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Brockmeier Named to ARS Writing Contest Judges Panel

The Argenta Reading Series today finalized the judges panel for its writing contest, which will conclude at an event this Saturday. Named to the panel are Laman Library Director Crystal Gates, Arkansas Times Arts & Culture Editor Stephanie Smittle, and award-winning writer Kevin Brockmeier.

Brockmeier is the author of the novels The Illumination, The Brief History of the Dead, and The Truth About Celia; the story collections Things That Fall from the Sky and The View from the Seventh Layer; the children’s novels City of Names and Grooves: A Kind of Mystery; and, most recently, a memoir of his seventh-grade year called A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip. He has published his stories in such venues as The New Yorker, McSweeney’s, Zoetrope, Tin House, The Oxford American, The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories anthology, The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror, and New Stories from the South, and in 2007 he was named one of Granta magazine's Best Young American Novelists. He teaches frequently at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.

"I'm excited for our young writers competing in the contest to get the opportunity to read their work in front of an accomplished writer like Kevin," said ARS Director Guy Choate. "This contest is all about the creation of good creative writing here in Arkansas, and Kevin has made a career out of doing just that."

More than 50 high school students submitted to the writing contest, but the field has been narrowed to four finalists who will compete for the $1,000 top prize. Britney Graves of Bryant High School, Bradi Matlock of Har-Ber High School, Haley McDaniel and Gaylee Spurlock, both of Valley View High School, will read their works on May 27 at 6:30pm at the Argenta United Methodist Church space at 421 N. Main St., in North Little Rock, Arkansas. RSVP to the free event here.

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