Home News & Events Now accepting applications: NEA Big Read

Now accepting applications: NEA Big Read

Are you looking for support to bring your community together to inspire meaningful conversations, artistic responses, new discoveries, and connections? Arts Midwest is now accepting applications for the 2022-2023 National Endowment for the Arts Big Read program. Organizations can access up to $20,000 in support for community-wide reading programs. Applications are due January 26, 2022. 

Learn More

The NEA Big Read broadens our understanding of our world, our neighbors, and ourselves through the power of a shared reading experience. Since 2006, the National Endowment for the Arts has funded more than 1,700 NEA Big Read programs, providing more than $23 million to organizations nationwide.

Eligible applicants include, but are not limited to: arts centers, arts councils, arts organizations, community service organizations, environmental organizations, fairs and festivals, faith-based organizations, historical societies, housing authorities, humanities councils, institutions of higher education, libraries, literary centers, museums, school districts, theater companies, trade associations, and tribal governments.

“The power of literature can amplify creativity and foster new partnerships,” said Torrie Allen, President and CEO of Arts Midwest. “We are excited for neighbors in communities across the nation to connect through the NEA Big Read.”

Join Informational Webinars

How to Apply for the NEA Big Read

October 27 at 11 a.m. CT

Join a webinar all about applying for an NEA Big Read grant. Hear from a moderated panel of previous grantees about various topics you might consider as you build your application.

Register Now

All About the NEA Big Read Books

November 16 at 11 a.m. CT

Join a webinar discussion about the 15 books that are a part of the NEA Big Read for 2022-2023, including insights from the authors.

Register Now

Can’t make these webinars but still want to tune in? RSVP and a recording will be sent to you within 48 hours of the event.


Explore the 2022-23 NEA Big Read Library

There are 12 new additions to the NEA Big Read library and three returning titles.
Click on the images to learn more about the books!

New Additions

Big Read 22-23 New Titles

Book cover of The Bear by Andrew Krivak

The Bear

Andrew Krivak

Book cover of Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude by Ross Gay.

Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude

Ross Gay

Book cover of The Cold Millions by Jess Walter.

The Cold Millions

Jess Walter

Book cover of Deaf Republic by Ilya Kaminsky.

Deaf Republic

Ilya Kaminsky

Book cover of Heartland: A Memoir of Working Hard and Being Broke in the Richest Country on Earth by Sarah Smarsh.

Heartland: A Memoir of Working Hard and Being Broke in the Richest Country on Earth

Sarah Smarsh

Book cover of Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi.


Yaa Gyasi

Book cover of Interior Chinatown by Charles Yu.

Interior Chinatown

Charles Yu

Book cover of Infinite Country by Patricia Engel

Infinite Country

Patricia Engel

Book cover of Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson.

Nothing to See Here

Kevin Wilson

Book cover of Postcolonial Love Poem by Natalie Diaz.

Postcolonial Love Poem

Natalie Diaz

Book cover of Sitting Pretty by Rebekah Taussig.

Sitting Pretty: The View from my Ordinary Resilient Disabled Body

Rebekah Taussig

Book cover of There There by Tommy Orange.

There, There

Tommy Orange

Returning Books

Big Read 22-23 Returning Titles

Book cover of The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui

The Best We Could Do

Thi Bui

Book cover of Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant by Roz Chast

Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?

Roz Chast

Book cover of Circe by Madeline Miller


Madeline Miller

National Endowment for the Arts Big Read is supported by the Endowment in partnership with Arts Midwest.