Beverly Hills, CA: PEN Center USA, a literary nonprofit based in Beverly Hills, is proud to announce its 22nd Annual Literary Awards Festival, set to take place on October 22, 2012, at the Beverly Hills Hotel. The awards festival will feature the presentation of the organization’s Literary Awards, which include one thousand dollar cash prizes and honor the best writing in the western states, in eleven genres. A distinguished panel of writers, editors, critics, and journalists judge the Literary Awards. PEN Center USA Executive Director Adam Somers has announced three of the year’s honorees: Morgan Entrekin will receive the Award of Honor, Joyce Carol Oates will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award, and CBS correspondent Lara Logan will receive the Freedom to Write Award. The recipient of the First Amendment Award will be announced in the coming months.
Joyce Carol Oates, Lifetime Achievement Honoree, is a recipient of the National Book Award and the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction. She has written some of the most enduring fiction of our time, including the national bestsellers We Were the Mulvaneys and Blonde (a finalist for the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize), and the New York Times bestsellers The Falls (winner of the 2005 Prix Femina Etranger) and The Gravedigger’s Daughter. She is the Roger S. Berlind Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at Princeton University and has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters since 1978. In 2003 she received the Common Wealth Award for Distinguished Service in Literature and The Kenyon Review Award for Literary Achievement, and in 2006 she received the Chicago Tribune Lifetime Achievement Award.
Lara Logan, Freedom to Write Honoree, has earned a prominent spot among the world's best foreign correspondents with her bold, award-winning reporting from war zones over the past nineteen years. In February 2011, she was sexually assaulted and beaten by a mob while reporting on the Egyptian revolution in Tahrir Square. She broke her silence about the incident on 60 Minutes to draw attention to the plight of women—particularly female journalists covering war zones—across the world. The 2011-12 season will be her seventh reporting for 60 Minutes. Logan's daily reports have been an integral part of CBS News' coverage of the war in Iraq, both before and after U.S. troops moved into the country. She was the only journalist from an American network in Baghdad when the U.S. military invaded the city, reporting live from Firdos Square as the statue of Saddam fell. Since then, she has spent the majority of her time in Iraq and Afghanistan. Logan has received an Emmy Award, Overseas Press Club Award, a DuPont-Columbia University silver baton, a Murrow Award, five American Women in Radio and Television Gracie Awards, a David Bloom Award, and the 2007 Association of International Broadcasters' Best International News Story Award for her report on the Taliban.
Past PEN Center USA Literary Award winners and honorees include: Woody Allen, Rudolfo Anaya, Paul Thomas Anderson, Ray Bradbury, T.C. Boyle, Sandra Cisneros, George Clooney, Cameron Crowe, Ariel & Will Durant, Carrie Fisher, Betty Friedan, Matt Groening, Vaclav Havel, Charlie Kaufman, Barbara Kingsolver, Maxine Hong Kingston, Ursula K. Le Guin, Dan Savage, Neil Simon, Oliver Stone, Michael Tolkin, Gus Van Sant, Alice Walker, Billy Wilder, Steven Zaillian, Hugh M. Hefner, Ben Goldhirsh and GOOD, Gloria Steinem, and Gore Vidal.
PEN Center USA has a membership of more than 600 professional writers. PEN Center USA strives to protect the rights of writers around the world, to stimulate interest in the written word, and to foster a vital literary community among the diverse writers living in the western states. For more information on the 22nd Annual Literary Awards Festival, please contact Hilary McCreery, Program Manager at PEN Center USA: email@example.com.