UH Creative Writing Program Professor Antonya Nelson Named USA Fellow

Since 2006, United States Artists (USA) has recognized the best and brightest artists with annual fellowships. Among this year's USA Fellows is a member of the University of Houston's esteemed Creative Writing faculty.

Antonya Nelson, Cullen Chair in UH's Creative Writing Program and award-winning author, recently was announced as a recipient of this prestigious fellowship.

"I am deeply appreciative of the generous vote of confidence USA Artists, especially the Todd Simon family, have extended to me," Nelson said. "The 50 artists are an impressively diverse group -- geographically, esthetically and artistically.  To be included among them is a great honor."

Nelson's award-winning short stories include "Female Trouble," which received the 2001 O. Henry Award, and "The Lonely Doll," recipient of the 2003 Pushcart Prize. Her 1989 collection of stories, "The Expendables" received the Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction, the Nelson Algren Award and a PEN Syndicated Fiction Award. For her 1996 novel, "Talking in Bed," Nelson received the Heartland Award in fiction.

Five of Nelson's books have been named New York Times Notable books: "In the Land of Men" (1992), "Talking in Bed" (1996), "Nobody's Girl: A Novel" (1998), "Living to Tell: A Novel" (2000) and "Female Trouble" (2002).

Her work has been published in The New Yorker, Esquire, Harpers and other magazines. In 2000, The New Yorker cited Nelson as one of the "20 young writers for the new millennium."

Nelson's other honors include a National Endowment for the Arts grant and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

"When faculty in UH's Creative Writing Program receive national recognition, it contributes significantly to the university's reputation as a school where original and important works are done," said J. Kastely, director of the Creative Writing Program. "It also helps the UH attract the best creative writers to its graduate program."

USA is an advocacy program committed to supporting working artists through privately funded cash grants. Each year, USA provides 50 artists with fellowships of $50,000. Fellows are selected by a panel of artists from diverse disciplines.

As part of UH's English department, the Creative Writing Program offers poets, fiction writers and non-fiction writers intensive training in both creative writing and literary studies. It offers two graduate degrees: the Master of Fine Arts and Doctor of Philosophy. Nelson is part of a talented faculty that includes award-winning authors and poets such as poet and non-fiction writer Nick Flynn, graphic novelist Mat Johnson and poet Tony Hoagland. To learn more about the program, visit www.class.uh.edu/cwp/.

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