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Oregon Literary Fellowships

Funding the production of new work by Oregon’s writers and independent publishers. 

Oregon Literary Fellowships are intended to help Oregon writers at all stages of their career initiate, develop, or complete literary projects in poetry, fiction, literary nonfiction, drama, and young readers’ literature. Fellowships are also awarded to support Oregon’s independent publishers and small presses that demonstrate a commitment to literary publishing.

Fellowships are merit based, and are determined by out-of-state judges.  Applications are accepted in the spring, and recipients are announced at the beginning of the year. There is no charge to apply. Many Oregon Literary Fellowship recipients go on to become Oregon Book Awards finalists.

2021 Oregon Literary Fellowships Guidelines and applications are available here.

2020 Oregon Literary Fellowship Recipients

Literary Arts is please to announce the recipients of the 2020 Oregon Literary Fellowships. Generous gifts from our community have increased the value of the Brian Booth Writers’ Fund Endowment which, in turn, have allowed us to further support exceptional Oregon writers.

This year, Literary Arts awarded two Oregon Literary Career Fellowships of $10,000 each, and thirteen fellowships of $3,500, for a total of $65,500.

We received 357 applications from writers and 17 applications from publishers for the 2020 fellowships. Out-of-state judges spent several months evaluating these applications, using literary excellence as the primary criterion. Literary Arts awarded three fellowships this year that were funded by the Oregon Arts Commission. 

Since 1987, Literary Arts has honored over 650 Oregon writers and publishers, and distributed more than $930,000 in fellowships and award monies through the Oregon Book Awards & Fellowships program.

Applications for the 2021 Oregon Literary Fellowships will open in August 2020.

Oregon Literary Career Fellowships
Fellowship amount: $10,000

Beth Alvarado of Bend (nonfiction), Oregon Literary Career Fellowship
Dao Strom of Portland (poetry), Writer of Color Oregon Literary Career Fellowship

Oregon Literary Fellowships
Fellowship amount: $3,500

Cynthia L. Brown of Portland, Laurell Swails and Donald Monroe Memorial Fellowship
Marjorie Celona of Eugene, Oregon Arts Commission Fellowship
Taylor Koekkoek of Portland, Laurell Swails and Donald Monroe Memorial Fellowship
Gabriel Urza of Hood River, Oregon Arts Commission Fellowship
Olufunke Grace Bankole of Portland, Writer of Color Fellowship

Garet Lahvis of Portland, Oregon Arts Commission Fellowship

Jamie Cooper of Portland, Walt Morey Fellowship
Alicia Jo Rabins of Portland, C. Hamilton Bailey Fellowship
Eliza Rotterman of Portland, Women Writers Fellowship

Kelly Garrett of Portland, Edna L. Holmes Fellowship in Young Readers

Rachael Carnes of Eugene, Leslie Bradshaw Fellowship

Fonograf Editions of Portland
Octopus Books of Portland

2020 Oregon Literary Fellowship Judges
Fellowships to writers of nonfiction, fiction, and poetry were judged by a panel consisting of:

Patricia Park, Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at American University, Fulbright scholar in Creative Arts, and author of the novel, RE JANE.

Aatif Rashid,essayist and author of the novel Portrait of Sebastian Khan.

Kerri Webster, Whiting recipient and author of two poetry collections including Grand & Arsenal (University of Iowa Press).

The judge for young readers literature was Kevin Emerson, author of 16 middle grade and YA novels including Last Day on Mars. The judge for drama was Stephanie Bubnis, Interim Managing Director of the Fordham Theatre Program. Kristina Marie Darling, Editor-in-Chief of Tupelo Press and Tupelo Quarterly, was the judge in publishing.

Apply for an Oregon Literary Fellowship

Apply for financial support to initiate, develop, or complete your literary projects. Learn more about the different fellowships we offer and how to apply.

Writer of Color Fellowships

Applicants can also choose to be considered for a Writer of Color Fellowship. The goal of the Writer of Color Fellowships is to promote perspectives from a variety of cultural, ethnic, and racial backgrounds, and encourage diverse writers to apply for fellowships. Two Writer of Color Fellowships will be offered each year. All applications for the Writer of Color fellowship are considered for an Oregon Literary Fellowship.

Oregon Literary Career Fellowships

In addition to our other fellowships, Literary Arts awards fellowships in the amount of $10,000 to writers selected by the judges for their exceptional talent. One of these fellowships is specifically for a writer of color. Applicants submit an application form, optional addendums, a writing sample, an artist’s CV, artist’s statement, and impact statement as described in the guidelines.

Previous Oregon Literary Fellowship Winners: Writers



Literary Nonfiction


Young Readers’ Literature

Previous Oregon Literary Fellowship Winners: Publishers

Hear from Reema Zaman, 2018 Oregon Literary Fellowship Recipient

Brian Booth Writers’ Fund

Brian Booth was a visionary Oregonian who helped create the Oregon Book Awards and Fellowships program with the help of William Stafford, Ursula K. Le Guin, Ken Kesey, and other iconic writers. Support Oregon’s creative future and make a donation in honor of Brian’s life and legacy.

Support The Fund