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Wesleyan Professor’s The Long Weeping: Portrait Essays Named Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award Winner

Jun 19, 2018

Asheville, NC—Orison Books is pleased to announce that The Long Weeping Portrait Essays by Jessie van Eerden has been named the winner of the 20th annual Foreword INDIES Book of the Year in the essay category. Van Eerden is an assistant professor of English and director of the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing at West Virginia Wesleyan College.

Foreword Reviews, a national book review periodical for books published by independent and university presses, announced the winners of its 2017 INDIES Book of the Year Awards on June 15th. The INDIES recognize the best books published by independent and university presses each year. All of the winners can be seen at

Over 2,000 entries were submitted in 68 categories for the 2017 Foreword INDIES Awards. Foreword Reviews’ editors chose the finalists and a panel of over 150 librarians and booksellers acted as judges to pick the winners.

“Van Eerden’s fundamentalist religious upbringing is recognized, not despised, as a vital part of her past, even as she moves into larger spiritual circles,” writes Foreword Reviews. “Traversing the full range of human experiences with grace, The Long Weeping insists that solace awaits on the other side of event the blackest tumult, if only it can be perceived and grasped.”

Orison Books is a non-profit literary press based in Asheville, NC, founded and edited by Luke Hankins, with a unique focus on the life of the spirit from a broad and inclusive range of perspectives.

Founded in 1998, Foreword Reviews is the only media company completely devoted to independent publishing. Foreword Reviews exclusively covers university and independent (non-“Big 5”) publishers, the books they publish, and their authors.

Van Eerden has been a faculty member at West Virginia Wesleyan College since 2012. She holds a B.A. from West Virginia University and a M.F.A. from the University of Iowa.