Patricia Engel was the winner of the Key West Literary Seminar’s Marianne Russo Scholarship for 2009. She subsequently signed a two-book contract with Grove/Atlantic, which will publish Vida, a collection of short stories, in 2010. Engel’s short story “Madre Patria,” workshopped at KWLS 27 with Hilma Wolitzer, is forthcoming in Quarterly West, while “The Bridge,” which debuted at the Seminar, will appear in print in The Atlantic Monthly’s 2010 Fiction Issue.
On this recording from 2009, Engel reads from “The Bridge,” about a father who throws his young son off Miami’s Rickenbacker causeway.
“When he found out his wife was unfaithful, Hector Castillo told his son to get in the car because they were going fishing. It was after midnight, but this was nothing unusual. The Rickenbacker bridge hanging over Biscayne Bay was full of night fisherman leaning over the railings, catching up on the gossip over beer and fishing lines, avoiding going home to their wives. Except Hector didn’t bring any fishing gear with him.”
From KWLS 2009: Historical Fiction and the Search for Truth