Arts Desk

F. Scott Fitzgerald Literary Conference to Honor Alice McDermott

The F. Scott Fitzgerald Literary Conference has announced the details of its 2010 conference. The event, to be held Oct. 16 on the campus of Montgomery College in Rockville, will honor author Alice McDermott with its Award for Outstanding Achievement.

McDermott, writer-in-residence at Johns Hopkins University, is best known for Charming Billy, which won the National Book Award in 1998, and her latest After This, which earned her a third Pulitzer nomination in 2006 (she has also been nominated for At Weddings and Wakes and That Night). McDermott's work often centers on Irish-American Catholic families in New York City or its Long Island suburbs, and she generally sets her stories in the past, often with a tie to World War II. These are complicated family sagas, but McDermott keeps them short—her works are all under 300 pages, which she accomplishes by using her words wisely: Her works, about love and memory and place, are spare but feature rich prose.

This is the last conference that Colonel John Moser, who has headed up the organization for the past 15 years, will be helming, as he announced his retirement earlier this year. There will be info about event on the Web soon; you can read about last year's conference at itss Web site.

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