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Pulitzer Center Update December 29, 2018

Vince Beiser on the 2019 PEN America Literary Awards Longlists

Media: Authors:
Land reclamation works are on-going at this area of Tuas, Singapore's westernmost area where a new massive container port—the world's largest in the next 30 years—is being built. The port authority is using materials dredged from the nearby seabed and earth excavated from tunneling work on a subway line to cut use of sand by about 70 per cent in the building of this pier—which will be one of four eventually. Singapore has been short of sand for its sizeable and continual land reclamation and construction…

Concrete. Glass. Silicon. Our civilization is built on the most important yet most overlooked...

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Multiple Authors
Image courtesy of PEN America.
Image courtesy of PEN America.

Pulitzer Center Grantee Vince Beiser is a semi-finalists for the 2019 PEN America Literary Awards for his book, The World in a Grain: The Story of Sand and How It Transformed Civilization.

The World in a Grain is the culmination of several years of reporting by Beiser on the global sand shortage, which included the work from his Pulitzer Center-supported project "The Deadly Global War for Sand." His book centers around how sand–the resource we use most after air and water–is running out, and the environmental and human costs of this shortage are being felt across the world.

PEN America Literary Awards celebrates the best voices in literature in genres ranging from fiction to nonfiction and poetry to essays. This year's awards will confer over $370,000 to authors of exceptional work published in 2018. Each award is judged by an esteemed panel of award-winning writers, editors, booksellers, and critics.

Beiser is on the longlist for the PEN/E.O. Wilson Prize For Literary Science Writing. According to the PEN America Literary Awards, this awards a book that exemplifies literary excellence on the subject of the physical or biological sciences and communicates complex scientific concepts to a lay audience. The winner will receive $10,000 and all book awards will be announced in January 2019. The winners will be celebrated at the 2019 PEN America Literary Awards Ceremony on February 26 at the NYU Skirball Center in NYC.

Beiser is an award-winning journalist based in Los Angeles. He has exposed conditions in California's harshest prisons, trained with troops bound for Iraq, ridden with first responders to disasters in Haiti and Nepal, and hunted down other stories from around the world for publications including Wired, The Los Angeles Times Magazine, Harper's, The Atlantic, The Village Voice, The New Republic, The Nation, Mother Jones, Playboy, Rolling Stone, and The New York Times.

Click here for the full list of finalists and other PEN America Literary Awards