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Announcing the fourth annual Honey & Wax Book Collecting Prize.

Emily Temple

February 19, 2020, 9:30am

Literary Hub is pleased to announce that submissions are now open for the fourth annual Honey & Wax Book Collecting Prize, which awards $1,000 to an outstanding book collection conceived and built by a young woman, aged 30 or younger, who lives in the United States.

According to the guidelines, “the winning collection must have been started by the contestant, and all items in the collection must be owned by her. A collection may include books, manuscripts, and ephemera; it may be organized by theme, author, illustrator, publisher, printing technique, binding style, or another clearly articulated principle. The winning collection will be more than a reading list of favorite texts: it will be a coherent group of printed or manuscript items, creatively put together. Collections will not be judged on their size or their market value, but on their originality and their success in illuminating their chosen subjects.”

The prize, founded in 2017 by Heather O’Donnell of Honey & Wax Booksellers and Rebecca Romney of Type Punch Matrix, seeks to celebrate a type of book collector who has often gone unnoticed. They write: “We observed that the women who regularly bought books from us were less likely to call themselves “collectors” than the men, even when those women had spent years passionately collecting books. By providing a financial incentive, and a forum in which to celebrate and share innovative collections, we hope to encourage a new generation of women collectors.”

Last year’s winner Emily Forster said: “It is possible that few others will ever see the books in my collection with the same admiration I do. Regardless, I will always feel this drive to celebrate and showcase what is beautiful about the illegitimate, the indulgent, and the disposable.” (Same.)

The deadline for submissions is June 1, 2020. You can see the full requirements and apply here. The winner will be announced in September. The prize is sponsored this year by Biblio, Swann Galleries, and Ellen A. Michelson.

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