The New Yorker magazine honored for CFIDS story
On May 5 the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME)
announced winners of the 2004 National Magazine Awards. The New Yorker won
three, including the prize for “Essay,” recognizing excellence in essay writing
on topics ranging from the personal to the political. Whatever the subject, this
award honors the author's eloquence, perspective, fresh thinking and unique
voice. The magazine’s prize-winning essay, “A Sudden Illness,” was written by
Laura Hillenbrand, acclaimed author of Seabiscuit: An American Legend and
a person living with CFIDS.
The judges wrote this about Hillenbrand’s New Yorker
article, "In this essay about her long, nearly unfathomable fight with chronic
fatigue syndrome, Laura Hillenbrand delivers rich, suspenseful, cinematic
details and imagery that transport the reader deep into the heart of her
nightmare-until it seems you are experiencing her claustrophobic and horrific
reality. 'A Sudden Illness' champions the importance of respecting personal
experience as valid (despite an army of 'authorities' who work to discredit it)
and creates an inspiring testament to the will to live and create."
ASME’s annual awards, referred to the “Ellies,” are considered
the Oscars of the magazine world. They have been given annually since 1966. To
Laura Hillenbrand, this honor was as personally meaningful as any she received
for writing Seabiscuit.