Two Baltimore authors are up for 2018 PEN America Literary Awards

Two Baltimore authors, former Sun sports columnist John Eisenberg and Johns Hopkins University professor Lawrence P. Jackson, are on a list of those being considered for PEN America Literary Awards.

Eisenberg, who spent two decades as a sports columnist for The Sun and has been a columnist at since 2012, is nominated for “The Streak: Lou Gehrig, Cal Ripken Jr. and Baseball’s Most Historic Record.”

Jackson, Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of English and History at Hopkins, is nominated for “Chester B. Hines: A Biography,” a book on the life of one of America's most prolific black authors.

Both authors are eligible for awards of $5,000, Eisenberg in the category of Literary Sports Writing, Jackson in Biography.

In all, nearly 70 books are up for PEN awards. Finalists will be announced in January, with the awards being handed out on Feb. 20 during a ceremony at the NYU Skirball Center in New York.

PEN America, based in New York, has been handing out its Literary Awards for more than 50 years. Billing itself as “the country’s only organization that both celebrates literature and defends free expression,” it places special emphasis on “emerging authors, writers of color, and international literature in translation,” according to a release announcing the nominees.

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