First-year MFA student Tiana Clark wins 2015 Rattle Prize for poetry

First-year MFA student Tiana Clark has won the 2015 Rattle Prize for poetry for her poem “Equilibrium.”  The annual prize carries with it an award of $10,000.   The magazine received a record 4,022 entries or roughly 15,000 poems; Clark’s poem, selected in a blind review by the editors of Rattle, will appear in the Winter 2015 issue.

Earley’s Mr. Tall shortlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award

Image result for tony earley

Vanderbilt faculty member Tony Earley’s story collecton, Mr. Tall, published by Little Brown, has been shortlisted for the €25,000 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award, the world’s richest short story prize. The Munster Literature Centre and the jury–which included Ladette Randolph, editor-in-chief of Ploughshares; British novelist Clive Sinclair; and Irish novelist Eibhear Walshe–announced the shortlist on June 19, 2015. The other shortlisted collections were Refund by Karen E Bender, The Redemption of Galen Pike by Carys Davies, Infidelities by Kirsty Gunn, Crow Fair by Thomas McGuane, and My Documents by Alejandro Zambra.

The Irish Times reported that British author Clive Sinclair, one of this year’s judges, said: “Short in length, but long in reach, these stories echo way beyond their starting points in – say – Nashville, Chile or Montana. They reached the shortlist not because they spoke the loudest, but because the words that made them managed to be both particular and universal.”

The 2015 winner will be announced in early July and the award itself will be presented to the succesful writer at the close of the Cork International Short Story Festival, said to be the world’s oldest annual short story festival.

Poet Kate Daniels Inducted Into the Fellowship of Southern Writers

Poet Kate Daniels, who directs Vanderbilt University’s Creative Writing Program, was inducted into the Fellowship of Southern Writers on April 18, 2015. She’s pictured above with Vanderbilt Creative Writing Program faculty colleague, fiction writer Tony Earley who also is a member of the Fellowship.

Earley introduced Daniels by noting that Daniels has “been widely admired by the literary community for years, for both the sheer breadth and technical accomplishment of her poetry, and for the passion with which she speaks for the traditionally voiceless, particularly Southern working-class women. She’s a national figure in the cutting-edge work being done at the intersection of medicine and art–putting into play the sort of radical idea that art of all kinds, when integrated with traditional medicine, can actually be a force for healing.”  Daniels, the 2011 recipient of the Fellowship of Southern Writers’ Hanes Award for Poetry, and Earley were among more than 40 acclaimed writers who participated in the celebration.

Academy of American Poets Prize for 2015

The winner of the Academy of American Poets Prize for 2015 is Ben Shane, a senior in Arts and Science.  Shane won for  his poem, “Splitting Firewood on a Winter Afternoon.”  Honorable Mention went to MFA grad student Max McDonough for his poem, “Scull Bay.”  Poet A. Van Jordan judged.

MFA student Carlson-Wee, Named 2015 NEA Fellowship Recipient, Wins 2015 Frost Place Chapbook Competition

Anders Carlson-Wee, second year MFA student in poetry, who has been awarded a 2015 Creative Writing Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts, has also just won the 2015 Frost Place Chapbook Competition sponsored by Bull City Press with his manuscript, Dynamite.  As part of the award, Dynamite will be published by Bull City Press in summer 2015, Carlson-Wee will attend the 2015 Frost Place Seminar as the Frost Place Chapbook Fellow, and he will give a reading at the Seminar. Carlson-Wee will also be able to spend a week as a resident of the Frost Place, once home of poet Robert Frost.

Carlson-Wee’s NEA fellowship is one of 36 awards given in the annual competition. The grant, for $25,000, allows recipients to “set aside time for writing, research, travel, and general career advancement.”

Carlso-Wee has also received a Bread Loaf Bakeless Camargo Fellowship for summer 2015.  The fellowship allows eight former Bread Loaf conference attendees to attend a month-long working residency at The Camargo Foundation in the beautiful seaside town of Cassis, France.

Carlson-Wee won Ninth Letter’s 2014 Poetry Award and New Delta Review’s 2014 Editors’ Choice Prize. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in New England ReviewThe Missouri ReviewThe Southern ReviewWest BranchPrairie SchoonerBlackbirdLinebreakForklift OhioBest New Poets 2012 and 2014.


The university-wide announcement of his NEA award follows:

National Endowment for the Arts awards fellowship to Vanderbilt MFA student

by  | Posted on Friday, Dec. 5, 2014 — 1:18 PM

The National Endowment for the Arts has awarded a literary arts fellowship to Anders Carlson-Wee, a second-year poetry student in Vanderbilt’s MFA Program in Creative Writing.

Carlson-Wee, a former professional rollerblader, will receive a Creative Writing Fellowship in Poetry. This $25,000, non-matching fellowship allows published writers to set aside time for writing, research, travel, and career advancement.

“I am thrilled for Anders and our stellar graduate program in creative writing,” said John M. Sloop, interim dean of the College of Arts and Science. “The NEA literary arts fellowship is an extraordinary achievement, recognizing Anders’ promising future as a gifted young poet.”

Kate Daniels, a professor of English who directs the MFA Program in Creative Writing, noted that Carlson-Wee was one of only 36 recipients selected from more than 1,600 poets.

“Anders is an extraordinarily gifted, hard-working and focused young poet who challenges himself at every opportunity,” Daniels said. Although poets tend to be known, especially in their younger years, for their disinclination to conform to social norms, Anders’ real-life experience is more unconventional than that of most of his peers. He has had an entire other life beyond and besides poetry — wilderness survival, freight train hopping and professional rollerblading.”

Carlson-Wee was raised in northern Minnesota and earned his undergraduate degree from Fairhaven College of Western Washington University. He is the winner of Ninth Letter’s 2014 Poetry Award and New Delta Review’s 2014 Editors’ Choice Prize. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Missouri ReviewWest BranchBlackbirdThe JournalNinth Letter,LinebreakThe Paris-AmericanBest New Poets 2012 and 2014, and more.

“Anders’ poems are remarkable for many qualities, but perhaps most of all for their delicate, yet intense imagery, and the unusual, arresting manner in which he brings his images together with direct statement and narrative clarity,” Daniels said. “The effect can be unforgettable — haunting and straightforward simultaneously. How he achieves this is part of his remarkable poetic gift.”

The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent federal agency that funds and promotes artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The award to Carlson-Wee was included in the agency’s first fiscal year 2015 announcement of $29 million for grants in three categories: Art Works, Challenge America, and NEA Literature Fellowships in Creative Writing.

Vanderbilt’s MFA Program, housed within the Department of English, continues to be ranked among the top MFA Programs in the country by Poets and Writers magazine. It ranks number one for selectivity.

The prize-winning creative writing faculty includes fiction writers Tony Earley, Lorraine Lopez, Lorrie Moore and Nancy Reisman; poets Mark Jarman, Kate Daniels, Rick Hilles, Beth Bachmann and Sandy Solomon; and nonfiction writer Peter Guralnick.

Ann Marie Deer Owens, (615) 322-NEWS