English PEN’s new programme PEN Presents is currently closed for submissions, reopening January 2023.

PEN Presents supports and showcases sample translations, funding the often-unpaid work of creating samples, giving UK publishers access to titles from underrepresented languages and regions, and helping diversify the translated literature landscape.

More about the programme

PEN Presents is open to literary translators anywhere in the world, for proposals to create sample translations of previously untranslated works.

The call has now closed for the first round of PEN Presents is open to works of Indian literature, of any form and genre, originally published in any of the languages of India. This round is a partnership between English PEN and the British Council, as part of the British Council’s India/UK Together Season. PEN Presents will reopen for submissions for works in any language and from any region in January 2023, with the aim of becoming a long-term, permanent programme.

PEN Presents is open to translators at any stage in their career, and we particularly welcome proposals from voices underrepresented in the translation community, heritage speakers and L2 translators, and those who do not have established access to publishers and commissioning editors.

Proposals will be assessed by an independent Selection Panel of experts from across the literary sector – writers, agents, scouts, publishers, booksellers and critics – and expert translators and language specialists. 12 shortlisted applicants, selected by the Panel, will each be awarded a grant of £500 to create a 5,000-word sample translation for the proposed work. 6 of these samples will then be selected as PEN Presents winners, and showcased in an issue on the PEN Presents digital platform. English PEN will offer editorial support to selected samples and promote them to UK publishers.

PEN Presents applications will be assessed in terms of their literary quality, the strength of the proposed project, and their contribution to UK bibliodiversity.

Read more about the process, timeline and eligibility criteria.