UVU Awards Marilyn Brown Unpublished Novel Award For Seventh Year
May 16, 2014
For Immediate Release
University Marketing & Communications: Melinda Colton, 801-863-6807
Written by: Heather Wrigley, 801-863-8504
Christy Monson of Ogden, Utah, has won this year’s Marilyn Brown Unpublished Novel competition for her coming-of-age work, “Clawing Eagle.” The award, which carries a $1,000 honorarium, was announced this spring at the Utah Valley University College of Humanities & Social Sciences Dean’s Recognition Banquet.
When she created the competition in 2000, Marilyn Brown, a well-known author in Utah Valley, had two purposes in mind. First, she envisioned it as a way to encourage writers. Second, she expected the award could recognize and reward the best newly written novels focusing on either cultural experiences in the American west or experiences unique to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from any place in the world.
Monson, who holds a master’s degree from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, is a member of the By Lines chapter of the American Night Writers Association. Her publication history includes books, novels, and anthologized short stories. Her new novel addresses the healing process of 12-year-old Dre, a Hopi boy exiled from his clan along with his mother. Clawing Eagle, a spirit guardian, helps Dre protect his mother while the two outcasts struggle for survival in the harsh desert and red-rock canyons.
UVU associate professor Jen Wahlquist of the Department of English & Literature serves as administrator for the competition, which the University has hosted since fall 2008. She notes that Monson’s novel “continues to represent the high caliber of previous winners.” She also hopes “to see a record number of participating authors by Oct. 1, 2014, the deadline for the 2015 competition.”
As this year’s winner, Monson joins previous Marilyn Brown Novel Award recipients Jack Harrell (“Vernal Promises”), Jeff Call (“Mormonville”), Janeen Justham (“House Dreams”), Arianne Cope (“The Coming of Elijah”), Todd Robert Petersen (“Rift”), John Bennion (“Avenging Saint”), Robert Goble (“Across a Harvested Field”), Susan Auten (“Putting Up Stars”), Paul Colt (“Boots and Saddles”) and Warren Scott Hatch (“A Boy Scout’s Field Guide to the Red-shifting Universe”).