American Academy of Arts and Letters honors 19 writers, including Haigh, Spiotta, Sinclair

   

Jennifer Haigh                                  Safiya Sinclair               Dana Spiotta 

 

The American Academy of Arts and Letters announced today the names of 19 writers who will receive the 2017 awards in literature, which will be presented in New York City at the Academy’s annual Ceremonial in May.  The literature prizes, totaling $265,000, honor both established and emerging writers of fiction, nonfiction, drama, and poetry.  The Academy’s 250 members propose candidates, and a rotating committee of writers selects winners.  This year’s award committee members were John Guare (chairman), Thomas McGuane, Anne Tyler, Rosanna Warren, and Joy Williams.

Recipients include novelists Jennifer Haigh (Heat and Light, Baker Towers, News from Heaven) and Dana Spiotta (Innocents and Others, Stone Arabia) and poets Kathleen Graber (The Eternal City, Correspondence) and Safiya Sinclair (Cannibal).

Haigh and Graber received Arts and Letters Awards in Literature, which honor “exceptional accomplishment in any genre” and come with a $10,000 prize.

Spiotta received the John Updike Award ($20,000), which is “given biennially to a writer in mid-career whose work has demonstrated consistent excellence.” Spiotta’s Innocents and Others is a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award in Fiction, which will be announced on April 21.

Sinclair was chosen for the Addison M. Metcalf Award ($10,000), which is “given to a young writer of fiction, nonfiction, drama, or poetry.” The Jamaican-born poet, currently a PhD candidate in literature and creative writing at the University of Southern California, is a 2016 Whiting Award winner, and her debut collection, Cannibal, won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry.

Work by the winners will be featured in the 2017 Exhibition of Work by Newly Elected Members and Recipients of Honors and Awards, which will be on view in the Academy’s galleries from May 18 to June 11.

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Los Angeles Times Book Prizes finalists announced

sweet-lamb-of-heaven   swing-time   innocents-and-others

spill-simmer-falter-wither  ways-to-disappear  the-bed-moved

Finalists for the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes were announced on Feb. 22. A total of 55 finalists were named in eleven categories.

In the Fiction category, three women writers were nominated: Lydia Millet, Zadie Smith, and Dana Spiotta.

Finalists in the First Fiction category include another trio of women: Sara Baume, Idra Novey, and Rebecca Schiff.

Strangely, The Girls by Emma Cline was nominated in the Mystery/Thriller category.

The prizes will be awarded on the evening of April 21, the night before the annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books begins at the University of Southern California.

Last year’s winners included Valeria Luiselli in Fiction for The Story of My Teeth and Chigozie Obioma in First Fiction for The Fishermen.

FICTION

What Belongs to You by Garth Greenwell

Imagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett

Sweet Lamb of Heaven by Lydia Millet

Swing Time by Zadie Smith

Innocents and Others by Dana Spiotta

THE ART SEIDENBAUM AWARD FOR FIRST FICTION

Spill Simmer Falter Wither by Sara Baume

The Whale: A Love Story by Mark Beauregard

The Nix by Nathan Hill

Ways to Disappear by Idra Novey

The Bed Moved by Rebecca Schiff