THE INAUGURAL ANTHOLOGY OF LITERATURE’S MOST PROMISING NEW VOICES
“A welcome addition to the run of established short story annuals, promising good work to come.” —Kirkus Reviews
Many writers who are household names today got their start when an editor encountered their work for the first time and took a chance. This book celebrates twelve such moments of discovery. The first volume of an annual anthology, launched alongside PEN’s new Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers, it recognizes writers who have had outstanding fiction debuts in a print or online literary magazine.
The winning stories collected here—selected this year by judges Marie–Helene Bertino, Kelly Link, and Nina McConigley—take place in South Carolina and in South Korea, on a farm in the eighteenth century and among the cubicles of a computer– engineering firm in the present day. They narrate age–old themes with current urgency: migration, memory, technology, language, love, ecology, identity, family.
Each work comes with an introduction by the editor who originally published it, explaining why he or she chose it. The commentaries provide insight into a process that often remains opaque to readers and students of writing, and showcase the vital work literary magazines do to nurture contemporary literature’s new voices.