Home Stories Introducing our 2024 Literary Debutantes – One Story

Introducing our 2024 Literary Debutantes – One Story


Each year at our annual fundraiser, the Literary Debutante Ball, we honor our authors who have published their debut books.

This year, our debutantes are ‘Pemi Aguda, Ghostroots (W. W. Norton & Company), Puloma Ghosh, Mouth, (Astra House), Uche Okonkwo, A Kind of Madness, (Tin House Books), Shannon Sanders, Company, (Graywolf Press). Tickets are on sale now for the Ball, which is happening May 1st at Roulette in Brooklyn.

In the coming weeks, you can get to know them through a series of interviews conducted by our readers. And we’re thrilled to be partnering with Debutiful for a live virtual reading with all the Debutantes on April 17th, hosted by our friends at Greenlight Bookstore.

Read more about these incredible debut authors below!

‘Pemi Aguda, Ghostrootsauthor of OS #277, “Breastmilk”

’Pemi Aguda is from Lagos, Nigeria. Published in Granta, Ploughshares, Zoetrope, and more, her writing has been awarded O. Henry Prizes for Short Fiction, a Henfield Prize, a Nommo Award for Short Fiction, and the Writivism Prize. Her novel-in-progress won the 2020 Deborah Rogers Foundation Writers Award. She was a 2021 Miami Book Fair Fellow in Fiction, and a 2022 MacDowell fellow. A graduate of the Helen Zell Writers Program at the University of Michigan, her work has been supported by the Bread Loaf Writers Conference, an Aspen Words Emerging Writer fellowship and an Octavia Butler Memorial Scholarship. Ghostroots, her debut collection, will be published by W. W. Norton, Virago Books and Masobe Books.

Puloma Ghosh, Mouthauthor of OS #282, “K”

Puloma Ghosh is a fiction writer based in Chicago. Her work has appeared in One Story, CRAFT Literary, Cutleaf, and other publications, and is forthcoming in No Tokens and Cake Zine. She’s received support from the Tin House Summer Workshops and an MFA from the Bennington College Writing Seminars. Her short story collection, Mouth, will be published by Astra House in June 2024.


Uche Okonkwo, A Kind of Madnessauthor of OS #248, “Our Belgian Wife”

Uche Okonkwo’s stories have been published in A Public Space, One Story, the Kenyon Review, Ploughshares, Zyzzyva, The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2019, and Lagos Noir, among others. A former Bernard O’Keefe Scholar at Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and resident at Art Omi, she is a recipient of the George Bennett Fellowship at Phillips Exeter Academy, a Steinbeck Fellowship, and an Elizabeth George Foundation grant. Okonkwo grew up in Lagos, Nigeria, and is currently pursuing a creative writing PhD at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. A Kind of Madness is her first book.

Shannon Sanders, Companyauthor of OS #263, “The Everest Society”

Shannon Sanders is the author of the linked short story collection Company. Her short fiction has appeared in One StoryThe Sewanee ReviewThe Virginia Quarterly ReviewTriQuarterlyJoyland, and elsewhere, and has received a PEN/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers. She lives near Washington, DC with her husband and three sons.


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