Mark Doty Wins National Book Award


Former Iowa Writers' Workshop instructor Mark Doty recently won a National Book Award for his collection of poetry, Fire to Fire: New and Collected Poems. The collection has been lauded as solidifying "[Doty's] position as a star of contemporary American poetry…The title poem is a gorgeous meditation on the way that life’s fire infuses the world…The poems combine close attention to the fragile, contingent things of the world with the constant, almost unavoidable chance of transcendence."

Doty is the author of eight books of poems, among them School of the Arts, Source, and My Alexandria. He has also published four volumes of nonfiction prose: Still Life with Oysters and Lemon, Heaven's Coast, Firebird and Dog Years, which was a New York Times bestseller in 2007. He has received the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, a Whiting Writers Award, two Lambda Literary Awards and the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for First Nonfiction. He has taught at the Iowa Writers' Workshop and has received fellowships from the Guggenheim, Ingram Merrill and Lila Wallace/Readers Digest Foundations, and from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The fiction category also included two writers connected to the workshop. Current instructor Marilynne Robinson was nominated for her novel "Home," and workshop alumnus Salvatore Scibona was nominated for his novel "The End."