2012 Texas Institute of Letters Finalists Announced

Texas Institute of Letters

The Texas Institute of Letters,

which has been promoting the state’s best writers since 1936, released its list of nominees for its annual awards this past week.

Competition is limited to authors who have lived in the state for at least two years or have entries pertaining to Texas subjects. Not surprisingly. some of the best-known writers in the state, like Stephen Harrigan, C.W. Smith and Naomi Shihab Nye, are among the nominees.

The awards will be presented in San Antonio on April 14.

Jesse H. Jones Award for Fiction ($6,000)

Laura Furman, The Mother Who Stayed (Simon & Schuster); Stephen Harrigan, Remember Ben Clayton(Knopf); C.W. Smith, Steplings (TCU).

 Carr P. Collins Award for Nonfiction ($5,000)

Michael Ariens, Lone Star Law: A Legal History of Texas (Texas Tech); Brian D. Behnken, Fighting Their Own Battles: Mexican Americans, African Americans, and the Struggle for Civil Rights in Texas (Univ. of North Carolina); Steven Fenberg, Unprecedented Power: Jesse Jones, Capitalism, and the Common Good(Texas A&M).

Steven Turner Award for First Fiction ($1,000)

Brian Allen Carr, Short Bus (Texas Review); Siobhan Fallon, You Know When the Men Are Gone (G.P. Putnam’s Sons); and Miroslav Penkov, East of the West (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).

Texas Institute of Letters Award for Scholarly Book ($2,500)

Nicolás Kanellos, Hispanic Immigrant Literature (Univ. of Texas at Austin); Christopher Long, The Looshaus(Yale); Robert Lee Maril, The Fence: National Security, Public Safety, and Illegal Immigration along the U.S.-Mexico Border (Texas Tech).

Helen C. Smith Memorial Award for Poetry ($1,200)

Paul Christensen, The Human Condition (Wings); Jennifer Grotz, The Needle (Houghton Miffllin Harcourt); and Naomi Shihab Nye, Transfer (BOA Editions).

Bob Bush Memorial Award for Best First Book of Poetry ($1,000)

Joshua Edwards, Campech (Noemi); Jose Antonio Rodriguez, The Shallow End of Sleep (Northwestern); and W.K. Stratton, Dreaming Sam Peckinpah (Ink Brush).

O. Henry Award for Magazine Journalism ($1,000)

Michael Hall, “Falling Comet,” Texas Monthly; Skip Hollandsworth, “The Lost Boys,” Texas Monthly; and Mimi Swartz, “Super Collider,” Texas Monthly.

Texas Institute of Letters Award for Children’s Book ($500)

Varsha Bajaj, T is for Taj Mahal (Sleeping Bear Press); David Davis, Fandango Stew (Sterling);Elaine Scott,Space, Stars and the Beginning of Time (Clarion); and Divya Srinivasan, Little Owl’s Night Out (Viking).

Texas Institute of Letters Award for Young Adult Book ($500)

Libba Bray, Beauty Queens (Scholastic); Pamela Porter, I’ll Be Watching (Groundwood); and J.L. PowersThis Thing Called the Future (Cinco Puntos).

Kay Cattarulla Award for Short Story ($1,000)

Rick Bass, “The Blue Tree,” Ecotone; Babette Fraser Hale, “Silences,” Southwest Review; and Bret Anthony Johnson, “Paradeability,” American Short Fiction.

Fred Whitehead Award for Design of a Trade Book ($750)

Bryce Milligan for As If the Empty Chair by Margaret Randall (Wings Press); D.J. Stout for Hard Ground by Michael O’Brien and Tom Waits (Univ. of Texas at Austin); and Barbara Werden and Lindsay Starr for Lone Star Law by Michael Ariens (Texas Tech).

Soeurette Diehl Fraser Award for Best Translation of a Book ($1,000)

James Hoggard for Oscar Hahn’s Ashes in Love (Host); Kurt Heinzelman for Jean Follain’s Demarcations(Host); and Dave Oliphant for Nicanor Parra’s After-Dinner Declarations (Host).

Stanley Walker Award for Newspaper Journalism ($1,000) 
Susan Carroll and Claudia Feldman, Houston Chronicle;Jordan Smith, Austin Chronicle; David Tarrant,Dallas Morning News.

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