Laura Maylene Walter is the recipient of the 2010 G.S. Sharat Chandra Prize for Short Fiction, as judged by Robert Olen Butler; Ohioana's 2011 Walter Rumsey Marvin grant, awarded annually to an Ohio writer age 30 or under; and Washington College's 2003 Sophie Kerr Prize, the nation's largest undergraduate literary award. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Poets & Writers, The Writer, Inkwell, American Literary Review, Ohioana Quarterly, Flyway, Crab Creek Review, South Dakota Review, and elsewhere, and her novel-in-progress was named a runner-up in the 2010 James Jones First Novel Fellowship. Laura grew up in Lancaster, PA, and has resided in the Cleveland area since 2004. She works as an editor of a trade magazine and lives with her husband and their two cats in Lakewood, Ohio. She discusses truth, fiction, and the writing life at lauramaylenewalter.com.
This collection of 13 stories feature characters, especially young women who redefine their sense of belonging by reconciling with their pasts. Whether it is a plain-looking woman winning ungainly notoriety as a lingerie window model, a young figure skater being lured by a stalker, or a daughter examining her mother's accidental death at a horse farm, these stories' protagonists surprise themselves and the reader by finding their places in the world through unpredictable turns. “Walter's first book is a collection of fine and finely unsettling stories,” writes Kristin Ohlson (Kabul Beauty School). “In these wonderfully written little tempests, the characters possess a keen but rarely bitter clarity about the losses and accommodations that life demands.” Butler writes that these stories “are not content simply to render the problems of characters; they transform those problems into the dynamic of desire, which drives all great narrative.”