American literary awards
Since 1980, the Los Angeles Times has awarded a set of annual book prizes. The Prizes currently have nine categories: biography, current interest, fiction, first fiction (the Art Seidenbaum Award added in 1991), history, mystery/thriller (category added in 2000), poetry, science and technology (category added in 1989), and young adult fiction (category added in 1998). In addition, the Robert Kirsch Award is presented annually to a living author with a substantial connection to the American West. It is named in honor of Robert Kirsch, the Los Angeles Times book critic from 1952 until his death in 1980 whose idea it was to establish the book prizes.
The Book Prize program was founded by Art Seidenbaum, a Los Angeles Times book editor from 1978 to 1985. An award named for him was added a year after his death in 1990. Works are eligible during the year of their first US publication in English, and may be written originally in languages other than English. The author of each winning book and the Kirsch Award recipient receives a citation and $1,000. The prizes are presented the day before the annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books.
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