Rick Bragg, the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer, journalist, and author of two bestselling memoirs and numerous other books, has been selected as the 2019 Conroy Legacy Award Recipient. Created in honor of the example set by the beloved Southern author Pat Conroy, the Conroy Legacy Award recognizes writers who have achieved a lasting impact on their literary community, demonstrated support for independent bookstores, both in their own communities and in general, written work that focuses significantly on their home place, and supported other writers, especially new and emerging writers. Serendipitously, Rick Bragg is a contributor to Our Prince of Scribes: Writers Remember Pat Conroy edited by by Nicole Seitz and Jonathan Haupt, published by University of Georgia Press and releasing this September.
When informed of the award, Rick Bragg shared, “I heard Pat Conroy read his work aloud and it will almost make you abandon this craft for good and take up something like brick laying. The elegance and beauty of it always, across decades, made me think ‘Oh, so this is what it is supposed to sound like, be, linger in the mind.’ The fact he once said good things about my own work made me walk on air. I mean it, my step was lighter somehow. To be presented his award by people who have been with me since the beginning of my writing life, in his name, is as fine a thing as I can ever expect.”
Suzanne Lucey of Page 158 Books in Wake Forest, NC praised this year’s award winner, “Rick Bragg is the whole package. Intelligent, to the point, hilarious and beyond generous with his time and storytelling. A true man's man and momma's boy who makes us cry with laughter. He embraces his Southern Roots and contributes to the overall reason we all love the South.”
SIBA will make a donation to the Pat Conroy Literary Center and to the Margaret Bragg Scholarship for first generation college students at Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Alabama in the name of Rick Bragg.