The 2010 PEN/Robert Bingham Fellowship for Writers went to Paul Harding for his novel Tinkers.
The PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize honors an exceptionally talented fiction writer whose debut work—a novel or collection of short stories—represents distinguished literary achievement and suggests great promise. The winner receives a cash award of $25,000, a stipend intended to permit a significant degree of leisure in which to pursue a second work of literary fiction. The Robert Bingham Fellow is also encouraged to become an active participant in the PEN community and its programs.
Oscar Hijuelos, Craig Nova, Hannah Tinti
From the Judges' Citation
“Tinkers is an exquisite novel, at once fresh and hauntingly familiar, simple and profound, told with a voice so keen and beautiful as to leave the reader in a state of excitement produced only by literature, and the best literature at that. It is a vision of the brutality of time, the haunting nature of the past, and the way in which people live and die. And while it is moving, Tinkers has a mysterious quality that only the very best fiction has. This is the ability to be at once heartbreaking and soothing, emotional and yet precise and reassuring.Tinkers is a lovely book, told with a voice you can trust and with a vision that makes human beings into the mysterious and important creatures we would like them to be.”
Terrence Holt for In the Valley of the Kings
Dahlma Llanos-Figueroa for Daughters of the Stone