Several authors have declined their nominations for PEN America’s literary awards, in protest over the nonprofit organization’s response to the Israel–Hamas war, the Associated Press reports.

The writers’ decisions to withdraw their books from consideration began after PEN announced the longlists for the awards last week. Shortly after the announcement, Camonghne Felix wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter, “Last Tuesday I found out that my book Dyscalculia was longlisted for the PEN/Jean Stein award. I decided to decline this recognition and asked to be removed from the longlist in solidarity with the ongoing protest of PEN’s continued normalization and denial of genocide.”

In March, more than a dozen authors pulled out of the PEN World Voices Festival, saying that the group’s response to the Gaza conflict was insufficient and that it had failed to condemn Israel for “the scale and scope of the attacks on writers in Gaza, or on Palestinian speech and culture more broadly,” according to the open letter they signed.

Other authors who have asked that their books not be considered for this year’s prizes include poet Eugenia Leigh, short story writer Ghassan Zeineddine, and novelist Maya Binyam.

PEN told the AP that nine of the 60 nominated writers have declined to be considered. Clarisse Rosaz Shariyf, PEN’s chief program officer of literary programming, said, “We respect their decision and we will celebrate these writers in other ways.”

One author not declining her nomination is Aaliyah Bilal, whose story collection Temple Folk, about the lives of Black American Muslims,was nominated for the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize. She told the AP that she saw a difference between PEN’s leadership and its award managers, saying, “They’re two separate things.”

Tom Beer is the editor-in-chief.