PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction

The PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction is awarded annually by the PEN/Faulkner Foundation to the authors of the year's best works of fiction by living American citizens.[1] The winner receives US $15,000 and each of four runners-up receives US $5000. Finalists read from their works at the presentation ceremony in the Great Hall of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C.. The organization claims it to be "the largest peer-juried award in the country."[1] The award was first given in 1981.[2]

PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction
Awarded forFiction
Sponsored byPEN/Faulkner Foundation
CountryUnited States

The PEN/Faulkner Foundation is an outgrowth of William Faulkner's generosity in using his 1949 Nobel Prize winnings to create the William Faulkner Foundation; among the charitable goals of the foundation was "to establish a fund to support and encourage new fiction writers." The foundation's first award for a "notable first novel," called the William Faulkner Foundation Award, was granted to John Knowles's A Separate Peace in 1961. The foundation was dissolved after 1970.

Mary Lee Settle was one of the founders of the PEN/Faulkner award after controversy at the 1979 National Book Award, when PEN voted a boycott on the ground that they were too commercial.[2][3] It is affiliated with the writers' organization International PEN.

The award is one of many PEN awards sponsored by PEN International affiliates in over 145 PEN centres around the world.

PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction


  1. "Award for Fiction". PEN/Faulkner Foundation. Retrieved 21 July 2011.
  2. Albin Krebs and Robert Thomas (April 18, 1981). "Notes on People; New York Writer Getting PEN/Faulkner Award". New York Times. Retrieved August 29, 2012.
  3. Matt Schudel (September 29, 2005). "Novelist Mary Lee Settle; Founded PEN/Faulkner Award". Washington Post.
  4. "Past Winners and Finalists," last modified 2015,
  5. Charles, Ron (April 7, 2015). "Atticus Lish wins PEN/Faulkner Award". Washington Post. Retrieved April 7, 2015.
  6. Charles, Ron (April 5, 2016). "James Hannaham wins PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction". Washington Post. Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  7. Announcing the 2017 PEN/Faulkner Award Winner, PEN/Faulkner Foundation, 2017, retrieved 4 April 2017
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