Paul Byall

Winner of the Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize

Yo no sé los salmos de las hojas secas
sino el sueño verde de la amarga tierra.
--Antonio Machado

Paul 2014

Paul 2007

Paul 2002 That hand on my shoulder is attached to my little niece, who got cut out of the picture, and we all know how that feels.

Paul - some setting in Berkeley, don't remember where.

About Me

Paul Byall escaped from a small town in Ohio at the age of 18 by earning a scholarship to Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, where -- believe it or not -- he majored in physics. He went on to do graduate work at the University of California. In addition to Ohio and California, he has lived in Barcelona, Spain, NYC and currently resides and writes in Savannah, Georgia.

Paul Byall is the award-winning author of numerous short stories and the novel Ridgeland (newly-revised and looking for a home). His first published story, written while a student at the University of California, received mention as a “distinguished story” in The Best American Short Stories anthology. He is the recipient of the 2018 Writers @​ Work Fiction Prize , the 2011 Porter Fleming Short Story Prize, the 2010 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Awardand the 2009 New South Short Story Prize. His novel, Ridgeland placed runner-up for the William Faulkner-William Wisdom First Novel Award as a novel-in-progress. Paul's long short story, "The Genie at Low Tide", published by Ploughshares has been anthologized in Ploughshares Solos Omnibus 2.

Switching to 1st Person:

My novel,Ridgeland, a sort of parody of the classic crime novel, revolves around a car, a swank Mercedes with California plates, that a stranger drives into a repair shop in a small Midwestern town and never returns to pick up. From here the point of view shifts from Carl, the owner of the shop, a jaded war vet who feels trapped in his circumstances, to Millie, Carl's estranged wife, to Alexander Stavros, the stranger from California who left the car, to Miklos Popadopoulous, the LA mobster in pursuit of Stavros, to Amanda, a beautiful, but alcoholic, split-personality who takes up with Carl on a flight through the Midwest toward New York. Various other minor characters -- a small-time scammer, a mugger, a hit man and, even, a bordello madame -- also chime in, as the story careens toward its denouement. The abandoned Mercedes, of course, serves as a metaphor for lost ambitions, youthful dreams, second chances, etc.

Selected Works

In 1992, as Barcelona prepares for the Summer Olympics, an elderly Catalan veteran of the Spanish Civil War tells the story of his youth.
A stranger drives a high-end Mercedes with California plates into a repair shop in a small Midwestern town and never returns for it,
Short Stories
December magazine, Spring 2016. Finalist for the Curt Johnson Fiction Award
An aging former baseball player living alone on a low country island in South Carolina encounters a young woman who claims to be his daughter from one of many one-night stands of his youth. Published as a Ploughshares Solo and available on Amazon.
Bellingham Review, Spring 2012 Winner 2011 Porter Fleming Short Story Award
Quarterly West, Spring 2018 Winner, Writers@Work Short Story Prize
Winner, 2008 New South Award
Finalist, 2008 David Nathan Meyerson Prize
Finalist, 2008 Willesden International Fiction Prize

Finalist,2009 Arthur Edelstein Short Story Award

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