Saint Mary's English Professor Brenda Hillman has been named to the Longlist for the 2013 National Book Award for Poetry. Hillman was nominated for the prestigious prize for her latest collection of poetry Seasonal Works with Letters on Fire, which was published in August by Wesleyan University Press.
The Olivia C. Filippi Professor of Poetry at Saint Mary's and the director of the College's MFA Program in Creative Writing, Hillman received an Academy of American Poets Fellowship in 2012 and is the author of nine poetry collections, including Practical Water, which earned the Los Angeles Times Book Award for 2009, and Bright Existence, a 1993 Pulitzer Prize finalist.
A Saint Mary's literary treasure, Hillman was named among the "Fifty Most Inspiring Authors in the World" by Poets and Writers in 2010 and she has received awards and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Poetry Society of America among others.
Hillman is among ten distinguished writers included in the Longlist for the 2013 National Book Award for Poetry. Seasonal Works with Letters on Fire was one of 209 works of poetry considered for the award. This is the first time Hillman has been nominated for a National Book Award. Finalists will be announced on Oct. 16 and winners will announced on Nov. 20, 2013 at a ceremony and gala in New York City.
The National Book Award is one of the nation's most distinguished literary prizes and has a stellar record of identifying and rewarding quality writing. In 1950, William Carlos Williams was the first winner in Poetry, the following year William Faulkner was honored in Fiction, and so on through the years. Many previous winners of a National Book Award are now firmly established in the canon of American literature, such as Sherman Alexie, Louise Erdrich, Jonathan Franzen, Denis Johnson, Joyce Carol Oates, and Adrienne Rich.