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Novelist Tim O'Brien wins major literary prize

By Ann Friou
University News Service
March 16, 2010

Tim O'Brien

Tim O’Brien

Novelist Tim O’Brien, holder of the Endowed Chair in Creative Writing at Texas State University-San Marcos, has received the 2010 Katherine Anne Porter Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

The award, a $20,000 prize, is given to a writer of prose with demonstrated achievements in literature. O'Brien, who mainly writes about his experiences in the Vietnam War and the impact the war had on the American soldiers who fought there, received the National Book Award in 1979 for his book Going After Cacciato. His novel In the Lake of the Woods won the James Fenimore Cooper Prize for Best Historical Fiction in 1995, and his short story “The Things They Carried” has been widely anthologized. His most recent novel is July, July (2002).

The American Academy of Arts and Letters, established in 1898 by Henry James, Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson, among others, has given $147,000 in prizes in 2010, honoring both established and emerging writers of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. The full list of honorees can be seen at www.artsandletters.org.