Tuesday, September 27, 2005


Yiyun Li
A Thousand Years of Good Prayers (2005)

CONGRATULATIONS to Yiyun Li for winning the first ever Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize (the world’s richest short story prize at €50,000 for a collection of short stories published in English anywhere in the world) for her début collection, A Thousand Years of Good Prayers (2005), a collection of stories set mostly in China. Li, who taught herself to write by reading the works of William Trevor, is the first winner of the Paris Review’s 2004 George Plimpton Prize for new writers for her story, “Immortality”. The other shortlisted books were David Bezmozgis’s Natasha and Other Stories (2004), Alice Hoffman’s Blackbird House (2004), Bret Anthony Johnston’s Corpus Christi (2004), David Means’s The Secret Goldfish (2004) and Tim Winton’s The Turning (2004).

BEZMOZGIS David [1973-] Short-story writer. Born in Riga, Latvia. STORIES Natasha and Other Stories (2004: winner of the 2005 Jewish Quarterly-Wingate Literary Award for Fiction; shortlisted for the 2005 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize, the 2004 Guardian First Book Award, the 2004 Governor General’s Award for Fiction and the 2004 Los Angeles Times/Art Seidenbaum Prize for First Fiction)

LI Yiyun [1973-] Short-story writer. Born in Beijing, China. STORIES A Thousand Years of Good Prayers (2005: winner of the 2005 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize and the 2006 PEN/Hemingway Award for First Fiction; shortlisted for the 2006 Kiriyama Prize for Fiction)

HOFFMAN Alice [1952-] Novelist. Born in New York, New York, U.S. NOVELS The Foretelling (2005); The Ice Queen (2005); The Probable Future (2003); Blue Diary (2001); The River King (2000); Local Girls (1999); Practical Magic (1995); Second Nature (1994); Turtle Moon (1992); Archives of Memory (1990); Here on Earth (1997); Seventh Heaven (1990); At Risk (1988); Illumination Night (1987); Fortune’s Daughter (1985); White Horses (1982); Angel Landing (1980); The Drowning Season (1979); Fortune’s Daughter (1985); Property Of (1977) STORIES Blackbird House (2004: shortlisted for the 2005 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize) CHILDREN’S Moondog (2004); Green Angel (2003); Indigo (2002); Aquamarine (2001); Horsefly (2000); Fireflies: A Winter Tale (1997)

JOHNSTON Bret Anthony [1972-] Short-story writer. Born in Corpus Christi, Texas, U.S. STORIES Corpus Christi (2004: shortlisted for the 2005 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize)

MEANS David [1962-] Short-story writer. Born in Kalamazoo, Michigan, U.S. STORIES The Secret Goldfish (2004: shortlisted for the 2005 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize); Assorted Fire Events (2000: winner of the 2001 Los Angeles Times Book Prize and a finalist for the 2000 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction); A Quick Kiss of Redemption and Other Stories (1991)

WINTON Tim [1960-] Novelist, short-story writer. Born in Perth, Western Australia. NOVELS Dirt Music (2001: winner of the 2001 Western Australian Premier’s Book Award, the 2002 Miles Franklin Award and the 2002 NSW Premier’s Literary Award; shortlisted for the 2002 Booker Prize for Fiction and the 2002 Kiriyama Prize for Fiction); The Riders (1994: winner of the 1995 Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best Novel in the Southeast Asia and South Pacific region; shortlisted for the 1995 Booker Prize for Fiction); Cloudstreet (1991: winner of the 1992 Miles Franklin Award, the Banjo Award and the Deo Gloria Prize); An Open Swimmer (1982: joint winner of the 1981 The Australian/Vogel Prize); Shallows (1984: winner of the 1984 Miles Franklin Award); That Eye, The Sky (1986); In the Winter Dark (1988) STORIES The Turning (2004: winner of the 2005 NSW Premier’s Literary Award/Christina Stead Prize for Fiction; shortlisted for the 2005 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize); Blood and Water (1993); Minimum of Two (1987); Scission and Other Stories (1985: winner of the 1985 West Australian Council Week Literary Award) NONFICTION Down to Earth (with photographs by Richard Woldendorp) (1999); Local Color: Travels in the Other Australia (1994); Land’s Edge (with Trish Ainslie and Roger Garwood) (1993) CHILDREN’S The Deep (with illustrations by Karen Louise) (1998); Blueback: A Contemporary Fable (1997); Lockie Leonard, Legend (1997); Lockie Leonard, Scumbuster (1993); The Bugalugs Bum Thief (1991); Lockie Leonard, Human Torpedo (1990); Jesse (1988)


Blogger Dennis said...

Short stories are usually harder to write because you have to dispense a ton of plot in so few words. But I like writing short stories because there's always the possibility and the "if..." factor that the reader has to make up - the story before and after the actual short story.

Yeah, I like your book recommendations.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005 1:32:00 PM  
Blogger Eric Forbes said...

Yes, you are right, Dennis. Short stories are much more difficult to write than novels. But the sad thing is, short stories do not sell that many copies compared to novels in the publishing industry. We will just have to buy more short-story collections to create a greater demand for it. Tell me what short stories do you enjoy? And thanks for the kind words.

All the best
Eric Forbes

Tuesday, September 27, 2005 4:38:00 PM  
Blogger Dennis said...

Murakami's "The Elephant Vanishes" Well, it doesn't really tell what kind of short stories I like - it tells what kind of stories I enjoy. I enjoy surrealistic stories. Stories about normal guys like me who are thrown in weird situations in a non-fiction world and they just can't make out what is going on.

Do you know Murakami's work?

Thursday, September 29, 2005 6:37:00 PM  
Blogger Eric Forbes said...

I think Haruki Murakami is an acquired taste. And I'm afraid I haven't acquired a taste for it - yet. But I believe he is very good at both the short story and novel forms. However, I've quite a number of his books in my collection but have yet to read them. I'm more into short-story writers like E. Annie Proulx, Tim Winton, John Updike, etc.

Friday, September 30, 2005 3:34:00 PM  
Blogger Dennis said...

I enjoy John Updike's works too.

Sunday, October 02, 2005 9:06:00 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home