New York, March 29, 2021 – The American Academy of Arts and Letters announced today the names of 18 writers who will receive its 2021 awards in literature. The awards will be presented virtually at the Academy’s annual Ceremonial at 7 p.m. on May 19 here. The literature prizes, totaling $600,000, honor both established and emerging writers of fiction, nonfiction, drama, and poetry. The Academy’s 300 members propose candidates, and a rotating committee of writers selects winners. This year’s award committee members were Amy Hempel (chair), Edwidge Danticat, Louise Glück, John Guare, Edward Hirsch, and Joy Williams.
$200,000 each given as income over two years in recognition of literary excellence and to provide freedom to devote time exclusively to writing.
LAURA VAN DEN BERG
$25,000 to an outstanding writer representing excellence in the craft of the novel.
Eight awards of $10,000 each honoring exceptional accomplishment in any genre.
LAYLI LONG SOLDIER
$5,000 for a work of first fiction (novel or short stories) published in 2020.
for Shuggie Bain
$10,000 to a writer of great promise.
$10,000 to a young writer of considerable literary talent for a work published in 2020.
for How Much of These Hills is Gold
$20,000 each to writers whose work has demonstrated consistent excellence.
$20,000 to a writer whose work merits recognition for the quality of its prose style.
$10,000 to a writer for achievement in children’s literature. Award jury: Michael Chabon, Louise Erdrich, Ann Patchett.