Willow Springs Books is pleased to announce the winner of the 2018 Spokane Prize for Short Fiction: Valerie Vogrin and her collection, Things We’ll Need for the Coming Difficulties, judged by Karen Karbo!

About the book:

Driver or passenger? Sidekick or hostage? Family member or outcast? During job interviews, first dates, and relationships with landlords, Vogrin’s characters, eager for security in whatever form they can find it, are caught between passivity and desperate action. This stylistically creative collection of stories explores what it might be like to be a Galapagos Tortoise’s girlfriend, flip a coin to decide your fate, and allow yourself to disappear down a highway with no destination in mind. Each story hums with an undercurrent of dread and dark humor, and invites the reader to consider how it might feel to have control at the tips of your fingers but never within reach. 

Valerie Vogrin is the author of the novel Shebang. Her short stories have appeared in print in journals such as Ploughshares, AGNI, and The Los Angeles Review, online at Hobartand Bluestem, and in The Best Small Fictions 2015. In 2010 she was awarded a Pushcart Prize. She teaches creative writing at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. She lives with her husband, dog, and cat on a tiny unnamed lake in Moro, Illinois.