We are pleased to announce the winners for the 2015 American Short(er) Fiction Prize, judged by Stuart Dybek. Thank you to everyone who submitted. We were overwhelmed by the breadth and quality of the stories, and, reading them, were thrilled again and again by the versatility and potential of the flash fiction form. The winning stories will be published in the magazine’s fall issue.
The first prize went to Jennifer Murvin, for her story “Emporium,” a subtle rumination on a father’s purchase of an enigmatic painting. Of the story, Stuart Dybek said: “I admired the alert, unmannered naturalness of the prose, and how, through a complex use of juxtapositions, the writer managed to convey the sense of mystery and contradiction so often present in our most basic relationships as well as the restrained, credible sentiment the story left with me.”
Jennifer Murvin’s stories and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in The Sun, Mid-American Review, The Cincinnati Review, Bellingham Review, Phoebe, Baltimore Review, and other journals. She teaches writing at Missouri State University and is recurring faculty for the River Pretty Writers Retreat. Find more about Jen and her work at JenniferMurvin.virb.com .
The runner up was Emily Geminder, for her story “1-800-FAT-GIRLS,” a piece rich with nostalgia and youthful longing, about the trouble young girls can get into. Dybek wrote: “From its memorable title on, there’s a dark humor and an imaginative integration of theme and variation, plus meta-fictional technique that gives this story an engaging narrative drive.” Emily Geminder’s writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Prairie Schooner, The Mississippi Review, Witness, Hobart, and elsewhere. She is a recipient of a 2015 AWP Intro Journals Award.
Many thanks to Stuart Dybek for judging the contest, and congratulations to the winners! Find out more information about our next contest here .