PRH Sponsors CLMP’s New Black Literary Publishing Award

In News by Porter Anderson

The award for ‘Black-led presses and other presses that champion the work of BIPOC authors’ names its first winners in the spring.

Image – iStockphoto: Mladen Zivkovic

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

Gannon: ‘Helping To Secure Racial Equity in Our Field’
In a statement from CLMP—the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses—it’s been announced that Penguin Random House has become the sponsor for the inaugural Black Literary Publishing Award, a program anticipated to be annual.

The award is being developed by CLMP to support “Black-led presses and other presses that champion the work of BIPOC authors,” that acronym standing for “Black, Indigenous and People of Color.”

The news was announced to donors at CLMP’s annual benefit for its program on October 22 and released to the news media on Monday (October 26).

Recipients of the first Black Literary Publishing Award are to receive US$10,000 and should be announced next spring.

During the annual benefit, which PRH joined as a sponsor, CLMP honored the recipients of its annual awards.

  • Lisa Lucas, well known to Publishing Perspectives readers and currently the executive director of the National Book Foundation, received the Energizer Award for Exceptional Acts of Literary Citizenship
  • Martin Riker and Danielle Dutton of Dorothy, A Publishing Project, received the Golden Colophon Award for Paradigm Independent Publishing

The benefit began with a special appearance by US poet laureate Joy Harjo.

Von Schilling: ‘A Literary Landscape That’s Truly Diverse’

Claire von Schilling

In a prepared statement, Claire von Schilling, executive vice president at Penguin Random House and director of corporate communications and social responsibility, said, “At Penguin Random House, we’re committed to fostering a literary landscape that’s truly diverse, where emerging and underrepresented writers are recognized.

“CLMP’s support of small, independent publishers, as well as grants like the Black Literary Publishing Award, help ensure that new, important voices are heard. We’re honored to support their 50-year legacy.”

Mary Gannon

In return, Mary Gannon, CLMP’s executive director, said, “We’re deeply grateful to Penguin Random House for its support of CLMP and the Black Literary Publishing Award, which we see as one step in many we plan to take on our path toward helping to secure racial equity in our field.

“Penguin Random House’s commitment enables us to launch this important initiative and secure its future.”

As we’ve reported, Lisa Lucas will join Penguin Random House in January as the new senior vice president and publisher of Pantheon and Schocken Books.

Under her leadership at the National Book Foundation—which has its National Book Awards’ virtual ceremony on November 18—Lucas spearheaded the distribution of 1.4 million books to young readers in public housing projects, and saw the program bestow National Book Awards on John Lewis, Ibram X. Kendi, Jesmyn Ward, and many others.

More on Penguin Random House’s outreach and the Global Social Impact site designed to display and promote information about it is in our Frankfurter Buchmesse interview with von Schilling.


More from Publishing Perspectives on issues in diversity is here, more from us on Penguin Random House is here, more on CLMP is here, more on Frankfurter Buchmesse is here, and more from us on the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on international book publishing is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson is a non-resident fellow of Trends Research & Advisory, and he has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson was for more than a decade a senior producer and anchor with CNN.com, CNN International, and CNN USA. As as an arts critic (National Critics Institute), he was with The Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and the Tampa Tribune, now the Tampa Bay Times. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman.