Kirsti Sandy Wins Franklin Pierce University’s 2017 Raven Prize in Creative Nonfiction

Apr 10, 2017

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Kirsty SandyNorthern New England Review (NNER), published by the staff and students of Franklin Pierce University, is pleased to announce that New Hampshire writer Kirsti Sandy is the winner of the NNER 2017 Raven Prize in Creative Nonfiction.

Paul Hertneky, author of the acclaimed memoir RUST BELT BOY: Stories of an American Childhood (Bauhan Publishing, 2016), was the final judge for the 2017 Raven Prize in Creative Nonfiction. He selected the winning story because of its pitch-perfect prose and dexterous storytelling. 

“From the very first sentence until the last,” Hertneky said, “’I Have Come for What Belongs to Me’ presents energetic, flawless prose that arrests the reader and won't let go, tumbling through a physical and emotional road-trip weaving the past and present with telling details, startling and revelatory facts, pitch-perfect humor, and elegant insights conveyed through its characters' sisterly interplay, amusing, enlightening, and ultimately haunting as only the best essays and stories can be.”

Franklin Pierce University is a home for creative nonfiction craft studies as well as innovative creative nonfiction pedagogy for the health sciences. “Our unique dedication to the art and craft of the creative nonfiction, including our focus on medical biographies and illness narratives, make Franklin Pierce the ideal host for the annual Raven Prize,” NNER editor Margot Douaihy explained. “We are honored to provide a platform for outstanding writing and true stories imaginatively told,” Douaihy said. 

A launch party and reading for NNER Volume 37 will be held on April 24 at 4:30 p.m. in the Lakeside Educational Center on the College at Rindge campus with featured writers and editorial staff in attendance. 

For questions, please email Margot Douaihy at


Kirsti Anne Sandy is the Interim Associate Dean of Arts and Humanities at Keene State College, where she has taught creative nonfiction and memoir, and will again after this administrative post. She lives with her husband and seven-year-old daughter in Chesterfield, NH. Sandy’s recent work can be found in Natural Bridge, Split Lip, A Flexible Persona, Gravel, Dirty Chai, The Boiler, Foliate Oak, and Under the Gum Tree, among other journals, and she is seeking a publisher for her essay collection She Lived, and the Other Girls Died. She was a student of creative nonfiction luminary David Foster Wallace in Illinois, where she attended graduate school. 


Paul Hertneky is the author of RUST BELT BOY: Stories of an American Childhood (Bauhan Publishing, 2016). Over a 27-year career, he has written stories, essays, and scripts for The Boston Globe, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, NBC News, The Comedy Channel, Gourmet, Eating Well, Traveler’s Tales, The Exquisite Corpse, National Public Radio, Public Radio International, Adbusters, and several literary magazines and anthologies including those published by Franklin Pierce University's Institute of Nature, Place and Culture. He has won a Solas Award for travel writing and two James Beard Award nominations. A graduate of the Bennington Writing Seminars, he serves on the faculty of Chatham University and lives with his wife, Robbie, in Hancock, New Hampshire.