Monday, October 18, 2010

Meet the Judges for The Story Prize: Marie du Vaure, John Freeman, Jayne Anne Phillips

We're proud to announce that this year's judges for The Story Prize are bookseller Marie du Vaure, Granta editor John Freeman, and author Jayne Anne Phillips. We've had great groups of judges in the past*, and this year's judges, I believe, extend this tradition.

Our formula is simple. Each year we have one writer as a judge. We alternate between a bookseller and a librarian. And the third judge is from another category—editors, critics, bloggers, etc. What this has done for us, I believe, is connect us more closely to the community that supports short story collections.

Here's how the process works: Julie Lindsey, Founder of The Story Prize, and I read all of the books entered for The Story Prize and choose three as finalists in early January. We send copies of each to the judges as soon as we've confirmed our choices. The judges then have about six weeks to read the books and inform me of their first and second choices. In the event each judge favors a different book (which hasn't happened yet), we use the second choice as a tie-breaker.

The judges' participation validates our efforts and adds another dimension to The Story Prize. And we appreciate the willingness of these very busy and accomplished people to be part of our efforts to promote short fiction.

*Past judges of The Story Prize
2009/10 Author A.M. Homes, librarian Bill Kelly, and blogger Carolyn Kellogg
2008/9 Editor/author Daniel Menaker, bookseller Rick Simonson, and author/One Story editor Hannah Tinti
2007/8 Author/critic David Gates, librarian Patricia Groh, and author/editor Meghan O'Rourke
2006/7 Author Edwidge Danticat, blogger Ron Hogan, and bookseller Mitchell Kaplan
2005/6 Author Andrea Barrett, librarian Nancy Pearl, and critic James Wood
2004/5 Author Dan Chaon, bookseller Ann Christophersen, and A Public Space editor Brigid Hughes