Joanna Scott

Joanna Scott

Joanna Scott (born 1960) is an American author and Roswell Smith Burrows Professor of English at the University of Rochester. Scott has received critical acclaim for her novels. A member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, she is the recipient of a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, a Guggenheim fellowship, and the Lannan Literary Award for Fiction.

Her stories have been included in Best American Stories (1993) and The Pushcart Prize (1993). In 1992 she won the Aga Khan Prize for Fiction from The Paris Review for her story "A Borderline Case." [] Zack, Suzanne, "Writing with an alchemist's touch," "Mosaic" magazine at Trinity College, Hartford, April 1997, accessed October 26, 2006] In 2006 she won the Ambassador Book Award for her novel "Liberation".

She is one of at least three authors who share the same name: a romance novelist and Joanna C. Scott, who has written both fiction and nonfiction books.


Scott grew up in Darien, Connecticut, where she was a volunteer emergency medical technician (EMT) with Post 53, a scout explorer post that serves as the town's volunteer ambulance service. One of her earliest pieces of writing was a nonfiction account of an EMT who lit fires, then help rescue the victims. She became involved in the literary magazine for Darien High School. [] Longon, Brooke, "Writer Joanna Scott reveals her muses" article in "Pier Glass" magazine, Spring 2003, at Tulane University, Web page accessed October 26, 2006.]

She received her bachelor's degree from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut in 1983. Before graduating, she spent a year in an exchange program at Barnard College and helped edit its literary magazine. Before graduating college, she also worked as a copy editor for United Features Syndicate in New York and spent a year at the Elaine Johnson Literary Agency. There she was an assistant to Geri Thoma, who later became Scott's own agent.

Scott received her master's degree from Brown University in 1985 and taught creative writing there as well as at the University of Maryland and Princeton University. Since 1988 she has been in the English Department of the University of Rochester, where she has taught courses in creative writing, the contemporary novel, the writing of Charles Dickens and other subjects. In one of her graduate courses she's taught about the ways fiction corresponds to time.Fact|date=February 2007 Translation for Scott is an issue of almost ultimate importance, as she herself has said and stated many times.Fact|date=February 2007

She is married to James Longenbach, a poet, critic and fellow professor a the English Department. Like Scott, he is also a graduate of Trinity College (Class of 1981). They have two children.

For research, Scott has traveled to Austria and Alaska. Often this research does not make its way directly into her books, but forms instead a surround voice which she cleverly manipulates in order to create the pulsating rhythm so common to her fictions. For story ideas, Scott refuses completely to use any printed words. Never will she open a book to find a voice, style, or characters, or even setting. Instead she roves posing as a variety of professional vocations in which a 45 year old white woman would typically be found. Admiring the supreme tradition of Woody Allen's research, Scott discusses her work openly with those she meets on the streets, as has been known to write entire novels based on the work of one of Rochester's notable street characters, a homeless man named Free Willy, a past employee of Kodak.. [] Longon, Brooke, "Writer Joanna Scott reveals her muses" article in "Pier Glass" magazine, Spring 2003, at Tulane University, Web page accessed October 26, 2006.]


*"Everybody Loves Somebody" a collection of 10 stories; release date: December 11, 2006; ISBN 0-316-01345-5 (Paperback)
*"Liberation" winner of the Ambassador Book Award for Fiction from the English-Speaking Union of the United States; ISBN 0-316-01053-7 (hardcover)
*"Tourmaline" finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award in the fiction category; ISBN 0-316-60848-3 (paperback)
*"The Manikin" (1996), a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 1997; ISBN 0-312-42138-9 (paperback)
*"Various Antidotes" (1994), a collection of short stories and another PEN/Faulkner Award nominee; ISBN 0-312-42387-X (paperback)
*"Arrogance" (1990), which received the Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Foundation Award, the Lillian Fairchild Award, and a nomination for the PEN/Faulkner Award; ISBN 0-671-69547-9 (hardcover); ISBN 0-312-42388-8 (paperback)
*"Make Believe" (2000); ISBN 0-316-77666-1 (paperback)
*"The Closest Possible Union" (1988); ISBN 0-312-42136-2 (paperback)
*"Fading, My Parmacheene Belle" (1987); ISBN 0-89919-451-6 (paperback)


External links

* [] Scott's short story: "What Will Happen"
* [] Scott's page at the University of Rochester English Department
* [] Book review of "Make Believe" in "Salon" by Kate Moses, 2002

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