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Fiddlehead Author Selected for Best American Mystery Stories 2014!

Michelle Butler Hallett

Michelle Butler Hallett's story "Bush-Hammer Finish," published in The Fiddlehead No. 257 (Autumn 2013), has been selected to be included in Houghton Mifflin Harcourt's The Best American Mystery Stories 2014! This will be the 18th edition of the anthology, which last year included Joyce Carol Oates. The book is slated for an October publication and includes the best 20 stories published in North America, selected by guest editor Laura Lippman.

Gerard Beirne, The Fiddlehead's co-fiction editor who selected Butler Hallett's story, had this to say:

"Every story is a mystery story. From the opening sentence we wonder, where do we go from here? Great stories inhabit the mystery, and in particular they inhabit it through the characters whose existence in the story causes us, the readers, to ask the most wondrous and mysterious questions of all — Who am I? and What am I doing here? Great stories somehow reveal a part of these mysteries to us. 

No. 257 (Autumn 2013)

Michelle Butler Hallett’s story caught my attention initially because of the hyperbolic style, the larger than life characters, the black humour; but more importantly, her story held my attention. To pull all of these challenging formal elements together required great authorial control. Indeed, from an editor’s point of view, the first mystery of a successful story can often be, how did the author achieve it?

Well successful it was, and I am delighted that it has been selected for Best American Mystery Stories 2014. Its inclusion is no mystery to me."

Congratulations Michelle!

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