Announcing our winner of the 2018 Press 53 Award for Short Fiction

Jun Julian.jpg

Jen Julian of Meadville, PA, has been named winner of the 2018 Press 53 Award Short Fiction for her story collection Earthly Delights and Other Apocalypses. Jen's story collection will be published in October, at which time she will receive her First Prize advance of $1,500.

Kevin Morgan Watson, Publisher and Editor in Chief of Press 53, who served as the only judge, says, "This collection of stories held my interest while taking me on a variety of journeys, both real and surreal, from a paleontologist who spontaneously crumbles to dust during a lecture, to siblings dealing with their hoarder-father’s estate. These stories ranged widely in theme and style, and after finishing one story I looked forward to where I would be taken in the next."

Jen Julian is a 2016 Clarion alumna with a PhD in English from the University of Missouri, Columbia, and an MFA in Fiction from UNC Greensboro. Her short stories and essays have appeared or are upcoming in TriQuarterly, Beecher’s Magazine, Greensboro Review, The Chattahoochee Review, and North Carolina Literary Review, among other places. Currently, she is the Visiting Fiction Writer-in-Residence at Allegheny College in Pennsylvania, where she teaches writing and literature and is working on a dystopian novel. She calls coastal North Carolina her home.

Watson also selected a Runner-up and four Finalists:

Book of Jeremiah by Julie Zuckerman of Trumbull, CT

Deep in the Heart by Laura Golden of Wilmington, NC
Out of Order by Michele Ruby of Louisville, KY
The Rightful Throne by Robert McBrearty of Louisville, CO
When by Katherine Zlabek of Washington, D.C.

Press 53 received nearly 300 entries from more than thirty states plus the District of Columbia. The Press 53 Award for Short Fiction is an annual competition for an outstanding, unpublished collection of short stories. Everyone at Press 53 thank all the writers who entered this year's competition. We are looking forward to reading more fantastic stories when we open entries for the 2019 competition on September 1.


Previous Winners

2014 —Wendy J. Fox, The Seven Stages of Anger and Other Stories

2015 —Elizabeth Gonzales, The Universal Physics of Escape

2016 —Dennis McFadden, Jimtown Road: A Novel in Stories

2017 —Stephanie Carpenter, Missing Persons