Vermont College of Fine Arts has chosen eight Vermont writers and readers to be the 2017 Vermont Book Award judges. The judges, each with expertise in one of four genres, are Emily Bernard, Amanda Coplin, Chard deNiord, Grace Greene, Beth McCabe, Kerrin McCadden, Janice Obuchowski, and Tanya Lee Stone.
Nominations for this year’s Vermont Book Award are open until March 1, 2017. The judges will select finalists to be announced in mid-June.
“This year’s judges are writers, teachers, librarians, and maybe more importantly, they’re some of the most passionate supporters of literature in Vermont,” says Miciah Bay Gault, coordinator of the Vermont Book Award and director of the MFA in Writing & Publishing at VCFA.
Emily Bernard, Professor of English and Critical Race and Ethnic Studies at the University of Vermont, is the author of several books including Remember Me to Harlem: The Letters of Langston Hughes and Carl Van Vechten.
Amanda Coplin is a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 honoree and the author of The Orchardist.
Chard deNiord is the author of six books of poetry, including Night Mowing and Interstate.
Grace Greene is the former Youth Services Consultant at the Vermont Department of Libraries and a current sub at the Kellog-Hubbard’s Children’s Library in Montpelier.
Beth McCabe serves as the Director of the Rona Jaffe Foundations Writers’ Awards.
Kerrin McCadden, winner of the 2015 Vermont Book Award, is the author of Landscape with Plywood Silhouettes.
Janice Obuchowski serves as the Fiction Editor at the New England Review and is a recipient of an Emerging Artist Award in literature from the St. Botolph Club Foundation in Boston.
Tanya Lee Stone is an NAACP Image Award-winning author of several books including Courage Has No Color and the forthcoming Girl Rising.
“There is no better way to honor Vermont's extensive literary culture than the Vermont Book Award. Vermont College of Fine Arts has figured out a way to gather all of Vermont's writers and readers as one family, and it doesn't matter that at its core it's a competition—it feels entirely like celebration,” says Kerrin McCadden.
The 2016 prize was awarded to Major Jackson for his poetry collection, Roll Deep, during the Vermont Book Award Gala in September.
The Vermont Book Award is a $5,000 literary prize, now in its third year, created by VCFA to celebrate the literature of Vermont. To be nominated, a book must be a work of outstanding literary merit published in 2016 and fall within one of four categories: children’s literature, creative nonfiction, fiction or poetry. The book’s author must also be a Vermont writer or have deep ties to the state of Vermont.
Books are nominated by a committee of independent booksellers of Vermont. To recommend a book for nomination, the public should contact a local bookseller. Publishers may also nominate books. For more information about the Vermont Book Award visit: http://vcfa.edu/vermont-book-award.