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Finalists announced for 2021 Maine Literary Awards

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The Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance has announced the slate of finalists for the 2021 Maine Literary Awards.

For the past decade-plus, the MWPA has been celebrating the work of Maine writers with this award. Nominations are open to all Maine residents (this includes part-time and/or seasonal residents). The categories include fiction and nonfiction (in multiple genres) as well as short fiction, drama, poetry and more.

This year’s awards are scheduled to be announced on May 27. Here are the nominees.


Book Award for Crime Fiction
Claire Ackroyd, Murder in the Maple Woods
Bruce Robert Coffin, Within Plain Sight
Barbara Ross, Jane Darrowfield and the Madwoman Next Door

Book Award for Fiction
Christina Baker Kline, The Exiles
Christopher Fahy, Belief
Meredith Hall, Beneficence
Jim Nichols, Blue Summer

Book Award for Nonfiction
Kerri Arsenault, Mill Town
Ernest Freeberg, A Traitor to His Species
Colin Woodard, Union: The Struggle to Forge the Story

Book Award for Memoir
Jennifer Finney Boylan, Good Boy: My Life in Seven Dogs
Kate Kennedy, Skin: A Memoir
Phuc Tran, Sigh, Gone

Book Award for Poetry
Megan Grumbling, Persephone in the Late Anthropocene
Éireann Lorsung, The Century
Wesley McNair, Dwellers in the House of the Lord

John N. Cole Award for Maine Nonfiction
Michael K. Komanecky, Jane Bianco, and Angela Waldron, Maine and American Art: The Farnsworth Art Museum
Don Reimer, Seen Anything Good?
Peter Taylor (editor) and Kara Douglas, From the Mountains to the Sea: The Historic Restoration of the Penobscot River

Book Award for Young People's Literature
Katie Coppens, The Acadia Files: Spring Science
Betty Culley, Three Things I Know Are True
Maria Padian, How to Build a Heart

Book Award for Children's 
Pat Davidson Reef, David C. Driskell: Artist, Educator, Author
Fran Hodgkins, Thump Goes the Rabbitt
Anica Mrose Rissi, Love, Sophia on the Moon

Book Award for Speculative Fiction
*No finalists will be named this year, but a winner will be announced at the ceremony!

Book Award for Excellence in Publishing
Amy Stacey Curtis, 9 Solo Biennials, Self Published
Margaret Hathaway and Karl Schatz, Maine Bicentennial Community Cookbook, Islandport Press
Joshua Klein, Another Work is Possible, Mortise & Tenon

Book Award for Anthology
Claire Millikin and Agnes Bushell, ENOUGH! Poems of Resistance
Kathryn Olmstead, Stories of Aroostook
The Telling Room (editors), A New Land: 30 Groundbreaking Poems by Youth Poets

Drama Award 
Suzanne d'Corsey, "Eros”
Travis Baker, “Hockey Mom”
Jayne Decker, “Ruby Red (a moment in the life of)”

Short Works Competition in Fiction
Shannon Bowring, “Romance”
Brandon Dudley, “Between the Bridge and the River”
Morgan Talty, “The Blessing Tobacco”

Short Works Competition in Nonfiction
Parker Blaney, “Detox”
Lesley Heiser, “Butterfly”
Laura Poppick, “The Maine Farmer Saving the World's Rarest Heirloom Seeds”
Sarah Twombly, “What We Want is Simple”

Short Works Competition in Poetry
Judy Kaber, “What My Father Says About Brooklyn and 4 Other Poems”
Suzanne Langlois, “What Lasts”
W. Kent Olson, “Common Cause and Other Poems”

Award for a Secondary School Literary Magazine
No award will be given this year but honorable mentions will be announced at the ceremony.

Youth Competition in Fiction
Leigh Ellis, “A Ghost’s Bucket List”
Alexa Barstow, “Windswept”
Alexa Barstow, “Onward”

Youth Competition in Nonfiction
Nina Chase, “Forest Journal”
Si Ting Chen “All I Can See”
Amira Doale, “Jasmine and Clementine”

Youth Competition in Poetry
Clara Bossi, “Cedars Still Growing”
Leigh Ellis, “Green Christmas”
Hazel Dow, “Sail-Away Stories”

Last modified on Tuesday, 11 May 2021 09:49


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