Texas Tech University

Texas Tech English Professor Wins Award from Stillhouse Press

Jenae Fleming

October 12, 2015

Jacqueline Kolosov recognized for non-fiction essays.

Jacqueline Kolosov
Jacqueline Kolosov

Jacqueline Kolosov, a full professor in the Texas Tech University Department of English, was awarded the Mary Roberts Rinehart Award from Stillhouse Press for her collection of essays, “Motherhood, and the Places Between.” Individual essays have been published in leading journals including The Sewanee Review, Bellevue Literary Review, and Terrain.org. 3 of the essays are also Notables in Best American Essays 2014 & 2015. The Mary Roberts Rinehart Award is both highly competitive and prestigious. Previous recipients of the award include Eula Biss (2014); Cheryl Strayed, the author the best-selling Wild (2013), Katherine Boo, a literary journalist and author of Beyond the Beautiful Forevers (2012), and Mary Karr, whose Liar's Club is a hallmark of the memoir tradition (2011).

Kolosov's collection of linked essays explores the inevitability of change through the lens of motherhood and infertility, loss and grief, and the power of self-transformation. Culling from her deep connection to writer Virginia Woolf and a newfound love of horseback riding, Kolosov's powerful memoir of loss, healing and renewal tugs at your heartstrings and keeps you coming back for more.

“I have always written through all my experiences, so I knew I would write through this one,” Kolosov said of her challenging experience with In Vitro Fertilization, including a devastating miscarriage at the same time that she was losing 2 dear friends to cancer, among them Margaret Sheffield Lutherer, who served Texas Tech for two decades.

Kolosov enlarged the project further through her lifelong engagement with the writings of Virginia Woolf, whose influence resonates throughout the collection. She is immensely grateful to Texas Tech for funding her research trip to London and to St. Ives, a village town on the coast of Cornwall where Woolf spent her childhood summers. This trip proved essential in the development and success of the collection.

Four months after her miscarriage, Kolosov began getting involved with horses. She valued their peacefulness, silence and calm, and found herself drawn to their mystery as well as the challenges that come with learning to ride well and become a true horsewoman. Working with horses began to change her and since that day, she has never looked back. 

“In June 2013, I bought a five-year-old half Andalusian mare, Marah, who has transformed my grief into something much richer and has enabled me to grow and to heal as well as to learn how to ride mindfully and with compassion,” Kolosov said.

The competition was judged by Warren Ralph Eubanks, non-fiction author, former editor of the Virginia Quarterly Review and publishing director at the Library of Congress.

In addition to winning the contest, Kolosov will travel to Virginia in September 2016 to participate in a discussion with Eubanks and be featured at the Fall for the Book Festival.