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NMSU graduate wins $3,000 fiction award

Kathleen Lee of Santa Fe, a New Mexico State University 1998 graduate, has won The Red Crane Books Writing Prize in honor of the late poet Jim Sagel.


Lee will receive $3,000 and her story, "Still Life," will be published in the Winter 2000 issue of NMSU's Puerto Del Sol magazine.

"The story tells awe-inspiring truths about human vulnerability," said Kevin McIlvoy, an NMSU English professor and Puerto's editor in chief.

Lee's story is about a woman who, after traveling out of the country for 20 years, returns to her hometown to die. She is forced to contemplate the life she has lived and her imminent death.

This is the first Red Crane Books Writing Prize to be awarded by the Santa Fe publisher. The award, with the support of Red Crane Books and Marianne and Michael O'Shaughnessy, will be presented annually to a New Mexico fiction writer who has not published a full-length book.

Sagel, a New Mexico poet who passed away in 1998, was on Puerto Del Sol's advisory board and published several books with Red Crane.

The second annual prize will be awarded to a New Mexico poet. Poets who have not published a full-length book may submit up to 10 poems of any length. Manuscripts must be received between Oct. 1 and Dec. 1, 1999. For more information contact: Kathleen West, Puerto Del Sol poetry editor, Department of English, MSC 3K, P.O. Box 30001, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, N.M. 88003-8001. The third-year award will be for a novel. No entrance fee is required.
Rita Popp
May 14, 1999