Catherine Reid, chair of Warren Wilson College’s undergraduate creative writing program, has been selected by the National Endowment for the Arts to receive a Creative Writing Fellowship in Prose (fiction or creative nonfiction).
The $25,000 non-matching grant is one of only 38 fellowships awarded nationwide. They enable published writers to set aside time for writing, research, travel and general career advancement.
Reid was awarded the fellowship based on a manuscript reviewed through an anonymous process in which the only review criteria are artistic excellence and artistic merit. Her essay, which first appeared in the Georgia Review, interweaves themes about bird hibernation with the influences of her grandmother, an ardent birder and survivor of the Spanish Influenza and the challenges of the Great Depression who died at age 100. Reid also is the author of “Coyote” and the essay collection “Falling into Place” (Beacon Press), on Oprah Winfrey’s list of “14 Riveting Reads to Pick Up in March 2014.”
“This is a formidable group of both emerging and well-established writers,” said Amy Stolls, NEA acting director of literature. “They demonstrate an impressive range of styles and subject matter. We are proud to recommend each of them for an NEA Creative Writing Fellowship.”
Reid said, “It’s truly an honor to be selected by a jury of one’s peers, to have the work itself – and nothing the panelists know about the writer – be what earns their unqualified thumbs-up.”
The 38 creative writing fellows range in age from 27 to 60 and hail from 18 states across the nation. The fellowships are highly competitive; for this round, the NEA received more than 1,300 eligible manuscripts. A complete listing of the NEA Creative Writing Fellows for fiscal-year 2014 can be found here.
The fellowship is the second Reid has received within the past two months. She is among 15 artists from across North Carolina to receive the 2013–2014 N.C. Arts Council Artist Fellowship Award in the categories of songwriting, composing and writing. The fellowships support creative development and the creation of new work. Reid’s arts council award specifically honors and supports her work in the category of Literature – Creative Nonfiction.