As the year approaches its end, the lists of nominees to various literary and cinematographic awards start to pop up like mushrooms after the rain. 2018 National Book Award Award for Fiction is no exception. Ten longlist authors were selected by the National Book Foundation and will impatiently wait to October 10 when the finalists will be revealed.
The Fiction Longlist includes one title by a previous National Book Award honoree, Lauren Groff, who was a Finalist in 2015. Longlisted authors have been honored with Whiting Awards, the O. Henry Award, the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, Pushcart Prizes, the Guggenheim Fellowship, and more, and their work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Harper’s, Tin House, and The Best American Short Stories, among many others. Working from New York, Illinois, Oklahoma, California, Mexico City, and more, the ten Longlisted authors represent a wide geographic range. The Longlist includes multiple New York Times bestselling authors, three story collections, and four debuts, and is made up of narratives addressing issues of addiction, grief, class division, racism, gender roles, cultural identity, American politics, and many more.
2018 Longlist for the National Book Award for Fiction:
Jamel Brinkley, A Lucky Man
Jennifer Clement, Gun Love
Lauren Groff, Florida
Daniel Gumbiner, The Boatbuilder
Brandon Hobson, Where the Dead Sit Talking
Tayari Jones, An American Marriage
Rebecca Makkai, The Great Believers
Sigrid Nunez, The Friend
Tommy Orange, There There
Nafissa Thompson-Spires, Heads of the Colored People
Publishers submitted a total of 368 books for the 2018 National Book Award for Fiction. The judges for Fiction are Chris Bachelder, Laila Lalami (Chair), Min Jin Lee, Laurie Muchnick, and Chinelo Okparanta. These distinguished judges were given the charge of selecting what they deem to be the best books of the year. Their decisions are made independently of the National Book Foundation staff and Board of Directors; deliberations are strictly confidential. The Winners to be announced at the invitation-only National Book Awards Ceremony and Benefit Dinner on November 14 in New York City.
Last year the National Book Award for Fiction was awarded to Jesmyn Ward's novel Sing, Unburied, Sing.