Ursula K. Le Guin Prize for Fiction to Launch in 2022

The Ursula K. Le Guin Literary Trust will award the first-ever Ursula K. Le Guin Prize for Fiction in 2022. 

The Le Guin Prize for Fiction is an annual $25,000 cash prize given to a writer for a single book-length work of imaginative fiction. This award seeks to recognize the kinds of writers that Le Guin invoked in her 2014 National Book Awards speech—realists of a larger reality, who can imagine real grounds for hope and see alternatives to how we live now.

The nomination process for the prize is open to all, and the nomination period for the 2022 Prize will begin on February 1 of next year. The trust will create a shortlist of finalists from the nominated works, and a panel of five jurors will read the shortlisted works. The inaugural year’s jurors are adrienne maree brown, Becky Chambers, Molly Gloss, David Mitchell, and Luis Alberto Urrea. The first prize will be awarded on October 21, on what would have been Le Guin's 93rd birthday.

“Many will appreciate an irony in that Ursula herself was suspicious of literary awards and prizes," said Theo Downes-Le Guin, Le Guin’s son and literary executor. "At the same time, she recognized their genuine value in honoring a writer and increasing visibility of good, undervalued writing. She also knew that a bit of money, at the right moment and in the right spirit, can be a turning point in a writer’s ability to continue writing."

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