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Los Angeles Magazine nominated for two National Magazine Awards

April 3, 2012 | 11:25 am

Mitricerichardson_missing
The American Society of Magazine Editors on Tuesday announced finalists for the Ellies, its annual awards for excellence. Los Angeles Magazine is a finalist in two categories, one of 26 multiple nominees.

Mike Kessler's September story, "What Happened to Mitrice Richardson?" is a finalist in the reporting category. Richardson, pictured above, was missing for more than a year after disappearing in Malibu. Kessler's story begins, "A recent college graduate, she was jailed briefly for trying to skip out on her dinner tab in Malibu, then freed in the middle of the night in a neighborhood far from home. She had no car, no ride, no phone, and no money. When she disappeared, it raised a flurry of questions about how the sheriff’s department handled her case. The discovery of her body a year later only raised more."

The New Yorker has two nominees in the category: "Getting Bin Laden" by Nicholas Schmidle and Lawrence Wright's "The Apostate," about film director Mike Figgis' involvement with, and departure from, Scientology. The other reporting nominees are "Our Man in Kandahar" by Matthieu Aikens in the Atlantic and "Echoes From a Distant Battlefield" by Mark Bowden in Vanity Fair.

The other Los Angeles Magazine finalist is novelist Steve Erickson, who serves as the publication's film critic. Erickson's recent criticism includes his own alternate Oscars and a year-end summary that focuses on films by Lars von Trier, Jeff Nichols and Terrence Malick. In the columns/commentary category, Erickson's competition is the Atlantic's James Parker, Time's Joel Stein, Bill Heavey in Field & Stream and Christopher Hitchens in Vanity Fair.

Another novelist, Jonathan Franzen, earned a nomination for the story "Ambition" published in McSweeney's. That's in the fiction category, where McSweeney's earned another nomination as well, for "The Northeast Kingdom" by Nathaniel Rich. Other nominees are Karen Russell for "The Hox River Window" in Zoetrope, Maggie Shipstead for "La Moretta" in the Virginia Quarterly Review and "Scars" by Sarah Turcotte in the Atlantic.

A complete list of the National Magazine Award nominees is online. The Ellies will be awarded at a ceremony in New York on May 3.

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-- Carolyn Kellogg

Photo: Photos of Mitrice Richardson are displayed during the search for the missing woman. Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times

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