The Dan’s Papers $6,000 Literary Prize for Non Fiction contest is racing towards its conclusion. Entrants write short pieces between 600 and 1,500 words that reference eastern Long Island in a meaningful way. They enter them at the DansPapers.com website. The final deadline for entries is approaching. The last day we will accept entries is July 31 at midnight. Three prizes will be awarded: two $500 prizes for runners-up, and one $5,000 prize for the First Prize winner. If you are intending to enter, you’ve got just two weeks to do so!
The award ceremony is going to be an elaborate affair at the John Drew Theater on Monday night August 26 at 8 p.m. Last year, the first year of the competition, the theater was filled to standing room only. If you would like to attend, get there early.
The keynote speaker for the event this year will be E. L. Doctorow, the author of several major works of American literature, including Billy Bathgate, Loon Lake, World’s Fair and Ragtime. Among the honors he has received have been the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Pen/Saul Bellow Award and the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. We are proud to have him as our speaker for this year.
The winning entry of the competition will be read to the audience at the end of the night by Pia Lindström, the winner of two Emmy Awards, one for on-screen performance and the other for news coverage. She’s a well known news correspondent who for nearly 20 years was the theatre and arts critic for NBC News, and we are happy to have her on our stage. Today, she has a show on Sirius/XM radio.
Also in attendance will be the Executive Chairman of our event, Bob Caro, who has won two Pulitzer Prizes for his biographies of Robert Moses and Lyndon Johnson.
The rules and regulations, and a place to submit your entry will be found at literaryprize.danspapers.com. We are asking for memories, histories, biographies, memoirs, events, opinions, humor and reminiscences. At the end of the summer, we hope to have put together two online eBooks. One will be of all the entries in the contest, and will be called Dan’s Hamptons Reviews, and the second will be of reminiscences and memories about the Hamptons, which will be called Dan’s Hamptons Memories. Some entrants will find their work in both volumes. Finally, on an ongoing basis, some of the entries will be showcased in one of the weekly issues of Dan’s Papers in the upcoming year.
Major funding is provided by Barnes & Noble. Sponsors of the Dan’s Papers $6,000 Literary Prize for Nonfiction are the Hampton Jitney, the Southampton Inn, the Bridgehampton National Bank, BK Builders, Southampton Audi, BMW, Mini and Porsche, and Destination America cable channel and we are very grateful for their support.
Our judges are Barnes & Noble Chairman Leonard Riggio, book publisher Marty Shepard, book critic Joan Baum, advertising executive Jim Marquardt, author Christopher Knopf, radio personality Bonnie Grice and visiting professor at Stony Brook Southampton College Andrew Botsford.
We are also grateful for the advice provided by Tony Walton in stage set design, to English Country Antiques and to Marder’s Landscaping for set dressing and to the staff and crew of Dan’s Papers, Barnes & Noble and the John Drew Theater for all they do.