State Book Awards

The Minnesota Book Award is currently open to authors who live in Minnesota and have had a book published in 2015 which is not self-published. It costs $45 and five copies of your book to submit. This morning, Wednesday August 5, I submitted my book to the award committee at the Friends of the Saint Paul Library. They will hand out the five copies to various readers and the process will begin. Finalists are announced in January, 2016. A large gala will be held, in April 2016, with autographs, refreshments, live music, and the announcement of the award winners.

The Minnesota Book Awards is a year-round process. It involves over 100 volunteers who work with nominations, judging, and the selection of finalists and winners. Last year, nearly 300 books by Minnesota authors were nominated! Over 300 Minnesota authors, last year. I live in a wonderful state!

Minnesota residents can apply to be a reader/judges for the competition.  JUDGES APPLICATION. It’s currently open. Love to read? This might be great fun for you.

There are several states that offer book awards.

My friend, Julie Bettinger, has been nominated as a finalist in the Florida Book Awards for her nonfiction book Blasted by Adversity: The Making of a Wounded Warrior.  The gala is set for August 8. GOOD LUCK, JULIE!!

Last year, my friend Lisa Ohlen Harris, was a finalist in the Oregon Book Awards, for her lovely memoir Fifth Season.

If you are an author, be sure to check and see if your state has book awards.

If you are a reader, check out your state’s book awards. You might find a new author that you love. AND, maybe someday, you’ll even run into that author in a local grocery store. After all authors are people, too. And even though our work is sometimes mysterious, we always end up going to a grocery store each week, just like you.

Case in point: Our own Moorhead, Minnesota author, Heather Slomski, was a finalist this past year! Heather’s short story collection, “The Lovers Set Down Their Spoons,” was published by U. of Iowa Press and also won the prestigious 2014 Iowa Short Fiction Award. Congratulations, Heather!

Minnesota Book Awards Finalists 2014

Check this out for more information on why book awards matter.

Jill Kandel
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