Professor and her student both win prestigious O. Henry Prize

Congrats to Prof. Crystal Wilkinson, and first year MFA in fiction, Chioma Ezeano, on winning the O. Henry Prize!

Crystal Wilkinson, associate professor, is the award-winning author of The Birds of Opulence (winner of the 2016 Ernest J. Gaines Prize for Literary Excellence), Water Street and Blackberries, Blackberries. Nominated for both the Orange Prize and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, she has received recognition from The Kentucky Foundation for Women, The Kentucky Arts Council, The Mary Anderson Center for the Arts, The Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown and is a recipient of the Chaffin Award for Appalachian Literature. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and her short stories, poems and essays have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies including most recently in the Oxford American and Southern Cultures. She will be next year's Kentucky Poety Laureate. 

Adachioma Ezeano is Igbo. She grew up in Nigeria, studied English Education at Nnamdi Azikiwe University, worked with First Bank of Nigeria 'fore moving to Kentucky. She is an alum of the Purple Hibiscus Workshop taught by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Her works or interviews have appeared in McSweeney’s Quarterly, Electric Literature, FlashBack Fictions, Deyu African, Brittle Paper. In 2019, she got nominated for Best of the Net and Best Small Fictions. In 2020, her work got anthologized in Best Small Fictions, 2020.  

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