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Community Favorites
Community Favorites

Community Favorites

The Chicago Literary Hall of Fame provides two forums for members of our community to feature favorite books and other contributions to the rich literature the city offers. It’s a way to highlight a cross-section of our great literary heritage—past, present, and future.

We welcome submissions of videos and essays.

Chicago Classics

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A dozen or so years into producing the Story Week Festival of Writers he had founded, Randall Albers was looking for something fresh. Tucked away over whiskeys in the back room of the Billy Goat, he asked Rick Kogan, “OK, Rick, if you were going to do something new for Story Week, what would it be? Give me an idea.” Without hesitating, Rick said, “I’d get a whole bunch of people—writers, actors, politicians, bus drivers, whatever—and have them read their favorite half-page of a Chicago book.”

Randy jumped on the idea, and for quite a few years Rick hosted just such an event, 18 people doing five minutes apiece of incredibly varied choices. 

When Randy served as CLHoF’s board president, it seemed only natural to reprise Chicago Classics in this new format. The venerable series represents everything at the heart of CLHoF’s mission. 

Would you like to share your favorite Chicago work? Email us with your idea and we’ll let you know how to become one of our Chicago Classic readers.

1001 Club

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There is a kind of joy in sharing our favorite Chicago works, and seeing the choices others make gives us insight into the person sharing and the literature shared. It’s a sort of a club. 

We want you to join this club, to help the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame highlight work from all eras while encouraging future masterpieces. 

Why 1001? A thousand and one is a big number. Ben Hecht, who set out to write a column a day for that many days, only made it a little more than halfway. We’re setting our goal as high as his, and hope to make it at least as far.

To join, Email us a brief story about a Chicago literary work (of any type) that holds special meaning to you. It should be 200 words or less, but write as long or as short as you like. (Full essays are great; so too are single sentences.)

Include a photo of yourself holding your favorite, or we can substitute a book cover or other image

The Chicago Literary Hall of Fame’s mission is to honor and preserve Chicago’s great literary heritage.
The Chicago Literary Hall of Fame is a federally registered 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Donations are tax deductible.

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