2009 Norman Mailer Fellows

The Norman Mailer Writers Colony at Provincetown, Massachusetts, is proud to announce the Norman Mailer Fellows for its 2009 inaugural year.
The seven Fellows chosen from 436 applications (from throughout the English speaking world) are writers that have displayed in their work the passion, skill and commitment that Mailer exhibited during his 60 year writing career.  The fellows will meet at the Mailer home in Provincetown from July 5 through July 31 of this year and will be mentored by James Magnuson (Without Barbarians, Ghost Dancing, Windfall and The Hounds of Winter) and Gregory Curtis (Disarmed: The Story of the Venus de Milo and named as one of the ten best magazine editors in the county in 2000 by the Columbia Journalism Review).
The program is designed to facilitate a balance between a focus on individual work and a forum for discussion. In the evening, occasional readings and presentations will allow attendees to become acquainted with and inspired by the work of other Fellows. The Norman Mailer Writers Colony is supported by The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, Random House Publishing Group, Spas and Diliana Roussev, Drue Heinz, Donna and J. Michael Lennon, Kathy and Lawrence Schiller, Jean Stein, Katrina and Wendy vanden Heuvel, Alix Ritchie, Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara and National Madison Group.


Alex Gilvarry is 28 years old and a native of Staten Island, NY. He received his MFA in Creative Writing at Hunter College where he studied with Peter Carey, Colum McCann, Nathan Englander, and Gary Shteyngart. He was named a Hertog Fellow in 2008. Before his graduate studies, Alex worked as an editor at a children’s publisher for many years, where he also wrote for children. He is at work on his first novel, a satire about a prisoner at Guantánamo Bay titled “From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant.” He lives in Brooklyn, NY.
Hannah Gersen is a fiction writer living in Brooklyn. She grew up in Boonsboro, Maryland and is a graduate of Amherst College. Her fiction has been showcased on as part of their “New Voices” series. She is thirty years old.
Charles Martin Kearney received a B.A. in English from the University of Maryland in 1974 and a J.D. from Antioch School of Law in Washington, D.C., in 1983.  He traveled in Central Asia and the Middle East in the late 1970s and eventually settled in Israel’s Golan Heights, where he taught English during the earliest days of the undeclared war in Lebanon.  His literary memoir, The Logic of Maps and Dreaming, chronicles his travels from Athens to New Delhi with an American woman named Suzanne. She had asked him to accompany her in the Moslem world as her bodyguard. Excerpts from The Logic of Maps and Dreaming have been published in The Missouri Review, Editors’ Prize Edition, 2004, and The Best American Travel Writing 2005.  The Best American Essays of 2005 selected an excerpt from The Logic of Maps and Dreaming as a Notable Essay. Charles Martin Kearney has also written for The Huffington Post. He is 57 and grew up in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area.  He currently lives in Columbia, Maryland.
Rachel Cantor’s stories have appeared or are forthcoming in the Paris Review, One Story, Ninth Letter, Fence, the New England Review, DoubleTake, and elsewhere. They have twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and have been short-listed for both Best American Short Stories and an O. Henry Award. She has received scholarships from the Bread Loaf, Sewanee, and Wesleyan Writers’ Conferences, and has been resident at Yaddo, MacDowell, Ucross, VCCA, and numerous other artists’ colonies. She lives in Philadelphia, where she has just finished a novel and a linked short story collection. She has a bachelor’s degree from Yale University, a master’s degree in creative writing from the Johns Hopkins University, and a master’s degree in international development.
Amy Rowland is a graduate of UNC Chapel Hill, a former MacDowell Colony fellow, and works as a copy editor at the New York Times. She is currently at work on a novel. She is 39 and lives in New York City.
Philip Shenon is an investigative reporter and bestselling author, based in Washington D.C. Almost all of his career was spent at The New York Times, where he was a reporter from 1981 until 2008. He left the paper in May 2008, a few weeks after his first book, “The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation,” hit the bestsellers lists of both The New York Times and The Washington Post. The book, a behind-the-scenes history of the 9/11 commission, was hailed by reviewers as “mesmerizing” (The New York Times), “stunning” and “spellbinding” (Publishers Weekly) and a “rich slice of investigative journalism” (The Observer, London).  At The Times, he was a foreign correspondent, reporting from scores of countries across six continents, and held several of the most important reporting assignments in the paper’s Washington bureau, including the State Department, the Pentagon, the Justice Department and
Congress. He has reported from several warzones and was one of two reporters from
The Times embedded with American ground troops during the invasion of Iraq in the 1991 Gulf War. Shenon joined The Times as an assistant to the columnist James Reston, the paper’s former Washington bureau chief and executive editor, a few days after graduation from Brown University in 1981. Shenon, 49, was born in San Francisco and now lives in Washington D.C.

Dave Morris served four years in the US Marine Corps as an infantry officer. He has covered the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan for and the Virginia Quarterly Review since 2003. His work has appeared in The Nation, Slate, Der Spiegel and “The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2007”. He has degrees from Texas A&M University and the University of California at Irvine.