New York City, May 6, 2014—Last night, PEN American Center announced the longlists and judges for the 2014 PEN Literary Awards in the company of friends and supporters at the annual PEN Literary Gala. For more than 50 years, these awards have honored many of the most outstanding voices in literature across such diverse fields as fiction, poetry, science writing, essays, sports writing, biography, children’s literature, translation, and drama. With the help of its partners and supporters, PEN will confer 18 distinct awards, fellowships, grants, and prizes in 2014, awarding nearly $150,000 to writers and translators.

This is the first year that PEN is releasing the preliminary results of the judging process for its book awards while also recognizing the skillful discernment of its distinguished judges who nominated them. With nearly 50 judges nominating over 80 longlisted titles in all, this year the PEN Literary Awards are recognizing more writers than ever while celebrating many deserving works that creative freedom makes possible.

“We are pleased to announce the longlisted titles for the 2014 PEN Literary Awards,” said PEN Executive Director, Suzanne Nossel. “On the heels of PEN’s 10th Annual World Voices Festival, which ended on Sunday, we are extending our celebration of international and U.S. writers to shine a spotlight on a greater variety of original and important books. In keeping with PEN’s mission of honoring literary excellence, we see this as an important step in building excitement for PEN’s Literary Awards and acknowledging the achievements of authors and those publishers who make their books available.”

Alice Quinn, Chair of PEN’s Literary Awards Committee, added, “This year, as always, we are profoundly grateful to the judges, themselves doubtless pressured for time for their own work on a daily basis, who have committed so much energy and discerning intelligence to the challenge of choosing finalists for these great prizes. Their labor and dedication is reflected in the marvelous range and quality of work held aloft by PEN in this announcement. The ceremony in the fall should be joyous.”

The shortlists for all book nomination awards will be announced on June 17. The winners for all 2014 PEN Literary Awards will be announced on July 30 and will be honored at the 2014 PEN Literary Awards Ceremony on Monday, September 29, 2014, at The New School’s Auditorium at West 12th Street.


PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize ($25,000): To an author whose debut work—a first novel or collection of short stories published in 2013—represents distinguished literary achievement and suggests great promise.

Judges: Charles Bock, Jonathan Dee, Fiona Maazel, and Karen Shepard


A History of the Present Illness (Bloomsbury), Louise Aronson
Middle Men (Simon & Schuster), Jim Gavin
Bogotá (TriQuarterly Books), Alan Grostephan
The Morels (Soho Press Inc.), Christopher Hacker
A Constellation of Vital Phenomena (Hogarth), Anthony Marra
We All Sleep In the Same Room (Rare Bird Books, A Barnacle Book), Paul Rome
Brief Encounters With the Enemy (The Dial Press), Saïd Sayrafiezadeh
Everybody’s Irish (FiveChapters Books), Ian Stansel
Godforsaken Idaho (Little A/New Harvest), Shawn Vestal
The People in the Trees (Doubleday), Hanya Yanagihara


PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay ($10,000): For a book of essays published in 2013 that exemplifies the dignity and esteem that the essay form imparts to literature.

Judges: Geoff Dyer, Stanley Fish, Ariel Levy, and Cheryl Strayed


Makers of Modern Architecture, Volume II (New York Review Books), Martin Filler
The Kraus Project (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Jonathan Franzen
Stories We Tell Ourselves (University of Iowa Press), Michelle Herman
The Blind Masseuse (University of Wisconsin Press), Alden Jones
Forty-One False Starts (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Janet Malcolm
Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls (Little, Brown and Company), David Sedaris
The Faraway Nearby (Viking Adult), Rebecca Solnit
Critical Mass (Doubleday), James Wolcott


PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award ($10,000): For a book of literary nonfiction on the subject of the physical or biological sciences published in 2013.

Judges: Akiko Busch, Rivka Galchen, and Eileen Pollack


Frankenstein’s Cat (Scientific American / Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Emily Anthes
The End of Night (Little, Brown and Company), Paul Bogard
Five Days at Memorial (Crown), Sheri Fink
High Price (Harper), Carl Hart
Surfaces and Essences (Basic Books), Douglas Hofstadter & Emmanuel Sander
Wild Ones (Penguin Press), Jon Mooallem
Gulp (W.W. Norton & Company), Mary Roach
Weird Life (W.W. Norton & Company), David Toomey
What the Dog Knows (Touchstone), Cat Warren
Paleofantasy (W.W. Norton & Company), Marlene Zuk


PEN Open Book Award ($5,000): For an exceptional book-length work of literature by an author of color published in 2013.

Judges: Catherine Chung, Randa Jarrar, and Monica Youn


Southern Cross the Dog (Ecco), Bill Cheng
Duppy Conqueror (Copper Canyon Press), Kwame Dawes
Leaving Tulsa (University of Arizona Press), Jennifer Elise Foerster
The Cineaste (W.W. Norton & Company), A. Van Jordan
domina Un/blued (Tupelo Press), Ruth Ellen Kocher
Cowboys and East Indians (FiveChapters Books), Nina McConigley
A Tale for the Time Being (Viking Adult), Ruth Ozeki
Ghana Must Go (Penguin Press), Taiye Selasi

*Ed Pavlic’s collection of poetry, Visiting Hours at the Color Line (Milkweed Editions) was mistakenly submitted for the PEN Open Book Award by the publisher and passed forward to the 2014 judging panel, who selected the title for this year’s longlist announcement. This title does not, in fact, meet the eligibility criteria specified in the online guidelines and so it has been removed from consideration. PEN apologizes for any confusion this has created and will rectify the vetting process accordingly for its 2015 submissions process.


PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography ($5,000): For a distinguished biography published in 2013.

Judges: James Atlas, Lisa Cohen, and Wendy Gimbel


Lawrence in Arabia (Doubleday), Scott Anderson
Wilson (Putnam), A. Scott Berg
Holding On Upside Down: The Life and Work of Marianne Moore (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Linda Leavell
Dreadful: The Short Life and Gay Times of John Horne Burns (Other Press), David Margolick
Margaret Fuller (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), Megan Marshall
Roth Unbound (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Claudia Roth Pierpont
American Mirror: The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Deborah Solomon
A Life of Barbara Stanwyck (Simon & Schuster), Victoria Wilson


PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing ($5,000): To honor a nonfiction book on the subject of sports published in 2013.

Judges: Joel Drucker, Chad Harbach, and Jackie MacMullan


Mickey and Willie (Crown Archetype), Allen Barra
Monsters (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Rich Cohen
Collision Low Crossers (Little, Brown and Company), Nicholas Dawidoff
The Sports Gene (Current), David Epstein
League of Denial (Crown Archetype), Mark Fainaru-Wada & Steve Fainaru
The Emerald Mile (Scribner), Kevin Fedarko
Francona (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), Terry Francona & Dan Shaughnessy
Their Life’s Work (Simon & Schuster), Gary M. Pomerantz
Game Over (The New Press), Dave Zirin


PEN/Steven Kroll Award for Picture Book Writing ($5,000): To a writer for an exceptional story illustrated in a picture book published in 2013.

Judges: Mac Barnett, Ted Lewin, and Elizabeth Winthrop


Train (Orchard Books), Elisha Cooper
Tea Party Rules (Viking), Ame Dyckman
Cowboy Up! Ride the Navajo Rodeo (Wordsong), Nancy Bo Flood
Look Up! Bird-Watching In Your Own Backyard (Candlewick Press), Annette LeBlanc Cate
The King of Little Things (Peachtree Publishers), Bil Lepp
Crabtree (McSweeney’s McMullens), Jon & Tucker Nichols
Bugs In My Hair! (The Blue Sky Press), David Shannon
Who Says Women Can’t Be Doctors? (Henry Holt and Company), Tanya Lee Stone


PEN Award for Poetry in Translation ($3,000): For a book-length translation of poetry into English published in 2013.

Judge: Kimiko Hahn


Black Stars: Poems by Ngo Tu Lap (Milkweed Editions), Martha Collins & Ngo Tu Lap
Even Now: Poems by Hugo Claus (Archipelago), David Colmer
Diaries of Exile by Yannis Ritsos (Archipelago), Karen Emmerich & Edmund Keeley
fungus skull eye wing by Alfonso D’Aquino (Copper Canyon Press), Forrest Gander
Impromptus by Gottfried Benn (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Michael Hofmann
Collected Haiku of Yosa Buson by Yosa Buson (Copper Canyon Press), Takako Lento & W.S. Merwin
Colonies by Tomasz Różycki (Zephyr Press), Mira Rosenthal
I Can Almost See the Clouds of Dust by Yu Xiang (Zephyr Press), Fiona Sze-Lorrain
Paul Klee’s Boat by Anzhelina Polonskaya (Zephyr Press), Andrew Wachtel
Cut These Words Into My Stone: Ancient Greek Epitaphs (Johns Hopkins University Press), Michael Wolfe


PEN Translation Prize ($3,000): For a book-length translation of prose into English published in 2013.

Judges: Ann Goldstein, Becka McKay, and Katherine Silver


Shantytown by César Aira (New Directions), Chris Andrews
Twists and Turns in the Heart’s Antarctic by Hélène Cixous (Polity), Beverley Bie Brahic
An Armenian Sketchbook by Vasily Grossman (New York Review Books), Elizabeth & Robert Chandler
The Infatuations by Javier Marías (Knopf), Margaret Jull Costa
Transit by Anna Seghers (New York Review Books), Margot Bettauer Dembo
Kafka: The Years of Insight by Reiner Stach (Princeton University Press), Shelley Frisch
The Dinner by Herman Koch (Hogarth), Sam Garrett
The African Shore by Rodrigo Rey Rosa (Yale University Press), Jeffrey Gray
The Emperor’s Tomb by Joseph Roth (New Directions), Michael Hofmann
Autobiography of a Corpse by Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky (New York Review Books), Joanne Turnbull & Nikolai Formozov


(The following PEN Awards do not have longlists but are listed below to announce the participation of those authors who are judging the awards. The winners will be announced on July 30th along with all of the winners for the book awards.)

PEN/Saul Bellow Award for Achievement in American Fiction ($25,000): To a distinguished living American author of fiction.

Judges: E.L. Doctorow, Edwidge Danticat, and Zadie Smith


PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction, Founded by Barbara Kingsolver ($25,000): To an author of an unpublished novel that addresses issues of social justice. The prize also includes a publishing contract with Algonquin Books.

Judges: Terry McMillan, Nancy Pearl, Kathy Pories


PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry ($5,000): To a poet whose distinguished and growing body of work to date represents a notable and accomplished presence in American literature.

Judges: Peg Boyers, Toi Derricotte, and Rowan Ricardo Phillips


PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater Awards ($7,500 and $2,500): Three awards which honor a Master American Dramatist, American Playwright in Mid-Career, and Emerging American Playwright. This is the inaugural year of the Award for an Emerging American Playwright.

Judges: John Lithgow, Elizabeth Streb, and Maria Tucci


PEN/Phyllis Naylor Working Writer Fellowship ($5,000): To an author of children’s or young-adult fiction, who has published at least two books, to complete a book-length work-in-progress.

Judges: Kathi Appelt, Johanna Hurwitz, and Padma Venkatraman


PEN/ESPN Lifetime Achievement Award for Literary Sports Writing ($5,000): To a writer whose body of work represents an exceptional contribution to the field.

Judges: Kostya Kennedy, David Rosenthal, and John Schulian


PEN/Edward and Lily Tuck Award for Paraguayan Literature ($3,000): To a living author of a major work of Paraguayan literature not yet translated into English.

Judges: Idra Novey, Yvette Siegert, and Mark Statman


PEN/Heim Translation Fund Grants ($2,000-$4,000): To support the translation of book-length works into English.

Judges: The PEN/Heim Translation Fund Advisory

The 2014 PEN Literary Awards are made possible through the generous support of PEN’s many donors:, Kathleen Beckett and Steven Kroll, the family of Robert W. Bingham, Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel and Carl Spielvogel, ESPN, Harrison Ford, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, The Kaplen Foundation, Barbara Kingsolver, Priscilla and Michael Henry Heim, Michael Moritz and Harriet Heyman, Phyllis Naylor, the Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater, the Estate of Rochelle Ratner, Dr. Edward O. Wilson and the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation, James and Cathy Stone, Edward and Lily Tuck, Hunce Voelcker, and Jacqueline Bograd Weld and Rodman L. Drake.

PEN will begin accepting submissions for its 2015 Awards later this summer. For a list of all 2015 PEN Awards and information about submission guidelines, please visit For questions about any of the awards, write to [email protected]. For questions about the long-listed titles, upcoming awards announcements, or advertising in the 2014 Ceremony program, please contact Paul W. Morris, PEN’s Director of Literary Awards, Membership, & Marketing, at [email protected].

About PEN American Center

PEN American Center is the largest of the 145 centers of PEN International, the world’s leading human rights and international literary organization. PEN International was founded in 1921 to dispel national, ethnic, and racial tensions and to promote understanding among all countries. PEN American Center, founded a year later, works to advance literature, to defend free expression, and to foster international literary fellowship. Its 2,000 distinguished members carry on the achievements in literature and advancement of human rights of such past members as James Baldwin, Willa Cather, Robert Frost, Allen Ginsberg, Langston Hughes, Arthur Miller, Marianne Moore, Eugene O’Neill, Susan Sontag, and John Steinbeck. To learn more about the PEN American Center, please visit:


Paul W. Morris, 212-334-1660, ext. 108, [email protected]
Arielle Anema, 212-334-1660, ext. 126, [email protected]