Shann Ray is an author born and raised in Montana, now living in Washington. His work has appeared in Montana Quarterly, Big Sky Journal, Best New Poets, McSweeney's, Narrative, Northwest Review, and StoryQuarterly among other venues. Artists who have influenced his aesthetic include A.B. Guthrie, Sandra Alcosser, Louise Erdrich, Nazim Hikmet, Mary Oliver, John Berger, Milan Kundera, Katerina Rudcenkova, Anna Akhmatova, Gabriela Mistral, Zora Neale Hurston, Alice Walker, Cormac McCarthy, Leo Tolstoy, Richard Hugo, Victor Hugo, J.S. Bach, Miles Davis, Gustav Klimpt, and Auguste Rodin.
Read about American Masculine and the Bakeless Prize
Shann Ray holds a dual MFA in poetry and fiction from the Inland Northwest Center for Writers at Eastern Washington University, a Masters in clinical psychology from Pepperdine, and a Ph.D. in systems psychology from the University of Alberta in Canada. His poetry and prose considers the nature of humanity with regard to violence and forgiveness. His collection of stories, American Masculine, was selected by Robert Boswell for the Katherine Bakeless Nason Prize and will appear with Graywolf Press in 2011. The Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, founded in 1926 by Robert Frost and Willa Cather, established the prize to support literary artists and ensure a richer future for American writing.