The PEN/Heim Translation Fund was established in the summer of 2003 by a gift of $730,000 from Priscilla and Michael Henry Heim in response to the dismayingly low number of literary translations currently appearing in English. Its purpose is to promote the publication and reception of translated world literature in English.
Since the Fund's inception in 2004, the Fund has given grants of $2,000–$10,000 to a total of 139 translations from over 35 languages, including Armenian, Basque, Estonian, Farsi, Finland-Swedish, Lithuanian and Mongolian, as well as French, Spanish, German, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, and Arabic. Among the 108 projects awarded grants in the Fund’s first 10 years of operation (2004–2013), 72 of those (roughly 67%) have thus far been published or are forthcoming from a publisher.
Deadline: Submissions will be accepted from April 1, 2019 through June 1, 2019.
Who is eligible:
- The PEN/Heim Translation Fund provides grants to support the translation of book-length works of fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, or drama that have not previously appeared in English in print or have appeared only in an outdated or otherwise flawed translation.
- Works should be translations-in-progress, as the grant aims to provide support for completion.
- There are no restrictions on the nationality or citizenship of the translator, but the works must be translated into English.
- The Fund seeks to encourage translators to undertake projects they might not otherwise have had the means to attempt.
- Anthologies with multiple translators, works of literary criticism, and scholarly or technical texts do not qualify.
- As of 2008, translators who have previously been awarded grants by the Fund are ineligible to reapply for three years after the year in which they receive a grant.
- Please note that projects that have been previously submitted and have not received a grant are unlikely to be reconsidered in a subsequent year.
- Projects may have up to two translators.
- Translators may only submit one project per year.
How to apply:
Please note that this year, hard copy versions are NOT required. The application process is entirely online.
Translators must complete the below applications form by midnight EST June 1, 2019. The below application will require the following materials:
1. The application form, with all items completed:
- A one- to two-page, single-spaced statement outlining the work and describing its importance.
- A biography and bibliography of the author, including information on translations of his or her work into other languages.
- A CV of the translator, no longer than three pages.
- If the book is not in the public domain and the project is not yet under contract, please include a photocopy of the copyright notice on the original (the copyright notice is a line including the character ©, a date, and the name of the copyright holder, which appears as part of the front matter in every book), and a letter from the copyright holder stating that English-language rights to the book are available. A letter or copy of an email from the copyright holder is sufficient.
- If the translation is currently under contract with a publisher, please submit a copy of the contract.
2. A 10–12-page, single-spaced sample of the translation.
3. The same passage in the original language (and, if the work has been previously translated, the same passage in the earlier version).
For more information, please contact awards[at]pen.org