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New Mexico State University instructor receives literary award

Bernadette Smyth, New Mexico State University instructor of women's studies and English, received the 2004 Tobias Wolff Award for Fiction.

000 award is offered every year by The Bellingham Review to recognize outstanding poetry, stories and essays.

Smyth's poetic short story, "Kissing," is about a young girl who learns about herself and her strength when confronted by obstacles in life. It is one of many interconnected short stories within her collection entitled "Devil House."

"It feels so good to get published and be recognized for a story that has stayed very dear to my heart," Smyth said.

Smyth received bachelor's degrees in English and journalism and minors in women's studies and broadcast journalism from Suffolk University in Boston in 1992. She received her master's degree in English from NMSU in 1998 followed by a master of fine arts degree in creative writing in 2002.

While studying at NMSU, she received the Sutherland and McManus awards from the English department.

Smyth served as the assistant publications manager for University Communications at NMSU from 2000-2004.

She also served as the editor-in-chief and managing editor of Puerto del Sol and is currently editing a supplement to the magazine about the murdered women in Juarez.

Smyth will be going home to Ireland in the fall to focus on her writing.

"Kissing" will appear in the Spring 2005 edition of The Bellingham Review. She also will have another piece, "Cider," published in Carve Magazine in spring 2005 and a book review coming out in Prairie Schooner this fall.