WVWC professor’s book wins award

ASHEVILLE, NC — Orison Books is pleased to announce “The Long Weeping Portrait Essays” by Jessie van Eerden has been named the winner of the 20th annual Foreword INDIES Book of the Year in the essay category.

Van Eerden is an assistant professor of English and director of the Master of Fine Arts in creative writing at West Virginia Wesleyan College.

Foreword Reviews, a national book review periodical for books published by independent and university presses, announced the winners of its 2017 INDIES Book of the Year Awards on June 15.

Over 2,000 entries were submitted in 68 categories for the 2017 Foreword INDIES Awards. Foreword Reviews’ editors chose the finalists and a panel of over 150 librarians and booksellers acted as judges to pick the winners.

“Van Eerden’s fundamentalist religious upbringing is recognized, not despised, as a vital part of her past, even as she moves into larger spiritual circles,” writes Foreword Reviews. “Traversing the full range of human experiences with grace, The Long Weeping insists that solace awaits on the other side of the blackest tumult, if only it can be perceived and grasped.”

Van Eerden has been a faculty member at West Virginia Wesleyan College since 2012. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from West Virginia University and a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Iowa.

Orison Books is a non-profit literary press based in Asheville, North Carolina.