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Alistair Morgan is First Non-American to Win the Plimpton Prize

Alistair Morgan and Alex Smith

The Paris Review AnthologyAlert! According to correspondence seen by BOOK SA, Alistair Morgan has won the 2009 Paris Review‘s Plimpton Prize for Fiction, which is awarded to “the best new fiction writer who has appeared in the magazine” the previous year.

Not one, but two of Morgan’s stories appeared in the venerable literary journal in 2008: “Iceberg” and “Departure”. His first novel, meanwhile, Sleeper’s Wake, will be published by Penguin later this year.

Writing to Morgan to inform him of the good news, Paris Review editor Philip Gourevitch said:

“Named after George Plimpton who edited the magazine for its first fifty years, the prize carries a $10,000 purse, and is presented each April at the our spring Revel, our fundraising bash in New York.”

The judges were Paris Review founder Peter Matthiessen, New York Review of Books editor Robert Silvers and Stephen Gaghan (Oscar-winning writer/director of Traffic and Syriana). According to the letter, the vote was unanimous.

Gourevitch continued, “This is the first time that I’m aware of that the prize has gone to a non-American, and I couldn’t be more pleased. Congratulations… now, we have to make sure that you will be with us on Monday night April 14 in New York to be feted and fussed over… The evening always honors a living master of our literature with the magazine’s Hadada Award (named after the noisy African bird, which was Plimpton’s favorite).”

BOOK SA joins Gourevitch in congratulating Morgan!

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Recent comments:

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Alex Smith</a>
    Alex Smith
    February 2nd, 2009 @12:39 #

    Fantastic! Wicked! Wonderful! Glorious! Historic! Alistair, this is remarkable and ... phew, I can't wait to read that novel waiting in the wings. Isn't it coming out this year? I don't even know the title, but I'm willing to bet it'll win awards too ... lots of big ones.

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Alex Smith</a>
    Alex Smith
    February 2nd, 2009 @12:47 #

    I'm so excited I didn't read it properly to see the title of the book...skimmer

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Lauren Beukes</a>
    Lauren Beukes
    February 2nd, 2009 @13:46 #

    Iceberg was remarkable and horribly relevant. C'mon Ben, dig up a link to Departure. And get us an extract of Sleeper's Wake while you're at it.

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Louis Greenberg</a>
    Louis Greenberg
    February 2nd, 2009 @13:54 #

    Wouldn't it be nice if this was the start of a SA-lit-the-next-big-thing-in-the-States snowball?

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Helen</a>
    February 2nd, 2009 @14:04 #

    Just read Iceberg instead of proofing a report on Angola. So many layers. And hear, hear Louis. (I don't see why not: our covers, editors, typesetters, designers and yes, our writers too, knock spots off much of what I saw Stateside.)

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Kathryn</a>
    February 2nd, 2009 @14:09 #

    Absolutely incredibly beautifully written short story. congratulations well worth the prize (and the money :)

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Liesl</a>
    February 2nd, 2009 @22:23 #

    Just the best news. Go, homeboy, go.


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