PEN America’s Literary Awards Program seeks diligent, organized interns to assist with the beginning of the 2018 literary awards cycle. The PEN Literary Awards confer nearly $315,000 annually to writers and translators. In 2018, PEN will administer 25 distinct awards in the fields of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, science writing, sports writing, biography, translation, and more.

Interns will gain exposure to New York’s vibrant cultural landscape through program development and regular communication with PEN’s literary affiliates. They will receive hands-on administrative experience and learn the operational details of executing the most comprehensive awards program in the country. Additionally, interns are invited to attend and volunteer for PEN’s many public events in the New York City area.


Interns will assist with a variety of tasks, including but not limited to

  • Communicating regularly with publishers, literary agents, editors, writers, and translators throughout the awards cycle
  • Providing support to judging panels; organizing the shipments of books 
  • Coordinating the announcements for the 2018 Longlists 
  • Monitoring the program’s email account and responding to general queries
  • Vetting and logging submissions; data entry 
  • Building webpages on
  • Contributing to the Literary Awards’ online presence through social media
  • Creating infographics or promotional materials for upcoming deadlines and announcements
  • Planning a special promotion for honored books around the holiday season
  • Supporting PEN’s Director of Public Programs and PEN’s Awards Administrator with program research, editing press releases, and crafting e-blasts. 

The Ideal Candidate:

  • Has excellent communication and research skills
  • Works at a steady pace and independently
  • Is willing to manage a range of administrative tasks
  • Is comfortable working with Microsoft Office Suite and Google Drive; any experience with MailChimp or photo editing software is strongly preferred.
  • Has a demonstrated interest in literature, cultural programming, and human rights.

For the fall, PEN asks for a commitment of two to four days per week (within normal business hours.) Internships will last from September 5, 2017 through December 15, 2017. This internship offers opportunities for extension for interested candidates.

This is an unpaid position. Though, interns who work more than 15 hours per week are eligible for a local travel stipend. PEN internships are also eligible for college credit.

To apply, please email a cover letter and resume to Nadxieli Nieto, PEN America’s Literary Awards Manager, at [email protected] with the subject line, “Fall Literary Awards Internship.”