Danielle Evans has won the 2021 Joyce Carol Oates Prize.
Danielle Evans, author of The Office of Historical Corrections and Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self, has won The New Literary Project’s annual Joyce Carol Oates Prize, a $50,000 award that recognizes “a midcareer fiction writer who has earned a distinguished reputation and the approbation and gratitude of readers.” Evans will take up short-term residency at UC Berkeley during the spring semester of 2022, and take part in New Literary Project’s Bay Area events during 2021-2022.
“Danielle Evans has more to teach us than we may be prepared to learn,” said Joseph Di Prisco, chair of The New Literary Project, in a statement. “Her subtle control of character and language enthralls us, and her stories dazzle with wit, passion, and insight . . . In the course of her marvelous career this author returns again and again from danger with prophetic stories of her own, radiant with intensity and conviction and grace.”
Said Evans herself, “I am thrilled and honored to receive this year’s prize, and to find myself in the wonderful company of this year’s finalists and the Joyce Carol Oates Prize’s previous winners. An award like this gives the gift of time and confidence, and I will use both as I work on my next book, a novel about celebrity, the shifting media landscape, the price of becoming an icon, and the ways our culture often simultaneously celebrates, mourns, and makes demands of Black women.”