blackbirdonline journalSpring 2014  Vol. 13  No. 1

Reading Loop Introduction


Ramona Ausubel
   from No One Is Here Except All of Us audio

Cabell First Novelist Award 2013
   A Conversation audio
   Panel Discussion audio

Matthew Phipps
   Review | No One Is Here Except All of Us,
      by Ramona Ausubel



spacer A link to Blackbird’s “First Novelist Reading Loop” menu appears at the bottom of every First Novelist-related page. You may also return to this menu at any time by visiting Features. 

Ramona Ausubel is the 2013 winner of the VCU Cabell First Novelist Award for No One Is Here Except All of Us.

The award, which celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2011, recognizes one debut novel by a rising literary talent each year. It is the centerpiece of an annual day of First Novelist events, including a reading by the prizewinning novelist and a discussion panel with the author, her agent, and the book’s editor.

The Blackbird First Novelist Reading Loop features an excerpt from No One Is Here Except All of Us (under Fiction), along with a reading by and a conversation with Ramona Ausubel on craft, inspiration, and writing from personal history (Features). Also included are a recording and transcript of a panel discussion with Ausubel, her agent PJ Mark, and her editor Sarah McGrath, moderated by Richmond-based journalist and editor Tina Griego (Features), as well as a review of No One Is Here Except All of Us by Matthew Phipps (Nonfiction).

The VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, which is presented under the auspices of Virginia Commonwealth University’s MFA program in creative writing, was created by Tom De Haven and Laura Browder to celebrate VCU’s inaugural year-long novel workshop, the first of its kind in the nation. Initial funding for the award was provided by VCU alumnus and novelist David Baldacci. The award was named for James Branch Cabell, a prominent Richmond writer who died in 1958 and whose papers are collected in the VCU library that bears his name.

Current sponsors of the award include the VCU Department of English, the VCU MFA program in creative writing, the James Branch Cabell Library Associates, the VCU Friends of the Library, VCU Libraries, the VCU Honors College, Barnes & Noble at VCU, and the VCU College of Humanities and Sciences.  end