Date: April 16, 2012
Media Contact: Susan Albert
sartonprize at

Story Circle Network Announces Sarton Memoir Awards

(Austin, TX. April 16, 2012)—The Story Circle Network (SCN) is pleased to announce the winners of the Sarton Memoir Award, open to women writers of books published in 2011. The award is named for May Sarton, distinguished American memoirist, poet, and novelist. It was granted this year to the writers of two outstanding memoirs, each of which is an inspiring example of the way women's memoirs document the private and public lives every woman lives.

Leila Levinson was awarded first place for her book Gated Grief: The Daughter of a GI Concentration Camp Liberator Discovers a Legacy of Trauma (Cable Publishing, 2011). The memoir reveals how unspoken memories and unshared stories can imprison and haunt us. It speaks to the power of story to honor and heal the wounds of the past.

The daughter of a Nazi concentration camp liberator, Levinson founded, a website where veterans and their children share their stories. She also teaches writing workshops for veterans and their families. While Gated Grief is her first book, her work has appeared in the Washington Post, the Austin American Statesman, The Texas Observer, WWII Quarterly, CrossCurrents, and War, Literature, and Art. She lives in Austin TX, with her husband and two sons.

Jamie Patterson was awarded second place for her book Lost Edens: A True Story (Beaver's Pond Press, 2011). A memoir of a failed marriage and abandoned dreams, the book helps readers understand that while some relationships are too broken to fix, we can change our stories and thereby transform our lives. Patterson, an academic editor, lives in Minneapolis MN. Lost Edens is her first book.

The Sarton Memoir Award is offered annually by the Story Circle Network, an international nonprofit association of women life-writers. For information about the 2012 award cycle, visit SCN's website at This year's competition closes December 7, 2012.

SCN also sponsors the largest and longest-lived women's book review site on the Internet (; a program of online writing classes taught by and for women (; an editorial service (; and the bi-annual conference, "Stories From the Heart." Membership in SCN is open to any woman who is interested in writing about her life experiences. For details: