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UMKC's <I>New Letters</I> Receives Prestigious Magazine Award

By Laura Spencer and Angela Elam

Kansas City, MO – The winners of the 2008 National Magazine Awards, the highest honor in the magazine industry, were announced Thursday at a gala event at Lincoln Center in New York. Kansas City-based New Letters won the essay writing award for Thomas E. Kennedy's account of his cancer scare. Other finalists in the essay category included The Atlantic, Harper's Magazine, and The New Yorker, among others.

New Letters is a quarterly journal published by the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Robert Stewart, who teaches creative writing and magazine editing at UMKC, serves as the editor-in-chief.

Stewart spoke on New Letters on the Air about writing and editing essays: "And what I discovered partly was a sense of a great unity in the universe, that you can see when you're actually putting writing together--that things go together that you didn't normally think would go together before. And in fact, that's what metaphor is bringing things together that don't normally belong together. It's part of the transcendent experience of literary writing."

The National Magazine Awards have been presented each year since 1966. They're sponsored by the American Society of Magazine Editors and Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

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