Read more about our accomplished panel of miniStories flash fiction jurors for the 2009 cycle of's mnLIT competition and publication project: Leif Enger, Lise Erdrich, Jon Fasman, Diana Joseph, and David Oppegaard.
July 21, 2009

Photo by Robin Enger

Our judges for the 2009 cycle of miniStories -- Leif Enger, Lise Erdrich, Jon Fasman, Diana Joseph, and David Oppegaard -- selected 18 winning short-short stories to be posted, one story every other week through April 2010, online at and This year's winning writers were selected from a pool of several hundred submissions by Minnesota writers to's 2009 mnLIT/miniStories competition.

The full list of 2009 mnLIT winners, in both poetry (What Light) and flash fiction (miniStories) is available here.

Our 2009 miniStories jurors:

Leif Enger was raised in Osakis, Minnesota, and worked as a reporter and producer for Minnesota Public Radio for nearly twenty years. He lives on a farm in Minnesota with his wife and two sons. He is the author of two nationally bestselling novels, Peace Like a River and So Brave, Young, and Handsome, both published by Grove/Atlantic.

Lise Erdrich was born in Minnesota, lives in Wahpeton, North Dakota, and has worked in Indian health and education for over twenty years. A graduate of the University of North Dakota and of Minnesota State University-Mankato, she is the author of the children's picture books Sacagawea and Bears Make Rock Soup. Stories from Night Train, her first collection for adults, have received many awards including the Minnesota Monthly Tamarack Award, the Many Mountains Moving Flash Fiction Contest, and Best of Show at the North Dakota State Fair, where the story "Zanimoo" was exhibited between a pig and the pickles, jams, jellies and preserves. Erdrich's essays and stories have also appeared in several journals and anthologies including Sister Nations: Native American Women Writers on Community, and Visit Teepee Town: Native Writings After the Detours.

Jon Fasman was born in Chicago in 1975 and grew up in Washington, D.C. He was educated at Brown and Oxford universities and has worked as a journalist in Washington, D.C., New York, Oxford, and Moscow. His writing has appeared in The Times Literary Supplement, Slate, Legal Affairs, the Moscow Times, and The Washington Post. He is now a writer and an editor for The Economist's web site. He is also the author of two novels, the NYT bestselling The Geographer's Library and, this year, The Unpossessed City, both published by Penguin Press.

Diana Joseph is the author of Happy or Otherwise, a short story collection, and I'm Sorry You Feel that Way, a memoir.  She teaches creative writing in the MFA program at Minnesota State University, Mankato. You can read more about and by Diana online by visiting her website, her blog, and her teaching blog.

David Oppegaard is a novelist living in St. Paul, MN. His post-apocalyptic debut novel The Suicide Collectors was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award this year, and his second novel Wormwood, Nevada will be released this December by St. Martin's Press.


In addition to these fine folks, novelist Geoff Herbach (The Miracle Letters of T. Rimberg, Three Rivers Press) returned for a second year to serve as our jury foreman for the 2009 cycle of miniStories. Not only did he coordinate the ins and outs of the adjudication process, Geoff also pored through the winning pool of 18 fiction writers to select our three grand prize-winners for this round of miniStories. is a joint project of the Walker Art Center and the McKnight Foundation

Membership on is FREE. Find step-by-step instructions for how to join and how to use the free resources available on the site. If you need assistance, contact Will Lager at [email protected]. Any Minnesota resident is eligible to participate in's mnLIT competitions for poetry and fiction; there are no entry fees, and all levels of skill and experience are welcome to enter work for consideration by a revolving panel of established authors and publishing professionals in mnLIT's blind adjudication process.




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