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Love to Read? 5 Valuable Scholarship Opportunities for Bookworms

Calling all book lovers! Put down your latest read and check out these amazing scholarships and contests based on books, reading, and literature.

One thing everybody knows about college is that it costs money! “How can I afford college?” is a frequently asked question for students and their families. A smart answer to this question is scholarships. And one interesting thing about scholarships is how unique each one is. You can find scholarships for almost any interest, including books, reading, and literature! Here are five great scholarship opportunities that every bookworm should look into.

1. Ayn Rand Essay Contests

Founded in 1985, the Ayn Rand Institute offers three student essay contests for avid readers of Anthem, The Fountainhead, and Atlas Shrugged. Requirements and submission deadlines vary depending on the novel you choose, as do prize amounts, with grand prizes of up to $25,000! Students in grades eight to 12 worldwide are invited to apply for the Anthem scholarship by May 31; The Fountainhead is open to middle and high school students ages 13 and up worldwide until June 7; and Atlas Shrugged is open to high school, undergraduate, and graduate students worldwide until June 14. Visit the official website and fill out the contact form to view the instructions for each contest.

2. Book Lovers Scholarship by Calvin Rosser

Does this name sound familiar? Sponsored by Calvin Rosser—a writer, entrepreneur, and regular funder of several different Bold.org opportunities—this Book Lovers Scholarship is open to high school, undergraduate, and graduate students in the US, with all GPAs and majors encouraged to apply. Just answer this question in 250–400 words: “If you could have everyone in the world read just one book, what would that book be and why?” With a May 31 deadline, this is a great annual opportunity for those who read multiple books across several genres!

Related: How to Turn Your Hobbies Into Scholarships With Ease

3. Bookshelf to Big Screen Scholarship

The Bookshelf to Big Screen Scholarship is another contest offered by Bold.org. Some well-known book series such as Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, Twilight, The Hobbit, and more have been created into modern-day films. Which is your favorite adaptation and why? High school and college students in the United States can share their thoughts in 400–600 words for a chance to win $1,000. This scholarship has rolling monthly deadlines until February 28, 2025, but students who apply earlier have a greater chance of winning, so start working on your application now!

4. Once Upon a #BookTok Scholarship

One more opportunity offered by Bold.org, the Once Upon a #BookTok Scholarship is for book lovers who’ve been influenced by the #BookTok community. The social media “digital literary movement” #BookTok has encouraged a community of readers to get together, discuss books, and find new ones to read. Are you engaged in the debates about character arcs? Were you looking for a new book when the #BookTok community gave you several recommendations? Then this scholarship is for you! To be eligible, you must be a high school or college student in the United States and respond thoroughly in 400–600 words to the prompt about your ideal bookshelf inspired by #BookTok recommendations. Apply by the rolling monthly deadlines until August for a chance to win $500 for college!

5. Poets & Writers Magazine writing contests, grants, and awards

While there are many amazing scholarship opportunities for readers, there are also contests out there for readers who love to write! If you’re a writer or would like to get started, check out the opportunities posted in Poets & Writers Magazine’s Writing Contests, Grants, and Awards database. You can find contests for poetry, short stories, novels, fiction, nonfiction, and more, with cash awards from $500 to nearly $100,000! From grants to university scholarships, there are so many opportunities for writers of all ages and locations. Do keep in mind that every contest has its own rules and requirements—including some entry fees, which make them different from traditional scholarships. Check the official website for more information, including a handy submission calendar.

Related: Fun Scholarship Opportunities for Students Who Love to Write

There are so many ways to earn and rack up grants and scholarships for college, especially for book lovers. Finding free money for college based on your interests isn’t impossible and can also be fun! As you can see, taking time to research and apply for scholarships and grants you’re interested in can pay off in the end.

Wondering what other opportunities are out there? Check out our featured scholarships and find even more based on your personal interests using our Scholarship Search tool.

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About Nadia Tubbs

Nadia Tubbs is a devoted writer who enjoys crafting poetry, essays, and research papers across genres. Her talent has been recognized with two published works before graduation. Excited for the next chapter, Nadia plans to pursue ESL Education at Liberty University. With a heart for language and teaching, she dreams of empowering others through education. Every word Nadia writes reflects her dedication to bridging gaps and fostering connections. As she prepares to embark on her next academic journey, she is poised to leave a lasting impact on literature and in the classroom.


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