The Ellen Meloy Fund for Desert Writers sends the willing and talented out to the desert to write. An annual cash award of $5,000 provides recognition and a small
The Ellen Meloy Fund for Desert Writers sends the willing and talented out to the desert to write. An annual cash award of $5,000 provides recognition and a small base of financial support for exceptional writers of the desert who wish to spend creative time in a desert environment and carry on in the spirit of Ellen Meloy.
All good writing finds voice in place and experience; really good nature writing lives in the field. Ellen Meloy breathed the desert air and wrote. Her voice was strong and sure because her inspiration was direct. Ellen was widely recognized for her excellence, which gave birth to four books, all collections of essays, largely about human connections to wilderness, deserts, and rivers. No river trip, hike, or car camp was complete without her journal.
Ellen Meloy’s sudden death on November 4, 2004, sent waves of shock and sorrow from her red rock home in Bluff, Utah. She contributed a sensual lodestone, a shining river cobble to the literature of natural history, science, and the southwest. A world of readers, friends, and family seek to illuminate and honor her legacy of words through a memorial fund, established to empower other writers with a place in the desert.
The Ellen Meloy Fund for Desert Writers grants one $5,000 award in the spring of each year. Only proposals for literary or creative nonfiction book projects will be considered. No fiction or poetry proposals will be reviewed.
The Fund supports writing that combines an engaging individual voice, literary sensibility, imagination and intellectual rigor to bring new perspectives and deeper meaning to the body of desert literature. All applications will be reviewed through a peer-panel process.
Considerations in the selection process will be:
the writing sample’s artistic excellence and desert literacy,
the strength of the proposed book project,
the biography’s ability to demonstrate a history and future of writing and desert experience.