Vermont Book Award

The Vermont Book Award is a new prize created to honor artists with deep connections to the state of Vermont, and to draw attention to a state so uniquely suited for creative enterprise.

VCFA will host the Vermont Book Award next fall (2016). In keeping with our mission of promoting emerging and established artists, the Vermont Book Award will recognize outstanding poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and children’s literature penned by either a Vermont writer or a writer with deep ties to the state of Vermont.

What kinds of books will be nominated? The kinds you like to read, of course.

Books of outstanding literary merit may be nominated in each of the following categories:

  • Poetry
  • Fiction
  • Creative Nonfiction
  • Children’s Lit

To be eligible for this year’s prize, a book must have a publication date between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2015 and must be penned by a Vermont writer or by a writer with deep ties to the state of Vermont. For instance, a writer might have been born and raised in the state of Vermont, but isn’t currently living here. A writer might have family ties in Vermont and have spent significant time in the state as a child or an adult. The setting of the nominated book might reflect these ties.

Books by VCFA staff, faculty, trustees, or current students are not eligible. Self-published books are not eligible.

Who nominates the books?

A special nominating committee, made up of the Independent Booksellers of Vermont, and chaired by Claire Benedict of Bear Pond Books in Montpelier. Publishers may also nominate books.

What is the nomination deadline?

All nominations must be received by March 1st, 2016.

Who chooses the finalists? And the winner?

A panel of seven esteemed judges — writers, teachers, librarians — will first announce a shortlist of finalists in each category. The judges will then decide on one winner. The winning book may be in any category.

Finalists will be announced next summer, and the winner will be revealed at an awards ceremony at VCFA in fall 2016, where he/she will receive a $5000 cash prize.

How can I get involved?

If you know of a book that should be nominated, please contact your local bookstore. Remember all nominations must be received by March 1st, 2016. See list of participating booksellers in the sidebar.

I am a bookseller or publisher, and I'd like to nominate a book.

Great! Please fill out the appropriate nomination form here. Note that if you are a publisher, we will be requiring a physical copy of all nominated works.

Can I attend the awards ceremony?

Yes! Stay tuned for the date of the next gala dinner. Music, dinner, and readings are among the events planned for this exciting evening.


Miciah Bay Gault
Program Director, MFA in Writing & Publishing
Editor, Hunger Mountain

Nominating Committee of Independent Booksellers of Vermont

Bear Pond Books
Claire Benedict, Vermont Book Award Nominating Committee Chair
77 Main St.
Montpelier, VT 05602

Next Chapter Bookstore
Cynthia Duprey
158 North Main St.
Barre, VT 05641

Village Square Booksellers
Alan and Pat Fowler
32 The Square
Bellows Falls, VT 05101

The Bennington Bookshop
Linda Foulsham and Phil Lewis
467 Main Street
Bennington, VT 05201
Connect with them on Facebook here!

Phoenix Books
Tod Gross, Manager
191 Bank Street
Burlington, VT 05401

21 Essex Way
Essex, VT 05452

Galaxy Bookshop
Andrea Jones and Sandy Scott
41 South Main St.
Hardwick, VT 05843

Ebenezer Books
Jennifer (JJ) Indeliclae
2 Lower Main St.
Johnson, VT 05656
Connect with them on Facebook here!

Northshire Books
Debbi Wraga
4869 Main Street
Manchester, VT 05255

The Vermont Book Shop
Becky Dayton
38 Main St.
Middlebury, VT 05753

Norwich Bookstore
Liza Bernard
291 Main St.
Norwich, VT 05055

The Flying Pig Bookstore
Elizabeth Bluemle and Josie Leavitt
5247 Shelburne Road, Suite 102
Shelburne, VT 05482

Bridgeside Books
Hiata DeFeo
29 Stowe St.
Waterbury, VT 05676

Bartleby’s Books and Music
Lisa Sullivan
17 West Main St.
Wilmington, VT 05363