One of my favorite literary memories was hearing George Saunders read the short story “Offloading for Mrs. Schwartz” when his first collection Civilwarland in Bad Decline was published. Saunders was a new writer and the bookstore where I worked really trumped his work. He hung around with us grad students and booksellers and told tales about writing the short stories that would launch his literary career while he was on the clock at a technical writing gig.
He was a super cool guy and an inspiration to an aspiring writer like me.
So yesterday, I was frantically hitting “refresh” on various browsers to see how Saunders fared in the prestigious Man Booker Prize. I didn’t believe that someone I “know” (however tenuously) could ever win the award. But damned it all if he didn’t!
The Guardian has a good rundown of the awards with notification that George Saunders and his novel Lincoln in the Bardo earned the fifty thousand pound prize.
Cannot be more excited!