The Robert Traver Fly-Fishing Writing Award was created in 1994 by Nick Lyons and the John D. Voelker Foundation to encourage and recognize “distinguished original stories or essays that embody the implicit love of fly fishing, respect for the sport, and the natural world in which it takes place.” The Traver stories and essays must demonstrate high literary values in one or more of these three categories:
- The joy of fly fishing: personal and philosophic
- Ecology: knowledge and protection of the natural
- Humor: piscatorial friendships and fun on the water
The award is named after Robert Traver, pen name of the late John Voelker, author of Trout Madness, Trout Magic, Anatomy of a Fisherman, and the 1958 best seller, Anatomy of a Murder.
Since 1994, twenty-two awards have been given for the winning entry. Two anthologies of the Traver Award–winning essays were published in two volumes: In Hemingway’s Meadow (2009) and Love Story of the Trout (2010).