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Winners of The 2023 Orison Prizes in Fiction & Poetry

Updated: 4 days ago


Orison Books is pleased to announce the results of The 2023 Orison Prizes in Fiction & Poetry.


FICTION RESULTS


David Heska Wanbli Weiden has selected the story collection "On Earth as It Is in Heaven" by Vishwas R. Gaitonde as the fiction winner from a pool of anonymous finalist manuscripts. Gaitonde will receive $1,500 and publication of his collection by Orison Books.


FICTION FINALISTS

Naomi Rhema Edwards, "The River Whales of Sub-Sub-Utopian Pittsburgh"

K. TingTing Gray, "Crescent Lane"

Wayne Karlin, "The Genizah: A Bricolage"


FICTION SEMI-FINALISTS


Allison Field Bell, "Bodies of Other Women"

G. W. Currier, "We Will Not Grieve"

Dianne Dugaw, "On Cowlitz Prairie: Tales of a Cowgirl Catholic"

Joseph Levens, "Girl in Tow"

Alan Sincic, "We Could Fix You"


ABOUT "ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN"

About the winning manuscript, David Heska Wanbli Weiden, author of Winter Counts, writes: "This luminous collection of short stories by Vishwas R. Gaitonde spans the globe, introducing us to memorable characters and written in exquisite prose. The men and women in these tales—many of whom are émigrés and expatriates—struggle to make sense of the customs and traditions of their new homes while also negotiating the passages of their personal and familial relationships. I was deeply moved by these stories and the characters’ travails and triumphs. It is indeed a pleasure to welcome this fantastic new voice in world literature."


ABOUT THE WINNER

Vishwas R. Gaitonde spent his formative years in India, has lived in Britain, and now resides in the United States. His work has appeared in Mid-American Review, Bellevue Literary Review, The Iowa Review, Santa Monica Review, Gargoyle, and Epiphany, among other places. He was a finalist in The George Floyd Short Story Competition conducted by The Nottingham Writers Studio, Nottingham, England, and he was a finalist for The Chautauqua Institution’s Janus Prize “for daring formal and aesthetic innovations that upset and reorder readers’ imaginations.” Distinctions include fellowships to The Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies (Minnesota) and The Hawthornden Castle International Writers Residency (Scotland).


POETRY RESULTS

Pádraig Ó Tuama has selected "This Eye Is for Seeing Stars" by Christine Poreba as the poetry winner from a pool of anonymous finalist manuscripts. Poreba will receive $1,500 and publication of her collection by Orison Books.


POETRY FINALISTS

Madelyn Garner, "The Luminous Between"

Regan Good, "The Blood Ribbon"

Jeanine Hathaway, "A Walk on the Margin"

Greg Rappleye, "Barley Child"

Michael Sandler, "Water Psalms"


POETRY SEMI-FINALISTS


Jana-Lee Germaine, "Learning Curve"

Stephen Benz, "Riffs || Glosses || Variations"

Richard Brostoff, "Still Smoke"

Jake Crist, "Old Dirt"

Daniel Kraft, "Notes Toward a Psalm"

Alice Liang, "Beforelife"

Jeremy Radin, "Belly God"

Stella Reed, "I Feel Just Fine in My Scars"


ABOUT "THIS EYE IS FOR SEEING STARS"

About the winning manuscript, Pádraig Ó Tuama, author of Feed the Beast and In the Shelter: Finding a Home in the World, writes: "This Eye Is for Seeing Stars has a clue in its title: seeing. Christine Poreba trains her gaze on birds, family, city, self, and change, and by this practice—looking at, looking to, looking through—she shows us what poetry can do. Regret is paired with art: 'I always knew I’d miss the live oak / I lived beside in Florida / for fifteen years'; and nature is not tame: 'when my son looks up at the beautiful clouds we name / anything we want he says he sees a gun...' Poreba's lyric voice, style, and point of view—as well as her capacity to sustain attention through poems of varying length—kept me returning to these powerful poems."


ABOUT THE WINNER

Christine Poreba is a New Yorker who lived for more than a decade in North Florida and now lives in Chicagoland, where she enjoys moving through seasons again. She is the author of Rough Knowledge (Anhinga Press, 2016), winner of The Philip Levine Prize. Her poems have appeared in several anthologies and numerous journals, including Barrow Street, The Southern Review, Cimarron Review, Puerto del Sol, and The Sun.



THE 2024 ORISON PRIZES


The 2024 Orison Prizes in Fiction & Poetry will be open for submissions from December 1, 2023 – April 1, 2024. The judges will be Kaveh Akbar (fiction) and Ellen Bass (poetry).

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