Literary AwardsGAMBIER, Ohio (January 17, 2005) Two short stories that originally appeared in The Kenyon Review will receive more widespread acclaim this month as Anchor Books publishes the stories in The O. Henry Prize Stories 2005. Gail Jones's "Desolation" and Ron Rash's "Speckle Trout" were awarded the prestigious O. Henry Prize last fall. Only 20 stories are selected for the prize each year, out of hundreds submitted by magazine editors throughout North America. Both of the Review's winning stories came from authors new to the literary journal.
The O. Henry Prize Stories 2005 contains brief essays from the three distinguished jurors on their favorite story and comments from the prize-winning writers on the inspiration for their stories.
These recent prizes bring the Review's total O. Henry Prize selections to 35, securing a spot for the magazine on the O. Henry's "notable magazines" list, alongside heavy-hitting commercial publications such as The New Yorker and Atlantic Monthly. The Review's first O. Henry Prize was in 1944 for Marguerite Young's story "Old James."
The prize is named in honor of William Sidney Porter, who adopted the pseudonym O. Henry. O. Henry penned many of his stories in prison. When he was released, he was invited to New York, where he continued to write for the next eight years until his death in 1910.
The Review provides Kenyon students with the opportunity to work with one one of the country's preeminent literary magazines. Each year, a select group of students are chosen to work as Kenyon Review Associates. Their duties may range from organizing readings to helping assess submitted stories and poems. The opportunity provides a chance to see how a literary journal works, from the inside, and to shape the literary life of the campus and---who knows?---maybe even the country.