Arlington, VA—December 22, 2023
Gival Press is pleased to announce that The Roar of the Foley Artists by Rebecca Claire Brooks of Washington, DC has won the 21st Gival Press Short Story Award-2023, which includes a cash prize of $1,000.00. This year’s judge Aaron Tillman chose the story. The story will be published online on Gival Press’s website and in the literary journal ArLiJo.
“In the comical and wildly inventive story The Roar of the Foley Artists, Rebecca Claire Brooks takes readers on a ride through the hyper-conscious mind of a Jewish man named Ari as he sits in his grandfather Gidde’s New York City apartment for their Friday night chess game. With a backdrop that pits Ari’s recent religious interest against his grandfather’s enduring skepticism—Gidde one of ‘the secular Jews who worship only at the altars of Irony and History’—the story contains multiple narrative layers: Ari’s compulsions to explore and hide his interest in Judaism, his concerns about and reverence for his stubborn and aging grandfather, strategies and suspicions about a present-time game of chess, and efforts to process the details around a silent film for which his grandfather worked as a foley artist, adding a new sensory dimension to the story. In The Roar of the Foley Artists, Brooks not only resists conventional structure and delivery, but resists a neat resolution, enabling a rich humanity to emerge in its place. As much as the interweaving narratives dazzle and amuse, they never overshadow the core components: the profound relationship between a grandson and his grandfather, the pivotal actions that elevate and define us, and the empathic hearts that beat beneath the roar of a ‘large, unpredictable universe.’”
—Aaron Tillman, judge
About the Author
Rebecca Claire Brooks is a writer and lawyer. She graduated from Harvard College in 2018 and from Yale Law School in 2022. She's written creatively since she was young, and rediscovered writing literary fiction while in law school. Her writing aims to grapple with tragedy through earnest reflection and irreverent humor. She lives in Washington, D.C., where she is working on a collection of short stories and a satirical memoir. The Roar of the Foley Artists is her first published short story.
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