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Maurice Carlos Ruffin is the author of the forthcoming historical novel, The American Daughters, which will be published in 2024 by One World Random House. He is the recipient of the 2023 Louisiana Writer Award and the Black Rock Senegal Residency. He also wrote The Ones Who Don't Say They Love You, which was published by One World Random House in August 2021. It is the 2023 One Book One New Orleans selection. The book was a New York Times Editor's Choice, a finalist for the Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence and longlisted for the Story Prize. The book was also selected to represent Louisiana at the 2023 National Book Festival. His first book, We Cast a Shadow, was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award, the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, and the PEN America Open Book Prize. It was longlisted for the 2021 DUBLIN Literary Award, the Center for Fiction Prize, and the Aspen Words Literary Prize. The novel was also a New York Times Editor's Choice. His work appeared in the New York Times, the LA Times, Oxford American, Garden & Gun, Kenyon Review, and Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America. A New Orleans native, Ruffin is a professor of Creative Writing at Louisiana State University, and the 2020-2021 John and Renee Grisham Writer-in-Residence at the University of Mississippi. Ruffin was the 2022 Grand Marshal of the Mardi Gras Krewe of House Floats and recipient of the 2022 Louisiana Board of Regents ATLAS grant.
M.O. Walsh is the author of the novels The Big Door Prize and My Sunshine Away, which was a New York Times bestseller and winner of the Pat Conroy Award for Southern Fiction. His first book, a story collection titled The Prospect of Magic, won the Tartt's First Fiction Prize. His fiction and essays have appeared in The Paris Review, Southern Review, Garden and Gun, New York Times and others. His latest novel, The Big Door Prize, has been adapted for television by Emmy winning Writer/Producer David West Read (Schitt's Creek) and is now streaming on Apple TV. He lives in New Orleans with his wife and family, where he directs the Creative Writing Workshop MFA program at the University of New Orleans.