Tara Lynn Masih

Marquis Who's Who Biographee2018 Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement AwardTara Masih grew up on Long Island's north shore, in the small harbor town of East Northport. After graduating from C.W. Post College, she moved to Boston and earned an MA in Writing and Publishing from Emerson College, where she taught freshman composition and grammar and tutored students with writing problems. She has worked as a publisher's assistant to Pym-Randall Press; as an assistant editor to STORIES literary magazine; as an editorial assistant at Little, Brown's college division; and as a book editor at Bedford Books/St. Martin's Press, and was a freelance book packager, copyeditor, and proofreader for such companies as Houghton Mifflin, Ballantine Books, and Harvard University Press for over 30 years.

Tara has published fiction, poetry, essays, profiles, and articles (Confrontation, The Caribbean Writer, Hayden's Ferry Review, The Los Angeles Review, Pleiades, Five Points, Natural Bridge), and her essays have been read on NPR.

She was a regular contributor to the Indian-American and Masala magazines, in which her essays on the topic of race and culture were often featured. She appears in A Directory of American Poets and Fiction Writers; Who's Who in America; Who's Who of American Women; and received the 2018 Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award and the 2019 Inspirational Woman in Literature Award. She has served on the advisory board for the Robert Frost Foundation, and judged the annual Soul-Making Literary Competition's Intercultural Essay Prize sponsored by the San Francisco branch of the National League of American Pen Women.

Much of her writing is set within the framework of nature and place, a result of the years she spent outdoors in the woods and on the shores of Long Island Sound. She LOVES history, flowers, anything vintage, the beach, the marshes, chocolate, and family time.

Brief Writer's Bio for Press

Tara Lynn Masih is a National Jewish Book Award Finalist and winner of the Julia Ward Howe Award for Young Readers for her debut novel My Real Name Is Hanna. Her anthologies include The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction and The Chalk Circle: Intercultural Prizewinning Essays. Where the Dog Star Never Glows is her collection of long and very short stories, and she's published multiple chapbooks with the Feral Press that are archived in universities such as Yale and NYU. She founded the Intercultural Essay Prize in 2006 and The Best Small Fictions series in 2015.

Masih received a finalist fiction grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, an Inspirational Woman in Literature Award from AITL Media, and several national book awards including an IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award for her role as an editor.

Select Interviews

The Writer An Interview with Tara Lynn Masih: Author & Publisher

Writing and Publishing Awards

Shelf Unbound Award - 2019 Best Indie Book Florida Book Awards
  • 2019 National Jewish Book Award Finalist (My Real Name Is Hanna)
  • 2019 Shelf Unbound Notable Book (My Real Name Is Hanna)
  • 2019 Julia Ward Howe Award for Young Readers (My Real Name Is Hanna)
  • Inspirational Women in Literature Award, from AITL Media, 2019
  • 2019 Screw Turn Flash Fiction Competition, Honorable Mention ("Billy Said This Really Happened to Lucy")
  • 2018 Florida Book Award, Gold Medal (My Real Name Is Hanna)
  • 2018 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award/Historical Fiction (My Real Name Is Hanna)
  • 2018 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Finalist/YA (My Real Name Is Hanna)
  • 2018 Litsy Award Nominee (My Real Name Is Hanna)
  • 2018 Skipping Stones Honor Award (My Real Name Is Hanna)
  • The Wigleaf Top 50 (very) Short Fictions List 2015 ("The Mystery Spot")
  • Finalist, 2014 Reynolds Price Prize in Fiction ("If You Had Stopped")
  • Silver medal, 2012 ForeWord Book of the Year Awards (The Chalk Circle)
  • Silver medal, 2013 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards (The Chalk Circle)
  • 2012 New England Book Festival runner-up award (The Chalk Circle)
  • 2012 Skipping Stones Honor Award (The Chalk Circle)
  • Pushcart Prize nomination, 2011 ("Pieta")
  • Finalist, Best Books 2010 (from USA Book News, for Where the Dog Star Never Glows)
  • Pushcart Prize nominations, 2010 ("Tracks and Traces"--creative nonfiction; "Delight"--story)
  • Bronze medal, 2009 ForeWord Book of the Year Awards (Flash Field Guide)
  • A Featured Writer Award from Hedge-Witchery.com
  • 55 Words guest story winner, May 2008 ("The VW and the Caddy")
  • Second place, Jane's Stories Press Foundation Flash Fiction Award, 2008 ("This Heat")
  • Best of the Web nomination, 2007 ("Suspended")
  • Second place, Carolyn A. Clark Flash Fiction Prize/Soul-Making Literary Competition Pen Women, 2005 ("Catalpa")
  • Finalist fiction grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council (1996)
  • First place, The Ledge's 1995 fiction contest ("The Dark Sun")
  • Florida Literary Foundation short story winner, 1993 ("Say Bridgitte, Please")
  • Pushcart Prize nomination, 1992 ("Turtle Hunting")
  • Best of Show, PacKAGING Women/Cell.ing Women 1991 poetry and art exhibit ("Will the Real Madonna Please Stand Up?") for both poem and photo
  • First place, The Paper Bag's 1989 short-short fiction contest for best stories of the year
  • Bookbuilders of Boston Scholarship, 1985
  • Lou P. Bunce Creative Writing Award, 1985
  • Second place, Loomings' 1984 literary contest ("Gray Afternoon")

Off-the-Book-Page Coverage

Where the Dog Star Never Glows mentioned in Ladies' Home Journal
Tara Masih

Latest News

The Bitter Kind: A Flash Novelette, my collaboration with writer James Claffey, is due out Oct. 2020 from Cervena Barva Press and Blackstone Audio! Cover reveal June 15.

I've been able to donate some royalty/prize money in honor of Esther Stermer and the survivors in my dedication to: the Holocaust Memorial Museum in DC; the Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Florida; Francesco Lotoro's ICML Foundation to honor musicians incarcerated in concentration camps and elsewhere. It always feels good to give back! So know if you bought the book, some of it went to good causes.

Hanna wins two more awards from the Boston Authors Club and Foreword Reviews! I also hear it is starting to be taught in high schools and middle schools around the country. I got a wonderful picture of a pictorial book report that appears on my contact page. Thanks to Violet in Alabama!

Hanna wins the gold medal in YA in the state-run Florida Book Awards!

I'm delighted to be honored with a 2019 Inspirational Women in Literature Award from AITL Media. A highlight of my career! Also looking forward to book club appearances through the Holocaust Memorial and Research Center of Florida and the Compassionate Women of St. Augustine. I'm also grateful that several bloggers posted Hanna among their top reads for 2018. I love book bloggers!

Thanks to the Traveling Sisters for reading Hanna in their book club and for interviewing me. It was a great experience to have contact in both directions: Author Q & A with My Real Name is Hanna by Tara Lynn Masih

Speaking of bookclubs, I'm honored that Cindy Hudson, author of Book by Book: The Complete Guide to Creating Mother-Daughter Book Clubs, highly recommends Hanna. You can read her full review here.

Hanna wins a 2018 Skipping Stones Honor Award!

Chalk Circle is being used at many universities, colleges, and even high schools, including Columbia, NYU, Rutgers-Newark, Salem State, Tiffin U, and Xavier. If you are an instructor you get a discounted review copy through your college bookstore or a free digital desk copy from Wyatt-MacKenzie.