Since its establishment in 1965, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has awarded more than $5 billion in grants in every state and U.S. jurisdiction, the only arts funder in the nation to do so. In its first grant announcement of its 50th anniversary year, the NEA will award individual creative writing fellowships of $25,000 each to 37 fiction and creative nonfiction, including St. Mary’s College of Maryland’s Visiting Assistant Professor of English Jerry Gabriel.
Gabriel was selected from among 1,763 eligible applicants by 23 readers and panelists. Through its creative writing fellowships program, the National Endowment for the Arts gives writers the time and space to create, revise, conduct research, and connect with readers.
“Since its inception, the creative writing fellowship program has awarded more than $45 million to a diverse group of more than 3,000 writers, many of them emerging writers at the start of their careers,” said NEA Director of Literature Amy Stolls. “These 37 extraordinary new fellows provide more evidence of the NEA’s track record of discovering and supporting excellent writers.”
The NEA’s creative writing fellowships program is arguably the most egalitarian grant program in its field: applications are free and open to the public; fellows are selected through an anonymous review process in which the sole criterion is artistic excellence; and the judging panel varies year to year and is always diverse with regard to geography, ethnicity, gender, age, and life experience.
Since 1990, 81 of the 138 American recipients of the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry and Fiction were previous NEA creative writing fellows.
For more information on projects included in the NEA grant announcement, go to arts.gov