Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Announcing This Year's Judges for The Story Prize: Dev Aujla, David Kipen, and Kirstin Valdez Quade

In alternating years, one of the three judges for The Story Prize is either a bookseller or a librarian. For story collections published in 2021, we’re featuring two judges who have each established and operate libraries with innovative approaches—alongside a writer of a celebrated short story collection and novel.

Dev Aujla runs the Sorted Library, a small independent reading space in New York. He is the coauthor of Making Good: Finding Meaning, Money & Community in a Changing World. His most recent book is called 50 Ways to Get a Job: An Unconventional Guide to Finding Work on Your Terms.

David Kipen is a former National Endowment for the Arts Director of Literature and San Francisco Chronicle book critic. He teaches writing at UCLA, contributes as Critic-at-Large for the L.A. Times, and is the founder of the 11-year-old Libros Schmibros Lending Library in Boyle Heights. He is also the author of Dear Los Angeles: The City in Diaries and Letters, 1542-2018 and is currently collecting material for the sequel, Dear California: The State in Diaries and Letters.

(Photo by Holly Andres, ©2020)

Kirstin Valdez Quade is the author of The Five Wounds, which is shortlisted for the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize. Her story collection, Night at the Fiestas, won the John Leonard Prize from the National Book Critics Circle, the Sue Kaufman Prize for First Fiction from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a “5 Under 35” award from the National Book Foundation, and was a finalist for the New York Public Library Young Lions Award. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, and The New York Times. She is an assistant professor at Princeton.