Your 2020 Literary Events Calendar
For All Your Literary Planning Needs
Every January, I open my brand new planner, make a couple notations I’ve been holding in my brain since before the holidays, and then—well, and then nothing, because I usually don’t make plans very far in advance. But this year is going to be different. This year, I’m going to use my planner to plan. So if you, like me, would like to fill your calendar (digital, analog, or merely hypothetical) with some literary events, I’ve put together a calendar tracking the biggest literary anniversaries, prize announcements, publication dates, and other happenings. (For more in-depth coverage of the books coming out in 2020, check out Lit Hub’s preview of the year’s most anticipated books, and for more TV and film adaptations, well, we’ve got a preview for that, too.)
It’s only January, so this calendar is necessarily incomplete—I expect we’ll have more than a few surprises in store in this cursed (or blessed?) year of our lord 2020. You may want to bookmark this page and check back over the next twelve months, as I’ll be updating the calendar as we go.
January 2: Centenary of Isaac Asimov’s birth.
January 17: Bicentenary of Anne Brontë’s birth.
January 23-27: Jaipur Literature Festival.
January 25: Burns Night.
February 4: 25th anniversary of the death of Patricia Highsmith.
February 11: Jenny Offill’s Weather is published by Knopf.
February 14: Hulu’s High Fidelity, starring Zoë Kravitz, premieres.
February 14: International Book Giving Day.
February 16: The Showtime adaptation of James McBride’s The Good Lord Bird premieres.
February 21: The newest adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma is released.
February 25: Colum McCann’s Apeirogon is published by Random House.
February 25: Erik Larson’s The Splendid and the Vile is published by Crown.
February 26: The Story Prize is announced.
February 27: The Booker International Prize longlist announced.
March 2: PEN America Literary Awards awarded in a ceremony hosted by Seth Meyers.
March 3: Anne Enright’s Actress is published by W. W. Norton.
March 3: James McBride’s Deacon King Kong is published by Riverhead.
March 3: Louise Erdrich’s The Night Watchman is published by Harper.
March 4-7: AWP Conference and Bookfair, this year in San Antonio.
March 10: Hilary Mantel’s The Mirror & The Light, the final Thomas Cromwell novel, is published by Henry Holt.
March 12: Lorrie Moore’s Collected Stories is published by Everyman’s Library.
March 12: Dave Eggers turns 50.
March 12: 2019 National Book Critics Circle Award winners announced.
March 16: HBO’s adaptation of Philip Roth’s The Plot Against America premieres.
March 18: The TV adaptation of Celeste Ng’s Little Fires Everywhere, starring Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon, premieres on Hulu.
March 19: 2020 Windham-Campbell Prizes announced.
March 24: Emily St. John Mandel’s The Glass Hotel is published by Knopf.
March 24: N. K. Jemisin’s The City We Became is published by Orbit.
March 25: 2020 Whiting Awards announced.
March 26: Centenary of the publication of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s This Side of Paradise.
March 30: Bicentenary of Anna Sewell’s birth.
March 31: Seventy-fifth anniversary of the death of Anne Frank.
April 2: The Booker International Prize shortlist announced.
April 2: International Children’s Book Day.
April 7: Veronica Roth’s The Chosen Ones is published by HMH.
April 7: Julia Alvarez’s Afterlife, her first novel in over a decade, is published by Algonquin.
April 7: 250th anniversary of the birth of William Wordsworth.
April 11: 50th anniversary of the death of John O’Hara.
April 15 (estimated): The Pulitzer Prizes announced.
April 21: Ottessa Moshfegh’s Death in Her Hands is published by Penguin Press.
April 23: Women’s Prize for Fiction shortlist released.
April 30: Annie Dillard turns 75.
May 5: Stephanie Danler’s Stray is published by Knopf.
May 5: Eimear McBride’s Strange Hotel is published by FSG.
May 5: Samanta Schweblin’s Little Eyes, translated by Megan McDowell, is published by Riverhead.
May 8: The Personal History of David Copperfield, starring Dev Patel in the titular role, is released.
May 12: Charlie Kaufman’s Antkind is published by Random House.
May 19: Jennifer Weiner’s Big Summer is published by Simon & Schuster.
May 19: Booker International Prize awarded.
May 21-31: Hay festival.
June 2: David Mitchell’s Utopia Avenue is published by Random House.
June 3: Women’s Fiction Prize winner announced.
June 7: Fiftieth anniversary of the death of E. M. Forster.
June 9: Elena Ferrante’s The Lying Life of Adults, translated by Ann Goldstein, is published by Europa.
June 9th: 150th anniversary of the death of Charles Dickens.
June 19: Tobias Wolff turns 75.
July 14: Leila Slimani’s Sex and Lies is published by Penguin.
July 14: Yaa Gyasi’s Transcendent Kingdom is published by Knopf.
July 15: 25 years since the first item was sold on Amazon.
July 21: Chelsea Manning’s untitled memoir is published by FSG.
July 30: Patrick Modiano turns 75.
July 31: Harry Potter’s birthday. He’d be 40 this year.
August 3: Centenary of P. D. James’s birth.
August 15-31: Edinburgh International Book Festival.
August 17: 75th anniversary of the publication of Animal Farm.
August 22: Centenary of Ray Bradbury’s birth.
September 1: Emma Cline’s Daddy is published by Random House.
September 8: Claudia Rankine’s Just Us is published by Graywolf.
September 8: 25th anniversary of the death of Eileen Chang.
September 15: Susanna Clarke’s Piranesi is published by Bloomsbury.
September 15: The Booker Prize shortlist announced.
September 28: 50th anniversary of the death of John Dos Passos.
September 28-October 5: Brooklyn Book Festival.
October 8: Centenary of Frank Herbert’s birth.
October 9: Kenneth Branagh’s latest Agatha Christie adaptation, Death on the Nile, is released.
October 9: A new adaptation of Roald Dahl’s The Witches, starring Anne Hathaway as the Grand High Witch, is released.
October 14-18: Frankfurt Book Fair.
October 15: Centenary of Mario Puzo’s birth.
October 27: The Booker Prize awarded.
November 9: Centenary of the publication of D. H. Lawrence’s Women in Love.
November 25: 50th anniversary of the death of Yukio Mishima.
December 9: 25th anniversary of the death of Toni Cade Bambara.
December 10: Centenary of Clarice Lispector’s birth.
December 18: 150th anniversary of the birth of Saki.
December 18: The new film adaptation of Dune is finally released.
December 22: 75 years since Holden Caulfield’s first appearance (in “I’m Crazy,” a short story published in Collier’s).