Literary Awards

Each year the Texas Institute of Letters awards more than $27,000 to recognize outstanding literary works in several categories. Eligibility for the awards requires that the author was born in Texas or has lived in Texas for at least five consecutive years at some time. A work with subject matter that substantially concerns Texas is also eligible. Beginning in April of 2024, the year listed refers to when the award was presented.


The TIL contests for work published in 2024 will open in mid- to late-September. Check here for instructions and links on submitting to 2025 awards.


Award Winners for 2023 and 2024

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Jesse H. Jones Award for Best Book of Fiction ($5,000)

Kay Cattarulla Award for Best Short Story ($1,000)

  • “Jewel of the Gulf of Mexico” by Selena Gambrell Anderson, McSweeney’s, 2024.
  • “Playing the Ghost” by Bret Anthony Johnston, Texas Monthly, 2023.

Edwin “Bud” Shrake Award for Best Short Nonfiction ($1,000)

  • “Amor Eterno” by Skip Hollandsworth, Texas Monthly, 2024.
  • “Uvalde Vive” by Gus Bova, The Texas Observer, 2023.

Previous Awards

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