National Book Foundation Introduces Translation Award

On January 31, the National Book Foundation (NBF) announced that it voted unanimously to establish a fifth National Book Award that would honor fiction and nonfiction translated into English and published in the United States. The National Book Award for Translated Literature fits in with the board’s new mission statement to celebrate the best literature in America, expand its audience, and ensure that books have a prominent place in American culture. Says NBF director Lisa Lucas, “We are a nation of immigrants, and we should never stop seeking connection and insight from the myriad cultures that consistently influence and inspire us. We want American readers to deeply value an inclusive, big-picture point of view, and the National Book Award for Translated Literature is part of a commitment to that principle.”

The National Book Award for Translated Literature will be awarded for the first time at this year’s 69th National Book Awards, joining the four other permanent awards in Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, and Young People’s Literature. As with the other categories, submissions for translated works will be open on March 7. Both writer and translator must be living at the beginning of the awards cycle, though neither party is required to be a U.S. citizen, and the original work need not be published in the year of the award submission. The National Book Awards Longlists will be announced the week of September 10 and finalists on October 10. Winners will be announced at the invitation-only National Book Awards Ceremony and Benefit Dinner on November 14 in New York City.

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Barbara Hoffert About Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (bhoffert@mediasourceinc.com, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Prepub Alert; past chair of the Materials Selection Committee of the RUSA (Reference and User Services Assn.) division of the American Library Association; and past president, treasurer, and awards chair of the National Book Critics Circle.

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