Saturday, February 13, 2021
In the first of several themed Chicago Classics this year, a group of extraordinary writers will read to us about love. Chicago natives Jacquelyn Mitchard, Peter Orner, and Dipika Mukherjee lead a lineup filled with authors with much to say on the subject. Each will treat us to a sampling of one of her or his own books as well as a favorite Chicago book. Michele Morano, whose recent memoir Like Love, takes a deep and fascinating dive into the subject, will emcee the event. The event, held virtually via Zoom, is free and open to the public. Registration is required.
Saturday, January 16, 2021
The Chicago Writers Association presents its annual Book of the Year Awards in a virtual ceremony Saturday, January 16, starting at seven p.m. Elizabeth Wetmore (Valentine, Traditional Fiction), Katey Schultz (Still Come Home, Indie Fiction), Jaqueline Saper (From Miniskirt to Hijab, Traditional Nonfiction), and Mary Lang Sollinger (From Inspiration to Activism, Indie Nonfiction) lead the list of honorees. Jennifer Brown Banks will receive the Spirit Award for the work she has done as a writer, administrator, and advocate in the literary community. This is the 10th year for these awards, which honor the best Chicago authors and their books from the previous year. The ceremony has always been held at The Book Cellar, but due to the health pandemic had to switch to a virtual format this year.
Thursday, December 10, 2020
Via Zoom Webinar
January 10, 2020
The Chicago Literary Hall of Fame's major 2020 fundraiser features three live auctions, readings by Carlos Cumpian, Haki Madhubuti, and Toya Wolfe, and even some literary trivia. Auctioneers Brian Hieggelke and Elizabeth Gomez will entertain you as the bidding for original artwork, a vacation package, and a unique virtual cooking experience with Vu Tran heats up.
Bid early on a range of items, including books, artwork, dining certificates, conference registrations, and a lot more:
We will be adding new items daily from now until the Zoom event, so keep checking back.
Saturday, December 14, 2019
A party to show our gratitude for all the support we've received throughout the year, from volunteers, to partners, to board members, to authors and scholars. There will be food, drink, and a plenty of conversation. At the party, we'll recap our 2019 accomplishments and unveil our 2020 calendar.
Thursday, October 24, 2019
200 S. Michigan Ave.
Penthouse (22nd Floor)
Chicago, IL 60604
The Chicago Literary Hall of Fame will induct its newest class of three writers on Thursday, Oct. 24 at Cliff-Dwellers, this event will be held at Cliff Dwellers. Though this is a private club, the event is open to the public. Reservations are required. Cost of dinner is $35; to reserve a seat for the program only costs $10. There is a cash bar beginning at 4:30 p.m.; dinner is served at 6:15 p.m.; the ceremony starts promptly at 7:15 p.m. Reservations can also be made by phone at 312-922-8080.
After seven classes of six writers, CLHOF reduced its class size to three last year, partly in order to ensure the highest standards for selection and in part to allow more detailed commentary on each writer at the ceremony. All 45 CLHOF inductees were selected after a rigorous process that relied on the expertise and passion of the finest minds in our literary community. Nominators and selectors include a range of scholars, authors, artists, and others known for their close and relentless interest in Chicago literature. This year's class will bring the total number of inductees to 48.
Thursday, September 19, 2019
61 W. Superior Street
Free; registration recommended.
Sterling Plumpp will receive the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame’s Fuller Award for lifetime achievement at a ceremony on Thursday, Sept. 19 at the Poetry Foundation. The event is free and open to the public, but registration is highly recommended.
On hand to pay tribute will be a distinguished lineup of speakers and performers, including Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Tyehimba Jess, Ronne Hartfield, Duriel E. Harris, Abdul Alkalimat, Reginald Gibbons, Ginger Mance, and Billy Branch. During Sterling’s long and distinguished poetry career, he has written about African American ancestry, racism, economic oppression, the blues, and a myriad of other subjects reflecting an aesthetic steeped in a dignified advocacy for social justice. Though born in Mississippi, Sterling came to Chicago in 1962, and his experiences as a student, postal worker, and draftee have informed his art. Among his many awards, Sterling has won several Illinois Arts Council Literary Awards, the American Book Award, and the Carl Sandburg Literary Award for Poetry from the Friends of the Chicago Public Library.
Publisher’s Weekly, in reviewing Johannesburg & Other Poems, said that Sterling was “a poet who looks with his ears.” Indeed, Sterling has infused jazz and blues rhythms throughout his work, and has said, “I’m directly influenced by blues performers and not record performance. You know, I spent fifty years of my life witnessing blues singers, and that’s what I’m trying to capture.”
In addition to his poetry work, Sterling has edited several anthologies, and served as editor for the Third World Press and the Institute for Positive Education. He has also served as an associate professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago Circle since the 1970s.
A reception will follow the ceremony. To ensure your place at the ceremony and reception, please register soon. Chicago Literary Hall of Fame only inducts historical writers into the Hall of Fame, and so the Fuller was created as a way to acknowledge our greatest living Chicago writers. Gene Wolfe (2012), Harry Mark Petrakis (2014), Haki Madhubuti (2015), Rosellen Brown (2016), Angela Jackson (2018), Stuart Dybek (2018) and Sara Paretsky (spring, 2019) have all previously been honored.
Sunday, July 7, 2019
Meet: Nelson Algren Statue, Polish Triangle at Division, Ashland, and Milwaukee Aves.
End: Lottie’s, 1925 W. Cortland, Chicago
The author of Chicago: City on the Make and The Man with the Golden Arm spent much of his life near the Polish Triangle, and both he and his characters bopped about the Wicker Park and Bucktown neighborhoods for many decades. On this walking tour, we’ll visit the places that figured prominently in Algren’s life and work, and investigate settings related to his fiction and fictional characters. Guide Salli Berg Seeley will also touch upon other literary associations in the area, including the Russian Baths featured in Saul Bellow’s Humboldt's Gift, connections to the Haymarket Event, a brief history of Charles G. Wicker, information about Chopin Theater and Young Chicago authors, and more.
Maximum Registration: 10
Cost: $20 per person
Groups (8 or more walking tour: 40 or more bus tour) can arrange a date and time for any of the available tours.
Sunday, November 11, 2018
American Writers Museum
180 N. Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60601
Almost right from that moment--the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month--when the shooting stopped, American writers set out to capture the essence of their experiences with that war and that peace. War and peace, along with love and death, constitute the most enduring and important topics of literary exploration, here and across the globe. How American writers have grappled with such profound and disturbing themes speaks much to our national consciousness, and also the diversity of our experiences. War and peace manifest themselves differently to different people. On the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day, an extraordinary blend of literary artists will share their stories (as well as the stories of others throughout literary history). Readers include Haki Madhubuti, Nina Corwin, Reginald Gibbons, Chris Green, and contributors to his anthology I Remember: Chicago Veterans of War, and Gerald Brennan, among others. This event is free and open to the public, and is co-sponsored by American Writers Museum and Chicago Literary Hall of Fame. Admission to the museum entitles guests to attend the reading.
Tuesday, October 30, 2018
61 W. Superior Street
Chicago, IL 60654
Stuart Dybek, considered among the best short story writers of his generation and also acclaimed for his poetry, will be honored with a Fuller Award for lifetime achievement at the Poetry Foundation on Tuesday, Oct. 30, from 7--9:30 p.m. Dybek grew up in Chicago’s Little Village and has written extensively about Chicago, particularly in his brilliant short story collections A Childhood and Other Neighborhoods, The Coast of Chicago, Paper Lantern: Love Stories, and Ecstatic Cahoots: Fifty Short Stories. His novel-in-stories, I Sailed with Magellan, as well as his two poetry collections, Brass Knuckles and Streets in their Own Ink, also explore the city. Dybek’s many literary awards include MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships, a Pen/Malamud Award, and a Lannan Prize. He has been Northwestern University’s Distinguished Writer in Residence for the past decade. Speakers from throughout the literary community will pay tribute to Dybek, including Bill Savage, Henry Bienen, Donna Seaman, Mark Turcotte, Alex Kotlowitz, Malcolm O’Hagan, Rachel Jamison Webster, Reginald Gibbons, Mary Dempsey, Dennis Zacek, and Scott Turow. A reception will follow the program. Free and open to the public. Doors open at 6:30 and it’s advisable to arrive early.
Sunday, October 28, 2018
Lincoln Park, Chicago
It's the twentieth anniversary of Don De Grazia's American Skin, and the novel is at least as relevant today as when it first came out. The story of teenager Alex Verdi's move from a downstate farmhouse to the big city harkens back to great Chicago realists like Theodore Dreiser, Sherwood Anderson, and Floyd Dell. The gritty 80s landscape has, to some extent, left Nelson Algren's Neon Wilderness behind, but in other ways it's updated the clouds in this seemingly glorious skyline. Alex's struggle to find himself, notably in a community of skinheads, leads to a brilliant, inspiring exploration of race, wealth, family, work, and success. We're honored to have Don be our special guest at this month's installment of the Great Chicago Books Club, which raises funds for the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame's (mostly free) programming throughout the year. The first half of the evening is a cocktail party; the second half is a discussion with Don about his novel and career. The event will be held at a private home in Lincoln Park--we'll give you the address when you register for the event. Cost is $40, and includes appetizers and drinks. Registration is limited to 15 people, and can be done simply by emailing or calling Don Evans (773.414.2603).