National Book Awards are a set of American literary awards.
Started in 1950, the awards
are presented annually to American authors for literature published
in the prior year, as well as lifetime achievement awards including
the "Medal of Distinguished Contribution to American Letters" and
the "Literarian Award". The purpose of the awards is "to celebrate
the best of American literature, to expand its audience, and to
enhance the cultural value of good writing in America." In 1988 the
National Book Foundation
was established which now oversees and manages the National Book
Awards are given in each of four categories: fiction
, and young people's literature
. Awards have
been given in various other categories, which have since been
retired or subsumed into the remaining categories.
The winners are selected in each category by an independent, expert
and volunteer five-member judging panel. Panels typically consider
hundreds of books in each category. A chair from each panel
announces the runners-up and winner during the "The National Book
Awards Ceremony and Dinner" held each year in November. The winners
each receive a $10,000 cash prize and a bronze sculpture; finalists
each receive $1,000, a medal, and a citation from the panel
Winners of the National Book Awards
Medal of Distinguished Contribution to American Letters
The "Medal of Distinguished Contribution to American Letters"
(DCAL) is a lifetime achievement award. The medal comes with
$10,000. The recipient is a person who "has enriched American
literary heritage over a life of service, or a corpus of
The "Literarian Award" is a lifetime achievement award. It is
"presented to an individual for outstanding service to the American
literary community, whose life and work exemplify the goals of the
National Book Foundation to expand the audience for literature and
to enhance the cultural value of literature in America."
- National Book Award
- Seattle's Egan wins National Book Award
- National Book Award: About Us"
- National Book Foundation, Presenter of National