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Awards to USA and Canada Individuals to Recognize Emerging Talent in Writing and Illustrating Children's Books

Ezra Jack Keats (EJK) Award for Writer and Ezra Jack Keats (EJK) Award for Illustrator


Agency
Foundation

GrantWatch ID#
163058

Funding Source
Ezra Jack Keats Foundation
University of Southern Mississippi - de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection
Array ( )

Geographic Focus
All USA
Canada: Alberta;   British Columbia;   Manitoba;   New Brunswick;   Newfoundland and Labrador;   Northwest Territories;   Nova Scotia;   Nunavut;   Ontario;   Prince Edward Island;   Quebec;   Saskatchewan;   Yukon;

Important Dates
Deadline: 12/15/23 Save

Grant Description
Awards to USA and Canada authors and illustrators to encourage and recognize emerging talent in children’s literature. Nominations are accepted on behalf of outstanding new illustrators and writers whose books portray the universal qualities of childhood, a strong and supportive family, and the multicultural nature of the world.

Ezra Jack Keats Award for Writer - This award will be given to a new writer for a picture book written in the tradition of Ezra Jack Keats that:

  • Highlights the universal qualities of childhood and the strength of the family, and community.
  • Reflects the multicultural nature of the world.
  • Has an original text and original story (no folktales or retelling of folktales).
  • Unifies illustrations and text.
  • Avoids stereotypes.
  • Is respectful of the child’s intelligence, sensitivity, curiosity, and love of learning.
  • Displays freshness and originality of language and literary expression.

The Award is given for distinguished writing and text, not for illustration. 

Ezra Jack Keats Award for Illustrator - The award will be given for illustration of a picture book that is illustrated in the tradition of Ezra Jack Keats that:

  • Highlights the universal qualities of childhood and the strength of the family, and community.
  • Reflects the multicultural nature of the world.
  • Unifies illustrations and text (if present).
  • Avoids stereotypes.
  • Is respectful of the child’s intelligence, sensitivity, curiosity and love of learning.
  • Demonstrate excellent command of the chosen medium.
  • Display freshness and originality in style and/or form of artistic expression.

This award will be given for distinguished artwork that creatively and skillfully embodies the essence of the story or text. 



Recipient

Additional Eligibility Criteria
To be eligible, the author or illustrator will have no more than three books published under any name, prior to the year under consideration. Both U. S. and international writers are eligible for books that are published in North America, and in the English language.

Books must be available through national distribution, i.e. Ingram and/or Baker & Taylor.

Ineligible
Self-published books are not eligible for consideration.

E-book only or print-on-demand titles will not be reviewed.

Pre-Application Information
To meet the submission deadline, books must be postmarked no later than December 15, 2023.

The Winners and Honors of the EJK Award are announced every year on the second Tuesday in March.

The EJK Book Award ceremony is held in April during the Fay B. Kaigler Children's Book Festival at the University of Southern Mississippi. In order to receive the award, each winning artist must attend the ceremony. The publishers are responsible for making arrangements for authors and illustrators to be at the Award Ceremony.

Award Guidelines: https://www.degrummond.org/ezra-jack-keats-book-award-guidelin

FAQ: https://www.ejkf.org/ejk-award-faq/

Number of Grants
The EJK Award is given annually to an outstanding new writer and new illustrator by the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation.

Estimated Size of Grant
The winning author and illustrator will each receive, at the award ceremony, a monetary award of $5,000 and the EJK medallion suspended in lucite and inscribed with the recipient’s name, the name of their book and the year it was published.

Honor book winners will receive a monetary award of $2,000 and a glass plaque inscribed with the recipient’s name, the name of their book and the year it was published.

Contact Information
Submit applications to:
The University of Southern Mississippi
118 College Drive #5148
Hattiesburg, MS 39406

For additional information, please contact:

Karlie Herndon, Interim Curator, de Grummond Children's Literature Collection
Karlie.Herndon@usm.edu
601.266.4086

Marge Sauls, Collections Specialist, de Grummond Children's Literature Collection
Margaret.Sauls@usm.edu
601.266.4349​

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