Chestertown, MD, June 6, 2005 — Benjamin Anastas, author of An Underachiever's Diary and The Faithful Narrative of a Pastor's Disappearance: A Novel, has been named Interim Director of Washington College'sRose O'Neill Literary House. Anastas succeeds Robert Mooney, associate professor of English, who stepped down from the administrative post last spring to devote more time to completing his second novel. The College is embarking on a national search for a permanent successor to Mooney. Anastas, who assumes his post on August 15, will also serve as a visiting assistant professor of English.
Prior to joining Washington College, Anastas served as executive director of the Ledig House International Writers' Colony in Ghent, New York. A graduate of the Iowa Writers Workshop and a former fiction editor of The Iowa Review, he won Story Magazine's College Fiction Competition in 1992 for "A Voice from Somewhere Else" and GQ's coveted Frederick Exley Fiction Prize in 1994 for his short story "Ice Fishing." His most recent short fiction, "Versace Enthroned with Saints Margaret, Jerome, Alex, and the Angel Donatella," was published in The Yale Review.
"The College is extremely pleased that Mr. Anastas has agreed to lead the Rose O'Neill Literary House program during the coming year," said Joachim Scholz, provost and dean of the college. "A distinguished writer who is very well established in the literary world of New York City, he will bring a wealth of talent and of literary connections to the Literary House. I believe our creative writing students can expect a lively and challenging year."
Washington College is a private, independent college of liberal arts and sciences located in historic Chestertown on Maryland's Eastern Shore. Founded in 1782 under the patronage of George Washington, it is the first college chartered in the new nation.