur”

Erin Lyons

Gay has this to say about the winning piece: “The Passeur is a subtle and smart story about what it really looks like when “well meaning” Westerners try to insert themselves into countries with fraught and violent climates. The story artfully reveals, among other things, how good intentions are not nearly enough to solve the very real problems of the world.”

Runner-Up:

“Come Go With Me” by Nora Bonner

Honorable Mentions:

“El Gritón” by Jose Alfaro

“Going Mean” by Dana Diehl

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Laura Spence-Ash’s “The Remains”

Lately, my Christmas list consists of a series of subscriptions to lit journals, and this year I was lucky enough to get One Story—and even luckier that the first booklet that landed in my mailbox was Laura Spence-Ash’s “The Remains.” Spence-Ash tells the story of Mrs. Constantine in five distinct sections, from five points-of-view, none of them Mrs. Constantine’s. We meet the main character, in fact, by meeting her corpse, which has been decaying in her half of a Queens duplex for months. One of the remarkable and memorable components of this piece is the care and attention Spence-Ash brings to her choice of characters who fill out the—well, the remains—of Mrs. Constantine.

The cast includes a spectrum of familiarity to the woman, and in that way, a spectrum of peculiarity when we remember that Mrs. Constantine’s remains have gone unnoticed for nearly a year. The police sergeant who discovers her and the reluctant seamstress who used to do her alterations could hardly be blamed for not realizing the woman hasn’t been around in some time. But when Spence-Ash introduces Mrs. Constantine’s next door neighbor, a young mother who admits to herself that she smelled something strange earlier in the year, I began to question my own passivity and the ease with which we can explain away truths that are uncomfortable. Spence-Ash raises the stakes with Bob MacMillan, Mrs. Constantine’s old boss, who called the police when she stopped showing up to work, but has quietly resigned to her absence. In a heartbreaking final section, we meet Mrs. Constantine’s ex-husband, a man who has moved on where the dead woman could not.

“The Remains” captures brief moments and realizations that each of these characters go through, pulling together deft outlines of what the lonely death means for them all, while also constructing a subtle portrait of the deceased. Perhaps my favorite part of this story, however—which I first read in January and think about and re-read regularly—is the little note in Ms. Spence-Ash’s bio which informs us that “this is her first published story.”

“Middle Space”: Call for Submissions!

AlphaTangoBravo/Adam Baker

Call for Indiana Review’s Special Themed Folio: MIDDLE SPACE

Bending the rules of craft is not a new thing. Bold steps and subtle transformations are how we move forward in literature, in society, and in ourselves. For a special folio in our Summer 2014 issue, we’re seeking work—in both form and content—that blurs genres and breaks down preconceptions, narratives of transgression that make us question our boundaries of what a literary work is and can do.

Keywords to consider and inspire: boundaries, borders, limits, edges, duality, on the verge, transformation, transgression, travel, movement, bodies, collapse, collage, correspondence, collaboration, middle space.

Click through for guidelines and deadlines!

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Interview With 2012 Fiction Prize Winner: CB Anderson

As we enter the final weeks of the 2013 Fiction Contest, many writers are faced with the question: What does it take to win?

Because submitting work can feel a bit like fishing in the dark with your firstborn child as bait, we asked last year’s winner, CB Anderson, to say a few words about her creative process and to share a few strategies for success in short fiction.

Anderson’s prize-winning story “Mavak Tov” will soon be published in her collection River Talk. The book contains 17 stories — a combination of short and short-short fiction forthcoming from C&R Press in 2014 . Be sure to check it out!

In response to “Mavak Tov,” last year’s judge Dana Johnson writes:

This story haunted me. The main character’s longing and desire for comfort, for a place to be, is so powerful and recognizable, as is the conflict and question this story poses, not just for the main character but for all of us: At what price do we achieve comfort? At what point do we reject what is easy and familiar for something far more necessary, which is true agency and power? This essential question is explored through a beautifully rendered relationship between a mother and her daughter and between the wives of one polygamist man, in gorgeous, unflinching detail. Read more…