ELLSWORTH – Martin Dibner Memorial Fellowships in fiction have been awarded to James Charlesworth of Waterville and Patricia O’Donnell of Wilton.

The Maine Community Foundation awards the fellowships annually to Maine writers seeking to develop their writing skills. A volunteer committee comprised of three novelists, Elaine Ford, Ben Marcus and Roxana Robinson, selected this year’s winners from 20 applicants.

O’Donnell is a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa (BA and MA in English). She earned an MFA in creative writing at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

A professor of creative writing at the University of Maine at Farmington, O’Donnell has published short fiction in a number of publications, including the Sandy River Review, Prairie Schooner, Short Story and the New Yorker.

Her Dibner fellowship will go toward travel expenses related to work of fiction based on experiences in Cape Town, South Africa.

Charlesworth received a BA in English from the Pennsylvania State University and an MFA in fiction from Emerson College, where he was on the staff of the Beacon Street Review. He is a fiction reader for Ploughshares.

The Dibner fellowship will provide financial support while he completes his first novel, “The Study of Hidden Animals.”

Novelist and historian Martin Dibner served on the Maine Arts Commission and was the first director of the Payson Gallery at Westbrook College. Several friends created the fund to honor Dibner’s contributions to the art of writing. The fellowship alternates between fiction and poetry. Next year’s deadline for poets is May 15.

A statewide public foundation with offices in Portland and Ellsworth, the foundation works with donors and community groups to strengthen Maine communities. For more information, visit www.mainecf.org or call 1-877-700-6800.

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