Townsend Prize

The 2020 Townsend Prize for Fiction

On Thursday, April 23, 2020, lovers of literary fiction throughout the state will gather together to celebrate the works of the ten authors chosen as finalists for this biennium’s awarding of the Townsend Prize for Fiction. The reception and award ceremony will take place at the historic DeKalb History Center in downtown Decatur from 6 to 8:30 p.m.

The finalists for the 2020 award are sure to represent the very best achievements in letters by Georgia writers over the course of the preceding two years, reflecting the prize’s celebration of the Southern voice in all its intricacies and incarnations. The list of finalists will be made available in mid-January 2020.


As in previous years, the 2020 award ceremony will include:

  • a catered reception with bar and live music beginning at 6 p.m.
  • the event’s program that will begin at 7 p.m., followed by the celebration’s keynote address from Patrick Ryan, acclaimed author of the short story collection The Dream Life of Astronauts, the novel Send Me, and three novels for young adults.

Complete details about the evening’s features―including admission prices to the event―will be made available by the end of December 2019.

With a legacy of more than a quarter century, the Townsend Prize is the state of Georgia’s oldest and most prestigious literary award. The 2020 celebration will mark the thirty-eighth year of the award’s existence, and the twenty-first awarding of the prize.