Established in 1950, the National Book Awards are American literary prizes administered by the National Book Foundation, a nonprofit organization. A pantheon of writers such as William Faulkner, Marianne Moore, Ralph Ellison, John Cheever, Bernard Malamud, Philip Roth, Robert Lowell, Walker Percy, John Updike, Katherine Anne Porter, Norman Mailer, Lillian Hellman, Elizabeth Bishop, Saul Bellow, Toni Morrison, Flannery O’Connor, Adrienne Rich, Thomas Pynchon, Alice Walker, E. Annie Proulx, Jesmyn Ward, and Ta-Nehisi Coates have all won National Book Awards. Although other categories have been recognized in the past, the Awards currently honor the best Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, Translated Literature, and Young People’s Literature, published each year.

Current Awards Year

2018 National Book Awards

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Browse by Year

Over the past 70 years, the National Book Foundation has honored nearly 2,600 titles. You can explore our archive here. 

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Explore the Archives

Over the past 70 years, the National Book Foundation has honored nearly 2,600 titles. You can explore our archive here. 

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How the National Book Awards Work

The National Book Awards were established in 1950 to celebrate the best writing in America. Since 1989, they have been overseen by the National Book Foundation, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to celebrate the best of American literature, to expand its audience, and to enhance the cultural value of great writing in America.

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Deadlines & Guidelines

Eligibility, the submissions process, current prizes, guidelines, FAQ.

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Medallions

Seals and digital image rights are available for NBA Winner, Finalist, and Longlist titles. In addition to medallions for individual titles, we also offer medallions for 5 Under 35 honorees and Distinguished Contribution to American Letters medalists, which can be used for future or backlist titles, respectively.

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