“Oasis” Nominated for 2012 Pushcart, O. Henry, and Best American Short Stories

On Thursday, I was elated to learn that my short story “Oasis”  had been nominated by Ruminate magazine for a  Pushcart Prize, a PEN/ O. Henry Prize, and for the 2012 Best American Short Stories.

As a short story writer, these three anthologies are like the Academy Awards for literary work: it’s amazing to win, but to be nominated is an honor in and of itself.

I was ten years old when I read my first smattering of stories in an O. Henry collection, 21 when I devoured a Best American Short Stories edition, and 25 when I read my first Pushcart anthology — and, in the case of each, I remember saying to myself, “man, what I wouldn’t give to write like this, to be included among these amazing writers one day.”

Now, with “Oasis” in the hands of these committees, I may just have a shot at inclusion — but, even if I don’t, it’s a dream come true to simply be among the piles of stories that are up for consideration.

My fingers are crossed, my hopes are high, but for now I will return to the work — yes, the work — and keep on trucking.

Thanks again to Dan Halloway for inspiring me to write “Oasis”; to eight-cuts for featuring the piece in their “Desert” exhibition; to Leif Enger for selecting the piece for the William Van Dyke fiction award; to Ruminate magazine and staff for their support and publication of the piece; to Kirsten Clodfelter, Maria Ivkovic, Norah Vawter, Ashley Ford, Jennifer Goldsmith, and Gary Armistead for reading and editing early versions of the story; to a season 4 episode of “LOST” for giving me the kernel of the piece; and, most of all, to my wonderful husband, Chris, for his unrelenting faith in me, my process, and in “Oasis” itself.

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