California writer Kelly Luce has been awarded the second annual Danahy Fiction Prize by the editors of Tampa Review. She will receive a cash award of $1,000 and her winning story, “Ms. Yamada’s Toaster,” will be printed in the forthcoming issue, Tampa Review 36.
Luce is a widely published author whose fiction has previously appeared in The Gettysburg Review, Fourteen Hills, New Ohio Review, Nimrod, and Alimentum, and can be found online at Common Ties and Review Americana. She was a finalist for the Indiana Review’s Fiction Prize in 2006. Originally from Chicago, she currently works as a nanny in Silicon Valley, California, and lives in the Santa Cruz mountains. She previously worked in Japan for two years—one year teaching public junior high English and a year directing a children’s immersion program.
Some of the characters and motifs in her story—with an inventive plot featuring a toaster that predicts the future and references to American and Japanese pop culture—derive from that experience, including the title character. “Though I never encountered a psychic appliance while living there,” Luce says, “I did have an English conversation student who was a partial inspiration for Ms. Yamada.”
The Danahy Fiction Prize was established by Paul and Georgia Danahy as an annual award for a previously unpublished work of short fiction judged by the editors of Tampa Review.
This year the judges also named five outstanding finalists:
- “A Valley of Gods” by Heather Brittain Bergstrom of Yuba City, California;
- “Almost Show Quality” by Barbara A. Fischer of Versailles, Kentucky;
- “Bat Mitzvah” by Mathew Goldberg of Fayetteville, Arkansas;
- “The Last Theorem” by Buzz Mauro of Annapolis, Maryland; and
- “Other Plans” by Courtney Zoffness of Brooklyn, New York.
The Danahy Fiction Prize is open to both new and widely published writers, and the contest has an annual postmark deadline of November 1. The $15 entry fee includes a one-year subscription, and all entries submitted are considered for publication.
Complete guidelines are available on the Web at http://tampareview.ut.edu or by sending a self-addressed, stamped envelope to The Danahy Fiction Prize, University of Tampa Press, 401 West Kennedy Blvd., Tampa, FL 33606.