From Our Staff | September 06, 2012

We are incredibly proud to announce that one of our contribituors, Rachel Swearingen, is one of six women writers to receive a 2012 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award!

From the press release:

“Celebrating its 18th year, the Rona Jaffe Awards have helped many women build successful writing careers by offering encouragement and financial support at a critical time. The Awards have been increased this year to $30,000 each and will be presented to the six recipients on September 20th in New York City.

“The other recipients this year are Julia Elliott, Christina Nichol, Lauren Goodwin Slaughter, Kim Tingley, and Inara Verzemnieks.

“Celebrated novelist Rona Jaffe (1931-2005) established The Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Awards program in 1995. It is the only national literary awards program of its kind dedicated to supporting women writers exclusively. Since the program began, the Foundation has awarded more than $1 million to emergent women writers, including several who have gone on to critical acclaim, such as Elif Batuman, Eula Biss, Judy Budnitz, Lan Samantha Chang, Rebecca Curtis, Rivka Galchen, Kathleen Graber, Frances Hwang, Aryn Kyle, ZZ Packer, Tracy K. Smith, Mary Szybist, and Julia Whitty.”

We’re over the moon about this news! Rachel’s story “Strangers Among Us” appeared in TMR Vol. 30, No. 1. Set in Washington D.C., the story is about Leslie, a woman unhappy in her marriage to her husband Michael, who visits her old working class neighborhood and a bar called Harry’s Tavern in the hopes of having an affair to deal with her crumbling marriage. It’s a terrific story about love, loneliness and the challenges in relationships that are often difficult to pinpoint. You can find a copy of the issue here.

Rachel is currently a visiting assistant professor at Kalamazoo College beginning in fall 2012. Visit her online at and say “Congratulations!”

Follow Michael on Twitter: @mpnye