Brazaitis received $500 and his novella will appear in a forthcoming issue of “The Meadow,” the literary and art journal of Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno, Nev.
The final judge of the contest was Christian Kiefer, a professor at American River College in Sacramento, Calif., and the author of the novels The Infinite Tides and The Animals.
A novella is usually defined as a fictional prose work longer than a short story and shorter than a novel—or anywhere between 50 and 150 pages.
“The novella is a beautiful form, but it’s not the easiest to get published, so I’m grateful to Christian Kiefer and the editors of “The Meadow” for selecting my work,” Brazaitis said.
“The Spider” is about a young missionary in Guatemala who, in the midst of that country’s civil war, falls in love with a brilliant, funny, and alluring young woman whose life may be in danger because of her family’s political leanings.
Brazaitis is the author of seven books, including “The River of Lost Voices: Stories from Guatemala,” winner of the 1998 Iowa Short Fiction Award, “The Incurables: Stories,” winner of the 2012 Richard Sullivan Prize and the 2013 Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award in Prose, and “Julia & Rodrigo,” winner of the 2012 Gival Press Novel Award. His latest book, “Truth Poker: Stories,” won the 2014 Autumn House Press Fiction Competition.