The prestigious South African Literary Awards were founded in 2005 by the wRite associates, in partnership with the national Department of Arts and Culture, as a platform to honour authors, translators, poets and other literary practitioners who made and continue to make a contribution in the South African literary landscape.

SALA honours writing and writers in all official languages across fourteen categories. They are K.Sello Duiker Memorial Literary Award, which is a celebration of one of the country’s most prolific authors of his generation, K. Sello Duiker. First-Time published writers are also acknowledged and honoured by the Awards. The other is the Nadine Gordimer Short Story Literary Award, honouring thespians in the genre, across all languages. In addition, there are: National Poet Laureate Prize, Poetry Award, Literary Translators Award, Lifetime Achievement Literary Award, Posthumous Literary Award, Literary Journalism Award, Creative Non-Fiction Award and, Chairperson’s Award, Children’s Literature Award, Youth Literature Award and Novel Award. 

More than a two hundred luminaries have been honoured over the last fourteen years. This year's list of nominees includes Fiona Snyckers' Lacuna and Nthikeng Mohlele's Illumination, both shortlisted for the Novel Award and Trevor Noah's Born a Crime (younger readers edition) for the Youth Literature Award. The winners will be announced at a celebratory awards ceremony to be held virtually on 7th November 2020, the International African Writers’ Day. Read more about the 2020 SALA's HERE.
Photo credit: South African Literary Awards 

Book cover for Lacuna


Lucy Lurie is deeply sunk in PTSD following a gang rape at her father’s farmhouse in the Western Cape. She soon becomes obsessed with the author John Coetzee, who has made a name for himself by writing Disgrace, a celebrated novel that revolves around the attack on her.

Book cover for Illumination


A story of direct and implied betrayals, Illumination is an unrelenting study of possession and loss, of the beauty and uncertainty of love, of the dangers and intrusions of fame.

Book cover for Born a Crime

Born a Crime

In Born a Crime, Trevor shares what his life was like growing up. The stories he tells in this book will make you laugh, cry and fill you with wonder and inspiration as you learn how this mischievous young boy used his quick wits and humour to get through his day-to-day lif...