2024 Creative Writing Awards Applications Are Now Open!
Penguin Random House, and We Need Diverse Books (WNDB), have opened submissions for the 2024 Creative Writing Awards. This is the first year the awards include the Freedom of Expression Award; in the face of book bans and attacks on free expression on the rise in America, Penguin Random House and We Need Diverse Books celebrate the power of books and stories. Applicants to the new award will be asked to answer the prompt, “Tell us about one banned book that changed your life and why.”
The 2024 competition launches on October 16, 2023, and closes on January 16, 2024—or when 1,000 applications have been submitted. Current high school seniors who attend public schools in the United States, including the District of Columbia and all U.S. territories, and are planning to attend college in fall 2024, are eligible and encouraged to apply.
Six first-place $10,000 prizes will be awarded in the categories of: the Michelle Obama Award for Memoir, the Amanda Gorman Award for Poetry; the Maya Angelou Award for spoken-word; fiction/drama; and the new Freedom of Expression Award. In recognition of the Creative Writing Awards previously being centered in New York City, the competition will award an additional first-place prize to the top entrant from the NYC area. Runners up will also be honored.
To apply and to read more about eligibility and rules, please click here.
Winners will be announced and posted on the Penguin Random House Creative Writing Awards website in early June.
Hear from this year’s winners and learn more about the program in the video below: