How to (Nearly) Win a Pulitzer in 5 Steps
We don’t know why there were three nominees for the Pulitzer Prize for fiction this year, but Michael Cunningham’s article on how the nominees were chosen is a fascinating guide for how to angle for the prize: Here’s how to win the Pulitzer in five (not-so-easy) steps.
1. Go Big
Take more risks and write the story you don’t know if you have the skills to tell over the exquisitely crafted miniature. There’s nothing wrong with a small story, but judges decided a national prize deserves a country-sized story.
2. Discover Something New or Destroy Something Old
How much transformation do your characters go through from the beginning to the end of the story? How can you inflict more change on them? Good stories require colossal transformation; great stories require epic transformation, not linearity, according to Maureen.
3. Make Your Reader Fall in Love
Susan was a tough-minded romantic who always had a reason for her devotions, but she was probably the most emotional of us all, and she could fall in love with a book in much the same way she could fall in love with a person.
4. Write Beautifully
To win a Pulitzer, each sentence must be beautifully written; beautiful writing requires only tenacious editing and the willingness to rewrite each sentence a thousand times. Cunningham: Of all the criteria, this may be the piece for which you have the greatest chance of winning a prize.
5. Do Magic
Great writing is, in other words, a mystery; while you have control over much of what you write, there will always be pieces that escape your grasp. A great work of fiction has a certain frisson when its components come together and then ignite; the cause should, to some extent, elude the experts sent to investigate.
What story will show the most transformation? How can you write the most beautifully you’ve ever written in fifteen minutes? Write for fifteen minutes, then post your grand practice in the comments. Don’t worry if your writing doesn’t win a Pulitzer; this is just practice.
How do books win the Pulitzer Prize?
AWARD ANNOUNCEMENT The Pulitzer Prizes in Books are awarded annually by Columbia University on the recommendation of the Pulitzer Prize Board, which acts on the nominations of distinguished committees of Pulitzer Jurors, and are announced in the spring.
How many books have won a Pulitzer Prize?
(Math whizzes will notice that those numbers don’t add up to the current yearu2014that’s because the committee occasionally declines to declare a winner from the finalists.) There have been 67 winners of this prestigious award to date, building a glittering hall of fame for an incredible array of novels.
Which of the following books received a Pulitzer Prize in Fiction?
Colson Whitehead’s The Nickel Boys (Doubleday)
Why is the Pulitzer Prize so prestigious?
The Pulitzer Prize is an annual award given by Columbia University in New York City for outstanding public service and achievement in American journalism, letters, and music, as well as fellowships.
Who is the youngest person to win a Pulitzer Prize?
Crosby was the youngest person to ever win a Pulitzer Prize at the age of 23, and since Stephanie Welsh’s win at the age of 22 in 1996, she has been the second youngest.
How much money do you get if you win the Pulitzer Prize?
What do Pulitzer Prize winners get when they win? There are 21 Pulitzer categories, and winners in 20 of them receive a $15,000 cash award and a certificate, with only the winner in the Journalism competition’s Public Service category receiving a gold medal.
What is the most prestigious book award?
The Booker Prize for Fiction, the world’s most important literary award, promotes the best in literary fiction by rewarding the year’s best novel; it has the power to change the fortunes of authors and publishers.
Who has won the Pulitzer Prize twice?
Nelson Harding is the only person to win a Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Cartooning in two consecutive years, in 1927 and 1928.
Which work of fiction won the most recent Pulitzer Prize?
Every winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in the twenty-first century
- Colson Whitehead, The Nickel Boys.
- 2017. Anthony Doerr, All the Light We Cannot See.
- 2014. Donna Tartt, The Goldfinch.
- 2013. Adam Johnson, The Orphan Master’s Son.
How many Pulitzer Prizes are awarded every year?
Each year, more than 2,500 entries are submitted for the Pulitzer Prize competitions, with only 21 awards typically given out.
How do you get nominated for a Pulitzer Prize?
Any person, whether an editor of a news organization, an individual journalist, or a reader, may submit material to the Pulitzer Prize competition through the Pulitzer entry site using our online entry form.
Who has won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction?
The Keeper of the Night Watch