Dalkey Book Festival logoPresented by Zurich logo


Frequently asked questions

You might have some queries about the Dalkey Literary Awards and the criteria for each category. Please see the FAQs below for more information.

How do the Dalkey Literary Awards work?

The Dalkey Literary Awards support writers resident in or born in Ireland and published in Ireland or the UK in 2019. There are two categories: Novel of the Year and Emerging Writer.

There is a Nominating Panel made up of there are 13 nominators including writers, literary agents, booksellers, academics and journalists. The Nominating Panel together nominate books published in 2019 by Irish writers and arrive at a shortlist of up to six books for each category. There are two distinct judging panels; one for each category, both made up of three members, typically an author, a journalist and a person in the public eye who loves reading. Each judging panel then reads the six shortlisted books for the relevant category before meeting on two occasions to agree one winner.

How do I enter a book?

Books are nominated by the Nominating Panel. In addition, your publisher may enter your book. Publishers should email nominations to info@dalkeybookfestival.org and put “Dalkey Literary Awards Nominations” in the subject line of the email. Closing date for entry is the 22nd February 2020.

What is considered an emerging writer?

An emerging writer is widely defined and includes (but is not limited to) writers of fiction, non-fiction, literary history, biography, memoir, collections of poetry, essays and short stories. Emerging writers may include writers of more than one published book and emerging writers may be of all ages.

What is considered an ‘Irish’ writer?

Authors need not be Irish but if not, then they must have been resident in Ireland for at least six months in each of the previous three years.

What is the prize fund?

The total prize fund is €30,000. The winner of the Novel of the Year Award receives €20,000 and the winner of the Emerging Writer Award receives €10,000. In addition, the winner of the Emerging Writer Award will win a spot at the Dalkey Book Festival on Sunday 21st June, appearing on stage with the three judges of that award to talk about their work and what winning the award means to them.