Elizabeth Poliner

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Elizabeth Poliner’s Recent Publications

On September 16, 2019, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on Elizabeth Poliner’s Recent Publications

Here are Elizabeth Poliner’s recent publications! “Anomie,” (short story) published in Story, Summer 2019.
Poems in The Sun: “What was Astonishing” (October 2019); “Climate Change,” (September 2019); and “Walking at Night,” (February 2019)

Short story “Sabelle” named a 2019 Nelson Algren Literary Award Finalist

On September 16, 2019, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on Short story “Sabelle” named a 2019 Nelson Algren Literary Award Finalist

Elizabeth Poliner’s short story “Sabelle” was named a 2019 Nelson Algren Literary Award Finalist (one of three finalists out of over 3,000 stories) and published in the Chicago Review.

At her husband Manny’s funeral, Kaye hoped she hadn’t gone on too long with her eulogy but she had a feeling she did. Still, someone had to tell them—friends, relatives, his children, his grandchildren—how much she and Manny had meant to each other, how happy they’d been. They were at least as important to each other, as besotted with each other, as he had been with Sabelle, the original wife who’d died some dozen years ago. Since then—during their eight years together, the last three of which were formalized in marriage—Manny was Kaye’s, her one and only husband; he was and would always be the great love of her life. Someone had to tell them, to make this matter clear, because as soon as Manny died, Kaye realized, their marriage, as if made of a rising vapor rather than the solid earth of their companionable, middle-aged love, was quickly vanishing. Sabelle, his first love, the mother of his children, the person he’d slept with through the bliss and blitz of a long, fruitful, till-death-do-you-part marriage, was at the core of the other eulogies, the children’s, the long-term friends, people who couldn’t help but reference Manny’s life in terms of Sabelle’s. What was Kaye’s marriage compared with all that? The funeral was coming to a close and Manny was soon to be buried, but it seemed all too real to Kaye that Sabelle, oddly enough, had come back to life.

Click here to read the full story: Chicago Tribune

Photo Credit: Nelson Algren works at a typewriter May 24, 1956, for a Chicago American story after the 1956 release of “A Walk on the Wild Side.” (Arnold Tolchin/Chicago American)

As Close to Us as Breathing wins the 2017 Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize!

On September 13, 2017, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on As Close to Us as Breathing wins the 2017 Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize!

From the Kafka Prize Committee

Although Elizabeth Poliner’s As Close to Us as Breathing takes place within the confines of a small seaside community, the story the novel tells is nothing short of epic. Unfolding over multiple generations of an American-Jewish family, Poliner’s work encompasses a world much larger than the one defined by its locale. The story is haunted by a very real death that occurs at the beginning of the book and forever alters the dynamic of the family, especially the relationship of the sisters Ada, Vivie and Bec. However, there is a melancholy to the novel, set in 1948, that seems rooted even deeper than the tragedy that befalls the family: in the horrors of the recently concluded second world war, the struggle at the settling of the Israeli state, or the stifling social roles the family has inherited from an old world left behind long ago. Religion and tradition have made decisions for the characters’ lives that are difficult to evade. Yet, there is also a grace to the prose that allows sunlight in. It is, after all, a beach novel and there are beaches, young love, baseball, vivid descriptions of family objects that are almost tactile. And, perhaps most significantly, it has a big, deep-beating human heart at its center that draws the reader in through empathy with the characters, who, like many of us, struggle to do what is expected of us, rather than what we desire.

About the Award
Since 1976, the Susan B. Anthony Institute for Gender and Women’s Studies and the Department of English at the University of Rochester have awarded the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for fiction by an American woman. The idea for the prize came out of the personal grief of the friends and family of a fine young editor who was killed in an automobile accident just as her career was beginning to achieve its promise of excellence. She was 30 years old, and those who knew her believed she would do much to further the causes of literature and women. Her family, her friends, and her professional associates in the publishing industry created the endowment from which the prize is bestowed, in memory of Janet Heidinger Kafka and the literary standards and personal ideals for which she stood.

About the Committee
This year’s Committee members were:

Beth Jörgensen, Professor of Spanish, University of Rochester
Jason Peck, Visiting Assistant Professor of German, University of Rochester
Katherine Mannheimer, Associate Professor of English, University of Rochester

-Source: SUSAN B. ANTHONY INSTITUTE FOR GENDER, SEXUALITY, AND WOMEN’S STUDIES, http://www.sas.rochester.edu/gsw/news-events/kafka-prize/winner.html

Listen to a Book Talk

On August 21, 2017, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on Listen to a Book Talk

AS CLOSE TO US AS BREATHING named as finalist for 2017 Library of Virginia People’s Award

On May 18, 2017, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on AS CLOSE TO US AS BREATHING named as finalist for 2017 Library of Virginia People’s Award

We need your vote! As Close to Us as Breathing has been named a finalist for the 2017 Library of Virginia People’s Choice Award for Fiction. The People’s Choice awards are given in both the Fiction and Nonfiction categories, and are voted on by the public via the Library of Virginia’s website.

VOTE NOW! Online voting begins on May 15, and will continue until July 15.

As Close to Us as Breathing is Costco’s February Pennie’s Pick!

On February 2, 2017, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on As Close to Us as Breathing is Costco’s February Pennie’s Pick!

As Close to Us as Breathing is Costco’s February Pennie’s Pick!

Many thanks to Pennie Clark Ianniciello!

Interview on Dead Darlings

On December 8, 2016, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on Interview on Dead Darlings

Elizabeth Poliner was recently interviewed on Dead Darlings, by Helen Bronk: View on DeadDarlings.com

Amazon Best Book of 2016.

On December 8, 2016, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on Amazon Best Book of 2016.

As Close to Us as Breathing has been named an Amazon Best Book of 2016. Find it here: http://amzn.to/2f1cEh3

As Close to Us as Breathing makes BuzzFeed Book’s list of “31 Books You Need to Bring to the Beach this Summer”

On July 15, 2016, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on As Close to Us as Breathing makes BuzzFeed Book’s list of “31 Books You Need to Bring to the Beach this Summer”

As Close to Us as Breathing makes BuzzFeed Book’s list of “31 Books You Need to Bring to the Beach this Summer”. View more HERE.

As Close to Us as Breathing is named an Amazon Best Books of 2016 So Far, in Fiction/Literature

On July 15, 2016, Posted by , In News, With Comments Off on As Close to Us as Breathing is named an Amazon Best Books of 2016 So Far, in Fiction/Literature

As Close to Us as Breathing is named an Amazon Best Books of 2016 So Far, in Fiction/Literature. Check it out HERE.