I’m delighted to report that the results are in for the inaugural Southword Fiction Chapbook Competition. There are two categories: Best International and Best Irish Chapbook. And the winners are…
Best International Chapbook
A Middle Eastern No by Jill Widner
( Yakima, WA USA)
Jill Widner grew up in Sumatra, Indonesia, the setting of her novel in progress, A Green Raft on a Muddy Swell, where her father worked as a petroleum engineer in the 1960s. The three stories included in A Middle Eastern No are part of a collection of stories in progress set in Iran and Saudi Arabia, where her father worked throughout the 1970s. When Stars Fell Like Salt Before the Revolution was published in both The Fiddlehead: Atlantic Canada’s International Literary Journal (University of New Brunswick) and Everywhere Stories: I (Press 53) in 2014. Yalda & Zhila is forthcoming in the May/June 2019 issue of Kenyon Review Online. Her fiction has also appeared in American Short Fiction; Asia Literary Review (Hong Kong); Kyoto Journal; North American Review; Shenandoah; Short Fiction (University of Plymouth Press), Wasafiri online, and Willesden Herald: New Short Stories. She has been the recipient of grants and fellowships from Artist Trust and the Washington State Arts Commission, the Banff Centre, the Corporation of Yaddo, Hawthornden Castle, the Helen Riaboff Whiteley Center at Friday Harbor Laboratories, the MacDowell Colony, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and VCCA-France. She is a graduate of the University of Hawai’i at Manoa and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and currently lives and teaches in Yakima, Washington.
It’s Not Me It’s You by Brian Kirk ( Dublin, Ireland)
Brian Kirk is a poet and short story writer from Dublin. He was shortlisted twice for Hennessy Awards for fiction. His first poetry collection After The Fall was published by Salmon Poetry in 2017. His poem “Birthday” won the Listowel Writers’ Week Irish Poem of the Year at the An Post Irish Book Awards 2018. Recent stories have appeared in The Lonely Crowd and online at Willesden Herald New Short Fiction, Fictive Dream and Cold Coffee Stand. His story Festival was longlisted for the Galley Beggar Press Short Story Prize 2017/8. He blogs at www.briankirkwriter.com.
The winning chapbooks will be published in autumn 2019. I’m really looking forward to this! Congratulations to my fellow winner, Jill Widner, and huge thanks to Patrick Cotter and all at Munster Literature Centre. It’s a major boost as I work towards compiling my first full short story collection with my mentor, Dermot Bolger.