Hub City/Emrys Prize 2021 winners announced

June 1st 2021

We are pleased to announce that the annual Hub City/Emrys Creative Writing Prize has been awarded to Eshani Surya in fiction and Margot Parmenter in nonfiction. Sponsored by the Hub City Writers Project and the Emrys Foundation, the contest is open to adults in Greenville and Spartanburg Counties in South Carolina, and Polk County in North Carolina. 

Eshani Surya of Greenville won the fiction contest for her story, “Now, Wiped of Her Face.” 

Margot Parmenter of Spartanburg won the nonfiction contest with her work titled “Shipwrecked.” 

The fiction runner up was Shannon Greene of Tigerville for her story “Panther Valley Tarot.” The nonfiction runner up was Adrianna Krywicka of Greenville for her essay “Is A Wetland Still a Wetland If It Has No Water?

The Hub City/Emrys Writing Contest is open annually. The winners receive a full scholarship to the annual Writing in Place Conference hosted by the Hub City Writers Project and held at Wofford College in Spartanburg, SC. The runners-up receive $50 scholarships to the conference.

The Hub City Writers Project is a non-profit organization in Spartanburg dedicated to cultivating readers and nurturing writers through its independent small press, community bookstore, and diverse literary programming that serves the community and beyond. The Emrys Foundation, based in Greenville, nurtures creativity among emerging and established writers.

The contest this year was judged by Jessica Handler, the author of the novel The Magnetic Girl,  (Hub City Press) winner of the 2020 Southern Book Prize and a nominee for the Townsend Prize for Fiction. The novel is one of the 2019 “Books All Georgians Should Read,” an Indie Next pick, Wall Street Journal Spring 2019 pick, Bitter Southerner Summer 2019 pick, and a Southern Independent Booksellers' Association “Okra Pick.” Her memoir, Invisible Sisters, was also named one of the “Books All Georgians Should Read,” and her craft guide Braving the Fire: A Guide to Writing About Grief and Loss was praised by Vanity Fair magazine. Her writing has appeared widely, including on NPR, in Tin HouseDrunken Boat, The Bitter Southerner, Electric Literature, BrevityCreative NonfictionNewsweek, and The Washington Post. She teaches creative writing and coordinates the Minor in Writing at Oglethorpe University in Atlanta, and lectures internationally on writing.

Of the two winners, Handler wrote, "In the elegantly constructed short story, Now, Wiped of her Face, two cousins, whom we meet as young girls, navigate the delicacy and difficulty of female appearance, desire, anger, and identity. The author and narrator of Shipwrecked clearly and honestly examines her memory of a possible sexual assault and, as she writes of the aftermath, 'the stories we make of our lives.'"

Eshani Surya is a writer based in Greenville, SC. Her writing has appeared in or is forthcoming in [PANK], Catapult, Paper Darts, Joyland, and Literary Hub, among others. Eshani is an Assistant Flash Fiction Editor at Split Lip Magazine. She holds an MFA from the University of Arizona in Tucson. Find her @__eshani or at

Margot Parmenter is a writer and a graduate student currently completing an MFA through the Savannah College of Art & Design. Her nonfiction and criticism has appeared in The Rumpus and Into the Void, and her essay “Amongst Reasonable Men” was the winner of the 2020 Sewanee Review Nonfiction contest. 

Shannon Greene is a librarian and writer, owner of a small business on Etsy, and podcaster. She is mom to 2-year-old Juniper, a dog, two cats, five chickens, and two snakes. She lives with all these and her husband, Daniel, in Tigerville, a Dark Corner valley in Travelers Rest, SC, named for the “tygers” (Bobcats? Cougars?) early settlers encountered. Find her on Instagram @mountainmorticia and listen to her podcast Phenomenon Baby to hitch onto her latest spiritual and intellectual hyper-focus. 

Born in Poland, Adrianna Krzywicka immigrated with her family to Chicago, Illinois, at the tender age of three. She spent her childhood summers swimming in the lakes surrounding her hometown of Elk and exploring the forest next to her grandparents’ house, leading to a love and appreciation of nature. After earning her MS at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, she became a biologist for the US Army Corps of Engineers. Currently, she lives in Greenville, South Carolina, where she can be found tending to her backyard, reading a good book, or attempting to cuddle with her mischievous cats.


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