Weiki Wang Wins PEN/Hemingway

Debut author Weike Wang won the 2018 PEN/Hemingway Award, honoring a distinguished first book of fiction, for her novel Chemistry (Knopf), PEN America has announced. Seán Hemingway, the grandson of Ernest Hemingway, will present the award to Wang on Sunday, April 8, at a ceremony at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston. This year’s judges—authors Chris CastellaniGeraldine Brooks, and Elizabeth Strout—praised Chemistry, a first-person narrative of a graduate chemist’s personal and professional indecision told almost entirely in the present tense, as a “brilliant book” written in “elliptical prose, spare and clean as bone.”

Weike Wang will receive $25,000 underwritten by the Hemingway Family Prize and the Hemingway Foundation; a month-long Residency Fellowship at the Ucross Foundation in Wyoming, a retreat for artists and writers; and a residency from The Distinguished Visiting Writers Series at the University of Idaho’s MFA Creative Writing Program, along with a $5,000 stipend.

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