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Gillan Wins Writers For Writers Award

Maria Mazziotti Gillan

Maria Mazziotti Gillan

Congratulations go out to Guernica poet Maria Mazziotti Gillan (What We Pass On: Collected Poems: 1980 – 2009)! Maria, along with John Grisham and Elizabeth Nunez, has been selected as one of the recipient of the prestigious 2011 Barnes & Noble Writers For Writers Award. According to Elliot Figman, executive director of Poets & Writers, Inc.: “Each of the winners of this year’s Writers for Writers Award is devoted to nurturing a specific community of writers. In so doing, they have each enlarged our national literature and enriched the lives of readers everywhere.”

The 2011 awards will be presented at Poets & Writers’ benefit dinner, In Celebration of Writers, on March 2, 2011, at Capitale in New York City. The chair of this year’s event is Michael Morrison, president and publisher, U.S. General Books and Canada, HarperCollins Publishers. Continuing a Poets & Writers tradition, authors will be seated at each table. Among those serving as literary table hosts this year are Elizabeth Alexander, Jonathan Franzen, Erica Jong, Wally Lamb, Sam Lipsyte, Peter Straub, and many other notable writers.

Tickets to the dinner begin at $500 per person. In addition, Poets & Writers will host an After Party with tickets offered at $25. The evening is expected to generate over $350,000, with proceeds to support Poets & Writers’ extensive programs for creative writers.

The Writers for Writers Award was established by Poets & Writers in 1996 to recognize authors who have given generously to other writers or to the broader literary community.

Maria Mazziotti Gillan has promoted literature in Paterson, NJ, for more than thirty years. She is the founder and executive director of the Poetry Center at Passaic County Community College in Paterson, NJ and the editor of the Paterson Literary Review. She coordinated and created the Allen Ginsberg Awards, the Paterson Poetry Book Prize, the Paterson Fiction Book Prize, and the Prize for Books for Young People, and for many years has organized readings and workshops in public schools, as well as for adults and senior citizens, in Paterson. Through POETRYWORKS/USA she created a cable television program to highlight poetry and fiction by regional and national poets and writers. She directs the Creative Writing Program at Binghamton University-State University of New York, where she is Professor of Poetry. She has published twelve books of poetry, including the Guernica publications All That Lies Between Us, which won the American Book Award, and What We Pass On: Collected Poems 1980-2009.

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