Lithuanian prose writers

Kristina Sabaliauskaitė


Sabaliauskaitė was born in Vilnius, and in 2002 she moved to London. The writer made her debut in 2008 with the historical novel “Silva Rerum”, which later grew into a tetralogy and became one of the most important Lithuanian books. This is a book about the life of the noble family of Narvojši in 1659-1667, in the period after the Deluge. Another book by the author dilogy “Empress Petra” a novel about the wife of Peter the Great, Lithuanian woman Marta Samuilovna Skavronskaya. The novel is set in the last days of her life. It tells her story and touches on the issue of cultural clash between the West and the East.

Undinė Radzevičiūtė


Radzevičiūtė finished Vilnius Academy of Arts where she studied history, theory and criticism of art. During 10 years she worked as creative director of international advertising agencies. She began publishing prose in 2003 and in 2015 won the European Union Prize for Literature for her fourth book, the novel “Fish and Dragons” (Žuvys ir drakonai). At the moment this novel is her largest and best work. The book combines two storylines: one set in 18th-century China and describes the life of a Jesuit artist there, and the other depicts three generations of women living in Chinatown in Vilnius.

Valdas Papievis


In 1985 Valdas Papievis graduated from Vilnius University with a major in Lithuanian literature. In 1990-1992 he was an advisor to Darius Kuolys, the Minister of Culture of Lithuania, and since 1992 he has been living in Paris. Critics distinguish between two periods in his work as a writer  Lithuanian and Parisian. The Lithuanian period includes his work on the publication of the independent cultural magazine “Sietynas”, which he joined in 1988-1990, and publication of his first two books. This period belongs to the existentialist movement in Lithuanian literature of the 1970s and 1980s. After moving to Paris, Papievis worked on radio and television, acting as a facilitator between Lithuanian and French culture. Today he is the author of 8 books of prose, among which a special place belongs to the novel “Eiti”. PEN Lithuania included this novel in the list of books of the decade (2005-2014).

Alvydas Šlepikas


Alvydas Šlepikas is a versatile author who not only writes prose but is also a poet, playwright, actor, screenwriter and director. He is a member of PEN Lithuania and the Lithuanian Writers’ Union. His novel “My Name is Marytė” (“Mano vardas Marytė”), about displaced people during World War II and the difficult post-war years, became one of the most read novels of 2012 in Lithuania and had six re-editions. It is also one of the most translated contemporary Lithuanian books.

Rimantas Kmita


Rimantas Kmita was born in Šiauliai. He studied at the University of Klaipeda where he received a PhD in literary studies, for some time gave lectures at the Universities of Klaipeda and Vilnius, published three collections of poetry and was known as a literary critic. Today, Kmita is known primarily as the author of a book “Chronicles of the South” (“Pietinia kronikas”). This is an educational novel written in the Šiauliai dialect which tells a story of a teenager from a provincial town growing up in the 1990s. The novel became the Lithuanian Book of the Year in 2017.

Giedra Radvilavičiūtė


The writer’s career of Radvilavičiūtė began in the late 1990s after her teaching literature at school and doing research in the US. The author began publishing essays in the cultural press and literally became the mother of the Lithuanian essay. Her second collection of essays, “This Evening I Will Sleep Against the Wall” (“Šiąnakt aš miegosiu prie sienos”), was shortlisted for the 2011 Book of the Year and won the European Union Prize for Literature in 2012. These are semi-autobiographical texts with a central theme of loneliness and the female experience.

Sigitas Parulskis


Sigitas Parulskis made his literary debut as a poet, later switching to prose and drama. He wrote a number of plays and collaborated with theater director Oskaras Koršunovas. He also worked for various newspapers, including “Lietuvos Rytas”, the most famous daily newspaper in Lithuania, and the cultural magazine “Šiaurės Atėnai”. Parulskis addresses the consequences of rule of the Soviet Union in Lithuania in his books. Critics call his novel “The Three Seconds to Heaven” (“Trys sekundės dangaus”) a cult novel. His novel “Darkness and Partners” (“Tamsa ir partneriai”) was shortlisted for the Angelus Prize in 2021.

Lithuanian poets

Antanas A. Jonynas


Antanas A. Jonynas made his debut in 1977, and was the most prominent figure of the Lithuanian literary scene of the 1970s-1980s. He is the author of twenty poetry books. Literary critics associate the poet’s work with hippies, blues and Beatnik poetry. His works are characterized by a special combination of irony and melancholy. In addition to writing poetry, Jonynas is a translator, and a special role in his work is played by the translation of “Faust” by Goethe.

Donaldas Kajokas


Because of his interest for the East and the use of Eastern poetical forms, Kajokas is sometimes referred to as the “old Chinese poet”. The poet is primarily known for his work as an editor at an important Kaunas weekly, “Nemunas”, where he worked for over 20 years. His collection of poems from the early period, “Meditations” (“Meditacijos”), won him the Lithuanian National Prize for Achievement in Culture and Art in 1999. His book “For a Deaf Donkey” (“Kurčiam asiliukui”) was named one of the poetry books of the decade by PEN Lithuania. Kajokas also writes prose and essays.

Daiva Čepauskaitė


Daiva Čepauskaitė is a poet and playwright who works full-time as an actress at the Kaunas City Chamber Theatre since 1990. Čepauskaitė has published four collections of poetry and was the main winner of the annual Poetic Spring festival in 2005. The theatricality of her poetry has influenced her work, and critics sometimes describe her poems as minidramas, emphasizing the dramatic elements in her poetry. “Horribly Beautiful Verses” (“Baisiai Gražūs Eilėraščiai”), Čepauskaitė’s latest collection of poems of 2017, blurs the boundaries between poetry for children and serious one for adults.

Giedrė Kazlauskaitė


Kazlauskaitė is known to readers not only as a poet but also as a critic and essayist. Her collection “Meninos” was shortlisted for the Lithuanian Book of the Year in 2014. In 2016 her collection “Singerstraum” was awarded the Lithuanian Writers’ Union Prize and recognised as the most creative book of the year. The search for God is an important theme in Kazlauskaitė poems. “Postilės”, the author’s third book, is a kind of poetic commentary on the Gospel which she wrote in collaboration with the Priest Julius Sasnauskas.

Marius Burokas


Marius Burokas is the editor-in-chief of the “Vilnius Review”, an online magazine about Lithuanian literature issued in English. He has translated many English-language poets into Lithuanian, including Walt Whitman, Allen Ginsberg, and Charles Bukowski. Burokas made his debut in 1999 with the collection of poems “Ideograms” (“Ideogramos”). His third book, “I Have Learned Not to Be” (“Išmokau nebūti”), won the Antanas Miskinis Literary Prize. “A Significant Presence”, (“Svaraus buvimo”), his fourth collection, was awarded the Maironis Prize for Best Poetry.

Rimvydas Stankevičius


Stankevičius is a poet, essayist and songwriter. He received a Master degree in Lithuanian literature at Vilnius University. The poet made his debut with the collection “The Eye” (“Akis”) in 1996. Since then he has published eight collections of poetry, a series of short stories, two collections of essays and a rhyming fairy tale for children. In 2002, together with the composer Rokas Radzevičius, Stankevičius created the rock opera “Jūratė ir Kastytis”. Stankevičius is best known for his poetry trilogy: “I Break the Seal” (“Laužiu antspaudą”), “The Simplest Spells” (“Patys paprasčiausi burtažodžiai”) and “Communication with Headquarters” (“Ryšys su vadaviete”).

Gytis Norvilas


Gytis Norvilas studied Theory of History and History of Culture at Vilnius University. His works have been published ever since 1997. His book “Zones of Discharge” (“Išlydžių zonos”) was awarded by the Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore as the most creative work of 2012. Norvilas’ work is associated with surrealism, poetic avant-garde and post-avant-garde. According to the writer, poetry should be provocative, uncomfortable and surprising. Norvilas often illustrates his poems with his own drawings. For a long time, the poet was the editor-in-chief of the cultural magazine “Literatūra ir menas”. He is one of the most prominent voices in the world of contemporary poetry and has won numerous awards.


Lithuanian writers for children

Kęstutis Kasparavičius


Kasparavičius studied design at the Vilnius Art Academy and worked as a book illustrator for a long time. He has won numerous international awards in this field, including Illustrator of the Year at the Bologna Book Fair in 1993. He made his debut as an author in 2003. It is quite interesting that his first book was published in a Chinese, not a Lithuanian publishing house which he had collaborated as an illustrator with. Since then the writer has gradually stopped illustrating other authors and focused on his own books. Today, he is the author of approximately fifty books and is one of Lithuania’s most beloved writers for children.

Lina Žutautė


Lina Žutautė is one of Lithuania’s most commercially successful writers. She started as an illustrator and worked with Lithuanian and foreign authors. Žutautė made her literary debut in 2010. She is the author of a popular series of books about a mischievous girl Kika-Mika. The work about Kika-Mika was awarded the IBBY Best Book for Young Readers, and her book “Ferdinand and Pooh” was included in the IBBY Honor List in 2014.

Ilona Ežerinytė


Ilona Ežerinytė made her debut in children’s literature when she was fifty years old. She had previously studied Lithuanian language and literature and taught in public and private schools for many years. Ežerinytė made her debut with short fairy tales and now writes mostly teenage books with a touch of magical realism. Her books have twice won the Book of the Year Award “Meeting Eid” (“Sutikti Eidą”) in 2016 and “The Crying Club” (“Verksnių klubas”) in 2018.

Kotryna Zylė


Kotryna Zylė is a professional graphic designer. During her studies, she became interested in Lithuanian mythology, which became the main theme of her books. Zylė made her debut as a writer for children in 2014 with her book “The Little Giant” (“Milžinas mažylis”), which she illustrated herself, and a few years later she wrote a teenage mystery novel, “The Reversed” (“Sukeistas”). Today Zylė is the author of 6 books, half of which were included in the prestigious international catalog “The White Ravens”.