The National Book Foundation’s 5 Under 35, 2015

5 Under 35 LogoThe 5 Under 35 program, now in its tenth year, honors five young fiction writers selected by past National Book Award Winners and Finalists, or previous 5 Under 35 Honorees. Since 2006, the program has introduced the next generation of writers, including Téa Obreht, Karen Russell, and Justin Torres. Supported by a generous donation from Amazon Literary Partnerships, the Foundation offers the 5 Under 35 authors a cash award of $1,000 each. Additionally, each Honoree will be invited to appear at a special event in Miami, FL in the Spring of 2016, in partnership with Miami Book Fair International.
BuzzFeedThis year's Honorees were announced on Wednesday, September 30 by BuzzFeed Books.

The 2015 5 Under 35 Honorees Are:

2014 5 Under 35 Honorees

LeVar Burton, Host

LeVar BurtonLeVar Burton, multi-award winning actor, director and education advocate, is best known to television audiences around the world for his portrayals of two iconic characters—Kunte Kinte in “Roots” and Geordi LaForge in “Star Trek: The Next Generation”—and for his 23 years as producer and host of the beloved PBS series “Reading Rainbow.” Burton is co-founder of the award-winning Reading Rainbow digital library, which has produced the #1 educational app and has just introduced SKYBRARY, the next generation of innovative children's educational media on the web. He is co-Executive Producer of the upcoming multi-part remake of “Roots” and has received the Eliot-Pearson Award for Excellence in Children's Media from Tufts University, the 2014 Los Angeles Times Book Prizes Innovator’s Award, and the 2015 Chicago Tribune Young Adult Literary Award. Burton is also the author of the new children’s book, The Rhino Who Swallowed a Storm.

Ben Greenman, Emcee

Ben GreenmanBen Greenman is a writer for The New Yorker and the author of several acclaimed works of fiction, including the short story collections What He’s Poised to Do, Superbad, A Circle Is a Balloon and Compass Both, and the novels Superworse, Please Step Back, and The Slippage. His fiction, essays, and journalism have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Paris Review, Zoetrope: All Story, McSweeney’s, and elsewhere, and have been widely anthologized. With Questlove, he is the co-author of the bestselling Mo' Meta Blues, and the memoir Brothas Be, Yo Like George, Ain't That Funkin' Kinda Hard on You?, by George Clinton. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two children.
> Twitter: @bengreenman

Rosie Schaap, Guest Bartender

Rosie Schaap Rosie Schaap has been a bartender, a fortuneteller, a librarian at a paranormal society, an English teacher, an editor, a preacher, a community organizer, and a manager of homeless shelters. A contributor to This American Life and, she writes the monthly "Drink" column for The New York Times Magazine. Her memoir, Drinking With Men, will be published in January by Riverhead Books.  
> Twitter: @rosieschaap

The 2015 5 Under 35 Selection committee:

2015 5 Under 35 Selection Committee

Phil Klay is a Marine Corps veteran of the Iraq War and the author of the short story collection Redeployment, which received the 2014 National Book Award for Fiction. He was also named a 2014 National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 Honoree, and in 2015 received the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize for best debut work in any genre.
Fiona Maazel is the author of the novels Last Last Chance, Woke Up Lonely, and, forthcoming, What Kind of Man.
Dinaw Mengestu is the author of three novels, The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears (2007), How to Read the Air (2010), and All Our Names (2015). He is a graduate of Georgetown University and of Columbia University’s MFA program in fiction, a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 Honoree, and a New Yorker 20 Under 40 selection. His journalism and fiction have appeared in such publications as Harper’s, Granta, Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, and The Wall Street Journal. In 2012, he received a 2012 MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. He lives in New York City.
ZZ Packer is the author of the short story collection Drinking Coffee Elsewhere. She is a graduate of Yale University, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She is an assistant professor at San Francisco State University whose interests include creative writing, post-classical narrative theory, and political philosophy. She is at work on a novel, tentatively titled The Thousands, which chronicles America’s violent history following the Civil War through the eyes of the Buffalo Soldiers—African American infantry and cavalry units who fought during the “Indian campaigns.” She is the recipient of a Dobie Paisano Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts grant, a Wallace Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University, and a Whiting Award. She has published fiction in The Best American Short Stories, Harper’s, Ploughshares, Zoetrope, and The New Yorker, which included her in its 20 Under 40 Fiction Issue. Her nonfiction has appeared in the American Prospect, the Guardian, the New York Times Magazine, the Oxford American, and the Washington Post Magazine.
Paul Yoon was born in New York City. He is the author of Once the Shore, which was a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 selection, and the novel Snow Hunters, which won the 2014 Young Lions Fiction Award. He is currently a Fellow at the New York Public Library’s Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers.