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Since 1985, the Foundation has supported creative writing through the Whiting Writers Awards which are given annually to ten emerging writers in fiction, nonfiction, poetry and plays. The awards, of $50,000 each, are based on accomplishment and promise. Candidates are proposed by nominators from across the country whose experience and vocations bring them in contact with individuals of extraordinary talent. Winners are chosen by a selection committee, a small group of recognized writers, literary scholars, and editors, appointed annually by the Foundation. Both nominators and selectors serve anonymously. The Foundation does not accept applications to the Writers’ Program.
The Whiting Awards are a wonderful antidote to self-doubt. The recipients come here in the knowledge that it is other workers in their art who have commended them. No commendation quite substitutes for the commendation of the respected practitioner. That laying on of hands marks the soul for the better and marks the memory forever.
Speaker, Whiting Writers’ Awards, 1998