University of Pittsburgh
October 5, 2008

Pitt's 2008 Drue Heinz Literature Prize Winner and Judge to Deliver Literary Readings Oct. 15

Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH-The 2008 Drue Heinz Literature Prize winner Anthony Varallo and judge Scott Turow will give evening readings at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 15, in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium, 650 Schenley Dr., Oakland. The event is part of the Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series' 2008-09 season.

Varallo received the honor for his short story collection, "Out Loud" (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2008). The Drue Heinz Literature Prize, one of the nation's most prestigious awards for books of short fiction, includes a cash prize of $15,000 and publication of the winning manuscript by the University of Pittsburgh Press. Previous winners include Kirk Nessett, Todd James Pierce, Stewart O'Nan, and Jane McCafferty.

"The stories in "Out Loud" are just awfully damn good," said Turow, who selected "Out Loud" from a pool of more than 300 entries. "They are the work of a very talented and accomplished writer."

Varallo also is the author of "This Day in History" (University of Iowa Press, 2005), which won the John Simmons Short Fiction Award and was a finalist for the 2006 Paterson Fiction Prize. His works of fiction have appeared in such publications as "Epoch," "Harvard Review," "New England Review," "The Black Warrior Review," "Crazyhorse," and "Story Quarterly."

Varallo is a native of Yorklyn, Del. He received his BA degree from the University of Delaware, the MFA degree from the University of Iowa, and the PhD degree from the University of Missouri at Columbia. He is an assistant professor of English at the College of Charleston and the fiction editor for "Crazyhorse," the college's nonprofit literary journal.

Turow is the author of the novels "Limitations" (Picador, 2006), "Ordinary Heroes" (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2005), "Reversible Errors" (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2002), "Personal Injuries" (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1999), and "The Laws of Our Fathers" (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1996).

Turow's books have been translated into more than 25 languages, have sold more than 25 million copies worldwide, and have been adapted into one full-length film as well as two television miniseries. He has won a number of literary awards and honors, including the Silver Dagger Award of the British Crime Writers, the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award in 2004, the Heartland Prize in 2003, and "Time Magazine's" Best Work of Fiction in 1999 for "Personal Injuries."

Born in Chicago in 1949, Turow graduated with high honors from Amherst College in 1970. He attended the Stanford University Creative Writing Center under an Edith Mirrielees Fellowship. In 1978, he graduated from Harvard Law School and served his native Chicago as an assistant U.S. attorney. After leaving the U.S. attorney's office in 1986, Turow became a novelist of legal thrillers.

The 2008-09 Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series season is cosponsored by Pitt's University Center for International Studies, Asian Studies Center, China Council Confucious Institute, Cultural Studies Program, Women's Studies Program, and Book Center and by the Carnegie Mellon University Creative Writing Program.

All events in the Writers Series are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Jeff Oaks at or visit