AS even casual readers know, The Atlantic Monthly is not a heavily staff-written magazine. We depend for our sustenance on a loose-knit family of providers -- reporters and essayists, novelists and poets. And as with all families, we take a certain pleasure in seeing our members receive recognition.
By any reckoning, 1999 was a good year for Atlantic fiction: a magazine that chooses its fiction carefully is glad to see its selections honored by the annual O. Henry and Best American Short Stories anthologies.
Each O. Henry collection (now published by Anchor Books/ Random House) designates three prizewinners among the roughly twenty stories printed in the anthology. The O. Henry editor, Larry Dark, also names the magazine he feels has published the best fiction in the course of the year. The Atlantic is the winner for 2000, and two Atlantic stories -- "The Man With the Lapdog," by Beth Lordan, and "The Deacon," by Mary Gordon -- were the second- and third-prize winners, respectively. The O. Henry collection also includes Nathan Englander's "The Gilgul of Park Avenue."
The 2000 edition of The Best American Short Stories, edited by E. L. Doctorow and published by Houghton Mifflin, will likewise include the Englander story, along with Frances Sherwood's "Basil the Dog." Listed among its 100 "notable" stories for 1999 are the Lordan and Gordon stories and "Sheep," by Thomas McNeely; "Closure and Roadkill on the Life's Highway," by William Gay; "Passengers," by Julie Schumacher; and "Assistance," by Roxana Robinson. The annual Best American Poetry for 2000 will include four poems published in The Atlantic last year, Rodney Jones, Thomas Lux, and Susan Mitchell. The new Best American Travel Writing will include two articles by Jeffrey Tayler from The Atlantic. Sasha Abramsky won a James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism for his article "When They Get Out," about the delayed consequences of our increasingly tough prison policies -- what happens when waves of convicts are released back into society.
Finally, Pulitzer Prizes were bestowed in April on three Atlantic Monthly contributors. The historian David M. Kennedy won the prize for history for his book Freedom From Fear, a portion of which was our cover story in March of last year. C. K. Williams won the poetry prize for his book Repair. And Thomas E. Ricks, now a reporter for The Washington Post, who has contributed three articles on military affairs to our pages, was a member of the Wall Street Journal team whose series on the post-Cold War armed forces won the Pulitzer for national reporting.
-- THE EDITORS
The Atlantic Monthly; July 2000; 77 North Washington Street - 00.07; Volume 286, No. 1; page 4.