PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Short Story Collection ($25,000)
PEN America will only accept submissions from publishers or literary agents. Authors may not submit their own book for this award. Book submissions will not be considered unless officially submitted via the online form AND received at the PEN America New York office with the corresponding Declaration of Eligibility.
The PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for a Debut Short Story Collection honors an exceptionally talented writer whose first book, a collection of short stories, represents distinguished literary achievement and suggests great promise of a second work of literary fiction. One winner will be selected by a panel of three to four writers or editors who are PEN America Members. The winner will receive a $25,000 cash prize intended to allow significant time and resources with which to pursue a subsequent work of fiction.
The PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize was established in memory of Robert W. Bingham, who died in 1999 at the age of 33, to commemorate his support of young writers, his love of literature, and his contribution to literary fiction.
All winners and finalists for this award are eligible to receive PEN America’s official winner or finalist seal. If you are a publisher of a shortlisted or winning book for this award and are interested in obtaining PEN America’s award seal, please write to [email protected].
For more information, please visit our FAQ page.
Submissions for the 2021 awards will be accepted from June 15, 2020, through August 15, 2020.
- PLEASE NOTE: This prize will honor a debut writer’s short story collection, which is also the writer’s first book.
- The candidate’s first (and only the first) collection of short fiction must have been published by a U.S. trade publisher between January 1, 2020, and December 31, 2020.
- Publishers may submit galleys or bound manuscripts for consideration if the book is not yet published.
- Candidates must be U.S. residents; American citizenship is not required.
- There are no restrictions on the candidate’s age or on the style of their work as long as it is fiction.
- If you submit a book for this award, you may not submit it for any additional PEN America Literary Award, with the exception of the PEN Open Book Award. Please note that the PEN/Faulkner is not considered a PEN America Literary Award.
- Self-published books are not eligible.
- PEN America will only accept submissions from publishers or literary agents. Authors may not submit their own book for this award.
- Please download the Declaration of Eligibility. Complete all fields and have a company executive sign in order to confirm the book’s eligibility. If eligible, please upload this document along with the rest of your application below.
- Each submission is $85*. If you would like to pay by check, please enter CHECK in the coupon code field at checkout. Checks should be made out to PEN America. Please also submit a verified email address on the submission form; your order cannot be processed without an email address, as this info will be used to later contact you regarding the shipments of your submission. Please note that submission fees are not refundable.
- Once you have completed the online submission form, mail one copy of the candidate’s book to the address below between June 15, 2020, and August 15, 2020. Please note that we also accept galleys and bound manuscripts.
PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize
588 Broadway, Suite 303
New York, NY 10012
- Once the submitted book is received and reviewed for eligibility by PEN America, you will be contacted by [email protected] and asked to ship one copy of the book to each of our awards judges.
*Submission fees may be waived for publishers whose annual net sales are less than $2 million. In order to have your dues waived, please have a company official write a letter on company letterhead stating that your press’ annual net sales are less than $2 million. Please send this letter as an attachment (.doc or .pdf) to [email protected]. Once received, you will be provided with a coupon code to use at check-out in order to have your submission fees waived. One fee waiver may be used for all 2021 PEN America Awards; you do not need to submit a separate fee waiver for each award.