July 20, 2012
Jacob White, assistant professor of writing and literature at Johnson State College, has won first place in the 2012 international fiction competition sponsored by Leapfrog Press for his collection of short stories, The Days Down Here.
White’s manuscript was among 424 submitted by authors from across the world in the adult fiction category. Leapfrog Press of Falmouth, Mass., will publish his book in fall 2013.
Contest judge Lev Raphael, an award-winning author of 20 books, called White’s stories “fresh, fierce, sad, funny, deep. The author is a natural storyteller, with a voice that is like music. … This book sings. It’s real, it’s beautiful.”
Leapfrog Press says White’s stories “concern people who no longer recognize themselves, who have arrived, like the Sunbelt itself, to a strange day that seems disconnected from all the old days, the old stories, the old selves. Yet it’s always on this day we must answer for ourselves — right an overturned car, recover the body of a brother, convince a son of our worth and his. We are adrift with bad judgment, a little loose in the head, but searching for the correction.”
A native of South Carolina, White joined the Johnson State faculty in fall 2010. He has published fiction in many journals, including The Georgia Review, New Letters, Salt Hill, New Orleans Reviewand The Sewanee Review, from which he received the Andrew Lytle Prize. He studied creative writing at Binghamton University and the University of Houston, where he received the 2008 Donald Barthelme Memorial Fellowship in Fiction and a Ph.D. in literature and creative writing. He also received special mention in The Pushcart Prize XXX, and he was a finalist for the 2008 Flannery O’Connor Fiction Prize.
In addition to teaching at JSC, White serves as fiction editor of the college’s award-winning literary journal, Green Mountains Review, and helps coordinate an annual authors series at JSC. He previously had taught at the University of North Florida, Binghamton University and the University of Houston. He lives with his wife and young son in Stowe.