MARY ROBISON WINS SHORT STORY PRIZE IN NEW YORK
The Rea Award is not only one of the most prestigious, but also very generous -- Mary Robison will receive $30,000 for her "significant contribution to the discipline of the short story form."
Robison is a leader in the so-called "minimalist" school of short fiction writing, but is a lot more readable than this might make her sound. She chooses small, apparently mundane events, and illuminates them with laconic humor and brilliant dialogue. Her collections include Days, and Believe Them.
Previous winners include Amy Hempel, John Updike, Eudora Welty, and Joyce Carol Oates. Hempel was one of the three judges, the others being Jayne Anne Phillips and Andrea Barrett. They praised Robison's stories for "their lean, cool ferocity and their wry takes on people in pivotal moments."